Friday, 19 August 2011

In Singapore: Finding Minis

Chinese zodiac charm
I've been in Singapore for two weeks and, as usual, was on the hunt for miniatures. In this place where shopping is considered a national pastime, I was happy to go along with the throngs, looking for tiny things I could use in my dolls houses.
Calligraphy supplies
    Chinatown provided rich pickings. Tiny wooden carvings and china ornaments in the shapes of Chinese zodiac animals were perfect for a miniature nursery or toyshop. Some stalls displayed many trays of beads in different shapes and sizes. The beads made of pale green jade and others in blue and white porcelain would make beautiful vases for a dolls house.
   There are many places in Chinatown supplying everything needed for calligraphy. I thought the little marble and stone figures on top of the squared or rounded pillars sold in these stalls would make beautiful statues in a dolls house hallway.   
Sterling silver merlion charm
   On my travels I often buy sterling silver charms. Usually these are sold for bracelets. But they are just the right size to make 1:12 scale ornaments for a mini mantelpiece or sideboard. I bought a charm of the Merlion, Singapore's half lion, half fish fountain, as a memento of my holiday. I will put it in the Oriental room of my Miniature Museum.
   If I had been making a miniature toy shop I would have been very tempted to spend up large in Lim's store in Holland Village. They had a whole cabinet of tiny Disney ornaments, from Tinkerbell to the Little Mermaid, made of china, finely detailed and hand painted. This shop also sells a wide range of oriental-style bits and bobs in colourful displays, many of which could be adapted to 1:12 scale.
    My holiday was great, combining three of my favourite things. People watching, seeing new places, and shopping for miniatures!  Now, where to next?

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