Dollhouse Blogs

Sunday 11 June 2017

The New Breakfast Room

Hello everyone,

I hope you are all doing well and enjoying a nice summer. Thank you for your great feedback on my last post, I really appreciate your comments. Since the earl's bedroom I have finished renovating the breakfast room.

I know many of you really liked the first breakfast room. Don't worry Elizabeth, it is safely tucked away and I plan on using it as a room box. I loved the room, but several things really bothered me. Firstly, the space was tight and people could not walk around the table if others were seated. Secondly, Betsy, you were right, seeing the room only through the doors and windows was driving me crazy. It was impossible to see all the detail. Thirdly, there was not enough wall space for a decent sideboard and servers. The room was originally going to be a loggia...

...but I decided I wanted more interior space and closed it up to make a breakfast room. Every time I change an existing room it winds up being too small!

I built a new structure which , I think, has much better proportions then the original. Here are more pictures of the new room.

The room was inspired by the breakfast room at The Elms. It is wider, deeper and taller then the original room and makes much more sense now. Breakfast was served on a sideboard and people would go make their plates and sit down. The space is now large enough for diners and staff to move around comfortably.


I studied the breakfast room at The Elms a little more carefully this time. I started by planning out the main elements of the walls.

When I was pleased with the proportions of the room, I faux finished the illustration board wall panels and had a test run.

The fireplace in the picture was transferred to the earl's bedroom

The fireplace wall gave me a hard time. Originally I cut out an opening for symmetry ans was going to make a closet. I realized I didn't like that...of course I realised this after it was glued in and the ceiling cornice was in place! I cut and tore off the right side of the fireplace wall and recut a new one, this time creating a built in shelf. I put it in place and realised the shelves would only be 5/8 in deep. Not terrible, but not right in a room this size. Finally I cut another piece and just added a lacquer chinoiserie panel.


The floor is a copy of the original breakfast room floor. I really like the pattern so I just started over on a bigger floor template.

As usual, I drew out one panel, photocopied it several times and used that as a template to cut the iron on wood pieces.


All the molding was painted faux walnut, but I decided to add a little gold accent on each strip. It took forever! The faux walnut technique is made with oil paints, so I had to use metallic gold oil paint to detail the trim. It was so long to do and you all know how much I dislike painting, but in the end I am happy with the results.

In the above picture, I used a piece of illustration board to keep the height of the chair rail steady around the room. The gold detail is very subtle but stands out nicely when light. The gold oil paint took 2 weeks to dry completely.


The ceiling was painted a warm white. I purchased  Sue Cook cornice C2, pre painted each piece with the ceiling paint and highlighted the detail in gold. I must have been tired or clumsy when I was cutting the cornice because all my cuts were off and the plasterwork crumbled.

I had to cover large gaps with wood filler, re-carve the detail in the cornice to the best of my ability, paint it white (picture above) and re-paint the gold highlights.

The chandelier is the Antoinette from the Getzans

Fireplace and niche marbling

I purchased the niche and William Kent fireplace from Sue Cook . I found a picture of a beige marble I liked and sponged on the finish. In hard to get to areas I used paint brushes and dry brushed on the paint. In the picture above you can see the tools I used. The paints are in the order I applied them. from left to right. I liked the yellow marble in the first room, but while I had seen real marble slabs that yellow, it did not translate as realistic in miniature.

I was pleased with the look of the fireplace against the walnut. Here is a closer view.

Chinoiserie lacquer panels

I believe I mentioned I hate painting. the main reason I hate it so is because I never get the painting to look the way I want it to. I took a lot of time prepping the panels. I cut out the illustration board to size, painted them black, glazed them with the same spray I used for the marble effect, sanded it with 600 sandpaper and buffed it with a 0000 steel wool. I repeated the painting , sanding and buffing 5 timed to get it perfectly smooth. I then prepared my paint and took out some pictures of chinoiserie panels. I stared at them and the panels in the first breakfast room for about an hour, then decided I was fighting a losing battle.

