Hurricane Henri

The dogs in Crown Jewel Manor are at it again!
Due to impending Hurricane Henri, there may be a delay in shipping orders. Thank you in advance for your kind patience. Stay safe, mini friends!

♥ Robin

©Copyright 2021 Crown Jewel Miniatures. All rights reserved.

IGMA Artisan Robin Brady-Boxwell

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Name Your Coffee!

Q: What’s In A Name?
A: Coffee!

Shop Crown_Jewel_Miniatures eBay for yours!

Dollhouse Mugs

Coffee, cup o’ joe, java, espresso, cappuccino… call it what you will but it’s a nice hot cup of yummy and I’m serving it to you in tiny mugs personalized with hundreds of names and nicknames!

A Mugs

I bought the empty mugs several years ago as partial inventory of a dollhouse shop that closed in the late 1990’s. The mugs are very well made and no longer in production from this company (Mini Mug House). I filled each one with resin to resemble coffee with cream. The coffee color is not as dark as my pictures- the glare of the glazing on the white porcelain was a little too much for my camera lens. It’s a nice coffee & cream color but also resembles tea and cream if your mini dollhouse inhabitants prefer to drink their resin tea from a mug. 😉


All mugs with names are available via my eBay (ID: Crown_Jewel_Miniatures). They are NOT listed in the Dollhouse Miniatures category because eBay does not allow listings of variations (choices) in the Dolls and Bears section, so please find them under my Items For Sale and not via the Dollhouse Miniatures category. Is your name there, or the name of a friend?

Phrases Mugs

In addition, I have a select number of names in slightly different mugs with blue font:

Blue Font Mugs

Great for a breakfast display at the kitchen table, on a dollhouse coffee table near a magazine or set up a coffee klatch scene in your tiny parlor- the possibilities are endless!

Bottoms up mini friends!

D Mugs


©Copyright 2015 & 2021 Crown Jewel Miniatures. All rights reserved.

IGMA Artisan Robin Brady-Boxwell

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Code Of Conduct Befitting An Artisit –

The International Guild Of Miniature Artisans has a Code of Conduct I believe everyone should review and ascribe to. Member or not, it is often how we conduct ourselves that leaves a lasting impression. Making your impressions positive ones is especially important in today’s world. Here it is in it’s entirety. I couldn’t have said it better…

Code of Conduct Befitting an Artist

All artists should hold themselves to the highest standards of ethical conduct, respecting each other’s creativity, skills and unique place in the world of miniatures. The following guidelines and standards for artists were written by a group of IGMA Artisans and Fellows based on real situations which have arisen in the course of sharing their beautiful work with the world. These guidelines answer many questions about how they feel about their work being copied and outline their wishes as to how they would like their work to be respected, given those various situations.

Inspiring others is often a part of the artist’s mission and each new artist should use such inspiration to develop his or her own signature form of miniature art.

Artists who teach their techniques expect their students will go on to use those techniques in the process of creating work that is distinctly the students’ own.

No artist should take a class and then teach that same class, which offers the same techniques as the original, using another teacher’s written/visual materials or patterns without express written permission from the original teacher.

No artist should copy the work of another artist and offer it for sale. To do so is disrespectful of fellow artists and may negatively impact the collector and student base the original artist has worked hard to build up over the years.

Mere copying does not truly benefit the person who is doing it. Copying what you love is a good way to learn; but the goal of learning is to stretch yourself, and use what you have learned to take the next step. Ultimately, artists should develop work that expresses their own creative vision, and offers something new to collectors.

A wise artist will keep a record of the pieces they have made.

Artistic work is protected by international copyright law from the time of its creation.

All creators of tangible work have a legal right to protect that work, and to ask that others refrain from making copies for sale. This includes miniaturizing the work of any other artist or company; including, but not limited to, miniaturized art, product design, packaging, advertising, logos, etc. If one didn’t create the design, then one must ask permission to use it if it is not in the Public Domain.

Appearance of a work on the internet does not mean it is in the Public Domain. When a work has entered the Public Domain, it means that all copyrights on that work have expired. Copyrights are usually in force until at least 50 years after the death of the holder.

By holding ourselves to the highest standards, we demonstrate the kind of respect and support for our fellow artists which benefits the miniatures world in general. – ©Copyright I.G.M.A. All rights reserved.

Robin ♄

©Copyright 2021 Crown Jewel Miniatures. All rights reserved.

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Crown Jewel Miniatures In The “World’s Most Expensive Dollhouse”?

Photo by Zak DeZon/Bloomberg

Seek And You Shall Find… and What A Find!

I’m stunned! I used Google to search for a “dollhouse castle clock” and stumbled upon my dream dollhouse. It’s a castle, of course. “Astolat Castle” is named for the castle in The Lady of Shallot, a 19th-century ballad by Alfred Lord Tennyson. The crenellated walls are so romantic and has the loveliest torch lights on the exterior and classic topiary on the balcony.

Oh, and it’s bargain priced… only 8.5 million dollars.

No, you’re not seeing things, that really is the price and it sure looks like it’s worth every penny. Scrolling down the photos, you see one meticulously curated room after another. A suit of armor stands sentry by the door. Crystal chandeliers and gilded French furniture lend an air of romance. Aahhh! It’s my dream dollhouse… I can’t make this up!

The library has a… wait. Go back to that last photo… the one with the gilded table… yes that one, the Salon! Is that a cheese board I made? ::: shaking my head ::: Don’t be silly! Ok, let’s move on with this magical mystery tour in the lovely dollhouse castle…

Photo by Zak DeZon/Bloomberg

There’s an amazing library, turreted rooms, a humidor with a fabulous collection of pipes for the mini gent and a bar. Every good dollhouse needs some hooch. Then…

OH MY GOSH! Now my eyes are bugging out of my head, because that turkey, sliced cranberry sauce, etc were definitely made by me… I just can’t believe my eyes… and look, I made the pumpkins in the next photo too! My art is in this incredible dollhouse??? What an honor! This kind of thing does not happen every day! I LOVE seeing my art in the dollhouses of my collectors, they have the most amazing collections but I can honestly say this is the priciest one I’m aware of… to date, lol.

Photo by Zak DeZon/Bloomberg

Photo by Zak DeZon/Bloomberg

Astolat Dollhouse is truly a work of art… and love. Be it humble or expensive, only a true collector expends this much love in bringing a miniature collection to life. It takes a lot of time and effort and the result is beautiful. Shrink me so I can move in?

I believe I know who the collector is, she’s always been fabulous to work with and I hope she sold the dollhouse to someone who will love it for many years to come.

This article was written back in 2015 but it’s still quite relevant today! Here we are in the midst of the horrible Covid-19 pandemic and there it is, folks…

… a miniature roll of “usable” toilet paper.

Photo by Zak DeZon/Bloomberg

As I said, I can’t make this up! You never know where your art will end up. All I know for certain is I love my collectors. They’re amazing people and I’m appreciative to help bring their mini food scenes to life in any small way.

Click here to read the article: World’s Most Expensive Dollhouse

and I’m mentioned here too:

Robin ♄

©Copyright 2015 / Zak DeZon. All rights reserved.
©Copyright 2020 Crown Jewel Miniatures. All rights reserved.

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My First Attempts At Mini Tupperware

Tupperware is quite handy for those times when you feel like throwing out your food another day.” LOL

Tupperware! It’s iconic and as I continue to work on my vintage kitchen roombox (a replica of my Grandmother’s kitchen), I decided to try my hand at making miniature Tupperware in 1:12th scale. These are my first attempts! I made them in turquoise, my favorite color, but my next attempts will be the familiar yellow my grandmother had her roomy kitchen cabinets. As a child, I loved seeing all the mixing bowls, Tupperware and Pyrex pans she had carefully organized on papered shelves.

Meanwhile these tiny prototypes are resting on a chair in my shabby kitchen. A hint of better things to come!

Happy mini-making, friends!

Robin ♄

©Copyright 2019 Crown Jewel Miniatures. All rights reserved.

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Bells Of Ireland, Flowers For Good Luck!

The bells of Ireland, a happy addition to any bouquet!

I love celebrating St. Patrick’s Day every year. It’s a huge holiday in our family, so when I came across this lovely kit in Georgie Steeds’ Etsy shop, I grabbed one right away. I’ve never seen them in miniature, so this was quite a happy surprise!

Still on a flower-making roll, I began this kit during my lunch break from a custom order, and was surprised how quickly I finished. The entire process took only about an hour and the results are sweet indeed! When they are dry, the mini royal florist will deliver them to Crown Jewel Manor and add them to a vase filled with Gosia Suchodolska‘s exquisite roses. A bouquet of beauty and good luck, something we can all appreciate.

Try your hand at making a mini flower kit this week. They’re quite addicting and you can brighten up your mini coffee or kitchen table!

Robin ♄

©Copyright 2019 Crown Jewel Miniatures. All rights reserved.

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New Flowers & Tomato Plants For The Crown Jewel Farm!

“Happiness held is the seed. Happiness shared is the flower.” – John Harrigan

The Crown Jewel Farm is a work in progress. You’ve had a peek at Farmer Jewel’s truck full of produce and my mini pumpkin patch. Last week I made time to build some of the magnificent flower kits I purchased from Moonflower Miniatures.

Thrilled with the results, I thought I would share my tiny crop of irises and yellow cosmos. Both flowers are real showstoppers! The quality of materials included in Ebe’s kits makes for stupendous flowers… the petals are delicate and the leaves of the cosmos are extremely lifelike! I also took a little poetic license and added detail to the iris leaves for depth.

I made the unfinished daisies in the photos using techniques I learned from Ebe and laser-cut daisy petals I purchased a long time ago from Hanky Panky Crafts.

In addition to the tomato plants I made from Georgie Steeds’ kits (shown in my last blog post), I’ve created more tomato plants using leaves I requested from Mary Kinloch and various supplies I’ve had in my “flower-making stash” for years. The tomatoes will eventually be planted in the garden of the farmhouse… another “to-do” project on my horizon.

The tomato plant on the right is incomplete. I ran out of leaves and await the delivery of my next order to complete it. I used several different shades of green to paint the leaves and even some yellow to give the plant a “slightly overwatered” look for added realism.

Happy flower and plant making, mini friends! It’s really quite easy with great quality kits and leaves like these!

Robin ♄

©Copyright 2019 Crown Jewel Miniatures. All rights reserved.

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Crown Jewel Farm

“I would rather be on my farm than be emperor of the world” – George Washington

The Crown Jewel Farm doesn’t have an emperor but it does have a squirrel! Kerri Pajutee has created magic once again and this tiny squirrel named Bob hopped onto Farmer Jewel’s truck to take a peek at the pumpkin patch. Bob is the favorite pet at the farm… expect to see a lot more of him in my photos, even at the kitchen door.

The Crown Jewel pumpkin patch is a combination of my own handmade leaves and a kit. I made several leaves using textured paper from Japan, the crinkled texture really added to the realism. I made my own pumpkins and plan to add more in the autumn. The other leaves, pumpkin blossoms and curly tendrils were part of the kit.

