Most people don’t know this about me: I am a miniaturist. I’ve wanted a dollhouse so badly growing up that I made them out of tissue boxes before my aunt eventually bought me a dollhouse kit whist visiting her, which my brother had built for me. In high school I designed homes as an interior design major and eventually built a multi-tiered theater, complete with a comprehensive backstage area…which I made my parents drive all the way to my school in midtown Manhattan, find parking, and carry it several blocks to my classroom. For one Christmas I asked my BFF to gift me with cold hard cash so I could buy supplies to complete a SoHo loft I made from scratch. She complied, but packed it inside a sweater box, prompting me to think: A sweater? A F*#$ing SWEATHER?!? She laughed as I tried not to strangle her. I needed those wainscot panels for my project! I made a tiny little moss-covered cottage to hide contraband items in which my mother threw out because she feared bugs living inside the thatched roof even though I had assured her many times the materials were all artificial. I was more upset about the disposal of the contraband goods than the cottage being unceremoniously thrown out. I’ve built dioramas all my life and eventually got my students into it just so I could wallow in a sea of miniatures. I’d look at my work schedule every time a miniature item crept into my social media feed and I’d sigh dramatically and dream of retirement where I would clear a space in my house devoted fully to the construction and displaying of miniatures.

In the meanwhile, I never turn down a request to paint a house-shaped matryoshka project. It’s not exactly the same as putting together a dollhouse, but close enough. The best thing about it is I don’t have to source for supplies and demand my love ones to gift me with money to put toward it.

This is for a very lovely lady who had the patience of a saint because this took a very long time to knock out. Her home is absolutely gorgeous, quite like the dollhouse I’d like to make one day.

The one request is that I put her cat somewhere inside the house, a task I gleefully agreed to because I have allowed to let a stray cat live with me and then steal my heart so I understand now how they’re the true residents of any home.

Spot the kitty!