Cartoons in matchboxes
and related items
Most of these are based on cartoons drawn in the mid-nineteenth century by John Leech, and published in Punch.
To allow for extra detail, most are in 1/72 scale, and fit in a matchbox about 2 inches long.
Leech often poked fun at the latest fashions. Here he mocks the chatelaine, a device women wore at waist level, with chains holding keys, scissors, and other useful items (but normally rather smaller than those in this scene.)
Bath night, highly organized. The children line up, wrapped in towels and with good head protection, while on the left three servants stand in line with the hot (?) water for the shower. (The page boy in red is hard to see.) $75.
503. This competent mother, having chained all her responsibilities round her waist, can comfortably read her book.
The background is from an old print, but the four people, the dog, and the (almost invisible) perambulator are made in 1/72 scale. $60.
505. "Dining under difficulties." The gentleman in the middle is smothered under the crinolines. 1/72 scale, $50.
The crinoline was the source of even greater merriment. I plan to make several more crinoline scenes.
.Toys in Miniature: Frances Armstrong
Grandfather is impressed with the kind heart of the little girl when she asks him to tell her little brother not to kill the large bluebottle fly on the window. But her motive startles him:"because I want to kill it myself," she explains. $50.
(Better picture coming.)
506. A crinoline turned inside out proves a useful shelter for a mother and her children on a stormy night. $45.
504. "True courage" is required for a man to carry a doll on a public street. $50. (Better picture coming.)
530. "Oh look, Ma, what a love of a chatelaine Edward has bought me!" Amongst the articles hanging from her waist are a kettle, a teapot, an iron, and some large brushes. $50 for either 1/144 scale (as in the picture) or 1/72 scale (where the figures would be about an inch high.
The scene below is set up as a centrepiece, but is also available in a matchbox, in either 1/144 or 1/72 scale. This is another chatelaine cartoon (see above).
Another smaller matchbox, with a 1/144 scene in it, not based on a cartoon.
520. Queen Victoria's children, dressed in fancy costumes. The figures are based on sketches the queen drew of her children. $40.
Another small matchbox with a 1/144 scene that is not from a cartoon.
521. This is my interpretation of a scene from Gwen Raverat's book
Period Piece, in which a small girl demonstrates her boredom in an art gallery with a sit-down strke. The policeman is wondering what to do next. $30.
523. This is also in 1/144 scale, the first in a projected "Granny" series which show little children with high expectations of what their grandmothers will do. In "Daisy chain" they seem sure that granny, burdened with the usual crinoline, will merrily join them in skipping with the rope they have made of daisies. $30.