The red tractor is one of my recent discoveries at an antique shop! It’s roughly 1:12th scale and my imagination is in full bloom with ideas for various ways to incorporate it in my miniature scenes.

It’s so nice to find time to make a few things for myself this summer. Last month I finished a tomato plant kit using my own tomatoes. It’s planted in a wooden bucket for now but will eventually become a permanent part of the royal garden on the Crown Jewel Farm. Both kits, pumpkin and tomato were purchased from The Minaiture Garden via Etsy. I love Georgie’s kits!

The garden tools and wheelbarrow are Sir Thomas Thumb miniatures and I made all of the fruit and vegetables.

Farm-to-table food is the best on earth, even in miniature. Happy summer, mini friends!

Robin ♄

©Copyright 2019 Crown Jewel Miniatures. All rights reserved.

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Rags To Riches – What’s Hiding In Your Miniature Stash?

“The hidden treasure that lies in plain sight!”

Collecting miniatures is such a lovely pastime and for those of us who have been avid collecters for decades it can lead to two very important considerations… downsizing and insuring our collections. Last year I was given a lovely little French notebook with blank pages and recently put it to good use as an inventory ledger. Unsure where to start, I began with the first room in my dollhouse and worked my way through all the rest… and then my “stash”. I did not list every item, just the pieces I felt were noteworthy- famous maker or the price paid. I listed the maker, price paid and a brief description.

At this point I felt confident that I had a comprehensive accounting of the “valuables” in my dollhouse and stash. I tallied up the minis in my little inventory ledger. I then knew the base acquisition value (vs. actual monetary value or open market price) of my dollhouse and its contents (what you pay for an item is not its actual worth, that is determined by many other factors including appreciation, collectibility, etc but we won’t get into the weeds on that). Like most prolific collectors, I assumed my collection wasn’t worth much but seeing it on paper made me wonder if I should insure it and who to ask. Are there dedicated insurers of miniature collections out there, or pencil-pushers who will look at me like I have two heads when I explain that I have a custom built dollhouse with some crystal chandeliers and a Randall Zadar figurine? This question is currently on hold until I do a little research and talk with those in the mini world who are knowledgeable about such things.

Meanwhile, I also weeded out pieces I no longer fancy and put them into the “downsize pile” (which quickly became mountainous) to sell at a later date and let someone else enjoy. Sound like a good plan? I thought so too, until the unimaginable happened.

Suffice it to say I’ve been collecting long enough to believe that I had a grip on the ordinary vs. the collectible/valuable miniatures in my collection… until I began shopping online for a mini basket to use in an upcoming project.

The funny thing about rabbit holes is you fall into them before you even know they are there. Just saying…

There I was, surfing eBay and then Etsy looking for a basket when I noticed a fancy wall table similar to one I had purchased on eBay in the 1990’s. I bought two tables actually, a matching pair with no maker marks, and paid about $14.00 for both. Neither table is itemized in my inventory ledger because I didn’t pay much for them and didn’t know who made them. Well, the joke was on me because further research revealed the tables were made by a giant among miniature artists- the late Eugene Kupjack and being sold today for approximately $1,500.00 for the pair! Had I failed to include them in my ledger, my collection will not be adequately insured and, I cringe to say this, had I not found them quite so enchanting, I might have put them in the downsize pile and sold them without knowing what they are!

So what’s hiding in your miniature stash?

Have you ever wondered? Don’t assume it’s “not much” as I did. Most of my minis were collected via eBay in the 1990’s during a time when our kids were little and my budget was even smaller. I also have an affinity for vintage pieces and was happy to dig through old boxes of “junk” at dollhouse shops that had been in business for decades. A few pennies here and there and I went home with some hidden treasures that nobody else saw much value in and the same could be true for you, especially if you’re a bargain hunter.

If you have unusual or unmarked pieces in your possession, why not do a Google search and see what you can find? Post photos on social media and see if others can identify them. Chances are someone will recognize what you have and offer a little insight.

Above all, do yourself (and your family) a favor and consider creating an inventory ledger. With a few exceptions (like mine), you know your collection better than anyone else. Only you can know what you paid for an item and where you found it or who made it. Unless your family shares your devotion to dollhouse miniatures, they are in the dark when it comes to value. I’ve had relatives who admired a piece of Bespaq furniture and were shocked by the price (I leave/put the price tags on the bottom of my minis)!

Even if you do not follow through with insuring your collection, you and your family will know what you have and roughly what it’s worth. A “few dollars” spent here and there over the years really adds up and it’s good to know where you are. You may discover a jewel in the rough, or not. In one sense it’s kind of like a lottery… you can’t win if you don’t play.

Sorting through minis is fun and you may hit the Eugene Kupjack-pot!

Robin ♄

©Copyright 2019 Crown Jewel Miniatures. All rights reserved.

Posted in How To Make Miniature Food | 1 Comment

A Bushel Of Farm Fresh Vegetables… And Baskets Of Appreciation!

“Good food grows on a farm but good friends grow in your heart” -Me

Kathleen Holmes has a rare talent for fine curating when it comes to her dollhouse and miniature scenes. With her help, I was able to find a Franklin Mint Model T truck like one recently featured in front of her dollhouse. Eventually I will customize it (for which I heartily apologize to the serious collectors of Franklin Mint cars & trucks!) but I was so enchanted with it when it arrived, I immediately tossed a few fresh veggies into the bed.

For now it sits on the mantel in our living room until I can situate it in a scene with gravel, grass, trees, etc. The dog, boots, shovel and order receipts are the genius addition of my husband who adores making comical changes to my collections. (Have you ever woke up to find a real peach in your dollhouse kitchen or a light bulb amid the building supplies for a “bright idea” you announced the night before?).

Husbands are rarely to be trusted in the presence of miniatures! 😍

My sincere appreciation to Kathleen for sharing her sources, and ideas, with the rest of us. Every scene is an inspiration!

Robin ♄

©Copyright 2019 Crown Jewel Miniatures. All rights reserved.

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Calling All Dollhouse Miniaturists & Collectors! Surf’s Up!

“Log on and surf the world of miniatures!”

Connecting with fellow miniature enthusiasts online is easier now than ever before. Instagram reveals a parade of tiny creations, Facebook keeps us current on who-is-making-what and various show schedules and we trade and connect on Etsy, eBay and websites from mini makers all over the world.

It’s a wonderful mini life!

Sharing a passion for miniatures, we come across fantastic collections, amazing artists and those with a true gift for curating and arranging miniatures. Surf the internet during lunch and off hours and you will find the most amazing miniatures! I’ve learned a few wiring tips last week, checked in on the progress of Giac’s Late Victorian English Manor (he boggles the imagination with his talent for intricacy), read all about the upcoming Colonial Williamsburg classes on the fascinating IGMA Blog, took a peek at Tim O’Dell‘s latest amazing artistry (have you see his phone poles, water faucets and farm tables?!) and kept abreast of the enchanting home life scenes in Kathleen Holmes‘ amazing and ever evolving dollhouse!!

I found gorgeous “wrought iron” doormats and shelving from a very talented mini maker in the Netherlands (Arjen Spinhoven!), marveled at the most realistic tiny parakeets I’ve ever seen (Sadie Campbell literally brings them to life!) and literally sighed with delight over the delicate beauty of realistic roses and petals floating in Gosia Suchadolska’s little glass bathtub!

On a more poignant note, have you noticed the announcement (and stunning photo!) now on Karen Fuller’s Etsy shop? Take heart! Out of the rubble, revival will be more glorious than ever!

I know it’s not easy to find “me time” these days, it’s extremely difficult for me too, but if you can grab a few minutes here and there, a vast ocean of mini friends, tiny raptures and useful information awaits!

Robin ♄

©Copyright 2019 Crown Jewel Miniatures. All rights reserved.

Posted in How To Make Miniature Food | 1 Comment

Vintage Dollhouse Chandelier Kits

“I guess like most people I’m a bargain-hunter. I love a bargain. I found out there’s two prices on everything. There’s the Rodeo Drive price and there’s the same merchandise down the street.” -Liberace

Snowy, housebound weekends are great inspiration to make new miniatures!

Crown Jewel Manor is undergoing renovations lately and needs chandeliers in several rooms. Fortunately I had three vintage chandelier kits in my lighting stash and faced with three days of snowfall, I grabbed my needlenose pliers and eye magnifiers. All kits are marked 1983 and still sealed, but I’ve had the kits for decades and had no idea if the components were still good. I was happily surprised!

Kadelli Kit KB-505 by Jeri Futvoye- Regency chandelier

Happy Unicorn Kit B by Phyllis Tucker- Euphrosyne (Joy)

Kadelli Kit KB-501 by Jeri Futvoye – Crystal Prism

If you have any of these kits in your stash, read all instructions before you begin. They’re fairly straightforward but it’s easy to make time-consuming mistakes if you’re unfamiliar with the parts or the order of assembly (I speak from experience, lol). Other observations…

Kadeli Kits:

-The components are divided into tiny bags with color coded dots. If the dots on the bags have fallen off, read through the instructions for each color code, identify the parts and mark your bags.
-The “candles” are white poly-coated wire rods that you snip to size. There are plenty of realistic candles on the market now, so I chose not to use the wire and have ordered Chrysnbon candles instead. This is why you do not see candles on the Regency chandelier in these photos.
-This kit came with an entire bag of components to use for practice! The most difficult part is making a loop on the end of the head pins using needlenose pliers, but practice makes perfect and after six attempts, I found it very easy to do.
-Kadelli kits came with the option to electrify, (which I did), but the bulbs are not hidden well… you have to be a little creative. Some wire will show, there is no way around it.


Note the candles have not yet been added…

Phyllis Tucker Euphrosyne Kit:

-There was some oxidization on the brass head pins in the Tucker kit and a few brass filigree caps were missing too. I found similar (almost identical) parts in my stash of jewelry findings to use as replacements.
-The bulb is enclosed within the ropes of crystals
-I found the Tucker kit easier to assemble due to its simplicity

Note the bare walls. This room is currently under renovation. See my earlier post on wallpaper removal.

I have many kits in my stash “to make someday” and it feels wonderful to switch off and try something different. If you’re on the fence about tackling one of these kits, I highly recommend you give it a try. The end result is definitely worth it! I paid less than $20. for each kit and considering the price of crystal chandeliers these days, it was quite a bargain in two respects. First it cost less and second I have learned so much from the instructions that I can easily make more crystal chandeliers, candelabras, lamps, etc! I saved all three sets of instructions for future reference and the components are readily available in craft stores and online.

Kadelli Crystal Prism:

Note the substitution of Chrysnbon candles instead of the coated wire that came with the kit…

Gosh, three crystal chandeliers in one weekend. Something tells me Liberace would be proud!

Robin ♄

©Copyright 2019 Crown Jewel Miniatures. All rights reserved.