The statue is a bit small for the niche, but it is all I had at hand

What you see in the picture above are pictures I found of a panelled chest lid. I cut them out, glued them on my perfectly smooth black illustration board panels with rubber cement and sprayed on 5 coats of glaze. I looked at some hand painted chinoiserie miniatures I have and the brush strokes just don't look like realistic lacquer panels. I am really happy with the end result. Here is a picture of how all the elements came together

It took me a week to decide what color I wanted the painted tiles of the fireplace insert. Sue Cook was very helpful sending pictures back and forth. The mirror above is also from her catalogue.


I use the Pretty Pleater to make my curtains. It usually goes well, however I failed to realize the pleater is 10 1/2 inches long and my windows are 12 inches high. I pleated the central area of the gold colored raw silk, but I still had to pin the folds down on a piece of foam core board to get the pleats to go all the way down.

The pelmets are illustration board to which I glued on the silk with The Ultimate Glue and then I added the white lace trim with Aleene's tacky glue

And with that, construction was complete.

I am happy I decided to redo the room. The larger room, especially height wise, fits much better with the rest of the manor.


The most important piece was the sideboard to display the breakfast food. I purchased a French console table from Allison Davies. The carved detail in her piece is amazing, but the chestnut finish was lost against the walnut walls, so I gilded carvings in the base and marbled the top so the table would stand out.

Again I placed the paints in order from left to right.

It stands out beautifully now. Below  is a close up of the breakfast. The fried eggs were purchased at Ananda in Barcelona on our last trip and the crumpets and silver were purchased at the Montreal show.

I used the same table and displayed the Imperial cherry blossom dinner set I commissioned from Julie at Westwinds miniatures a while ago. The gorgeous flower arrangement was made from Martha Mclean. I think I need better cutlery though.

And that was it for the breakfast room.

Birthday present

May second was my birthday and I got a Randall Zadar figurine called The Golden Age from Jo and my family.

I love my birthdays and planned on supper and doing things I love to do for a whole week...however this birthday was spent taking care of Ozzy who broke his knee doing god only knows what. He had surgery on the 3d of May and is much better now, but the 3 weeks after the operations were difficult and I got very little sleep. No the best birthday, but since next year is my 40th I'll just have to make up for it.

And that is all for now my friends. The past few rooms have been inspired by some of my favorite places: The earls office and breakfast room by The Elms, the countess' bedroom by Rosecliff, the earl's bedroom by Chatsworth, and next time we will travel to the Royal Pavilion in Brighton for the countess's study.

I just want to welcome new followers and thank those of you who have been following me for a while. For some reason I often have a hard time accessing new followers' blogs, so if I am not following you please let me know, it is not intentional.

Big hug to all,


  1. Madre mía Giac, tus obras pasan de ser un simple hobby a ser una verdadera obra de arte. Felicidades. Un beso

  2. Como siempre que visito tu blog, estoy asombrada y maravillada. Admiro mucho tu arte y tu tesón. Y cuando parece que algo no puede mejorar, tu nos demuestras que puedes hacerlo aun más bonito.
    Mi felicitación y un fuerte abrazo

  3. Oh it looks wonderful! I'd never have guessed you had trouble with the drapes.

    Happy belated Birthday!

  4. I'm right there with you Giac in the painting department. You have an idea and it never quite translates when you pick up the paint brush. I think you made the right choice with the Chinoiserie panels and saved yourself a headache. The gold and yellow looks so good in the room. As much as it freaks me out even considering changing a room, I think the transformation is amazing and well worth the effort :0)

  5. I'm speechless ... incredibly beautiful work !!!

  6. You have done again amazing work.Everything looks so so beautiful.Happy Birthday!

  7. This room is beautiful beyond words. Perfect!

  8. Beautiful work, Giac, super!
    Mini hugs!

  9. Caro Giac, sempre incrível seu trabalho !!!
    admiro muito seu talento e seu dom artístico..
    é fantástico seu trabalho e me deixa encantada sempre..
    sempre chamo meu marido para ver também , pois é lindo demais..
    Felicidades pelo seu aniversário, que Deus o abençoe sempre com saúde e paz !!
    grande abraço e boa semana.

