Eastern Courier : January 14th 2011
6 EASTERN COURIER, JANUARY 14, 2011 NEWS Local & Sports Parks Summer Programme Kids Triathlon Training If you are competing in a triathlon or duathlon this year come and join us for a session to help you along with your training. Bring your bike! Tuesdays 4:00pm - 5:00pm Lloyd Elsmore Park: Meet at the cricket club carpark off Bell Road 18 January 25 January 1 February 8 February 15 February Kindly sponsored by Find out more: phone 09 301 0101 or visit www.aucklandcouncil.govt.nz Local & Sports Parks Summer Programme Glow Worm Night Trail You have seen Totara Park by day, now see it by night. Spot eels in the creek, catch sight of a frog or two and observe clusters of glow worms. Bring a torch. Tuesdays 9:15pm - 9:45pm Find out more: phone 09 301 0101 or visit www.aucklandcouncil.govt.nz Totara Park: 18, 25 January 2011 Meet at the Wairere Road carpark, Manurewa Bookings are essential: Contact (09) 301 0101 to make a booking Partners fighting less The Families Com- mission has put a substantial drop in partner violence down to anti- violence campaigns. A Ministry of Jus- tice survey shows the incidence of confrontational offences by partners dropped from 22 crimes per 100 adults in 2005, to 14 per 100 in 2008. The period covered by this sur- vey coincides with the huge public focus on family and partner violence generated by It's Not OK and White Ribbon campaigns,'' chief families com- missioner Carl Davidson says. Enthusiasts have small obsession Small things: A few of the dozens of box room and street front miniatures crammed into Anne Eustace's Papatoetoe home. Most she's made herself, others were workshop projects with members of her miniaturists club. Reporter Karen Mangnall and photo- grapher Michael Parks discover that it's a small world after all. Down on the farm: A scale model of the kitchen at Anne Eustace's family home in Urenui, Taranaki, right down to the blacked range. Demo model: Anne Eustace with one of her box rooms showing different scales used in modelling. The cabinet at the back is at 1/12th scale, the one to the left 1/24th and the little one far left is at 1/48th. The wicker chair and baskets are made by Jenny Taylor of Whenuapai, the plates are handpainted by Esme Agnew of the North Shore and the 1998 wall calendar is a perfect replica. Thinking small is a big deal for Anne Eustace and Pat Case. The friends are miniatures enthusiasts -- fans of making scale models of buildings, rooms, scenes real or imagined and everything that goes with them. It's a hobby that calls on a range of skills from architec- tural drawing to landscaping, needlework to upholstery, electrical wiring to construc- tion and metalwork to woodturning. The women met at a miniatures club 35 years ago and started out making dolls houses then expanding their historical horizons. We learned so much about architecture and furniture and different periods,'' Pat says. It becomes an obsession.'' That's a masterly under- statement when you look around Anne's Papatoetoe home. Every surface in every room is crammed with miniatures and box rooms'' displaying interior scenes and furnishings. And out back is her work- room. It has a library of books on architectural eras and antiques, cupboards full of tiny furniture fittings and tools ranging from hammers to soldering irons, circular saw and lathes. As a hobby it does seem to take over,'' Anne admits. It's okay as long as my husband's not growling. Put it this way -- I'm the fastest cook in the west.'' Unlike many miniaturists who go for Tudor, Victorian or Edwardian eras, Anne's thing is real Kiwiana stuff''. I thought we've got so much of our history here I'll do models of that.'' She mines her 70-plus years in New Zealand for sub- ject matter. A model of her dormitory at New Plymouth Girls High School sits near one of the kitchen at her Taranaki fam- ily farmhouse in Urenui com- plete with its blacked range and jostles a vignette of the cream stand at the farm gate with black Orpington chickens pecking underneath. There's even a 1/12th scale model of the murder house'' at West Papatoetoe Primary School where Anne was a dental nurse for five years. I've just about done my life in miniature,'' she says. In 1989, she made a scale model of St Paul's church in Urenui for its centenary. It went on the cake.'' One of her prized efforts is a 1950s Kiwi bach with corru- gated iron roof, a kingfisher out back on the clothesline, original lino, fly papers, fold- ing deck chairs and even a pair of sandshoes with black soles. The bach is also sitting on proper foundations, checked by Anne's husband who's a draughtsman. That's an indication of the miniaturist's mania for authenticity and detail. Everything's made of materials that are as auth- entic as possible and measured precisely to scale. Anne and Pat are always on the lookout for new subject matter. Both carry a tape measure wherever they go. And it's a point of honour that everything works,'' Anne says. In the United States where it's a huge hobby, there are kitsets for everything. But Pat and Anne, like most of their Kiwi colleagues, take a No 8 wire approach and prefer to make every- thing themselves. It's an expensive obsession, Anne says. I couldn't afford to do it if I didn't make most of it myself.'' She runs workshops to help fund her hobby while Pat sells little cane baskets to fel- low miniaturists. Overseas it's big business for skilled craftspeople selling miniatures of everything from silverware to furniture. Kiwi enthusiasts prefer to swap and trade their specialties -- one woman makes china from scratch, another handpaints plates, then there's a bag maker and a bookbinder who specialises in tiny books. Go to www.nzame.org for information on miniatures clubs.
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