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Easter Dinner In The Dollhouse

A Strong Family Has Well Worn Seats At The Dinner Table

Where will your dollhouse family be this year come April 21st? If they’re gathering around your mini dining room table, a hyper-realistic Easter dinner will set the scene for an amazing holiday. I’ve prepared platters of succulent hams, tiny fresh-baked clover rolls, bowls of creamy mashed potatoes, bowls filled with spring peas & carrot bits with a pat of melting butter…

And, of course, pristine white plates of Easter dinner…

Peppercorn crusted ham – Baked pineapple – Mashed potatoes – Peas & carrots – Clover rolls – Baked sweet potatoes – Mustard pots – it’s all here…

If they have room for dessert, there are fluffy cupcakes with luscious whipped cream in all the pastel colors of spring…

When Easter day in your dollhouse comes to a close, your dollhouse family will be asleep in their mini beds with jelly beans in their resin tummies and apple pie leftovers on the kitchen counter for breakfast…

All this and more is now available now at Crown Jewel Miniatures – ETSY and it doesn’t end here. I have plans for more Easter food in the coming weeks. Just set the tiny table with your springtime best and keep an eye on my shop for more.

Robin ♄

©Copyright 2019 Crown Jewel Miniatures. All rights reserved.

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Chestnuts In A… Popcorn Popper?

“There is probably a smell of roasted chestnuts and other good comfortable things all the time, for we are telling Winter Stories – Ghost Stories, or more shame for us – round the Christmas fire; and we have never stirred, except to draw a little nearer to it.” -Charles Dickens

Yes! I’ve always been one to think outside the box, so when I noticed an old fashioned popcorn popper in Kathleen Holmes‘s collection (isn’t her dollhouse fantastic? I love it!), I knew I had to have one. Kind and helpful as ever, she helped me find one online and within days I had this little treasure in my hands.

I was amazed when I opened the box. It’s extremely well made and far more recherchĂ© in person. At first I considered creating a mini ‘popcorn making scene’ in front of a camp fire, fireplace or maybe on a stovetop with a jar of popcorn, an open package of butter, a salt (or cheese) shaker or maybe with a bag of caramels nearby. Then my creativity went into overdrive and I imagined something quite different…

The popcorn popper is just a basket after all. You decide what to put it in, right? I considered using it as a shrimp basket on a charcoal grill, but that’s summer fare. It’s winter time and I love cozy Christmas scenes in front of a good blaze. Suddenly I decided to make a miniature ‘chestnut roasting scene’!

Chestnuts! ~ Cue Nat King Cole ~

I envisioned chestnuts in a wood bowl, a few chestnuts in the basket, a roaring fire in an Inglenook fireplace… mugs filled with hot cocoa, a tray of Christmas cookies and a cozy blanket for two. I’m a hopeless romantic, can you tell?

I don’t have an Inglenook fireplace and must substitute electric embers for the fire, but the rest is definitely in my wheelhouse! I’m so excited about this project, I may stage the scene in more than one room.

Will I stage a cozy scene as described above in the Crown Jewel Manor drawing room, or something a little more modest in my mini gent’s library with brandy, a cheese tray, slippers and a good book? Stay tuned to my blog to see!

Meanwhile, here’s a look at my popcorn popper and the first chestnuts I have made. The gorgeous wood bowl belongs to Kathleen and I look forward to seeing the chestnuts in her dollhouse too.

You can’t go wrong with chestnuts during the holidays. Toss a handful into a bowl of pine cones… use them on Christmas wreaths with dried fruit and raffia… or join me in the CJM drawing room and groove to Nat King Cole as we celebrate the holidays “mini style”. Many thanks to Kathleen for showing me where to find the popcorn popper. The inspiration I get from this piece is especially delightful this time of year.

Merry Christmas & Happy Holidays, from my house to yours, mini friends!

Robin ♄

©Copyright 2018 Crown Jewel Miniatures. All rights reserved.

Posted in Announcements, Crown Jewel Imaginarium, New Miniature Art! | Leave a comment

Cover & Feature Article in Artisans In Miniature iMag!

Cover To Cover, It’s Magic In Miniature!

Exciting news! Artisans In Miniature “Harvest & Halloween” iMag issue 68 is out and guess who has the cover and a feature article? As always the entire issue of the iMag is beautifully formatted and I give extra appreciation to editor Sally Watson for doing such a spectacular job, even though she was hospitalized. Sally was a dream to work with and the layout of the cover and the feature on my art are the work of a true professional.

Many thanks to Sally and the AIM staff. You’re all amazing people and your dedication and commitment shines with every issue. Happy Harvest & Halloween everyone and check out the AIM iMag… it’s free!

Robin ♄

©Copyright 2018 Crown Jewel Miniatures. All rights reserved.

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Autumn Apple Pie

Apples, Cinnamon, Buttery, Flaky Pie Crust… It must be fall!

We think of apple pie as all-American but you may be surprised to learn that the first recipe for apple pie goes back to 1381 England. Geoffrey Chaucer’s written recipe must have been delicious, it included apples, figs, raisins, pears and a pastry shell with absolutely no sugar.

Dutch apple pies date back to the 1600s and also included lemon, cinnamon and sometimes raisins and icing. I’ve just started a Dutch apple pie… no crumbles on the top yet, but it’s coming along nicely. Here’s a sneak peek…

Can you just imagine the warm fragrance of apples & cinnamon baking in the oven? There are several pies in progress on my tile and I will list them in my Etsy as time allows. Until then, enjoy a slice of real apple pie this fall and give a nod to Geoffrey Chaucer for a brilliant idea!

Robin ♄

©Copyright 2018 Crown Jewel Miniatures. All rights reserved.

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Introducing Dracula’s Pastry Cupboard©, the 2018 edition of the Crown Jewel Miniatures Annual Halloween series!

Dracula’s Pastry Cupboard© is the eighth in the series, as shown in Issue #68 of Artisans In Miniature.

This is a one of a kind and is now available via my Etsy shop just in time for the Halloween holiday. It will not be reproduced, so grab it while you can!

Count Dracula has benefited greatly from the new tax cuts and decided to splurge on a new coffin, but what’s a vampire to do with the old one? Inspired by the 2011 edition in the series, Chef Ina Coffin©, I helped our favorite Count repurpose another coffin in a macabre bakery fixture and now he is eager to sink his famous fangs into the blood orange filled layer cake.

Who knew Count Dracula had a sweet tooth?

Drac moved his pillow and cloak to his new casket, but as you can see he insisted on leaving his favorite “poison” sign inside this one. I tried to explain it wasn’t appropriate for a display of baked goods, but he gave me that hungry stare that sent a chill up my spine, so I left it in and further humored him by giving it a fresh coat of paint and black and white decorative accents to show off his style. Top to bottom, the shelves are crammed with everything your mini ghoul will need for a well stocked candy cupboard or sinister display in your dollhouse bakery.

The top shelf has an orange frosted cake topped with fondant ghosts stirring a green apple cauldron filled with blue raspberry syrup. The Count’s favorite vintage of plasma wine and crimson cup wine glass are nestled close to a tall jar of orange and cream candies, red velvet tarts with cherry vanilla whipped cream, maple & oak leaf glazed sugar cookies, a lime wafer sandwich cookie, 2 gourds and autumn leaves.

The second shelf serves a leaf shaped plate with more maple glazed sugar cookies, 2 very tiny pumpkins, a carnival gourd, a package of citrus candy sticks, a vanilla cupcake with blueberry whipped cream, a tiny squash gourd, a blackberry galette on a black plate, maple & oak leaf cookies and a chocolate sculpture of a haunted tree complete with a goblin head, candy rocks near the base and a blue raspberry filled cookie.

Shelf three offers a twisted lollipop, chocolate cupcake with tall raspberry whipped cream, a sugar pumpkin, bag of lime candy sticks, citrus candy stick, 2 gourds, fall leaves and an iced blackberry tart on a black plate.

On the bottom shelf we have the Count’s favorite blood orange jelly cake. As you can see, he couldn’t wait to bite into a few slices, but don’t despair… I’m sending you one loose slice to display as you wish. Served on a ruffled glass cake plate, this vanilla layer cake with blood orange filling, vanilla frosting is topped with a festive candy stick and a lime chocolate decoration. Two additional autumn leaves complete the scene.

Once again the door to imagination has been thrown wide open- literally. A fancy coffin? Luscious cookies and cakes served under a poison sticker? Dracula’s Pastry Cupboard© gives a whole new meaning to “think outside the box”. Want to try a bite? Go ahead, choose your treat! They look delicious and the coffin is tastefully decorated. How can you go wrong? One of two possibilities is certain… you’ll either get a trick, or a treat… and it’s all in the name of fun. Just be sure to make your selection before Drac returns…

He prefers to dine solo, and legend has it he can be a real pain in the neck with unexpected visitors.

Dracula’s Pastry Cupboard© is a fun celebration of Halloween and I hope it gives as much pleasure as I had in making it. <3 Happy Halloween! Robin ♄ ©Copyright 2018 Crown Jewel Miniatures. All rights reserved.

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My 2018 Custom Order List Is Closed

Closing The 2018 Custom Order List Early

Due to family commitments, my custom order list is now closed for the year, effective immediately. Typically the list is open from January through October but this year I need to cut it short by a few weeks to due to major milestones and happy celebrations within my family.

The list will resume at the end of the first week in January.

Thank you all for your kind understanding and well wishes. These are happy times for my family and me, and I look forward to discussing new custom orders with you in the new year.

Meanwhile I will continue to create and list new art in my Etsy shop! The Imaginarium is humming with new projects and ideas and they’re all coming your way! I have plenty of autumn and Christmas minis in production and it’s almost time to unveil the Crown Jewel Miniatures Annual Halloween collectible! Here’s a hint:

Who is well dressed, loves the ladies and has a dashing French title?

If you guessed Count Dracula, you’re right! Drac has a delicious surprise in store for you. Watch this space to learn more!

Robin ♄

©Copyright 2018 Crown Jewel Miniatures. All rights reserved.

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A Day In The Life Of a 1:12 Food Miniaturist…

What’s Cookie Dough Without A Cookie Cutter?

Not much, if you ask me, so when I made two batches of autumn sugar cookies for a pair of prep board scenes, I rolled out the dough nice and thin, keeping it in true 1:12th scale. I then cut out a few and arranged them on a baking sheet, made a little ball of raw cookie dough, textured and “browned” some for a fresh baked effect, brushed a few others with fall flavored glazes… spiced pumpkin, maple, chocolate and orange, and sat back to take stock of my latest creations.

That’s when my realism meter went off.

It’s not very realistic to have cutout cookie dough without a cookie cutter! Now I’ve done this before… rolled out dough for biscuits and cookies, and then whipped up a tiny round cookie cutter. Simple. Maple leaves are not as easy, especially when the leaf cutter I used has a very nicely detailed shape. Still, I needed a cookie cutter, so I grabbed various pieces of sheet metal in different strengths and hoped for the best.