  10. Cada vez que dices que vas a cambiar algo se me para el corazón y pienso que estás loco, jaaaaaa! Tus trabajos siempre me parecen imposibles de mejorar hasta que decides hacer una reforma y surge el milagro... No tengo adjetivos, tu trabajo me parece grandioso! ♥

  11. Que decir de tu trabajo...¡espectacular!, cada cambio que haces es inmejorable, es de un realismo aplastante;felicidades por ello y muchas gracias por mostrarlo.Felicidades por tu cumpleaños y por el regalo , me parece fantástico se aprecia que es una porcelana finísima y perfecta.Te deseo feliz semana:-)

  12. Hello Giac! Happy Birthday!
    I do not really like fried eggs, but in such a room you can eat anything. A room of amazing beauty! Thank you, you are very inspiring!
    Hugs, Julia

  13. Lovely Giac! This looks so perfect for a breakfast room. Big windows for letting in the sunlight, the fresh flowers on the table, beautiful fireplace for winter mornings. The chinoiserie panels came out beautifully in the end. Sending love to Ozzy and late birthday wishes to you!

  14. Okay Sir Giac, You were RIGHT and I was wrong; however
    in this case, my being 'wrong" is alright because your NEW AND IMPROVED breakfast room is MAGNIFICENT and your decision to expand the proportions of the room to suit the rest of the renovations was indeed, -Exactly the RIGHT THING TO DO! ♡
    I LOVE the new fireplace and must say that your marbling looks Realer than Real!
    And your comments regarding the need for room to move freely around the table as well as requiring the space for a sideboard and other servers, was entirely justified because those would be issues for me too, and in retrospect it would've been undignified for the Countess to be constantly scooching her chair in and out so that her servants to get past- simply UNTHINKABLE!
    Your Glorious Sideboard laden with the ancestral silver and assorted British breakfast foods (all beautifully presented); have made the modifications to this room not only worthy of both the Count and the Countess, but fit for a King!
    I wish you a HAPPY BIRTHDAY year ahead, my friend and conclude with a heartfelt
    BRAVO Milord Giac ♡
    BRAVO!!!! :D


  15. Happy belated! I love how this room is looking, I especially love the panels and the fireplace. Oh and I love what you did with the table---

  16. WOW !
    Que de merveilleux changements! Que la peinture vous pose problème Giac, Cela ne se ressent pas, vos "chinoiseries" sont superbes. Le parquet, les éléments en marbre et le plafond sont ... Je finis par ne pas trouver les bons mots ;)
    Tout simplement : c'est un travail FANTASTIQUE !
    Amicalement. Joce

  17. Breathtaking! I really love your work<3


  18. Happy belated birthday, Giac, Jo and your family have spoiled you very much! I hope Ozzy will be better better soon, poor thing!
    Your transformation of the breakfast room is amazing and well worth the effort, the result is absolutely stunning! Thank you for sharing your techniques and sources of inspiration with us.
    Big hug, Ilona

  19. Terrific! A masterpiece. Eveything is perfect in this room.

  20. I truly love this room,it's full of light with the floor and the curtains. I also love your chinoiserie panels. I find the colour of the dinner set fantastic. Everything makes it a great room.

  21. Darling I just love the new Breakfast room, it reminds of an english castle and I dont remember the movie but Im sure I've seen something like that room before. its like a full size room! you do great work Giac and Happy Belated Brithday tell Ozzie that I hope he is feeling better.


  22. Hi Giac,

    Wowww wat is de breakfast room PRACHTIG geworden, werkelijk ongelooflijk hoe jij dat toch steeds voor elkaar krijgt om al je mooie en zeer doordachte ideeen zo perfect tot uiting te brengen. De vloer ook zo fantastisch ontworpen en uitgevoerd.

    Ieder detail is zo verfijnd tot de lekkernijen die genuttigd kunnen worden aan toe. Ik krijg gewoon zin om aam te schuiven om gezamenlijk genieten van een heerlijk heerlijk ontbijt.

    De allerbeste wensen voor Ozzy en ik hoop dat de knie weer helemaal goed zal genezen. Ondanks deze gebeurtenis wil ik je toch nog van harte feliciteren, en volgend jaar je 40e wordt het een TOP feest!!!

    Veel liefs,

  23. This is just sooo pretty! There is such ambiance and a sense of space/place. The light glowing through the window highlighting the best features of the furnishings. There is so much I could write for hours about each aspect from the chinoiserie to the flooring. I will be revisiting this post several times.

