I'm placing my miniature works on display on this website for anyone who's interested to see the making off , I used my accompanied texts of Instagram as I wrote those spontaneously at the time I was working on it.
Its a sort of keeping it all together as a keepsake.

Venus and Adonis project

The Venus and Adonis project.

Somewhere in one of my Bloomsbury Art Books I stumbled across Venus and Adonis, a painting by Ducan Grant,

I fell completely for it and couldn't imagine any other painter that would be able to paint this Shakesperean poem in this way and those colours in 1919 IT's just So Cool.

I needed to see it in real life which made me travel to England to visit the exhibition in which it was hung.

Back home a seed had planted itself firmly inside my head, wanting to make that painting, in another form namely a diorama.
It took me about a year and a half to dare start this wonderful project which was pure joy!

Jeroen, my talented carpenter friend and great help , made me the bend curtain rod and background hills I wanted.

There is room between them for depth and I placed Adonis on a straw. I loved making the softest woollen underground for Venus to lay her body on, I sewed, embroidered, filled, quilted and painted it.

Venus was made of wire, tape and clay. I loved fattening her tights and painting her in shocking pink. In my version she looks away because she knows Adonis will loose his life when going on a bear hunt.

She descended from her goddess world because she wanted to seduce this attractive man. Adonis however preferred to go on a bear hunt. Men, where are they when you need them!!!

Adonis got killed and where his blood entered the earth beautiful flowers grew (Greek mythology)
There are many versions of Venus and Adonis, this short interpretation comes for Shakespeare. He made a very long poem storytelling about the two of them.

As my exhibition was coming closer where I wanted to show off my Venus diorama I decided to paint het as well to be able to show where the diorama originates from. 

The start of Virginia's bedroom


Dear Charleston Dollhouse followers,
I hope you enjoy the news that I'll be starting today at the making of Monk's House miniature.
There's so much of Vanessa and Duncan to be found in Virginia's and Leonard's home.
I can't imagine Charleston Dollhouse ever to be really finished as I will always be surprised by something I hadn't noticed before and that's perfectly fine.
Wherever or whenever there can always be a new addition and that feels good.
I had not expected that there would come a new eagerness to undertake Virginia's house but here we are!
This time I'm not alone as I found a partner in crime in Jeroen van Daele who is a carpenter and a friend. My plan was to work with wood this time around so I asked him to help me out.

The name of my project will be " Virginia in the looking glass", later more about that.Vanessa Bell painted this Still Life, which hangs in Virginia's bedroom,in 1911. Firstly I painted the tiny picture frame. I was to
was told when visiting Monk's House that the abstract work hanging left of it was painted by Angelica Garnett. I seem to be going from huge to extremely small!

The fireplace tiles were designed by Vanessa as well. They were referring to Virginia's book " To the Lighthouse " ánd to the Cornish lighthouse in St. Ives they both loved so much when holidaying there as children.

This wonderful world of creating is keeping my mind of Corona. It made my day. I hope you all have something to keep you distracted.

Stay isolated for the good cause, we're in this together.

Today I waxed Virginia's chair. Could it be a Thonet chair? I used Annie Sloans dark wax and brushed it up with a toothbrush. The chair is made by Jeroen who did a great job.

I made a pillow in it and have started on Virginia's shawl given to her by Lady Ottoline Morell. I searched my house for a piece of black fabric but the only thing I found that I wanted to put my scissors in was and old legging( tights without feet) from the Stone Age . Clean btw. So happily started embroidering and now it needs the fringes to finish it off.

Tomorrow's another day! Today's work was fringing Virginia Woolf's shawl and started cutting one by one the herringbone floor of her bedroom out of wooden stirring spoons . My fingers hurt but I can see it coming step by step.
I want to wax the floor as I did the chair. I hope it works out.
Does anyone know on what occasion she got that beautiful shawl by Lady Ottoline Morell? Please do tell me! This is how far I got. My fingers ,hands and back ache but I can slowly see Virginia's bedroom come to life.

I have been cutting the wooden floor from coffee stirring sticks and waxed it with a toothbrush. So very glad that it's done. It brings me joy, I hope you too! Stay well.Working on books for a couple of days now,

feeling like Hogarth Press again from the time I made a zillion books one by one for my Charleston Dollhouse.
If anyone has a good picture of Virginia's Shakespeare volumes full front, id be obliged.
(*that someone came forward!)

