Emily Boutard makes teeny, tiny replicas of your dream 1960s apartment furnishings. Her incredibly detailed mid-century modernist miniatures are half the size of standard doll’s house furniture, but they're perfectly scaled.
It’s taken Boutard a couple of years to perfect the art of tiny furniture making, and she's catalogued the journey on Instagram account Architecture of Tiny Distinction. “Nobody really taught me how to do this,” she tells The Creators Project. “I can’t say I’ve had formal training of any kind. I just always collected miniatures and am obsessed with tiny things.”
Boutard makes her furniture out of craft wood from art supply stores. “I had a go at 3D printing, but I wasn’t happy with plastic, it doesn’t really look like wood even if you paint it,” she explains.
“So it’s all wood, and I try to stick to true materials to the particular furniture item.”
A former lawyer, 28-year-old Boutard is currently studying an architecture degree. Which means she’s able to build tiny houses to put her tiny furniture inside of. So there’s a modernist apartment complex in the works—a replica of Le Corbusier's iconic brutalist building Unité d'habitation.
While she's focused on modernism for now, Boutard has crafted replica pieces of furniture from many other iconic design eras in the past. Other tiny furniture projects have included building an eighteenth century style Scandinavian sitting room inspired by a trip to Sweden, and Australian colonial furniture copied from the examples in the Tasmanian Museum and Art Gallery. She’s experimented with building matchbox sized versions of the Victorian terrace houses that line Melbourne’s streets.
If you feel inclined to start building tiny teak sidetables, Boutard offers free tutorials on her website. She's very encouraging of others to have a go at building their own miniatures. “It’s really fun and anyone can do it,” she says. “People should have a crack!”
You can find out more about Architecture of Tiny Distinction here and follow Boutard on Instagram.
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