Frequently Asked Questions

Questions on this page

Buying minis

Sources for how-to instructions

Swedish style and Swedish living

Buying minis

Where can I find 1:12 scale Swedish style miniatures and accessories?

I can recommend a few Swedish mailorder sources:

  • Minst - artisan-made traditional Swedish furniture and accessories (plain or with folk-art painting), kits for a Swedish style dollhouse, and also some modern Scandinavian designs like Arne Jacobsen's "Ant" chair.
  • Skala Minimal (email) - artisan Agneta Ottosson sells reasonably priced traditional Swedish furniture of her own production, her own line of wallpapers, scale reprints of ticking for mattresses, and folk-art painted chip baskets (all true to the style of traditional Swedish countryside homes). To see her own line and other artisan's items, scroll down to the artisan list near the bottom of the menu.
  • PiaMaria - Swedish food in miniature (custom orders too). Skala Minimal carries some of her foods.

These websites are more or less written in Swedish, but the owners will be happy to help you if you email them. (Note that not everything sold by Swedish miniature stores is in Swedish style - we have Taiwan-made Victorian things too!) There are probably other sources too; these are the ones I'm familiar with. If you're looking for inspiration for Swedish interiors, se the question below.

Where can I find 1:48 scale Swedish style miniatures and accessories?

Nowhere, as far as I know! LEN has printed my instructions for a few Swedish projects: Christmas dinner (volume 2, issue 1), ancient Scandinavian kubbstol (i.e. "log chair" - volume 6, issue 5), Christmas tree ornaments (volume 6, issue 6), Carl Larsson style roombox (volume 7, issue 3).

Where can I find a 1:48 scale <whatever>?

Here are some general suggestions:

  • Check out my Who's linking to me page. A number of those sites have links to projects and dealers.
  • If you're a member of a small-scale dicussion group, you can post the question there.
  • Use Google (or your favorite search engine) to search for that item. Don't forget to enter "quarter scale" or "1:48 scale" or "1/48 scale" in the search box, too.
  • Search eBay too (there are convenient links for that on the Smaller SF page).
Do you sell or swap some of your work?

No - because I don't like parting with designs that I've only made one of, and I dislike making more than one of the same design! Or, to put it another way, I want to spend my time on doing things I really enjoy, like making minis for myself, and occasionally as a surprise for my very closest mini friends. And as I enjoy the challenge of scratchbuilding nearly everything, I don't need to make money to support the habit.

I prefer sharing my designs by publishing project directions, to encourage fellow miniaturists to grow by trying their hand at more and more advanced designs. We usually learn crafts by doing, not by buying, right?

Sources for how-to instructions

Where can I find instructions for building a <whatever> in miniature?

In 1:48 scale, LEN is usually your best bet. The index on the site lists what projects there are in each issue. If you're curious to see what I've contributed to LEN, please visit my Little Enough News page.

NAME's website provides a great tool for locating projects in mini magazines. Under Tips and projects there's a link named Search for a project. Select Smaller scales and type in the kind of project you're looking for, e.g. "house". I got a dozen matches for 1:48 scale houses of various styles (plus some 1:24 houses) in various magazines. A search for "bed" also gave a dozen 1:48 scale matches. That way you can easily find instructions in publications you might even already have. (And remember that with a little practice, you can adapt many 1:12 scale instructions for use in 1:48 scale too!)

You can also do a web search for something like "quarter scale" "free project", and see if you find anything interesting. By the way, if you want to design and build miniature versions of full-size items, the internet is a great source for photos as well as measurements. And so is your local library!

Have you published a workbook of your designs?

Yes, and no. A few years ago I did publish a workbook of basic designs, in Swedish (you can read more about it at the Basic Swedish home page), but in English I've only published single designs in Little Enough News. Go to my Little Enough News page for an illustrated listing of the projects. And I hope you've noticed my DIY projects on this site?

Why don't you sell directions for your designs?

The main reasons are these:

  • I'm a hobbyist, making miniatures because I enjoy it - I don't want the fuss of handling a business.
  • I don't have complete directions and diagrams other than for the designs that have already been published somewhere (and those are of course protected by copyright)
  • In the past I've often contributed to LEN, and you can still buy the back issues from Pam Scott.
  • Nowadays when I come up with a new project that I'd like to share, I add it to the free DIY projects on my website. Of course I could stop doing that and offer the project directions for sale instead, but would that really be an improvement? ;-)

Swedish style and Swedish living

Where can I read about Swedish interior styles?

I don't know any reliable websites about it, but there are some books that you might find on your library or that you can get through inter-library loan (or buy, of course).