I want to paint the book covers Virginia made by hand but first let me fill up all these shelves.
I'm very grateful for this project to take my mind of reality for a bit. Can't read a newspaper without crying anymore. The loneliness of the patients ( first COVID 19 outbreak had taken place, a pandemic that was taking our breath away for fear), the worries of the left behinds and the nurses on the intensive care as well as of the patients.

The heavy burden on all of the medical staff. Not being able to touch and comfort and to see the devastating effect of this virus. All the people who are alone and have to cope,my respect to you all. Lets stay strong and sensible together.The room looks as if its almost time for Virginia to close the curtains and get into bed. Her book is waiting for her on her bedside table.
Today I finished the curtains made of Duncan Grant's fabric . Its so lovely!
(I made it from an old shirt of my husband and painted it)
Also finished the bedside table lamp. The shade I cut out of the cap of a glue tube. I made the foot of the lamp of clay and 'glazed' it.
All the books in these two book cases were finished yesterday. Glad I could put them in there! No strength in fingers left. Going somewhere good I think. Besides that I hope you

Latest addition to Virginia's bedroom is the painting of the white daffodils made by Angelica Garnett. Daughter of Vanessa Bell an d Duncan Grant, no wonder she could paint! Working on the beautiful bookcase made by Jeroen who did an excellent job! I have painted it and started on Virginia's volumes of William Shakespeare.

Virginia made the book covers herself during one of her periods of mental illness. It was a calming distraction. The case itself came from Tavistock Square in London.Virginia's bookcase with Shakespeares volumes is finished. I have been working for days on cutting the books , painting the bookcase, the book covers in five layers and then the little labels with the titles of the books written on it. I made them look old. The beautiful painting on the back is Monk"s House Garden by Duncan Grant. New addition to the bedroom is this beautiful table made by Jeroen and 'tiled',painted,glazed and waxed by me . I think its originally made by Quentin Bell if I'm not mistaken.

It looks like they need a bit more grey/black but when I studied them closely I could see they have faded over time. They are only one and a half centimeters big and each get their own painted cover. I got the full front pictures of a sweet follower with which I was very pleased and inspired by. The beginnings of Hamlet, King Lear, Much Ado about nothing and Pericles are there!

Slowly but steadily going forward! Also a beginning of the tapestry on the floor and the bowl on the bookcase. This will be made of an acorn cap. ( don't know how it called in English officially) Virginia!!

I wish you could tell me where your beautiful chair comes from? Did you bring it coming from London? Was it a gift? Today I worked on this little wooden chair made by Jeroen. I painted it and gilded it and gave it its beautiful embroidered chair seat as I have seen it in Monk's House. Step by step.Today I was a plumber and a painter. I made the faucets of electrical cord and beads, pins and flower shaped metal beads. All from somewhere in a drawer in the house as I do not buy things to make this room.

I made hinges and the doorknob of beads as well. I glazed the basin, made the tiniest piece of real hand soap, painted the wood and I'm satisfied. Time to work in the garden!
Lovely Saturday to you all! 

Still needed the beautiful little cup of the finest bone China by Foley on Virginia's mantelpiece in her bedroom decorated by Vanessa.I used the tiniest bit of clay.

The ear is made of that little coloured ring you find on an electric toothbrush so you can see which one is yours. One has to be inventive! Been working on the exterior of Virginia's house.

The weatherboard was a horrible thing to do. Every row was about three mm. It took me days. Glue everywhere. I painted it white when finished as at Monk's House.

Virginia's Writers shed 

Jeroen van Daele sure did his part on the woodwork of Virginia's writing shed!
I feel I'm standing right there in the garden in Rodmell as I look at it.

I just planted a dead beech from the hedge in my garden in front of the shed and I'm making a zillion leaves to let it come back to life as a tree.

This is going to be so beautiful! I want to sew the decking of the very tiny chairs. 

I need to make the roof, paint the shed, make the pavement etc but first those leaves!

Not showing the other side of the shed so you have something to look out for!Its too hot but I couldn't resist transforming these deckchairs made by my friend Jeroen by painting the wood and sewing the carefully chosen fabric.

You never know if Virginia might need them today to sit and reflect in the shadow!Still working on this project. The writing shed of Virginia Woolf. Why has a day only 24 hours?Dividing my time and doing the best I can. Deadline is the 9th of October as I want to bring Virginia's miniatures with me to my exhibition.

