Miniaturist of the Month – Carole Risteen
Real Good Toys‘ Miniaturist of the Month is Carole Risteen of Deltona, FL. Carole is someone every miniaturist wants to know. For starters, she has been involved with dollhouses and miniatures for over 35 years. Over time, Carole has worked in three different miniature shops, and has built over 300 dollhouses. When Carole was working for Through the Keyhole in Texas, she taught classes and built dollhouses as a Santa’s helper. She said, “Our double garage never had a car in it, but often had half a dozen or more houses under construction”. Carole has participated in four years of IGMA Guild School classes. What is IGMA? IGMA stands for International Guild of Miniature Artisans and was founded to promote fine miniatures as an art form. This organization holds a series of intensive training classes every year at their campus in Castine, Maine. Carole said she has made many wonderful friends over the years. She considers this hobby her obsession. She tells us, “There has always been some new technique or skill to learn and many old skills to share with others”. Carole confides, “It has never failed me – lifting me up in sad times and allowing me to help others along the way”.
Carole started in miniatures by making House of Miniature furniture kits. She was a buyer for a retail department store in Tucson, AZ and building the furniture kits was her way to relax. Carole says she bought her first dollhouse in 1979 from The Doll House, Inc. in Scottsdale, AZ. Over the last 12 years, she has been able to share her love of dollhouses and miniatures with her special needs students through Morning Star School fundraisers. She hopes to continue building dollhouses for Morning Star School fundraisers, with the help of her students and her grandchildren.
Carol is an active fan of Real Good Toys Dollhouses on Facebook. She has participated in our Build Along projects and was recently chosen as one of our finalists in our “What’s in Your Attic Contest”. She continually fascinates us with her ability to transform and customize our dollhouses in a way that makes them one of a kind. One project she has shared with us throughout the building process is her Real Good Toys Classic Bungalow. Carole nicknamed this dollhouse “Bossy”. She was re-creating a dollhouse she grew up in and throughout the building process the dollhouse seemed to tell her which direction she should take with the customization. She customized the dollhouse with an extra floor and many other special touches. Her abilities are remarkable and her work is exquisite. Now can you see why every miniaturist would love to know Carole? Not only does she love dollhouses and miniatures, she gets immense joy from sharing that love. Carole says, “…my addiction is complete and part of my retirement is minis, supplies and kits I have stock piled”.
Thank you, Carole, for letting us have a glimpse into your mini world and allowing us to get to know a little bit about you.
Would you like to be our next Miniaturist of the Month? It’s really easy. Just email your information with a few pictures attached to firstname.lastname@example.org.