  24. Gran decisión dar mayor amplitud,la nueva habitación se ve maravillosa,los paneles de la pared me fascinan,amo cada detalle tan bien estudiado y trabajado y con una puesta en escena tan soberbia!!!!
    Feliz cumpleaños con retraso y un cariñoso abrazo a Ozzy que espero ya se encuentre recuperado!!!

  25. Bonjour Giac,
    encore une fois vous avez réalisé des merveilles. Vous devenez un Maître dans les techniques de faux-bois et faux-marbre, c'est parfait. C'est une très bonne idée d'avoir ouvert la pièce par des fenêtres. Quand au parquet, c'est un chef-d'oeuvre. Encore BRAVO Giac.

  26. Hola Giac, que gusto desayunar en esa habitación tan bien hecha, tu paso a paso me encanta y los resultados maravillosos.
    La figura de regalo de cumple muy bonita deseo lo hayas pasado muy bien y te felicito por tus 39 años y espero que Ozzy esté bien.
    Un abrazo

  27. Hello Giac....another masterpiece. The room is just gorgeous. You really have an eye and talent for perfection! I love it all! Happy birthday Giac, and give Ozzy some Irish cuddles from me!!

  28. Hello Giac,

    I have been folowing your blog for some time now and it is high time that I comment you on your wonderful work. Your manorhouse is improving every time although it is already so good. The redecoration of the Earls bedroom was stunning already, but the new Breakfastroom is really superb. Ik liked the old one very much but you are right, these proportions are better. And the decor, what can I say. A wonderful result.

    Your blog has helped me deciding to try and build my own miniature house. Although with will be of a different period and style, I aspire to achieve the same level of quality. Good luck with your future endeavoures.


  29. First of all - although belated - my best wishes to your birthday and congrats on your stunning gift. Here's to many more makeovers to come!!! *LOL* You are my hero, you really are - and you never stop to amaze me and leave me open mouthed in front of my monitor. Another case of making something gorgeous even better - but now with the before- and after-pictures it's easy to see that you were right with your feeling about the room being too small and not realistic enough. It was worth all the work because now this is a room with the right dimensions. It's now an inviting, friendly room - a place where I would like to enjoy a cup of morning coffee with a tasty fried egg... ;O) I hope Ozzy is fine again!


  30. !!!! Impresionante !!!, no tengo palabras Giac, es elegante, fantástico, maravilloso.
    Me dejas con la boca abierta

  31. Dear Giac, I am coming for breakfast! Early as the sun is rising.... all I need is tea and that gorgeous room!!! You have converted it into the perfect grand yet intimate and cheerful even serene space that matches all the rest of the upgrades you have been working on! Bravo! It is beautiful! Your method of achieving the Chinoiserie panels is brilliant! The Victorians were masters at combining so many techniques.... you might have "authentic" panels! LOL!
    I wish you a Happy Birthday and am sorry it was spent with a wounded companion.... I hope Olly is now on the mend!
    I love all the improvements you have been making.... please keep them coming!!!

  32. Giac you've got such vision and patience - You amaze and inspire me! There are so many fine details, and each finish and piece you add just makes the room a delight to gaze upon. The light streaming through the windows and onto the table creates a feeling of grandeur. It could be a design magazine cover photo and fool anyone. I noticed the headphones and wonder - What do you listen to while you work? And whatever it is, don't be embarrassed to tell!

  33. Prendre son petit déjeuner dans la quiétude de cette superbe pièce aux fines boiseries, quel raffinement Giac, bravo à vous!

  34. Amazing as always!
    Happy belated birthday and I hope Ozzy is doing better now!
    Lori K.

  35. Hello, Giac - You've worked your amazing magic on the new breakfast room and turned it into an elegant, exquisite space. You were right to allow more space to move around the table freely; there's no sense of crowding, but just that lovely spaciousness. I love the golden light that's created by the curtains and the mellow tones of the floor - and your beautiful dinner set highlights the golden touch, as does that subtle gold paint on the molding. All those elements work together to make the perfect backdrop for the beautifully marbled fireplace and the sideboard. That piece is wonderful; I'm so glad that you didn't allow it to disappear into the wall! I can't believe the amount of work that you've done on the chinoiserie panels - and all the work paid off. The panels are striking, and they bring such a dramatic spark to the room, finishing it off to perfection. You've created a breakfast room that seems filled with morning sunlight and the scent of fresh flowers - what an absolutely inspiring way to start the day! I wish you a happy belated birthday; your new figurine is beautiful. I hope Ozzy will soon recover fully.

