year, our judges complain that selecting the best out of hundreds of outstanding
projects gets harder. This year was so difficult that we actually had our first
ever "2nd-Guess-the-Judges" vote among all of our employees, just to be sure we
had selected wisely and well. Even so, we expanded our Honorable Mentions to showcase
the astounding quality and variety of the projects. We are so grateful to all of
you who participated and urge you to continue improving your skills, so that next
year your project might earn front cover.
Grand Prize: $1000 Gift Certificate
Christina Pardy, Canton, MA
Judging is based on five criteria: craftsmanship, originality, artistry, completeness
and the judges' personal tastes. The "Alpine Cottage" got perfect scores in every
category from all judges and moved ahead of the considerable competition.
Now prepare to be shocked--Christina swears this is her first-ever miniature project
of any kind! Obviously, she is an artist, but she usually creates larger projects.
Each stone and roof tile was carved by hand from
Paperclay® and tinted with watercolors.
A self-professed pack rat, she made dark green lawn from an old ultrasuede dress
and the augmented it with landscaping foam bits and "found objects" from nature.
The figure lounging outside was made from an "ugly doll" she had kept since childhood.
She made his clothing, including the felt hat from fabric scraps.
First Place: $500 Gift Certificate
Monika Liebenow, Shelton, WA
Monika's Sugarplum Castle is three feet wide, two feet deep and four feet high!
It weights over fifty pounds because it is constructed, almost entirely, of solid
wood. Sections and walls from the Sugarplum Cottage are still recognizable, but
The stonework was carved by hand and highlighted with multiple coats of paint. The
towers were made from heavy cardboard carpet tubes, cut into 8" sections, then stuccoed.
She used Hydrocal® to form each and every decorative rosette around the windows
and arches. Truly a remarkable masterpiece!
Second Place: $300 Gift Certificate
The Three Bears' House
Carole and Neal Pruzan, Ossining, NY
Every year there is at least one entry that is just so darn cute it's irresistible.
Carole and Neal's project meets that standard and surpasses it with craftsmanship
Their grandchildren gathered the stones and pinecones used to cover the walls and
shingle the roof. The tree trunks were constructed of newspaper rolled around wire
frames with layers of papier-mâché and paper towels added to create a realistic
bark effect. Carole says that she is a retired art teacher--we say that she is still
showing others how to create art.
Third Place: $200 Gift Certificate
Donna Thorson, Janesville, WI
Donna is a theater artist and costume designer who only started dabbling in miniatures
a year ago. Like our Grand Prize Winner, she embellished her project with Paperclay®
and carved basswood. The furniture was custom-made to fit perfectly into the house.
She sculpted Santa, the two elves and the cowboy marionette from Fimo®. And don't
miss the inlaid design in the wood veneer floor!
The icicles were made from Ultra-GloTM and the snow is gesso mixed with Snow-Tex®.
It was the cone-shaped tower roof that grabbed the judges' attention, but it was
the myriad details that brought Donna into the winner's circle.
Click here to view the 11th
Annual Creatin' Contest Honorable Mentions