Fortunately the miniature cookie cutter gods smiled on me. In the process of making 2 cookie cutters that pass muster for a maple leaf, I also managed to salvage the ones I wrecked, thus the freeform cookie cutters you see on the right side of my picture. I have no idea what they are, or how I shall use them. They look like something out of a Rorschach test! LOL One of my collectors, a truly lovely lady who shall remain nameless, is likely nodding her head as she reads this.

It’s all in a days work! Give me a day or two and I’ll list the entire set in my Etsy shop. Until then, remember… never give up! You usually get what you need. 😉

Robin ♄

©Copyright 2018 Crown Jewel Miniatures. All rights reserved.

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A Basket Of Summer Berries On Your Dollhouse Porch

Grab some flour and sugar and let’s make something berry delicious!

We have a bumper crop of summer berries here in New England and they’re on their way from the mini farm to your dollhouse table!

Take a handful of blueberries, raspberries, blackberries, strawberries, add a few cherries for good measure, mix it all up with a little chalk, glue and mini magic and what do you get? Berry dessert trays, berry pies, berry cobbler and an extra helping of hyper realism for your dollhouse. It was a berry fun week here in the CJM Imaginarium and I made a few goodies so grab your mini spoon, pass the whipped cream and enjoy!


©Copyright 2018 Crown Jewel Miniatures. All rights reserved.

IGMA Artisan Robin Brady-Boxwell

Posted in New Miniature Art! | Leave a comment

Rooting For Karen Fuller of K&J Metalworks

Sometimes it’s not about the miniatures, it’s about being a miniature family.

Sometimes we need someone simply to be there. Not to fix or do anything in particular. Just to let us know we are supported and cared for.

Over the weekend I learned from Karen Fuller of K&J Metalworks that she lost her home, shop, miniatures and all her tooling to the devastating Thomas Fire in Ventura, CA. I think we can all imagine the horror of losing our homes and further imagine the devastation of losing all the tools & materials we make over the course of a lifetime which we use to create our art and make a living. I don’t know how a person bounces back from heavy loss. I just know my heart is reaching out from the East Coast to the West Coast and giving Karen a big hug.

I don’t know Karen personally, I’m more familiar with her incredible talent. I only had limited interaction with her in 2015 when I purchased one of her amazing refrigerators. We traded a few emails and her warmth and genuine spirit impressed me that her collectors meant far more to her than her art. I found her to be a lovely, wonderful, truly caring person and hoped to trade with her again. As usual, you make your purchase, plan for more “someday”, your life gets busy and you drift onward. It’s the nature of a successful business transaction… but then something like this situation comes along and suddenly you’re reminded that life is unpredictable.

The Thomas Fire was the 8th most destructive fire in CA and I’m grateful that Karen is still with us and those who love her… many lives were lost. This is a sobering reminder that there is much, much more to our lives beyond the lovely art we make & collect. Behind the scenes there are lives and circumstances not on display and I invite you all to join me in prayers and support for Karen. As she rebuilds her home, life and eventually her tools and business our love and encouragement are needed. Please keep her in your hearts and minds and pray that her recovery from this terrible fire is swift and harmonious.

Fine miniatures don’t make themselves. People make miniatures, and there is no better encouragement for regrouping and mini making than the love & support of the people in our miniature family. Hang in there Karen, we’ll keep the light on for you…


©Copyright 2018 Crown Jewel Miniatures. All rights reserved.

IGMA Artisan Robin Brady-Boxwell

Posted in Announcements | 1 Comment

Losing Miniature Collector Magazine

Farewell Miniature Collector

Poetry is the opening and closing of a door, leaving those who look through to guess what is seen during the moment.

Miniature Collector was poetry in small scale and to coin one of their featured titles, if we take a peek backward “Through The Looking Glass”, we’re left with lots of happy memories.

It seems like yesterday… I posted to this blog in utter amazement because Miniature Collector magazine reached out to me to ask if they could feature my art on their venerated pages. I was not an IGMA Artisan then, I was just putting my heart and passion for hyper realism in miniature into my clay and hoping for a decent result. I still don’t know how they “discovered” me in 2012. Someone on their editorial team must have come across my art on the internet. I only wish I knew who it was so I could thank them.

It’s so much fun to have your art shown in a magazine. It’s a real thrill when a magazine reaches out to invite you in, instead of the other way around… but I have to say that for me personally, it was a true honor to be in Miniature Collector. Readers know the pages of Miniature Collector featured the best in the business- true artists whose passion leapt off the page and made you want to buy everything mini you saw! To be among them is still humbling for me. I guess I’m a perfectionist in the sense I’ll never think my art is “good enough”. I keep changing materials and techniques, always trying to improve, not satisfied with the status quo…

Now you know why I (and thousands of others) loved Miniature Collector. When you keep reaching for the best, you look for the best and you knew you would find the best on the pages of Miniature Collector. Just looking at the line up in 2013, I’m starstruck at the talent… Bluette Meloney, Nancy VanHorn, Barbara Studebaker and Miyuki Kobayashi, just to name a few. Martha Puff, Cindy Erickson and other talented writers drew us into the backstories of collectors, enthusiasts, mini makers, Artisans and Fellows. What a treasure trove!

I used to do a little jig when I found an issue waiting for me in the mailbox. Out came my teacup and I’d curl up on the couch reading it cover to cover, completely absorbed in the Lilliputian magic before my eyes. In many ways it was a little bit of Christmas, year round. Fun, imaginative, inspiring and happy. Oh, so happy!

Apparently Scott Publications closed its doors a few weeks ago. Several people in the miniature community posted the sad news on social media. By one account, Managing Editor Ruth Keessen fell from a ladder while cleaning gutters and broke her back. For personal reasons, they decided to close shop. The outpouring of compassion is heartwarming, as are the calls for someone to buy the company and keep the subscriptions coming.

I will miss the magazine in so many ways. Doug Kroll was awesome in so many ways! He was so much more than advertising, he was the “voice” of Miniature Collector, to me. He had all the answers and never left me waiting for adcopy or advice. Cindy Erickson was delightful, she wove my words into the article without distorting the focus on my art. I could go on but let me just say, this was a quality team and it showed in the final product.

Farewell Miniature Collector. I found hours of enjoyment between your pages and I’ll never stop peeking Through The Looking Glass.

December 2013

December 2013


©Copyright 2018 Crown Jewel Miniatures. All rights reserved.

IGMA Artisan Robin Brady-Boxwell

Posted in Announcements | 15 Comments

Society Ladies’ Lunch… Pearls & Crimson Lipstick Required.

Keep calm and eat shrimp!

One society maven leaned over her chardonnay and whispered to the other a startling confession: “Darling, I’m on a seafood diet. I see food and I eat it.”

A simple shrimp salad seems to be the perfect lunch while spending an afternoon with friends & I’m serving these on elegant little plates rimmed in gold that your mini maven is sure to appreciate. My hyper-realistic Boston lettuce is mixed with red lettuce, a little cucumber, several pieces of succulent shrimp and a tiny slice of lemon. Perfect for a ladies’ lunch or a romantic dinner for two in your dollhouse. Pour the wine!

Available now via my Etsy shop. Happy summer!


©Copyright 2018 Crown Jewel Miniatures. All rights reserved.

IGMA Artisan Robin Brady-Boxwell

Posted in New Miniature Art! | Leave a comment

Take-Out Food in 1:12th Scale

Grilled Pita Sandwiches, Tacos & Stuffed Clams!

Taco ’bout awesome!

It’s summer time and folks are traveling, spending time outdoors & some are leaving their offices to visit food trucks on their lunch break. Whatever keeps your mini people busy this summer, take-out food is sure to be on the menu! This week I’ve listed the tiniest take-out containers lined with a sheet of kitchen paper, serving some really delicious selections!

Choose from tacos & guacamole, grilled pita gourmet sandwiches stuffed with turkey, cucumbers, tomato & lettuce or if those tiny palates prefer seafood, check out my stuffed clams & tartar sauce!

Available now via my Etsy shop. Happy summer!


©Copyright 2018 Crown Jewel Miniatures. All rights reserved.

IGMA Artisan Robin Brady-Boxwell

Posted in New Miniature Art! | Leave a comment

Thanksgiving Morning In The Kitchen

Just Like Mom & Grandma Used To Make!

Home kitchens are usually busy but never more bustling than on Thanksgiving morning. Mom, Grandma, Aunt Mabel… or Dad and Uncle Bob… the names change from kitchen to kitchen and are just as varied as the menu of family favorites but one thing is certain… holiday meals are a labor of love. I love autumn! It’s the beginning of the holiday season and spending quality time with those we love the most. In our home, stuffed, roasted turkey is the star of the dinner table but it takes a lot of work to get it from the market to the turkey platter and this year I wanted to celebrate all the cooks who work so hard behind the scenes.

“Stuffing The Turkey” is a one-of-a-kind Thanksgiving extravaganza! My first goal is always realism, but I also wanted to bring the harvest indoors. Gourds, pumpkins, fresh apples & butternut squash color the landscape of the table… offsetting a raw turkey (which is never a delight to the eye, except to the most passionate chefs). Fresh baked pie, breads, & biscuits… baskets lined with warm plaid colors… it’s all here… right down to the spool of kitchen string to truss the turkey and my exclusive turkey baster!

This tribute to the unsung heroes of the holiday kitchen will find a home with one special collector and I hope he or she enjoys owning it as much as I enjoyed creating it. Happy Thanksgiving everyone! May your holidays be warm, cozy and filled with good food, loving arms and happy kitchens!

Available now via my Etsy shop.


©Copyright 2017 Crown Jewel Miniatures. All rights reserved.

IGMA Artisan Robin Brady-Boxwell

Posted in New Miniature Art! | Leave a comment

Pine Cones, Autumn Leaves and… Cheese

Cheese, wine and friends have one thing in common, they’re all better when they’re old.

Pine cones are lovely when paired with leaves, and leaves are lovely when paired with…

Did you guess what I did with the leaves shown in my last post? They were the perfect accent for my autumn fruit, wine & cheese boards!

I added real pine cones in keeping with the season and it inspired another new project I hope to begin soon (watch this space!). Meanwhile, here are a few additional photos of my fruit, cheese & wine tributes to fall. Each is one-of-a-kind…

Available now via my Etsy shop.


©Copyright 2017 Crown Jewel Miniatures. All rights reserved.

IGMA Artisan Robin Brady-Boxwell

Posted in New Miniature Art! | 1 Comment

Autumn Is A Second Spring When Every Leaf Is A Flower

The rustling of the leaves is like a low hymn to nature.

As mentioned in my last post, accessories are often created in the Crown Jewel Miniatures Imaginarium to display my 1:12th food art. I have been on the hunt for realistic 1-inch scale fall leaves for a very long time without success, so I gathered materials over the summer to experiment with leaf making and this morning I got started.