  36. Love it! The amount of work and effort you put in to creating (and re-creating) your mini masterpieces is amazing.

  37. I always click on the first picture to look at it full screen size and then scroll through the rest before going back and reading your post. Truly the photos look like oil paintings of a very grand breakfast room. Huge compliments on your photography and lighting before I even start on the 'build'. All the painstaking work (five steps for the walls for example) is what makes your work perfection. It is a lovely and totally credible room, huge congratulations.
    Here's a link that might interest you - there is a section about breakfast - more excuses to go food shopping?
    Having said that the serving areas usually had chafing dishes of various sorts and so much of the food was covered Here's a bit from a Guardian article.......
    Guests were free to arrive at breakfast when they so chose, but the proper hour was usually between nine and half past ten. Far from the simple repast enjoyed at the beginning of the nineteenth century, Edwardian guests would feast on fruits, eggs, potted meats, fish, toast, rolls, tea cakes, muffins, hams, tongues, pies, kidney, fried bacon and were given tea, coffee, hot cocoa, and juices to drink. The sportsman’s breakfast was even more substantial, including game pie, cold beef, deviled turkey, broiled ham, kippered haddock, collared eels, spiced beef, shrimp, cold fowl, curried eggs, toasted mushrooms and broiled mackerel among other things, and though tea and coffee were taken, a tankard of beer or a cherry brandy were the drink of choice.

  38. Der Giac!
    This is incredible! Love every detail, every colour and the only Word I can find for it is magnificent!
    Fantastic work!!!!
    Big hug

  39. I am a little late to see this because I was on vacation. Another master piece - great work! I do like this room better with room to walk around. Great job on the woodwork, marbling, floor and decorative panels. It is inspirational.

  40. Se ve todo tan bonito, tan elegante y tan real!!!. Está claro que estos salones cuanto mas grandes mejor.
    Me encanta como has dejado las paredes.

  41. Thank you for putting the little sculpture in the alcove. Now I will feel like I am part of this magnificent house in some way :)

  42. I like it, a lot. It is chic, yet cozy.Again: well done, Giac!

  43. I enjoy your posts. Your transformations are amazing and I love the walk through changes.

  44. Hi Giac,
    You are so talented. I am in awe of your amazing work! Happy belated birthday and I hope Ozzy is doing better. :)

  45. Innanzi tutto buon compleanno e auguro a Ozzy di riprendersi al meglio. Sorprendente il grande lavoro che hai fatto, una precisione maniacale,hai fatto un ottimo lavoro, e ora le proporzioni e gli spazi sono veramente ok. Ti auguro una bellissima estate. Un grande abbraccio

  46. Dear Giac,

    Happy belated birthday and do hope that Ozzy is doing better.
    The transformation of the breakfast room is amazing, love the chinoiserie lacquer panels, the fireplace and the chandelier, you are so talented and love seeing your work.
    Have a great weekend

  47. Hi Giac,

    My name is Anuj Agarwal. I'm Founder of Feedspot.

    I would like to personally congratulate you as your blog English Manor Dollhouse has been selected by our panelist as one of the Top 100 Miniature Blogs on the web.

    I personally give you a high-five and want to thank you for your contribution to this world. This is the most comprehensive list of Top 100 Miniature Blogs on the internet and I’m honored to have you as part of this!

    Also, you have the honor of displaying the badge on your blog.


  48. Hola Giac , mucho tiempo sin venir. ¡Felicidades! Te escribí un email. Tú trabajo, una maravilla, como siempre. La mansión es un sueño. Mejoría para la rodilla de Ozzy. Besos

  49. Another beautiful work, what a patience you have to make it so precise, I am always amazed. It has become a very nice warm room!

  50. Hi Giac .... excuse the late visit to you ... but it is so hot ....35°
    As always, I am thrilled by your miniatures.

