For June, we are asking you to "Show us your Centerpieces!"
Have you ever been asked to finish a centerpiece for a Houseparty or Convention? Or have you ever won, bought, or made a centerpiece from The Gazette?
Here are the amazing submissions.
From Debbie Colombo:
One of my favorite things about a Houseparty or Convention are the centerpieces. I love walking around the room and checking out all the different ways they have been finished. I have helped make them for different Houseparties and I have purchased one in an auction, but I have never won one until the Portland Houseparty last month. They were all so creative and fun, and if you have not seen them yet, you can watch the video that was done featuring all of them here.
One of my favorites, that I was very sad not to have won, was from the 2016 "Gals, Gangsters and Gatsby" Small Scale Houseparty in Greenville, SC. This amazing 1920's style (OMG, a century ago) Craftsman style House, was designed by Jayne Payne. All the furnishings were designed by different members of the committee and they were all marvelously accurate.
From Mary Johnson:
The first Centerpiece I won was "Winter" at Portland's Four Seasons.
In the exhibit room I was snapping dozens on dozens of photos of all the centerpieces, where Susie Newell introduced herself and removed glass domes so I could take better shots. (Can you believe I was so enthralled with centerpieces that I didn't recognize who she was? She has since become a good friend!)
I loved my "winter" so much I had to have them all! It took the better part of two years but hunted for and bought the remaining three Seasons. I love every one!
The second centerpiece win was the Haunted House from Scranton "Sleepy Hollow". The lantern was shattered during shipping home, and not replaced (yet) so it "lives" in my china hutch! I'm hoping to win a third centerpiece at either Indy or Providence, RI.
From Grace Mlynowski:
I won this centerpiece in Franklin, Tennessee. Someone at a nearby table was gracious enough to trade with me as I had my eye on this throughout all the meals. I was hostess so I got to get a hands-on look too.
From Cheryl Polito:
I made this 1/144th scale centerpiece for a micro minis convention. The book I chose was the old lady who lived in a shoe. This was the first and only centerpiece I have made for a convention. I actually made two but can’t remember who won the other centerpiece.
These are from the OLHP Splintered Fairy Tales.
From Marty Young:
This is the centerpiece I won in Cleveland. The Theme was “Surfing USA”
From Alice Barber:
I was delighted to win a table centerpiece from the1995 NAME Houseparty, made by Ruth Hacker of the “Crazy 8’s”. There is even illumination behind the stained glass but I was unable to photograph that.
From Cat Wingler:
I made this centerpiece many years ago for a Regional Houseparty in Baltimore. I had a wonderful time building and aging the haunted mansion inside the pumpkin. The three happy witches went with the pumpkin to say Happy Halloween.
From Lesia Lennex:
The One That Got Away ...
I've just been looking through the centerpieces folks have shared with Create. What a lot of great items! I have several others besides the one I shared, but I'm still looking for THE one. I attended the 2004 small scales Naperville HP. It was marvelous. My friend, Isabel Allen, was our table hostess and she won our table centerpiece and then years later donated it to the 2013 Lexington, KY HP Houseparty Helpers. I entered $150 in tickets on the centerpiece but someone else won it. I guess it wasn't meant to be. I'm hoping at some point that one of those centerpieces will come up for auction or even be featured in some way. This one was special to me because I was pregnant with my daughter (she turns 18 in July). If you see one, they're 1/2 scale, four travel designs, and just marvelous. The Gazette featured some how-to on their construction and the HP souvenir book had some construction as well.
From Gwen Cargill:
The theme of our Holiday Party in 2009 was Window Wishes. I remember there was a toy shop, travel agency, sewing/ quilt shop, baby gift shop, train store, dollhouse shop, kite shop, bridal shop, art gallery and many more.
From Elaine Levine:
I won this centerpiece from the Charlotte Convention.
I made this centerpiece for the St. Louis National in 2014. Unfortunately, I don't have a single picture that shows all of the riverboat, so am including a few - one shows the front end and side, the other the back end with the little boy fishing off the back with a copy of Huckleberry Finn on his lap.