I used rice paper, silk paper, mini punches, watercolors, etc and set to work. Here’s a peek (the leaves were only 3/4 done at the time these photos were taken)…

I only needed a few for mini food displays but I made tons because I want them for an outdoor scene in my private collection. The process is a bit tedious, and today I have even more respect for the pros, like Mary Kinloch, who create the most gorgeous flowers and plants and make it look easy. 🙂

To learn how I made use of them, stay tuned to my Etsy shop today! I had a lot of fun making the leaves but they’re just an accent for my food displays and I’m about to launch two new pieces. I will list them shortly.

Hint: Pine cones are lovely when paired with leaves, and leaves are lovely when paired with…


©Copyright 2017 Crown Jewel Miniatures. All rights reserved.

IGMA Artisan Robin Brady-Boxwell

Posted in Crown Jewel Imaginarium, Making Miniatures | Leave a comment

Crown Jewel Cutting Boards

A Peek Inside In The Crown Jewel Miniatures Imaginarium

“Necessity can be the springboard to success!”

Julia Child once said “Cooking is like love, it should be entered into with abandon or not at all”, and that’s how I feel about making 1:12 food art. I’m constantly searching for better servingware and sourcing true 1:12th scale items is often a challenge. Dishes are never thin enough, pots & pans are often chunky and baking pans that meet all the requirements are plastic and impossible to bake with polymer clay inside. (TIP: Make a mold of the interior of plastic pots & pans then bake your polymer clay in the mold, cool and transfer to the plastic pan).

Today I wanted slim, thin cutting boards & serving paddles and decided to try my hand at making them myself. I purchased a strip of bass wood at the craft store and grabbed my trusty Easy Cutter and this is the result of my very first attempt at making cutting boards:

I just measured and cut the length I wanted, used my cutters to nip the corners and around the handle, sanded the contours and used a pin vise to make a hole for the rope. I applied walnut stain, signed the bottom and finished with sealer.

It was easy, quick and as time goes on I will get a little fancier with shapes and handles and use other stains and finishes for a variety of options. Making 1:12 food art entails more than just crafting the food; utensils and servingware are a fun part of the process.

Happy crafting, mini friends!


©Copyright 2017 Crown Jewel Miniatures. All rights reserved.

IGMA Artisan Robin Brady-Boxwell

Posted in Crown Jewel Imaginarium, Making Miniatures | Leave a comment

Fall Harvest On The Crown Jewel Farm

What’s Cooking In The Crown Jewel Miniatures Imaginarium?

“Not make miniature food every day? You must be out of your gourd!”

It’s true, I’m always making something. Every day presents new possibilities and I love carrying my morning coffee into the Imaginarium to begin a new project. Having finished a bushel of apples yesterday, I turned my focus to other fall favorites today… gourds, sugar pumpkins and butternut squash. I need a little of each, plus the apples, for a special project I have in mind.

The gourds are not finished but here is a peek at day 2 of my autumn harvest…


©Copyright 2017 Crown Jewel Miniatures. All rights reserved.

IGMA Artisan Robin Brady-Boxwell

Posted in Crown Jewel Imaginarium, Making Miniatures | Leave a comment

See What’s Cooking Today In The Crown Jewel Imaginarium!

An Apple A Day…

Crisp fall apples! These mini Granny Smith’s and MacIntosh have not been baked or sealed yet, so the color will lighten up after baking, but here’s a peek at my tile this morning…


©Copyright 2017 Crown Jewel Miniatures. All rights reserved.

IGMA Artisan Robin Brady-Boxwell

Posted in Crown Jewel Imaginarium | Leave a comment

Frequently Asked Questions

Insight Into The Crown Jewel Miniatures Imaginarium…

What brand of chalk pastels do you use and why?
I have a few favorites and the one thing they all have in common is intense pigment and permanent colors that do not fade. Choosing soft pastels can be confusing… every brand claims to be “the most color fast”, “the best available”, etc but only when you work with it several times and save your art for several years will you truly know if the claims are true. I use Rembrandt, Unison, Daler-Rowney and Loew-Cornell (and like them best, in that order). I have also used Sennelier, Mungyo, Art Pro and Prismacolor but I don’t recommend them for various reasons (too gritty, color doesn’t last or isn’t strong enough or not enough variety in color). You may be surprised to find Loew-Cornell on my list as it’s not a premium brand but it’s the diamond in the rough! I pay more for my chalks, clays, and other premium supplies because they give me a far better finished product.

Do you give classes or tutorials?
No. I’ve spent years developing my own techniques, mixing various mediums to create a custom material and I’ve created custom tools for myself. I don’t use toothbrushes, rarely use paint, and generally use materials for purposes other than their intended use. These ideas are unique to me and my art, so for now I’m jotting them down to publish in a book some day. You may notice I often add “Etc” to the list of materials in my Etsy listings, and that’s because I often use unusual materials to achieve ultimate realism.

Why don’t you use Facebook (or your Pinterest or Twitter) more often?
Most of my time is consumed making custom orders and I have a large, busy family. I sincerely love interacting with all of you, but there never seems to be enough time to keep up with social media.

Why isn’t your blog connected to friends?
My blog is CMS… an extension of my website provided by my webhost… (it’s a little complex, not user-friendly like Blogger, etc). When Google discontinued “Friend Connect” a few years ago I had no idea how to connect my WordPress blog with others. If anyone is familiar with blog code and wants to help me out, please let me know. I would love to have my blog connected with all of yours… I feel like I’m on an island over here! LOL 🙂

Do you sell at shows?
Teresa Layman and others have encouraged me to do the Guild Show several times but the truth is I would have to work for many months to build up enough stock and wouldn’t have anything to sell online and no time to fulfill custom requests (an additional reason to consider limiting or suspending my custom order list indefinitely). Also, I’m creative… I don’t like making multiples. I prefer to craft OOAK and extremely limited edition pieces. I would love to do the Guild Show soon!

Will you make me a copy of another mini maker’s work?
I get this question all the time… sometimes it’s a blatant request (folks send me photos), other times it’s more subtle… and I’m sorry but my answer will always be ‘no’. As an IGMA Artisan I’m committed to upholding the standards of the Guild and as an artist I make common items in my own style and never recreate the intellectual property of others. “Imitation is the sincerest form of flattery” – unless you’re a mini food artist. 🙂

How long did it take you to become an IGMA Artisan?
My journey to become an IGMA Artisan was relatively quick but not everyone is the same (boring world if we were), it’s just a matter of time and practice. The common focus of folks who message me about this appears to be that they’re in a rush. It’s a great motivator to have your competence validated (I get that) but the timing of the journey doesn’t matter as much as the destination. When I opened my Etsy shop in 2010 and began selling on eBay, my food art was definitely the work of an amateur. I look at photos of those pieces and cringe (a great topic for a magazine article)… applying to the Guild was the last thing on my mind. I was deeply dissatisfied with my skills and totally focused on making 1:12th food that looked real. By the time I was there (2013) it was my husband who suggested I apply. I guess he thought I was ready, so maybe that’s the best way to go about it. Have someone you trust give you their opinion of your work and (good or bad) accept their critique. Do your very best, believe in yourself and don’t quit! You can get there. 😉


©Copyright 2017 Crown Jewel Miniatures. All rights reserved.

IGMA Artisan Robin Brady-Boxwell

Posted in Crown Jewel Imaginarium | Leave a comment

My Custom Order List

Happy Autumn Mini Friends!

The leaves have just begun to turn here in New England and though the days are still very warm, I’m looking forward to crisp air and a breathtaking kaleidoscope of autumn color, fall is gorgeous! If you’re like me, you’re stocking the mini kitchen in your dollhouse with fresh baked pies and home cooking in preparation for a homey holiday display.

As usual you’ll find more new art in my Etsy and eBay shops now that I’ve wrapped up my custom orders for the year. Here’s a look at my last 2017 custom order, Thanksgiving dinner for four…

Heading into the holidays with family and friends is an essential period of rejuvenation for me artistically. Even the most passionate artist needs time away from the studio deadlines and more free time for family and new creations… and for me this entails suspending custom orders over the holidays (Oct – Jan).

My bench is always crammed with new art because every time I fulfill a custom order I maximize my time and make extras, and I’ll do my best to list some of the surplus as quickly as possible. Right now I have Mexican cuisine, Thanksgiving prep tables & dinners, gourds and squash, cookies and much more! I’m amazed at the variety of foods my collectors ask for. Raw turkey, tostadas, coffee & pie in rustic trays, fruit & cheese assortments, etc. The extras are all coming your way.

Many thanks to all my custom art collectors!!! Some are my “regulars” (folks who order almost monthly), some are new collectors, but all are truly special people, lovely to work with!! It’s an honor for me to help bring mini kitchens and dining rooms to life, it’s so much fun!!

I want to take this opportunity to say that I’m considering reducing the number of custom orders I will accept in 2018. By mid year, my Etsy store, blog and eBay begin to appear somewhat neglected and the freedom to create random food art on my own time is especially enticing. For now I’ll list what I have, make some holiday food and work on my minis-to-make-list. Here’s a peek at one WIP (work in progress)… a collection of Mexican cuisine.

Since taking that photo, I’ve added shredded cheese & lettuce to finish off the tostadas and tacos…

Be sure to check my Etsy shop and eBay (ID: Crown_Jewel_Miniatures) for availability!

Happy collecting, mini friends!


©Copyright 2017 Crown Jewel Miniatures. All rights reserved.

IGMA Artisan Robin Brady-Boxwell

Posted in Announcements | Leave a comment

2017 Annual Halloween Collectible by IGMA Artisan Robin Brady-Boxwell

Introducing “Trick Or Treat – Sweet To Eat” Do you dare to ring the doorbell?

It’s a full moon. You’re on a dirt road, hungry and tired and you take a turn down a dark, deserted path. Up ahead you see lights in the distance and your step quickens. Shelter, at last! But as your weary feet fly over the distance between you and salvation the night air picks up and you detect a whiff of… chocolate?

Convinced that you’re so ravenous that now you’re simply imagining the heavenly smell of the most sublime treat known to man, you forge on until you come to an eerie castle with spooky towers so tall the turrets seem to disappear into the night sky. Your footing slips a bit as you climb up the jagged steps, but oh! Who goes there? Why, it’s a ghost! With a pumpkin at your feet and a dilapidated graveyard to your right, you start to wonder how you’re ever going to reach the front door of the castle with him in the way. He’s just standing there, not making a sound, as you stare and worry if he’s friend or foe. Hastily you decide to skirt around him and brave the few last steps to the top, but what’s that bubbling noise?

You crane your head around the ghost and spy a witch’s cauldron set on a low fire in the grass. Your foot slips again and you begin to slide. You brace your hands against the fall and that’s when you finally realize you’ve been walking on steps of… chocolate!

