A Sedalia woman’s love for fairies, leprechauns and little people has provided her a fairy-tale of a pastime that allows her to create miniature houses and lighted gardens in her small home studio.
Sandra Talkington’s fascination with little people and leprechauns isn’t due to Irish blood, although she said she used to be a “carrot top.”
“I’ve got Scottish blood, but I don’t have any Irish,” she said laughing. “I’ve always been fascinated with little folk. Irish or not, I’ve always been fascinated with them.
“Ever since I was a little kid, I’ve always been in love with fairies, and I’ve always liked miniatures,” she added. “I remember my mom used to tell me that I was playing in the sand box a lot building castles.”
She added that she didn’t dabble at building castles in the sand, but as a small child she would make detailed constructions.
“I would have flags and the whole works,” she said.
She grew up, got busy with having a family and almost totally forgot about castles, fairies and the land of little people.
“I had my children and raised them,” she said. “Now, I’m retired and I’m getting back into it. I had just totally forgotten all about it during those years.”
She said she was looking through Pinterest and she began to see how others were putting together miniature displays and this spurred her creativity.
“Fairy gardens at that time was just coming out, but they were building them outside,” she noted. “So, I thought ‘well, the people who live in apartments can’t have fairy gardens outside.’
“I would prefer mine inside anyway,” she added. “So, I decided to make one for myself and it just sort of avalanched from there.”
Talkington has been making miniature fairy gardens and other small items since 2004.
“I never really sold any of it, I was just playing around with it,” Talkington said.
Eventually, she did begin to sell her miniature fantasy art when she started taking her creations to craft shows with her daughter Debbie McNeal.
“My daughter started going and she was doing real well,” Talkington said. “So, I thought ‘well you know what? Maybe I’ll join her.’ So, I bought a booth next to her’s and we consolidated it into one booth. That’s what we’ve been doing ever since.”
Talkington and her daughter had a booth this past weekend at the Show Me Crafters Craft Show on the Missouri State Fairgrounds.
This fall, Talkington plans to begin making miniature doll houses. As with most of her projects, she said she always starts out with cardboard and builds from that point.
“Or I buy birdhouses,” she added.
To the fairy gardens she adds preserved moss to give the piece a woodsy feel and often uses sand on the houses. Tiny flowers, plants, mushrooms and animal life are added. She works on the various projects each day.
Besides making detailed fairy gardens and doll houses, Talkington creates small log cabins. One in particular has a small stone fireplace, a porch, windows with cloth curtains and a wreath on the door.
“I make log cabins for toy train people,” she said. “They like to have houses and cabins and mountain scenes, and I can make their little buildings for them. I want to get into that a little bit too.
“I’m just a kid at heart, what can I say,” she added smiling.
Faith Bemiss can be reached at 530-0289 or @flbemiss.