From Sally Lonn:
I have made and won several centerpieces. It is always such a thrill and I love feeling like I contributed to the convention. I have re-gifted some to NAME as Houseparty Helpers. This is one of my all time favorite wins, from 2007, Inside/Outside Small Scales Regional Houseparty in Fresno, California. All of the centerpieces were based on the Brambly Hedge books. The containers I think were from Costco and were beautifully mounted and fully landscaped in the back. This one was created by Gold Country Miniature Society of Grass Valley, CA and the Tinker Belles of Fresno. I studied these pieces for days filling out a contest form and I won! I have pieces to make the Brambly Hedge storeroom at some point. This was a wonderful Houseparty and one I will always remember.
From Julie Stuckmeyer:
Here's my centerpiece -- the only one I've ever won -- from the first online Houseparty. It was also my first ever Houseparty so I didn't even know what it was when it showed up. I like it more now than I did when I first got it. It really is a very clever piece comprised of lots of different mediums.
From Betty Turmon:
I cannot remember where I won this centerpiece. <If anyone knows, e-mail email@example.com> It may have been at a quarter scale house party in Salt Lake City.
From Shirley Caskey:
I won this at the 1994 "Back to the Fifties" National Houseparty. It was an exciting moment for me.
From Dee Cirilli:
I won this Four Square Pittsburgh House at the 2019 Pittsburgh Houseparty "Won’t You Be My Neighbor?" I got a Halloween House made by the committee and I absolutely love it! I kp it out all year. The roof comes off so the inside can be decorated.
From Karen Sesody:
Here's the pictures of the Seattle centerpiece I won.
From Bev Fleming:
Here's my Portland centerpiece, that we all received.
From Diane Fisher:
I won this at the 2008 "Rain, Wine, and Roses" Houseparty in Seattle and love it!
This centerpiece was won by me at the first online Houseparty.
From Trish Billard:
The very first Houseparty I went to was in Salt Lake City in 1994. The theme was "Opening Night, the Curtain Going Up" and I was really into theater at the time. The centerpieces were all beautifully finished boxes representing steamer/costume trunks. There were themes, Marionettes, Follies, Opera, and Ballet. This was also the first time they had all the centerpieces on display in the exhibit room between meal functions. They had a scavenger hunt contest where you had to list which roomboxes had a trunk, a Pinocchio, etc. which really encouraged everyone to look at all the beautiful work done on all of them! And they all lit up. I was in love with the dressing room Follies theme! I wish I could send you pictures of one of each theme. Just as I was saying to my tablemates, "Well, ONE of us will win this" my seat number was announced! What a great topper to win the centerpiece at my first Houseparty. That was a special memory.
The second centerpiece I'd like to share is the first one I made for a Houseparty. It was for 2013's Tuscon "At Night At The Museum." Being from "Silicon Valley" I just had to go with a Tech theme: Robotics! Now, I also decided I had to make it animated, so I found a battery-operated ice skating rink decoration and modified everything to make it fit. The sumo robots spin and chase each other, as do the soccer robots, while the lone robot goes around in circles, appears to stop, and go another direction, all while they move in groups around the entire ring. It was fun. I also used magnets to attach the post and doors/wall at the back so they could easily be packed for shipping. I love making centerpieces because I enjoy the process of making things, but don't have room to display everything I make.
From Cynthia Stencill:
Here is the centrepiece I made for our minisgathering during the pandemic.
From Tammy Witthaus:
I was lucky enough to win this awesome centerpiece created by Debbie Young and Jeff Packard at the 2019 A Little Bit Country Shabby or Chic National in Nashville! I LOVE seeing all the different centerpieces and the fact that they move to different tables at each meal.
From Debby Albert:
I won the centerpiece for 2007 National. It was a Winnie the Pooh centerpiece and was so cute that I donated it to my son’s elementary school. Unfortunately, I don’t have a picture of it.