Oh that yummy, delicious, weird sensation when you lick not dirt, but finely made chocolate from your hands! The aroma coming from the cauldron smells suspiciously like sour apple candy. Moonlight glints on the magic castle illuminating chocolate walls, licorice windows, a doorway edged in candy batons and fruit drops the size of boulders are nestled below. The star and moon over the door are made of orange candy, the twisted peaks overhead are luscious grape taffy… and you smile and march right up to that black licorice door and pound on it loudly with both fists…

“Witchy Poo, Witchy Poo, please let me in! I’m tired and hungry but wearing a grin!
Your marvelous castle of chocolate, your ghost of marshmallow…
At first I was afraid, but he’s my kind of fellow!
If you don’t let me in, I’ll eat you out of house & home, little by little each day,
Until this delicious Halloween castle is in my tummy to stay!
Witchy Poo, Witchy Poo have you more tricks or treats inside?
I promise to be good! Your will I shall abide!”

…and then came the raspy, cackling reply…

“Step right in, my pretty and learn for yourself,
What Crown Jewel Miniatures has concocted in this sugary spell.
All will be revealed… sweet secrets foretold,
But only to the buyer, once my delicious castle is sold!”

This year my 2017 Annual Halloween Collectible is a dessert sculpture carved from chocolate. Detailed freestyle, by hand, the walls of the castle resemble tree trunks and the spires were inspired by a witch’s hat. The headstones have a bit of glitter to simulate moonlight glinting off marble stone and the ghost on the steps was inspired by a trick-or-treat costume. Definitely the piece de resistance for your 1:12th scale mini Halloween party!

There will be only one queen of this Halloween castle as it is a one-of-a-kind and will never be reproduced. The question is, will it be you? I will not accept orders to recreate this. Available now via my Etsy shop!

Happy Halloween mini collecting everyone!


©Copyright 2017 Crown Jewel Miniatures. All rights reserved.

IGMA Artisan Robin Brady-Boxwell

Posted in Announcements, New Miniature Art! | Leave a comment

Crown Jewel Miniatures Featured in October 2017 Issue of Dolls House & Miniature Scene!

A Feature in Dolls House & Miniature Scene Magazine!

More exciting news in the land of Lillput! Last year I was contacted by the very talented Karon Cunningham and invited to participate in a feature article in Dolls House & Miniature Scene magazine (published in the United Kingdom). The feature will appear in the October 2017 issue and I’m very excited to have a part in it!

Stay tuned! As soon as I receive my copy I will update this post with a feature photo.

Meanwhile, happy collecting mini friends and be sure to grab a copy of the October issue. DHMS is a great magazine and the staff works very hard to bring you quality photos and informative articles on the latest art, mini makers, IGMA Artisans & Fellows and news related to our wonderful hobby!

Many thanks to Karon Cunningham for the invitation! It was my pleasure to work with her and I’m sure the article will be great!


©Copyright 2017 Crown Jewel Miniatures. All rights reserved.

IGMA Artisan Robin Brady-Boxwell

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Going… going… SOLD to the mini collector at the 2017 IGMA Guild Show!

2017 IGMA Guild Show Auction

Attending the IGMA Guild Show this year? Be sure to check out the auction which will include 3 pieces of my art! Each bid helps to support the International Guild of Miniature Artisans in its mission to promote miniatures as an art form – a very worthwhile endeavor and you’ll skip home with some lovely mini treasures painstakingly crafted by certified IGMA Artisans & Fellows!

This year I donated the following:

– Basket of assorted artisan bread
– Tossed salad in Phil Grenyer bowl
– Selection of cream tarts

Held at the Hartford/Windsor Marriott from September 19-24, 2017 in Windsor, CT this year’s Guild Show promises to be better than ever with classes, dealers from around the world, exhibits and of course silent and live auctions.

I’m proud to be a certified IGMA Artisan and thrilled to be a part of the Guild Show! Have fun at the show friends and happy mini collecting!


©Copyright 2017 Crown Jewel Miniatures. All rights reserved.

IGMA Artisan Robin Brady-Boxwell

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2016 Annual Halloween Collectible by IGMA Artisan Robin Brady-Boxwell

“Trick or Treat!”

Halloween 2016 table

It’s that time of year again and my 2016 Annual Halloween Collectible will create an instant party scene in your dollhouse! This “Trick or Treat” dessert table is crammed with a huge array of festive fun. Petits fours topped with candy corn, tiny cakes with marzipan ghosts, luscious cupcakes, cookies, pots de crĂšme, meringues, candy sticks, whipped cream tarts, hard candy, cake… even a candle and much more! Your mini Halloween party-goers will have a ball with these sweet treats… all served with fruit punch, coffee and spiced persimmon liqueur.

It’s a boo-tiful spread!

Available now via my Etsy shop! As you know Etsy only allows 5 pictures, so here is a spooktacular parade of eye candy:

2016 Halloween table 2

2016 Halloween table 3

2016 Halloween table 4

2016 Halloween table 5

2016 Halloween table 6

2016 Halloween table 6

2016 Halloween table 7

2016 Halloween table 8

2016 Halloween table 7

2016 Halloween table 8

2016 Halloween table 9

2016 Halloween table 10

2016 Halloween table 14

2016 Halloween table 11

2016 Halloween table 15

2016 Halloween table 19

2016 Halloween table 13

2016 Halloween table 14

2016 Halloween BACK

Happy Halloween!

©Copyright 2016 Crown Jewel Miniatures. All rights reserved.

IGMA Artisan Robin Brady-Boxwell

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Crown Jewel Miniatures takes part in the 2016 IGMA Guild Show drawing!

IGMA Guild Show “Elements of Style” Bakery Clock Case Drawing


If you’re one of the lucky attendees of this year’s International Guild of Miniature Artisans (IGMA) Guild Show this week at the Glenpointe Marriott in Teaneck, New Jersey (Aug 3-7) be sure to buy raffle tickets for two vintage Elements of Style clock cases, recreated by Teresa Layman and Peter Kendall! These extraordinary roomboxes will be available at the IGMA Annual meeting on Sunday morning at the Guild Show.

One clock case in particular has been transformed into an exquisite bakery! It’s truly a collectors piece and filled with amazing art from the following IGMA contributors:

Teresa Layman (F)
Pete and Pam Boorum (A/A)
Robin Brady-Boxwell (A)
Anne Caesar (F)
Linda Cummings (F)
A Rose Gallagher (F)
Phyllis Hawkes (F)
Teresa Martinez (A)
Cristina Miniscetti (F)
Orsolya Skulteti (F)
Ruth Stewart (G)
Ray Storey
Lorraine Thomson (A)
Barbara Vajnar (A)
Mary VanderDussen (G)
Jasmine Blanche Woodbury (A)

Tickets are now available for $5 each or 6 for $25, from Carol Block ( and will also be available at the Guild Show registration table, August 3-7, 2016.



©Copyright 2016 Crown Jewel Miniatures. All rights reserved.

IGMA Artisan Robin Brady-Boxwell

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A Peek Through The Looking Glass

“A Day In The Life Of Crown Jewel Miniatures”

CJMtarts1 COPY

It’s a pretty rainbow of “busy” lately in the CJM Imaginarium©! I’m preparing cupcakes and tarts for Easter and my tile is full. It’s hand-piped mini whipped cream gone wild! It’s a pretty assortment of marshmallow stars, dreamy swirls and tasty towers of whipped cream, frosting and lightly baked pastry casings.


The custom mixed, pastel colors are delicate- perfect for Easter, birthdays and luscious “Marie Antoinette” desert collections. I just got a glass shipment in from the extremely talented Philip Grenyer of Glasscraft. As soon as I arrange these little lovelies on miniature displays I’ll list them in my Etsy shop!



©Copyright 2016 Crown Jewel Miniatures. All rights reserved.

IGMA Artisan Robin Brady-Boxwell

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Peasant food… Yum!

Salad Dressing

“Do not eat garlic or onions; for their smell will reveal that you are a peasant.” – Cervantes, Don Quixote.

Salad Dressing303

If that’s true then all our dollhouse cooks are peasants with really good palates! LOL

Salad Dressing301

I’ve blended “garlic” and “fine herbs” with “spices” in glass jugs for mini salad dressing that looks as good as it would taste… if it were real.

Salad Dressing302

The jugs look very convincing on your dollhouse kitchen counter. Pair it with one of my realistic tossed salads and a few spice jars- or use it like a marinade and display it near a raw chicken or beef roast on the stovetop as if it’s about to go in the oven.

It also looks great on the shelf of the mini refrigerator or a tiny picnic table… the possibilities are endless!

Salad Dressing304

Available now via my Etsy shop.


©Copyright 2016 Crown Jewel Miniatures. All rights reserved.

IGMA Artisan Robin Brady-Boxwell

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Macaroni + Cheese = Crown Jewel Miniatures Ultimate Realism!

“It’s diamonds in your pocket one week, macaroni and cheese the next”. -Jolene Blalock

Mac n Cheese 102

Or… if you collect Crown Jewel Miniatures, it’s both! These tiny pans of comfort food are little jewels of ultimate realism for your dollhouse and a lot of work goes into every one.

Mac n Cheese100

Crown Jewel Elbow Macaroni

It takes several days to make just one lifelike pan of my macaroni and cheese. Each tiny elbow noodle is individually handcrafted without the use of molds or clay extruders. It’s a painstaking process but I wouldn’t have it any other way.

Mac n Cheese101

The elbows are tiny… 1mm in diameter or less and I set each noodle into place one by one.

Mac N Cheese103

Mac N Cheese104

A small portion has been scooped out to show detail and the pan comes with a messy spoon to help create a convincing scene.

Mac N Cheese105

Mac N Cheese106

Each pan is baked to golden perfection and shows melted cheese sauce, oven-crisped edges and gooey goodness. Your dollhouse family will fight over every tasty bite!

Mac N Cheese107

Mac N CheeseCLOSE

I only made three and one has already sold as part of a custom order. Check my Etsy shop for the other two tomorrow when I make them available. They won’t last long!


©Copyright 2016 Crown Jewel Miniatures. All rights reserved.

IGMA Artisan Robin Brady-Boxwell

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Happy Valentine’s Day Mini Friends!

“Sometimes”, said Pooh, “the smallest things take up the most room in your heart”.

CJM Bakery

With Valentine’s Day right around the corner I’ve been busy whipping up the most delectable little desserts. The Crown Jewel Imaginarium Bakery will offer fancy cookies, cupcakes, sliced cake, candy, parfait, marshmallows, jars of meringues, cherry cupcakes, chocolate decadence and more just for you!

CJM Bakery 201

CJM Bakery 202

CJM Bakery207

CJM Bakery210

CJM Bakery212

CJM Bakery221

CJM Bakery222

Each miniature dessert is perfect for a sweet dollhouse Valentine’s Day scene or a special touch in your mini bakery and will be listed via Crown Jewel Miniatures – Etsy in the next few days.

If you’re looking for something with a personal touch, browse Crown Jewel Miniatues – eBay for personalized mugs of mini coffee for your special Valentine!

