Thursday, October 15, 2015

Preparing for the Holidays & Keeping Tools Clean

The balmy evenings of summer continue into autumn in our neck of the woods but the feeling is somehow different. Maybe it's just knowing that summer, in all its glory, has passed and autumn, those wonderful weeks beckoning in the approaching holidays, is here. Labor Day came, school began, the rhythm of the fall is in full swing.

Thanksgiving, as a major national holiday with its emphasis on food, immediately calls us into the kitchen and presents opportunities for miniature decorating with a twist. How about designing a room to show what happens before the big dinner? But let's step back a minute first.

Here's an old picture of the New York Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade starring Felix the Cat. He was quite the character in his day. Felix appears to be supported by a number of clowns and is followed by a big shoe, probably inhabited by the old woman and and her numerous children. If you can identify the balloon character in back of the shoe, please let us know!

Following is Ms. Peggie's own Thanksgiving Day Parade. The  succulent roast turkey leads, followed by a basket of fresh rolls, a pickle jar, two wonderfully gooey desserts and a colorful fruit salad. Creamy whipped potatoes, gravy and all the other fittings for a sensational holiday are also available.
Ms. Peggie's Place carries all kinds of wonderful foods to inspire you in creating just the right setting, whether it's for meal preparation or anything else. Please, come have a look.

Have a Bloody Mary -- or a Bloody Shame -- and begin your planning. Wander through our grocery department to find just the right combination of tomato juice straight or one with more pizzazz to get things rolling.

Take a look and you'll find a tray with drinks all set to go. Pair the drinks with chips, set up a big old cheese block and then consider your entrees.                                                                                
They'll never be bored for a cheese board.
There's lots of food, from subs and taco platters to seafood cocktails, stews, and soups. Watermelon always adds a certain panache to any miniatures party. It used to be that this gourd was only available during the summer months but these days it can often be found year round. In any case, creative license is always legal and encouraged for your creation. In addition to watermelons, you'll find a juicy cantaloupe on a cutting board as well as other fruits and vegetables waiting to be prepared.

A smashing stew!
Shrimp cocktail, anyone?

Here's to tacos!
Seafood Extraordinaire
Matzo ball soup

A juicy cantaloupe

Apple pie fixings, featuring fresh apples
How about a cherry pie?

A small sampling of available vegetables

October 31st brings Halloween, another opportunity for decorating and entertaining. If a Halloween Gala is in the cards and you want to move past the usual candy corn, take a look at the chocolate desserts in the display cabinet. There is something about gooey, chocolate swirls on baked goods that conjure up witches and goblins -- if the pastry is served on Halloween and if it's in a setting all decked out in Halloween fashion. We'll help you there, too.

A Halloween cake hand made by Michael Sue!

What's food without dishes to serve it upon? There are lots here and remember to provide flatware so the little people won't  muck up their fingers mixing the dip.

Dishes are available in all shapes, sizes and designs from delicate porcelain to pieces that could pass for Melmac, and everything in between.

Now it's time to look at the cooking appliances. A big red Aztec stove would fit well into any contemporary setting. There's also a beautiful white and black unit, accented in gold and blue that gives an Asian appearance as well as a large Pennsylvania Dutch stove. Other models are also here, as well as microwaves and grills, for those who prefer to hold their party outdoors.

Whether your design is indoors or out, table linens, oven mitts,  aprons and towels will be needed. Peruse our collection and especially notice the extra-fancy hostess aprons.

Sparkle dishes, for an extra special presentation.

Utensils -- to keep things tidy

Service for the whole family

Kitchen accessories

Petite and pretty

Dishes and cookware to fit all tastes and budgets.

Pop the turkey in here...
...and let the gravy simmer on one of the burners.

Especially charming stove for an Asian kitchen.
Straight out of Lancaster, PA.

Good for anytime in San Diego and for hardy sorts in other areas.

Aprons, towels and mitts.

An apron for the hostess with the mostest!

Perle Mesta would approve!
And whatever you decide to do, please be careful!

Christmas is coming!

A Reminder!  The San Diego Miniature Crafters 42nd Annual Miniatures Show & Sale is presenting Michael Sue Nanos at the 2016 Workshop: Picnic S'Mores on Sunday, February 7, 2016 from 9:00 A.M. - 11:00 A.M. There is a one time nonrefundable workshop fee of $18.00. No tools are needed and beginners are welcome. Minimum age is 13. The show will be held at the Al Bahr Shrine Center, 5440 Kearny Mesa Road. San Diego. Email questions to Further details and registration information are at Hit Classes and Workshops. The class will be a lot of fun. We hope to see you there!

