Sunday, 22 July 2012

Readable Miniature Books by Ann Vanture

A Boxed Set of Beatrix Potter Books From Paper Minis

One of my 'good intentions' when making miniatures has been to have all  real, readable books in my mini museum and Edwardian dolls house. 
   Some of them I've bought ready-made, such as the beautiful open books I bought from Barbara Brear of South Africa. I wrote about them in one of the Guest Interviews on this blog.
  Other books I've made from kit sets. I have been very impressed with the kit set books I bought from Paper Minis. The colors were fresh, the pictures and text crisp, and the kits went together easily, as long as I took my time and folded pages carefully!
  I asked Ann Vanture of Paper Minis to tell me about them. 

W.  Where do you source the old books you make your miniature copies from?
 Ann.  I have a huge human scale book collection and I still have lots of books from my childhood. Many of my friends have books in their collection and they have allowed me to borrow these for miniaturizing. A few I have bought and downloaded. I make sure that the books I use are not still in copyright in this country. 
  What many people do not know is that many of the books are actually derivative works of mine. For examples, the Unicorn Tapestries, the Duc de Berry Book of Hours and the 21 Missions books were compiled and authored by me. Many of the books are abridged by me as well in order to fit the tiny format. That can be a difficult task, to be able to keep the story and style intact. Those itsy bitsy Beatrix Potter books are very difficult. By the way, I only publish Potter books whose characters are not trademarked.
    I think many miniaturists only concern themselves with copyright and should also familiarize themselves with trademarking. Where the boxed sets are concerned, I design the boxes myself and incorporate design elements found on and in the books the box houses.
    Every book is re-typeset in order for the collector to be able to read, albeit with a magnifier. Only my Uncle with perfect eyesight is able to read my books without help! And he is 83 years young.
    All artwork is cleaned and color enhanced to make these little jewels complete. Remember these are vintage and antique books and have lost much of their original scrumptious color over the years. Another hurdle is eliminating a child’s added “designs”, usually in crayon.
Mini Dolls House/Bookcase Kits
    Every book I sell either has a storage box or a laminated matching box sleeve, this keeps the books from flopping open when stored away. Some of my favorite designs are the tiny dollhouses kits I designed to double as mini bookcases.
   Thanks, Ann. It's interesting to find out how much work is involved in producing the kit set books.Your books now are in my Edwardian dolls house nursery and in the Rare Books room of my miniature museum. 


  1. Replies
    1. Yes, Deni, I love her products. They're just that bit different.