Happy Valentine’s Day mini friends. I wish you love and happiness on February 14th and every day of the year.

Robin ♄
©Copyright 2016 Crown Jewel Miniatures. All rights reserved.

IGMA Artisan Robin Brady-Boxwell

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Artisan Bread

“If thou tastest a crust of bread, thou tastest all the stars and all the heavens.” -Robert Browning


Realistic, artisan breads bring a homey touch to dollhouse kitchens and bakeries like no other food can. Display sliced baguettes on mini kitchen counters next to a tiny knife and bottle of garlic olive oil for a realistic look…

Sliced Baguette

My latest batch features quite an assortment, with baguettes, boules, seeded loaves, bagels, cottage loaves, rye, wheat, poppy bagels and pans of fresh baked dinner rolls.


Create an inviting scene and leave your mini oven door open just enough to catch a glimpse of fresh baked rolls!

24 Rolls

These assorted boules are perfect for display on a mini counter near an open pot of jam…


Bagels of any flavor always look inviting…

Blueberry Bagels 1

Blueberry Bagels 2

And best of all you can serve it your way… with tiny pots of whipped butter, a bottle of my Special Reserve herb infused olive oil, jars of wobbly jelly and filled, personalized coffee mugs!

Stephan & Angelique mugs

Autumn is a perfect time for baking in real life and your dollhouse!

2 Dozen Rolls

Cottage Loaf

Cottage Nut Loaf



©Copyright 2015 Crown Jewel Miniatures. All rights reserved.

IGMA Artisan Robin Brady-Boxwell

Posted in New Miniature Art! | Leave a comment

Q: What’s In A Name?

A: Coffee!

Dollhouse Mugs

Coffee, cup o’ joe, java, espresso, cappuccino… call it what you will but it’s a nice hot cup of yummy and I’m serving it to you in tiny mugs personalized with hundreds of names, greetings and nicknames!

A Mugs

I bought the empty mugs two or three years ago as a partial inventory from a dollhouse shop that closed in the late 1990’s and forgot I had them until recently. I filled every one with resins to resemble coffee and cream (milk). The coffee color is not as dark as my pictures- the glare of the glazing on the white porcelain was a little too much for my camera lens. It’s a nice coffee & cream color but also resembles tea and cream if your mini dollhouse inhabitants prefer to drink their resin tea from a mug. 😉


All mugs with names are available via my eBay (ID: Crown_Jewel_Miniatures) and the mugs with greetings and nicknames are available via my Etsy shop. Is your name there?

Phrases Mugs

In addition, I have a select number of names in slightly different mugs with blue font:

Blue Font Mugs

Great for a breakfast display at the kitchen table, on a dollhouse coffee table near a magazine or set up a coffee klatch scene in your tiny parlor- the possibilities are endless!

Bottoms up mini friends!

D Mugs


©Copyright 2015 Crown Jewel Miniatures. All rights reserved.

IGMA Artisan Robin Brady-Boxwell

Posted in New Miniature Art! | 3 Comments

Double The Pleasure!

Dolls House World

I’m in Dolls House World too?

While waiting for the glue to dry on my latest project I found myself browsing through the current digital issue of Dolls House World (October 2015) and a little blueberry cake on the cover (see above) immediately caught my eye- it was mine! I couldn’t believe my eyes when I turned the pages and found a reprint of a blueberry cake tutorial I did for American Miniaturist in July 2012. The cake was part of a “Blueberry Explosion” collection I had done that year and to be honest my art has definitely improved since then but it’s still wonderful to see the tutorial in print again, so thank you Ashdown!


For curious readers who want to understand how this can happen… Ashdown owns American Miniaturist, Dollhouse Miniatures and Dolls House World magazine, and they reserve the right to reprint every article they publish, so if you’re in one magazine, don’t be surprised when that same article appears in one of their other publications at a later date.

I forgot this could happen but I think it’s great to be in two magazines in one month! The Dolls House magazine has a lovely 4 page feature on my art, and my art is on the cover…

The Dolls House Magazine Cover

and Dolls House World has my tutorial for a blueberry buckle cake. The tutorial is great for my fellow mini makers and the feature is for those who want to get to know me a little better.

Sweet! 😉

ï»żRobin ♄
©Copyright 2015 Crown Jewel Miniatures. All rights reserved.

IGMA Artisan Robin Brady-Boxwell

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Home Baked Pumpkin Bread!

Peter, Peter, pumpkin eater is a theif!

Pumpkin Bread

Peter Peter broke into my Imaginarium and tasted my newest batch of pumpkin breads! He sliced the frosted loaves…

Pumpkin Bread Rolls

He tasted my fresh baked pumpkin rolls, still warm from the mini oven!

Pumpkin Breads

He ate my iced pumpkin cake!

Pumpkin Breads Cake

Pumpkin Breads Cake2

Does anybody know where this creep lives? I guess I’m just going to have to list all my baked pumpkin baked goods “as is”… sliced and partially eaten, but that’s ok. Bread and cake always looks better when you can see the inside. Still… if any of you know where to find that mini pumpkin eating thief, let me know. I think he took my best cake server too! 😉

Pumpkin Breads All

Happy Autumn mini friends!


©Copyright 2015 Crown Jewel Miniatures. All rights reserved.

IGMA Artisan Robin Brady-Boxwell

Posted in Announcements, New Miniature Art! | Leave a comment

The Dolls House Magazine Cover & Feature!

The Dolls House Magazine Cover

My First Cover!

My art has been featured in magazines, but this is my very first cover! Special thanks to editor Katie Holloway and her very talented team at The Dolls House Magazine for an amazing layout and well written feature. Cover to cover, the October 2015 issue is phenomenal! Katie & co. were absolutely wonderful to work with and I very much appreciate the invitation to be part of such a top rate publication.

The digital iMag version was released September 1st and available now for download. The hard copies will be in the mail by October 1st and I can hardly wait to receive mine!

For the benefit of my fellow American collectors, I should mention The Dolls House is a British publication but with the magic of the Internet, you can purchase access to the online iMag via their website and be reading it within minutes! Better still, subscribe and curl up with a cozy cup of tea when it arrives on your doorstep each month!

All food shown in the feature is available now via my eBay (ID: Crown_Jewel_Miniatures) and Etsy shop. You can find links to both on the “Sale” page of my website.
Thank you very much The Dolls House! It’s been my pleasure working with you and I hope you’ll ask me back in the future!

©Copyright 2015 Crown Jewel Miniatures. All rights reserved.
ï»żRobin ♄

IGMA Artisan Robin Brady-Boxwell

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NEW! Special Reserve Vinegar

Special Reserve1

Crown Jewel Miniatures Special Reserve Collection Continues!

Red Wine Vinegar

Check out the latest addition to my Special Reserve collection… red wine vinegar. Inspired by crates of prize-winning bottles of vinegars and herb infused olive oils imported from Italy, these distinctive bottles are the crowning touch for a highly realistic cooking scene in your dollhouse kitchen or mini bistro.

Special Reserve 2

RedVinegar104 copy

Each comes to you with a unique cap of my own design, you will not find it anywhere else.

RedVinegar105 copy

Special Reserve 3

The necks are wrapped with gold foil lariats and include tiny metal crown medallions to advertise their blue ribbon contents! Your mini gourmet cook only uses the finest ingredients and these bottles are perfect for display on stove tops and kitchen counters. For ultimate realism place them beside my salads or Italian cuisine dishes and make a statement!

Red Wine Vinegar

Available now in my Etsy shop: Crown Jewel Miniatures ETSY

Special Reserve4

©Copyright 2015 Crown Jewel Miniatures. All rights reserved.
ï»żRobin ♄

IGMA Artisan Robin Brady-Boxwell

Posted in New Miniature Art! | Leave a comment

Miniature Herb & Garlic Infused Olive Oil

Kitchen Essentials – Salt, Spices & Olive Oil

CJM Italian Kitchen

Here is a peek at my latest batch of herb and garlic infused olive oils. Available now in my eBay and Etsy shop, choose between chub or tall with round or square caps.

CJM Italian Kitchen

Group fresh vegetables, bread and cheese assortments and my realistic oil bottles with fresh made dishes to bring your dollhouse kitchen to life.


GarlicBasket copy

Each bottle brings realism to your mini kitchen and works in almost every era and décor.

ItalianALL100 copy

PourBottleGarlic101 copy

I’ve added tiny cloves of garlic to canola oil for a fresh effect.

PourBottleGarlic106 copy

All my bottle tops and caps are my own, original design- you will not find them anywhere else.


TallLargeCap106 copy

Large caps, small caps, square caps too- each is a little different!

TallSmallCap100 copy

TallSmallCap102 copy

Available in chub or tall sizes, they’re perfect for grouping on your mini pantry shelf.

TallSmallCap108 copy

TallSmallCap109 copy

©Copyright 2015 Crown Jewel Miniatures. All rights reserved.
ï»żRobin ♄

IGMA Artisan Robin Brady-Boxwell

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Paint, Wallpaper & Add Flooring To A Dollhouse with Crown Jewel Miniatures!

How To Finish The Interior Of A dollhouse!

If you’ve read the “Meet The Artisan” page on my website you know that I was the go-to person for dollhouse interior design while I worked at Dollhouses Plus. In addition to selecting and matching decorating components, I installed them and over the years I’ve had several requests for tips. While I no longer finish dollhouses, except my own, I know that even the most amazing dollhouse food won’t look like much in a bare mini kitchen! Here are my recommendations for finishing the interior of your dollhouses. I hope this helps!

Each of the following items can be found at Home Depot, Lowe’s or any hardware or home improvement store:

Plastic scrapers – 1″, 2″ & 4″ wide
Cheap craft paintbrush 1″ wide
Medium grit sanding block
Mini paint roller & tray
White satin or semi-gloss paint (I use Valspar from Lowe’s, sold by the quart)
Scotch transparent tape
Wallpaper adhesive (gel) (I use Roman GH-57 from Lowe’s but any wallpaper and border adhesive will work as long as it’s gel. You can use Modge Podge in a pinch but it does not last). Use regular household wallpaper adhesive, don’t waste your money on overpriced mini pots of “dollhouse” adhesive.
Paper towels
Damp paper towels (squeeze out all excess water)
Utility knife
Straight edge ruler
Scissors (for wallpaper only)
Disposable nitrile gloves (to protect your hands from flooring adhesives)
Contact cement

The following items can be found online, eBay, craft stores or your local dollhouse shop:

“Easy Cutter” by Northwest Products (for cutting wood, formica tile and wood molding)
Quick Grip glue
Gloop Adhesive (from Model Builder’s Supply)
Modge Podge

1). Construct the dollhouse and do not install windows or stairs.

2). Sand the bare wood with a medium grit sanding block to ensure all surfaces are smooth and free of glue globs.

3). If you plan to electrify the dollhouse, install tape wiring. Cover all brad and eyelet connections with a piece of Scotch transparent tape. This ensures the paint will not interfere with the connections.