However, a few years ago I won a centerpiece from the NC State day. Rose and the Garden Party. Since then Rose met Rocky and they have 2 babies.
From Mae Karoli:
I’ve been lucky enough to win 2 centerpieces outright and 2 others by “default”. This is a centerpiece I won outright from the “College of Miniature Knowledge” in Louisville in 2003. The ladies who made the centerpiece named the doll Norman.
This centerpiece is from the online convention “Our Miniature World” in 2014. I placed a bid on extra centerpieces that were available and I was lucky enough to win one.
This is from “Rollin’ on the River” in St Louis in 2014 that I won by default because the original winner didn’t want to transport it home as he was flying.
This is from “What’s Cookin’?” in Indianapolis in 2015. The original winner of this was our table hostess and she wanted others at the table to have a chance to win. She told us to pick a number between 1 and 10 and I had the closest number.
These are centerpieces that my club, the Strongsville Miniature Club (C-731), made -- one for “What’s Cookin’?” in 2015 and the other for “Come to the Circus” in 2017. There is an elephant in the circus wagon.
From Jackie Browder:
A tiny kit from the recent Splintered Fairytales OLHP.
From Lesia Lennex:
I'd like to share a unique centerpiece I created from a kit --- It's the balloon from 80 days around the world OLHP in 2019. This was such a fun and challenging kit! It was designed by Ruth Stewart. As you see, it's electrified and looks wonderful!
From Rose Stout:
The Philadelphia 1992 "Welcome Friends National" was my first convention and I was thrilled to win this Ben Franklin doll scene. The armoire was won at the 2005 Salt Lake City regional.
In 2001 I served on the Committee for the Peabody regional house party and helped make the lamps which were our centerpieces, never expecting to win one Imagine my surprise when I did.
From Jackie Williams:
Here is the 'Come Fly With Me' centerpiece in 1/48 scale that I built from a kit.
The dolls are my creations I learned how to make from Susie Newell's tutorials online.
Pilot is getting breakfast and coffee before heading to his flight assignment.
Here is a center piece I won at a past online convention by Quarter Connection.
Once again the dolls I added after I received the piece. They are my Darlings in quarter scale. JoAnn Jacot was table hostess and this is a 3 sided scene.
From Rhonda Williamson:
Whoops! I sent in my photo for the May challenge of the centerpiece that I made for our local NAME clubs 26th Anniversary and NAMES 50th Anniversary. Warren Ohio Area NAME club celebrated both anniversaries last month. Here it is again.
From Paula Francis:
I never won anything, anywhere until the National Convention in Charleston, South Carolina in 2018 (Sweet Tea and Sunshine). The winning seat number was 1 and that was ME! I was so excited, I came right out of my seat. In my opinion it is one of the most beautiful centerpieces, ever. The team workmanship was flawless and it is one of my most treasured pieces. Thank goodness we drove home to Maine and didn’t fly -- I would have hated to try and pack it safely.
From Barb Antol:
In 2019, I purchased the 1/4" scale hot air balloon centerpiece kit from the “Around the World in Eight Days” Online Houseparty. I didn’t get chance to build the kit right away, and that turned out to be a good thing. The following year, our niece got engaged and since her fiancé proposed in a hot air balloon, I decided this project would make a perfect and special wedding gift for them. I decorated the balloon with a wedding theme; adding a tiny wedding cake from Ruth Stewart, a little champagne bucket and glasses and a tiny bible I made from a paper kit. I even crafted a teeny little engagement ring in a box, using bits of wood and some micro beads! I found an O scale bride & groom figure which worked well. The balloon is displayed in a heart-topped glass dome. It was a really fun project and my niece and her husband loved it.
From Suzie Aguilar:
The centerpiece I won was from the “Welcome to My Garden” Convention in Seattle. I was extremely excited because the vignette included a section of a kitchen, my favorite! The centerpieces were made in 1:24 scale. I now work in 1:48 scale and have begun downsizing my miniature vignettes. Though I was thrilled to win the centerpiece years ago, I decided it was time to let it go since 1:24 was not a scale in which I ever got interested. I donated the centerpiece to the auction during the “Splinter Fairytales” Online Houseparty. I won it from NAME so I decided NAME should benefit from its sale.