    Everything is detailed and made with love ..... I pull my hat in front of you !!

    Have a nice summer ..... maybe with baby?

    Hubs Sigrid

  51. Your work is over the top amazing!

  52. Hi Giac, sorry I'm so late with a comment on your blog...
    I had a vacation to Crete Greece and a lot of difficulty with my blogs lately but now every thing solved!
    Hope your partners knee is getting well we take a lot of things for granted but you miss them a lot when the body let you down... you're still very young LOL gratilations for your 40th birthday!!! Your energy is still high when you get older as I am its more difficult...
    Lovely as always your tiny big rooms, love the gold and those lightfitting's wow divine...
    greetings from The Netherlands!

  53. Holy WOW! The room is much grander and the people will definitely have space to walk around without bumping into everything. I love the chandelier--- what a fancy "breakfast room"! I think my most favorite part is the finish on the fireplace mantle. Phenomenal job, Giac!

  54. The room is incredibly Beautiful! The drapery panels came out so well, and you did a great job improvising for the length. Happy belated Birthday!
    Deri Terry

  55. This is marvellous, better than real :)

  56. Hi Giac, it is always such a joy to see what you have created, even if I always seem to be late to the party (you know, life...)
    This room is another triumph. I'm blown away by the parquet flooring you have made. Those circles look so difficult to cut by hand! The result is gorgeous. I agree with you on the chinoiserie painting on some miniatures, it just doesn't look right. I am also working on a breakfast/dining room with chinoiserie, very different from yours, but with some similarities. I have collected some small pieces which will fit the room, one of which is a small lacquer panel. The paint work is so unbelievably fine! So yes, quite agree with you on the panels. Any paint work we would do ourselves to attempt to replicate it would look clumsy. But then again, that too has its charms ;-) The chandelier is gorgeous! I'd be very happy to take my breakfast in a room like this ;-)

  57. I just realized I didnt comment! I have revisited this post several times. I guess I get so much into the details of what you done I forget. This room is so very pretty! Although I know I will never meet your skill level you always push me to new heights by seeing just what is possible. You dont settle until it is just as it authentic. You arent just an artist you are an inspiration.
    thanks so much for sharing your work and explaining it as you go. I look forward to the next post.

  58. I enjoy your posts. Your transformations are amazing and I love the walk through changes.


  59. What a beautiful work again, Giac! This room is amazing and I love every detail. Floor, panels, fireplace, wow!
    Sorry for the late comment... Have a good week!

  60. Sempre belíssimo e muito elegante

  61. Sorry this is late, but I had to say your breakfast room is stunning. I love the fireplace and chandelier, and your breakfast table is gorgeous. Everything is just perfect. I would certainly enjoy having breakfast here :-)

  62. As always your work and attention to detail is fantastic. Love how your have included your progress pics, so inspirational for the rest of us Mini makers out there. Hope the rest of your summer is filled with happiness and joy. Jenn

  63. Wonderful, Giac, what a great work, soooo beautiful :-)

    Big hug


  64. This room is really beautiful! I usually do not like the high boiserie up to the ceiling, I think it makes the rooms too dark. But this room is full of light and the walls are perfect! I also love chinese panels, I would like to make a Chinese style room in my dollhouse. I think it will be the dining room.
    Congratulations for your job!

  65. Your work is so beautiful! You are truly amazing Giac =)!! Happy birthday a little bit late and I hope Ozzy has a speedy recovery! Wow you have a big birthday coming up next time :D!

  66. Hello Giac,
    you're welcome to have a cup of coffee in my cafe :o)

    You are the greatest artist for me!!!!!

    Mini hug

  67. You dont settle until it is just as it authentic. You arent just an artist you are an inspiration.

    แตกใน xxx

  68. Hola Giac:
    Impresionante trabajo, me impresiona los detalles tan reales. Un placer ver tu blog. Enhorabuena! Un abrazo.

  69. Ciao Giac!
    Sempre fantastiche le tue creazioni!
    Un saluto

  70. Benim bloğuma ziyarete beklerim. Yorumlarınız benim için değerli.

  71. Wow amazing!

  72. I really like your site and content so much,thanks for sharing the information keep updating, looking forward for more posts.