Another big success for Miniatura
Kitten Von Mew and husband Richard. Photo Rob Tysall.
Miniatura Spring Show was held at Stoneleigh NAEC 18-19 March.
Review by Ann Evans
Miniatura – the show for dolls house miniatures held its 97th show recently at Stoneleigh, attracting around 2,000 visitors all eager to see what the talented craftsfolk had been making recently. And with 93 very different stands and world class artisans exhibiting their wares, visitors were certainly spoilt for choice.
From miniature oil paintings, to delectable cakes and foodstuffs; from modern, retro, Tudor and Medieval furniture to character dolls from different periods of history, plus quirky and fantasy and simply beautiful. Dolls houses came in all scales and styles, from 1:12 right down to 1:144.
Robert Crouch. Photo Rob Tysall
Not that you need to own a dolls house to appreciate Miniatures. Lots of people choose room boxes – or any kind of containers in fact which will house a miniature scene. We spotted a miniature violin case turned into a miniature room. Kitten Von Mew had a steam punk garden on her head complete with privy and looked very stylish indeed. You can even buy easy to assemble ‘flat pack’ room boxes and ‘book nooks’. Simply slot them together and let your imagination run wild in decorating them.
Robert Crouch's French cafe. Photo Rob Tysall.
A number of the exhibitors and societies ran workshops, sharing their skills and knowhow with others. You could make a 1:12 scale hot air balloon, or a tiny pipe cleaner teddy bear that would fit into a matchbox. You could try your hand at miniature needlework or pick up some practical skills in creating outside textured and weathered walls.
Amanspeak Miniatures look good enough to eat. Photo Rob Tysall
An important and regular stand at the show was Pat Cutforth’s Cancer Research UK stand who was thrilled with the amount they made at Miniatura: £8,452 sent to Cancer Research UK. Pat added, “It is hard to believe when so much of what we sell is tiny and inexpensive. However, this is greatly boosted by the occasional donation of fine handmade items from another stallholder. Donations are the lifeblood of the fundraising — along with all the help with pricing, serving behind the table for two days, setting up on Friday (this takes at least fifteen man-hours), and of course the kindness of organiser Andy Hopwood. He gives us the huge table, free admission for our helpers and a terrific amount of encouragement. Buyers also contribute a huge amount – they are so happy when they find a bargain, but always spending generously to support this charity.”
Pat continued, “The results for this Miniatura are a record. I started the Marlborough Dolls House Fair in 1987 and we made £1,642. Twelve years later we held the last Fair, raising £19,100, then took our remaining stock to Miniatura. Over all these years we have made £378,786 for Cancer Research UK.”
Miniature Needlework Society. Photo Rob Tysall.
Miniatura has been running for the last 40 years, having started in 1983 by Bob and Muriel Hopwood. Of recent years their son Andy and his team have taken over the organisation of the event, and the online side of Miniatura. Andy commented, “We had a larger attendance than expected and I am delighted to announce that over 2,000 visitors enjoyed the work of 93 stands. After exhibiting at the NEC for many years, the previous two events at Stoneleigh were wonderful but this time was even better.”
Further details and to buy tickets for the Autumn Miniatura on Saturday 30 September and Sunday 1 October 2023, visit: www.miniatura.co.uk