Sunday, January 16, 2011

My Printer's Drawer

One of the items I've collected for my entire life is miniature things. I have always loved miniatures, once owning a big beautiful Victorian doll house that I played with daily as a girl.

Growing up, the doll house was just too big to keep, but still, I've been drawn to small wonderful little toys and mementos.

As a teen an adult I've been drawn to tiny souvenirs, picking up something special on each of my travels. I'm not huge into buying souvenirs, but this is a collection that I just love.

About ten years ago while on a trip with my mom we saw a printer's drawer in an antique shop in Sanpete County. Printer's drawers were used at print shops when lead letters were stored in huge cabinets ready to be laid out for printing.

The drawer was perfect. Tiny cubies in lots of sizes that could hold my ever growing collection of tiny travel mementos. We bought it on the spot.

Since then the Printer's drawer has hung in a couple of locations, but it has always been a favorite thing of mine in the entire house. In this home it resides in the living room next to our Georgia O'Keeffe NYC Radiator Building print (you can see it in this photo). I love it. And look at it often.

I thought it was high time that I shared this on my blog. So, in all its beautiful glory, here is my Printer's Drawer.

And here are some of my favorite things:
1. The little owl is carved from a piece of wood. E picked it up in this incredible store in Japan the first time he visited. Later I visited the same store and just fell in love. The owl is one of a kind and is signed by the artist on the bottom.

2. The mother and child is also a wood carving. This is my favorite thing I got in Italy on my honeymoon. We visited these amazing towns in Northern Italy in the Italian Alps. It might be my favorite travel memory ever, it was just an amazing day. This area is known for wood carving and I was thrilled that many of the carvings were under two inches tall. I picked up the mother and child and have loved it ever since.

3. Delft Glass is everywhere in Holland. When we visited Amsterdam in 2005 I was so excited to see Delft glass even came in miniature. I picked up the bunny, the kissing boy and girl (top row, middle) and some little Dutch shoes that I hang on the Christmas tree. Love!

4. The cast iron polar bear is something that didn't come from a trip, instead it came from eBay. I have loved polar bears for quite some time, and found this charming little man on eBay. He had been part of an antique child's circus set and for some reason he was being sold alone. He is chipped and old and wonderful. I think I paid less that $5.00 and was so happy with the purchase.

5. One thing I like to look for when searching out a small souvenir is something that represents the area or a specific memory. The cast iron lamb is so tiny (only about a half an inch) and I just love it. I picked it up when I visited the Cotswolds England, which is known for their sheep and wool. The tiny little lamb has a hand painted collar of flowers. Perfect to represent the stunning English countryside.

6. The winter fairy is the only thing I got when E and I visited Austria for our Honeymoon. I remember the day so well. We were in Innsbrook enjoying the amazing Austrian city. Right on the main street there was this tiny fabric shop. Loving fabric I stopped in and saw a tiny basket of these little handmade girls. Picking a favorite I paid and left and have been so happy with her ever since.

That is only a small sample of what lies on my Printer's Drawer. I look forward to filling it slowly over a lifetime of travel.

See how sweet the tiny owl is? And the mother and child behind him.
Winter fairy and a ladybug climbing a daffodil, one of my favorite things from the Hamptons in New York .


  1. LOVE IT! Thanks for posting about the drawer because it is new inspiration to get moving on my printer drawer project. Do you ever clean yours? I was wondering if spraying mine with Pledge would be a mistake.

    Also, how do you find the miniatures at the stores? Sometimes the stores have so much stuff, I don't see all the tiny things...


  2. Allie,
    You too have a beautiful collection of small items. Love them!

    I've dusted my drawer from time to time but other than that, I've not cleaned it more deeply. I kinda like the dirt, adds to the antiqueness. ;)

    Finding miniatures in stores takes a lot of looking. I don't love to shop but if i see small items in the windows, I'll often go in to scope it out. Also, some countries miniatures are easier to find.

    Japan is super easy, the entire country is obsessed with miniatures but Europe is harder. Some trips I never even got anything (Tanzania) because I never found anything I liked. But treasure hunting is half the fun.



Lovely thoughts:

Related Posts with Thumbnails