Please visit us soon to have a look. We look forward to seeing you!


Michael Sue Nanos

Michael Sue's Tips:

Crafting Hints

Here are two tips I've gotten from a NAME convention:

1. Keep your tools free of glue as you are working. Jab tweezers, small scissors, X-Acto knives, needles, etc. into a block of white Styrofoam. Keep jabbing and all that glue will be cleaned off. No kidding!

2. Prevent paint brushes from getting all gunked up with dried paint. It's very simple, just start off with a damp brush; it will keep the paint from traveling up the brush to its base.

A good class is worth the price!

Wednesday, July 22, 2015

Bigger News Than Rain in San Diego!

The San Diego Miniature Crafters 42nd Annual Miniatures Show & Sale is presenting Michael Sue Nanos at the 2016 Workshop: Picnic S'mores, on Sunday, February 7, 2016 from 9:00 AM - 11:00 A.M. There is a one time nonrefundable workshop fee of $18. No tools are needed and beginners are welcome. Minimum age is 13. The show will be held at the Al Bahr Shrine Center, 5440 Kearny Mesa Road, San Diego.

As this announcement is written the weather here in San Diego is hot and sticky, but seven months down the line we'll be dragging our sweatshirts out of our closets and whining about how cold it is. So wouldn't it be heartwarming to take a class from our own Michael Sue, the Proprietor of Ms. Peggie's Place, as well as an experienced instructor?

S'mores, that quintessential summertime treat, will add warmth and fun to the wintertime weather. You'll learn to make a picnic basket to hold the groceries to make the s'mores, and you'll even make the little forks to roast the marshmallows.

Email questions to Further details and registration information are at Hit Classes and Workshops. The class will be a lot of fun. We hope to see you there!

Thursday, May 28, 2015


Rah, Rah, Sis Boom Bah! Spring has sprung and with it Memorial Day, Father's Day and the Fourth of July. This is the season we celebrate our freedom, those who have come before us and given us that freedom, and our dads. It's a period to be patriotic and grateful, and with the warmer weather  a time to appreciate the beauty of our country and outdoor play. 
Old Glory's hues of red, white and blue create a striking backdrop for projects integrating summer themes into their stories. The store has a nice selection of red-white-blue decor to add a patriotic punch to anything you desire.  There's a little wooden bear pull-toy as well as a furry bear decked out in the flag's colors, and a table with four Raggedy Ann and Andy type dolls playing a lively game of checkers. Select some pretty Americana signs to perhaps be used for party accents or placements. And don't forget our scale sized box of fireworks!

You'll find wading pools for the kids as well as barbecues for the grown-ups, one with a set of tongs attached. We have two dapper chefs to help things along, too. These beautifully detailed figurines are from Falcon and were designed by the late Marcia Backstrom. You can provide your chefs -- or preferred figurines -- with mitts, aprons and towels from our revolving selection of leisure time must haves.

 There are also several ice chests and bags of ice to complete the meal. After grilling enjoy a game of croquet.

The shop's grocery selection is outstanding...
and you'll find foods appropriate for summer picnics as well as the most formal of services. Don't miss the perfectly constructed woven basket filled to the brim with freshly picked mushrooms and if other vegetables are more to your liking you'll see them too. There is also a fully stocked shopping cart with popular household products.

The shop carries outdoor furniture...

constructed of wood,
as well as wicker...
and also some knock your socks off gorgeous hand painted nautically themed furniture. There's a wonderful chest with interior storage compartments adding to the realism of the unit.

A companion desk and chair will complement a father figure in your house.
And, if your dad enjoys fishing take a look at our selection of rods...

as well as a perfectly detailed tackle box, too diminutive to photograph. Please visit us to see it!

On the subject of things nautical, remember to take a look at our selection of sailing vessels. There are several different types, including a model of a Viking ship -- very impressive!

But if land transportation is more to your style -- or Dad's -- we have some handsome bicycles in stock, including one painted a fire engine red.

At the end of the day, after grilling or sailing and taking a little swim, a newspaper hat will put the lid on things. You'll find lots of them at Ms. Peggie's, too!
Just for fun!
We hope you'll visit us soon, and we look forward to hearing from you. Your comments are welcomed and appreciated.


Michael Sue Nanos