  • The Swedish Room by Lars Sjöberg. Interiors from manors and well-off farms, from the mid-17th to the mid-19th century. The original Swedish edition is titled Det svenska rummet.
  • The Swedish House by Lars Sjöberg. Focuses on wooden houses, which are by far the most common in Sweden. Exterior and/or interior photos of manor houses and some large farms, but not humbler dwellings. The book covers the mid-17th to the mid-19th century. The original Swedish edition is titled Svenska trähus.
  • Decorative Arts of Sweden by Iona Plath was originally printed in 1948, and later reprinted by Dover Publications. It has lots of b/w photos of vernacular furniture, textiles, other folk art items, and photos of few farm house interiors. There are also photos of contemporary Swedish design.
  • Creating the Look: Swedish Style by Katrin Cargill. If you want a general introduction to upper-class Swedish style influences from the 17th century to about 1900, with an emphasis on the 18th century, the author seems to have a good grasp of the facts. There's also some information on vernacular furniture and interiors. The Swedish edition is titled Den svenska traditionen.
    — What I don't like about Katrin Cargill's book, is that the pics are a mix of on the one hand authentic interiors, and on the other hand interiors with a mix of authentic and non-authentic elements. E.g., at the very beginning of the book is a photo of 18th century chairs with seat covers that have gathered flounces and big sashes that definitely don't belong in that time period, in fact they don't belong in Swedish style at all. The pics that the text says are from a certain manor or a certain farm look authentic (they are often Gustavian), while many of the other ones show a mix of period furniture and modern furniture, or period furniture from one level of society placed in a room belonging to a different level. I'm also somewhat sceptic towards her suggestions for rustic and folkartsy painted decorations, as I haven't seen anything really similar before.
Where can I read about the Gustavian style?

I assume you've already read my brief introduction to the style on my Gustavian house page. Again, I don't know any reliable websites about the style, but here are some additions to the general book suggestions above. N.B., some are only available in Swedish, mainly included for Swedish readers.

  • Neoclassicism in the North by Håkan Groth. If you want to see top notch Gustavian furniture, this is the book. Subtitled "Swedish furniture and interiors 1770-1850", this book is filled with exquisite photos of palace and manor house interiors, also includes a section with 100 photos of individual pieces of furniture with date and maker given. There's a Swedish edition of this book too, titled Nyklassicismen i Sverige.

Lars Sjöberg is a well-known expert in Swedish 18th century furniture and houses. In addition to his books that I listed in the answer on interior styles above, he has also written a number of other books, that are only available in Swedish as far as I know. In his books, Sjöberg focuses on the slightly simplified Gustavian designs that are uniquely Swedish, rather than the high-end almost-French style pieces found at the court or in big manors. I recommend the following books to Swedes interested in the Gustavian era (but take a trip to the library before you buy them):

  • Rum för möbler guides you through the rooms of a Rococo or Gustavian house, detailing the furniture types, paint colors and textiles used in these eras. A really beautiful book.
  • 1700-talsmöbler att snickra själv by Sjöberg et al. is a collection of measured drawings of Gustavian furniture.
  • Stolar, taburetter & fåtöljer i Sverige från 1600 till 1800 - 200 years of chair design in Sweden.
  • Sörby gård is a booklet with measured drawings of a small 18th century manor, being restored to its 18th century condition.
Where can I read about Swedish folk costumes and the Swedish "National Costume"?

Bo Skräddare is a tailor who sews folk costumes on demand, and there's plenty of information on his site. As far as I know, that's the most complete information source online about Swedish costumes. Most of it is in Swedish, but some is in English too, and at least you can see the pics anyway. Try these start pages on his site:

Where can I read about Swedish traditions?
  • describes present-day traditions around the year.
  • Ingela Martenius (genealogist and M.Phil. in ethnology) has written about rites of passage in Sweden - traditions around baptism, coming of age, wedding and burial, in the period 1686-1914.
Where can I find Swedish recipes in English?

Search for "swedish recipes" using your favorite search engine. You'll find lots and lots of websites. You might also want to check out some cookbooks. If you can't find any in the big online bookstores, remember that there are several Swedish or Scandinavian giftshops online.

  • has a good list of Swedish classics, with photos and descriptions, but no recipes. If some dish catches your interest, search the web for recipes.
  • Swedish cakes and cookies is the book to get if you want sweet baking recipes. It's a translation of the Swedish cookbook "Sju sorters kakor" that was first printed in 1945, and has been continuously updated ever since (it's sold 3.4 million copies in Sweden, so there's a copy in virtually every home). web site by Anna-Carin Betzén. All rights reserved.