Making little skittles of clay and thinking about a croquet (or is it cricket?)set to put on the grass on the other side of the shed.

Too many plans. Today is painting day. Have a good day too!Little steps forward. Working on the ball games. Bowls was Virginia's favorite game so I have promised to add those. I've never seen that game in the Netherlands.

We do play the French Jeu-de-boules. I made the Croquet sticks out of skewer and clay. I think they're rather funny!I try to paint the inside of the shed which is hard as the brush will not bend for the little corners. I sort of painted the floor and will make the tapestry to go underneath her desk this week.

Waxed the rim of the wood that holds the house. Slowly it starts to give the impression of my Rodmell experience.

Love the way it looks on my Hella Jongerius vase. A vase-house with a tree!I'm working on all the very very small things that need to be on Virginia's desk. I'm a bit in love with the tiny pack of Voltiguer cigars. Its made of clay and about half a centimeter big.

The oil lamp I found in a garage sale. Couldn't believe my eyes!

It was much too big for this tiny writing shed so I shortened the glass very carefully with sanding paper and my husband took of the copper foot ( of which I make a lampshade now with the head of a flower as a shade) and now its perfect!

The old tapestry I made is still a bit too big but will be fixed. Its hard measuring in this tiny house.
In the tree I made a bird's nest and watch closely for my squirrel!

Wanted to make little eggs for the nest but as it's autumn..still thinking about that one.
The wall outside is new too. It gives a bit of closure.Well that's it for the moment. Have the best Monday you can possibly have!

Today I finished this wonderful project I did with Jeroen van Daele who made this little desk as well. The only thing still missing is Virginia's original chair which comes at a later moment.

I waxed the desk and gave it handles at the drawers, put the cigars,fountain pen, oil lamp,vase( made out of a flower head),glasses and pen tray who were patiently waiting here, on top of it. Washed up my bell jar, gave it it's definite place and got teary eyed when I stepped back.

What an amazing journey this was. I so enjoyed it.Finally I can say finished!
Virginia still missed her own old much used chair in her writing shed.

But look! My big friend Jeroen made with his big bare hands the tiniest of chairs!
He's my magician. I made it look old and used and gave it a wicker seat and a sigh of contentment.

I so hope to do another project like this in the future!
What about it Jeroen? Would love to hear any specific Bloomsbury suggestions.   

The Bloomsbury Dollhouse, My fairy tale

Once upon a time I got fascinated by Virginia Woolf and her artistic sister Vanessa Bell who was a painter.

I visited their homes, read books about them and was instantly hooked.

Back home in the Netherlands, I didn't want to let go so I continued my reading and decided that I wanted to stay in that wonderful atmosphere of creativity.

I started making The Charleston Dollhouse from cardboard (To be able to cut it more easily)It didn't have anything to do with striving for an exact copy of the house but more with bringing joy in studying the content of the place and reliving my visit.

A lovely detail in the Dollhouse is the child's drawing hanging in Ducan's studio (on the fire place) It is made by Virginia Nicolson, Vanessa's granddaughter who also made the original big one as well. Isn't that lovely.

The Bedroom and writers shed of Virginia Woolf 

Between then and now I've visited not only Charleston many times but also the home of Virginia and I wanted to make Virginia's bedroom as well .

This time I wanted more a looking -box so you could see the details way better than is the case in my Dollhouse .

Decided this time, to make the frame out of wood and asked Jeroen van Daele, who is a gifted carpenter to help me out.

I loved working on this room, painting Duncan's and Angelica's paintings in miniature, making all the books one by one, especially all of Virginia's Shakespeare volumes which ARE having beautiful dust jackets, covered by VirginIa herself when feeling unwell to calm her down.

I painted the book covers one by one. The kindest people on Instagram helped me with the pictures if I didn't remember a certain detail.

It felt like a joint Bloomsbury project. The herringbone patterned floor I made from wood sticks to stir you coffee with, I waxed them.

The faucet I made from electricity cord with a little metal bead on top of it that makes you believe it is a faucet!

I could tell for hours of the joy of finding creative solutions for everything from bits and bobs as the Bloomsbury members did so too

I was asked on Instagram to make the writing shed of Virginia as well and so I did. It's lovely but very hard to look inside where you'll find her desk, flowers in a vase of a dried seed pod, lamp, glasses , cigars, fountainpen and Virginia's exact chair.

Outside the shed and therefore easier to see, her favourite game of bowls amongst other things