Category Archives: Baroque

Posted on 01 August, 2017


National Museum of Toys and Miniatures

History (from the website)

The National Museum of Toys and Miniatures opened in 1982 as the Toy and Miniature Museum of Kansas City featuring the collections of Mary Harris Francis and Barbara Marshall. Operating in a building on the corner of 52nd and Oak on the University of Missouri – Kansas City campus, the 7,000-square-foot museum had two full-time staff members.
Over the next thirty years with expansions in 1985 and 2004, the museum grew to 33,000 square feet. During that same period, the collection increased to over 72,000 objects. In 2012, the museum embarked on its first public capital campaign to support building and exhibit improvements.
 On August 1, 2015, the museum reopened as The National Museum of Toys and Miniatures with the world’s largest fine-scale miniature collection and one of the nation’s largest antique toy collections on public display. The Coleman Dollhouse, pictured above, is a fine example.

Let The Great Images Roll

I am sure the museum is marvelous and I hope to visit someday. In the meantime, I will content myself with what I think is one of the best-looking websites on the Internet. When it’s time to let my mind roam free, I fill half of my 24” monitor with the Museum’s Home page, then click on Collections in the top nav bar. The working space fills with two squares – nice color combo, soft orange for Toys and aqua for Miniatures. Click on either, poke Next when needed, and you get seemingly endless slideshows of wonderful pieces in the museum. Very relaxing, if I don’t have to concentrate on what’s I’m doing on the other half of the screen.

Susan Downing, with Patrick Owens


I invite you to visit my Etsy Shop where I offer many accessories and pieces of furniture in 1:12 scale. Subscribers to this blog receive a discount on all Featured Products. Click here for details.

Posted by Patrick Owens

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Posted on 12 October, 2016


Maureen Caelli’s Baroque Italianate Palazzo Dolls House

Baroque Exteriors

Baroque architects thought of a building as a kind of giant sculpture, a single mass to be shaped according to their requirements. The idea of movement was also an important element, achieved by the use curves and counter-curves, which became a dominant motif. Facades utilized columns, pilasters, cornices, or pediments, all of which must appear as a cohesive whole, obeying the strict laws of symmetry.


Posted by Susan Downing

Categories: Baroque, exteriors

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Posted on 02 October, 2016


Coffer with fruitwood, oak, elmwood, and ebony. Click on the photo for a video on the technique.

French Baroque Furniture

Two styles of Baroque vie for dominance – Italian and French. In furniture, I vote for the French. The long reign of King Louis XIV (171-1774) marked the beginning of a series of distinct period furniture styles, the first being Baroque. Some of the most beautiful and refined furniture ever made, displaying the highest level of artistic and technical ability, was created in Paris during the eighteenth century.


Posted by Susan Downing

Categories: Baroque, furniture

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Posted on 23 September, 2016


Music Room of Thierry Bousquet found on LoveIsSpeed

Baroque Interiors

Baroque architects took cues from theater design. The use of stage sets and backdrops gave the illusion of infinite space. Just as in a theater, a proscenium, an archway between the stage and the crowd, was used to delineate space. The concept of theatrical lighting – shafts of focused light (spots lighting) to create shadows in the ambient light, all played roles in how to address space. There was a return to Gothic some elements – windows and elaborate vaulting.

The color palette was rich with dark reds and greens. Gold was used to enhance accent features and to decorate the frames of mirrors and paintings.

Baroque interiors are highly detailed, including intricately carved wood paired with luxurious textiles covering furniture and walls, and for window coverings. These fabrics are often damask, with or without floral patterns.


Italianate Palazzo Drawing Room found on Dolls’ Houses Past & Present

The ceilings were decorated with images of putti (little boys) while plant motifs could be seen in wall decorations.

Baroque style is also distinguished by bold contrasting colors as opposed to gold and pastels that are more prevalent in rococo.

The interiors featured various complex architectural details along with religious frescos and depictions and precision are also essential characteristics of Baroque.

As befitting church doctrine, the rules of symmetry were critical. This was exemplified in scrollwork, where the letters S and C were favorite subjects. When facing each other, the C-shaped scrolls of the Baroque would line up precisely. In rococo, those scrolls would be askew, breaking the rules, and offering a feeling of whimsicality. Other favorite scrollwork objects were foliage, with and without fruit.


Salon of Thierry Bousquet found on LoveIsSpeed

Design Elements

Foliage motifs – A profusion of plant life characterizes the Baroque style.

Initials and monograms as well as crests

Scrolling foliage and garlands of flowers decorate many objects.

Marquetry – Marquetry is the laying of veneers of different-colored woods onto the surface of furniture. This novel form of decoration was learned from French and Dutch cabinet-makers.

Putti – The Italian word ‘putti’ meaning ‘boys’ is the name given to the chubby infants seen on many Baroque objects.

Crests and initials – The decorative use of monograms, usually people’s initials, was a particular feature of the Baroque style. Heraldic crests were also incorporated into designs as symbols of status and ownership.

Lambrequin motif – baroque interiors were enriched with luxurious textiles. The distinctive features of these fabrics were


Ken Haseltine’s Baroque music room found on his Flickr photostream.

transformed into motifs to be used in other media. The lambrequin, or tasseled cloth motif, is one of the most common.

Floors are typically made from high-end materials such as solid wood or marble. Large room-sized, hand-woven rugs are placed to soften spaces

Furniture is intricately detailed to accent embellishments with curved legs, carved details, and gildingGold frames and gilding on statues and pottery are commonLarge mirrors, crystal chandeliers, door knobs, and pulls are commonly used

Luxury fabrics in damask and floral prints are used for upholstery, wall coverings, and floor-to-ceiling window coverings.

The Baroque style lasted until about 1726 when the asymmetrical Rococo style began to evolve. You may be interested in my article on Baroque Furniture.


Susan Downing, with Patrick Owens


I invite you to visit my Etsy Shop where I offer many accessories and pieces of furniture in 1:12 scale. Subscribers to this blog receive a discount on all Featured Products. Click here for details.


Posted by Susan Downing

Categories: Baroque

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