Wired dollhouse shell

Prime The Walls:

Priming is absolutely necessary! Bare wood leaches the moisture out of wallpaper paste, this is even more prevalent with brittle wood in older dollhouses. Over time the wallpaper as the wallpaper adhesive dries out, the wallpaper begins to lift at the corners and edges or unsightly air pockets form behind the wallpaper. A paint primer prevents all that and will also keep the color of wallpaper true, especially wallpapers with with light backgrounds. Want to change your wallpaper in the future? A paint primer will make future wallpaper removal a breeze!.

-Prevent wallpaper from lifting
-Keep wallpaper colors true
-Protect wiring & walls during future wallpaper removal
-Quick & easy future wallpaper removal

4). Prime (paint) the entire interior of the dollhouse with bright white satin paint found in any home improvement or hardware store. Add additional coats until the wood is no longer visible through the paint. This usually requires 2 or 3 coats, depending on how dry the wood is. Allow to dry thoroughly, usually 3 to 5 days.

FINISH ORDER: Finish every room, top to bottom- start with the ceiling, then walls, flooring and save stairs, molding, wainscoting and trim for last.

CEILINGS: Either leave the ceilings white, as is, or use dollhouse ceiling paper or fancy textured, household wallpaper in white. Use damp paper towels to wipe ceiling free of dust before beginning. Measure the ceiling and roll out the ceiling paper on a clean surface, finished side down. Using a ruler, mark the measurements in pencil and use a craft knife along the side of the ruler to cut. (^If you are unsure of the accuracy of your measurements, leave an extra 1/8″ – 1/4″ margin on the open end of the ceiling to compensate. You can always trim away the excess). Even if the ceiling paper is pre-pasted, use a 1″ wide craft brush and brush on household wallpaper adhesive gel. Press the paper to the ceiling and use the 4″ plastic scraper to smooth the paper onto the ceiling, taking care to smooth away all bubbles and wrinkles. Use dry paper towels to wipe excess wallpaper gel from your scraper after every stroke. Use a firm stroke from the center of the ceiling to the edges to squeeze out the excess wallpaper gel. Use the scraper and damp paper towels to wipe away the excess, then use dry paper towel to ensure the edges are dry and let the ceiling paper dry at least 4 to 6 hours. ^When thoroughly dry, slice away any excess using a sharp craft knife, held flush with the edge of the ceiling.

Smooth Painted Walls:
If you installed wiring, you cannot just paint the walls in pretty decorator colors as the bulk of the tape wire and splices will be visible through the white primer and your paint. You must wallpaper the room with plain, smooth, wallpaper and then paint over the wallpaper. Use damp paper towels to wipe walls and floors free of any dust before beginning.

Textured Painted Walls:
Install textured wallpaper and when thoroughly dry, paint it in a color of your choice… or… if using a textured paint, install plain, smooth wallpaper, let dry and then stipple your textured paint onto the plain wallpaper. Brush textured paint onto the wallpaper using an “X” stroke, sweeping the brush downward on one line of the “X” and upward on the other.

Papered Walls: Measure each wall from floor to ceiling and lay the wallpaper on a clean surface, finished side down. Using a ruler, mark the measurements lightly in pencil and using a craft knife along the side of a straight edge ruler, cut the wallpaper. ^Do not use scissors to cut wallpaper! Even the sharpest pair will not give you a straight, even, edge. It is not necessary to leave any margin for error, as the bottom of the wall will be covered with baseboard molding, thus covering any gap. Even if the wallpaper is pre-pasted, use a 1″ wide craft brush to apply wallpaper adhesive gel. Be sure to cover the paper entirely, especially the corners. Starting with the left side of the room, lay the wallpaper against the wall with the top edge lined up against the ceiling. Use plastic scrapers to smooth out any wrinkles and bubbles, sweeping the scraper down the wall, in overlapping strokes. Take extra care to be gentle with cheaper dollhouse wallpapers, which are thin and delicate. Use dry paper towels to wipe excess wallpaper paste gel from your scraper after every stroke. If you get a little on the face of your wallpaper, use a clean, damp paper towel and gently wipe it off. Do not scrub or you may ruin the print of your wallpaper. (Coated or sealed wallpapers are far more durable and less susceptible to damage). Begin the next sheet of wallpaper slightly overlapping the side of the one you just installed by 1/8″. (As wet wallpaper dries, it shrinks, and the overlap will prevent any gap in coverage. You can butt the sides of the wallpaper flush against each other but there is no guarantee the wallpaper will not shrink when dry and you may have gaps). When cutting the final sheet of wallpaper, leave a 1″ extra margin (this will be trimmed away after it dries). Use the scraper, then the damp paper towels to wipe away excess paste. Use a dry paper towel to ensure the edges are clean and dry and let the wallpaper dry at least 4 to 6 hours. After wallpaper is dry, use a sharp craft knife or razor blade and cut an “X” inside the window openings and trim the wallpaper away. Remove excess wallpaper from the edge of the wall with a utility knife held flush with the edge of the wall. Install painted window frames with a thin line of Quick Grip glue on the back side, taking care to wipe away any glue globs, interior and exterior, with damp paper towels immediately after installation. Hold in place 1 minute and let dry.

Strip Wood Floor Planking: If using wood strips or tongue depressors, I use an “Easy Cutter” by Northwest Products to cut the wood to size. Use a cheap 1″ craft brush to apply Gloop or other non-water based glue. Contact cement works well too but only brush on a little at a time as it will dry out before you can lay the entire floor. Wipe away any excess as you go with damp paper towels.

Wood Floor Sheets & Carpet: Measure the floor and lightly mark the top of your wood flooring. (Use an eraser to remove the marks after installation). It’s important to mark the top of your flooring… or reverse the measurement when you mark the back of the flooring (mirror image) because dollhouse rooms are never perfectly squared. (Your floor may be 1/4″ wider at the back of the room than at the front). Using manufacturers directions, brush recommended adhesive directly onto the dollhouse floor and lay flooring sheet flat on the floor, pressing firmly into place. Using a smooth, plastic scraper, press down firmly with broad strokes in the direction of the wood grain, giving extra attention to the edges and corners. I do not recommend weighting the flooring unless your weights cover every square inch as partial weight in random areas may result in an uneven floor. Immediately wipe away any excess with damp paper towels. ^I do not use contact cement, etc. I use Quick Grip glue, applied via a thin line around the edge of the flooring and a few squiggly lines in the center.

Plastic Tile Sheets
Follow the same procedure with plastic tile sheets, but use a lighter touch when pressing down and do not use a scraper. Wear nitrile gloves to protect your hands as the finish on most plastic sheet flooring tends to come off easily. Press the tile sheets into place with firm hands, wiping away any excess adhesive with damp paper towels. I use Quick Grip glue.

Follow the same procedure with carpet, but use either Modge Podge or tacky glue thinned with water. Brush a thin layer of adhesive directly onto the dollhouse or roombox floor paying careful attention to the edges and corners. Smooth the carpet with a 4″ wide smooth plastic scraper, working from the back of the room to the front and wipe away any excess adhesive with damp paper towels.

MOLDING: Measure the width of each wall and cut the molding to size. Use the Easy Cutters to cut molding to size and for angled joins on inside corners use the Easy Cutters to cut the end of the molding on an angle. Household scissors are not recommended! Even the sharpest pair of scissor will compress and distort the wood and every join will be noticeably uneven! To decrease the chance of glue globs, run a very thin line of Quick Grip glue down back center of the molding. Beginning on the left, outer corner, press the molding into place and hold for a minute or two until set.

Wedgwood Room

STAIRS: Build stairs to fit and stain or paint to match the room. Install stairs, and wipe away excess glue with damp paper towels. I use Quick Grip to install staircases.

If you followed my instructions and primed your walls before installing wallpaper in your dollhouse, then wallpaper removal is going to be quick & easy and your wiring will not be damaged!

Let’s remove the gold wallpaper from my dining room. Usually vinyl coated wallpaper is difficult to remove, but with primed walls this will be easy…

For Regular Wallpaper: Soak a kitchen sponge in very hot water and hold the sponge against the wallpaper until thoroughly saturated. Let the water soak in for several minutes to loosen the wallpaper, then use the scraper to remove. The wetter the wallpaper, the easier it is to remove. Hot water is more effective than warm water! Protect your wood floors with dry paper towels and blot excess water as you go.

For Vinyl Coated Wallpaper: Tear the vinyl layer away from the paper backing of the wallpaper, then follow the instructions above for removing regular wallpaper.

Notice the paper backing of the wallpaper turns dark when saturated with hot water…

When all visible wallpaper residue has been removed, use a clean sponge soaked in hot water to rub away all vestiges of wallpaper paste until the primed (painted) surface below is smooth. Protect your wood floors with dry paper towels and blot excess water as you go. If necessary, gently use a scraper blade to remove stubborn bits of wallpaper paste (or glue). Sponge down the wall with hot water until all residue is removed. Sandpaper is not recommended; it will pit your walls and destroy your tape wire!

Voila! Easy wallpaper removal. This room is now ready to be repapered…

©Copyright 2015 Crown Jewel Miniatures. All rights reserved.
ï»żRobin ♄

IGMA Artisan Robin Brady-Boxwell

DISCLAIMER: The tips included in this blog post are intended as suggestions only and do not constitute professional advice or instructions. Always refer to manufacturers directions and product safety warnings. I am not responsible for any damages you may incur.

Posted in Finishing A Dollhouse, Making Miniatures, Wallpapering A Dollhouse | Leave a comment

A Dollhouse Summer BBQ!

Hot Off The Castle Grill!

CJM Castle BBQ

Long, long ago in a galaxy far, far away…

Oh wait, wrong one. 😉

Once upon a time, there was a hungry mini family in the Crown Jewel mini castle and it was almost the first day of summer. The royal baker suggested a barbeque picnic, just outside the castle walls in the shade and everyone rejoiced!

Crown Jewel BBQ

Mini dad presided over the grill, basting juicy racks of ribs…

Crown Jewel BBQ

Half cooked steaks

Mini mom assisted, tossing a garden salad and setting out bowls of baked beans and macaroni salad…

Macaroni salad

The royal baker brought apple pies, cherry pie, blackberry pastry and the USA cake made by children…

Apple pie

USA cake

Mini grandpa sat in an Adirondack chair in the shade, with a glass of iced lemonade, enjoying a sizzling hot dog…

Hot dogs

CJM BBQ table

Mini kids dressed their burgers with cheese, ketchup, tomato and pickles…



Mini teenagers guzzled cola and dug into submarine sandwiches, stacked with ham, cheese, lettuce and tomato…

Sub sandwich


As for me, I took advantage of my day off from mini cooking and joined in the fun with a warm slice of all-American apple pie…

Apple pie slice

CJM castle wall BBQ

The End.

©Copyright 2015 Crown Jewel Miniatures. All rights reserved.
ï»żRobin ♄

IGMA Artisan Robin Brady-Boxwell

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