In addition, I made polymer clay vegetables for the “ABCs of Miniatures” Houseparty centerpieces in Sacramento CA. I was not able to attend so I didn’t get any photos. It was fun and challenging making hundreds of tomatoes and such!
From Carol J. Shea:
The centerpiece here has quite a memory attached. On one of the first Houseparties I attended, I won a centerpiece in Denver. It was the year of Colorado's state day and the center pieces were of 2 different styles. One was with the state emblem and flag plus other items from their history. The other was the one attached -- an alien crash site. The one at my table was the state day commemorative. I wanted one of the alien crash site and I was bold enough to go around asking the other winners if they would trade with me. I was lucky enough to find a winner that traded with me. My table mates/friends thought I was crazy but I fell in love with this scene. This was made in 1" scale and when I went into 1/4" scale I gave this one to my son-in-law as he loves 'little green men' items -- he has tattoos of them plus other memorabilia. So it stayed in the family even after all my other 1" scenes were gone. I have greatly enjoyed every Houseparty I have attended before and since, but this one will always stand out to me.
From Ruth Goodger:
This centerpiece is really old from when inch scale was the main deal. Can’t remember if it was from Salt Lake, Denver or Colorado Springs. Maybe the Springs since there is an item from Pikes Peak Miniature.
My other centerpiece was from Portland where we all won! I finished items in the inside.
When QC had online conventions I didn’t win centerpieces but they were a basic shape and easy to duplicate at home.
From Chris Ernst:
Here is a centerpiece from the 2014 Spring online convention “Our Miniature World of NAME.“ I worked on the committee to make these.
This is a centerpiece from the 2017 national convention “That’s Entertainment!” This one ended up at my friend's table for the brunch when they gave them away. I told her that she had to give it to me if she won it because I loved it SO MUCH. She didn’t win it but talked the person that did win it into giving it to me and I still love it.
From Vicki Scidmore:
I was lucky enough to win a centerpiece at Welcome to my Garden in Seattle (2016). For the first seat number drawn, the lady had left early. On the second draw I won! I love this centerpiece so much I put my miniature self in it (centerpiece was made by Barbara Renken).
I made a copy of the centerpiece “chair” from the first on-line HP.
I also made the airport café centerpiece for Portland and the tiny house from the fairy tale OLHP.
Many years ago I bought two centerpieces from the Von Fliss estate (they were among the founders of NAME). They were from the Golden Years of Hollywood in 1982 and a bit worse for wear from long storage. One was a red dress from “Jezebel” which I re-made as a steampunk wedding dress. The other was a white lace dress for Scarlett O’Hara which is pretty but so gray with dust it is more suited for Miss Havisham. I was given a Night at the Museum centerpiece of “History of Chairs”, taken apart for re-use. What a lot of memories all these bring back!
From Janet Smith:
One thing I have done these past few years is to take my niece/nephews on trips when they turned 12. For my niece, Julie’s 12th year, we went to the “Night at the Museum” Convention in Tucson. Julie helped me setting up my sales table and she took some classes and enjoyed shopping. And she relished the attention that the kids at the convention got from us old-timers. She bonded, especially, with Diane Fisher, who was one of our tablemates. She was lucky enough to win two helpers and, when it was time for the centerpiece drawing, she won that as well. But, she decided that she liked 1” scale miniatures better than quarter inch and we were at a quarter inch table. After learning that she won, she whispered in my ear, “I don’t really want the centerpiece … can I give it to Diane?” My response was simple. ”NO! But you can give it to me.” Selfish, I know … and I apologized to Diane who said that she wouldn’t have accepted it anyway. So it’s now happily residing here at my home and gives me a wonderful memory of my trip with Julie!