Nightcaps and Night Caps

The hot chocolate tray has been taken upstairs to be finished before going to bed...

I spent the Christmas holidays working on the Master Bedroom in Daviot House.  It is a room that has had many identities in the past, but never quite worked out.  I decided to rip out everything and start again!

Even the fireplace was removed, which left an unfortunate hole, but it was good to start with a blank slate.  I kept the floor, as it matched the other floors in Daviot House, and the old door, as I like the old stone of the building peeking through.

This part of Daviot House was built in 1615, though the west wing is actually the old stone tower which is much, much older.

I spent a couple of days doing tedious panelling.  I was concentrating so hard that I forgot to take photos of this part of the process.  I made a simple moulded ceiling and plain panelled walls. 

 I decided to put the fireplace at an angle, a position that is much more common in old houses than you might think, especially if you are used to the traditional, symmetrical Georgian dolls house layout.  The angle adds a little more visual interest as it can be seen clearly without taking up too much wall space.

The fireplace already made its debut in my New Years post, but here it is in its simple glory.  I used the same DAS clay and watercolour technique that I use all over Daviot House.  

I painted and sealed everything with a lovely warm off-white colour.  A beautiful Sue Cook firegrate is pretty without being too ornate.  The cheap sconce light will be changed to a nicer one when I next order from Ray Storey.

I'll also have to work out how to improve that hole in the floor, and I need to order more skiting boards!  There is always something to finish off...

Ta da!  The light works, as does the bulb for the fire (though it could do with being more orange, another thing for the list...)  I know miniature lighting tends to ruin photos, but I do love to turn on the lights in Daviot House, it never ceases to be magical!

Now for the accessories and furniture.  First, art for the walls. I chose some 16th century portraits and used my usual technique of modpodge to make the canvas more realistic.  I shall perhaps paint copies of them later, but I am happy with them now, especially the Lady in Red.  I can't work out if she is smiling or not.

(very fuzzy, my apologies!)

A few simple vases and pots for the mantle piece... 

 L-R MMMiniature Treasures, Elizabeth Causeret and Avon Miniatures

A beautiful heart shaped Venetian mirror by Arjen Spinhoven.  I saw a very similar, real-life one in a house in Scotland, and was delighted to find this in miniature.  

Hearts are very Scottish motifs, from Walter Scott's Heart of Midlothian to the Luckenbooth brooch.  And I like the way the crest on the top is mirrored by the crest on the firegrate below!

It is to be the looking glass above my Ian Holoran dressing table.  One of my most precious pieces of furniture, I am glad it has found a permanent home now.

On top of which, more miniature delights.  I have been collecting for this room for a while now, and it is lovely to see all the pieces together finally.

A Muriel Hopwood shoe, Shevchenko and Glasscraft perfume bottles, Shevchenko brush and comb.  And in the middle, an exceptional mother of pearl jewellry box by Malcolm Hall.

To the left of the fireplace is a sweet fold-up writing desk by J Whitehead.  I originally saw this on Ebay three years ago, but sadly did not manage to win the auction.  Imagine my delight when I saw it for sale online elsewhere!   

I don't know if it is exactly the same one, but obviously it was meant to come and live at Daviot House eventually!  I shall have to fill it with correspondance and billets-doux.

It folds up so neatly, and hardly takes up any space by the fire.  A good place on a cold January evening to write thank you letters for Christmas gifts.

And now to the left hand wall by the window, where the light is much brighter!  I am not a fan of wardrobes in small rooms, as they tend to take up too much space, so a beautiful mahogany chest of drawers will do for storage.  It also has a handy surface to decorate.

The vase of flowers was one of the first things I made for Daviot House, and the colours are still very bright.  They bring out the flowers on the 18th century nightcap that I embroidered last year, after encouragement from Geneviève (merci!)

A very, very large amount of extremely tiny stitches!  Often surface embroidery doesn't photograph so well in miniature, unlike tapestry.  But I think in this case the fairies have been at work, as even I can't see the stitches, and I made them!

Well, a little more visible with zoom, of course!

Well, if we are going to wear such a lovely night cap, we're going to need a bed to wear it in...

This is the lovely Warren Dick bed I received for my birthday last year.  I have started on the mattress and pillows, but have yet to make the bedding or the bed hangings.  A big project for 2022!  I haven't decided if the hangings will be embroidered yet, we shall see.  I placed it at an angle, to optimise the space, and I think it works quite well.

Here is the rug that I borrowed for the hall for the New Year post, but it was actually made for this room.  The colours tie-in nicely with the paintings and the slate blue silk I have chosen for the bed.  But sometimes I do like to move things around a bit in the house!

The space seemed a bit empty, and I wanted a chair or a cosy place to sit...

A nice meridienne to relax on before going to bed.

Some items you have seen before, but they have now found their permanent home.  The tulip cushion from Saint Valentine's day  seems quite happy here, as does the pear cushion.  Both with Latchkey and Jonquil silk tassels, of course!

I can't wait to finish the bed...

Oh yes, last but not least, a tiny table by Edward Norton, it just looks perfect here.  Somebody has finished off their nightcap, blown out the candle and put down their book to get ready for bed!

I hope you enjoyed this transformation , sweet dreams!




  1. A beautiful room and you are so good at finding the perfect and right accessories. I love the mirror and the jewellery box. You know how I admire your embroideries and I am amazed by your nightcap, I'm so glad you embroidered it as it is perfect for this room next to the bouquet. I also enjoy very much the way you display your miniatures to tell a story.

    1. Thank you Geneviève, but mostly thank you for the inspiration to do it!

  2. La estancia ha quedado maravillosa. Cada detalle esta muy cuidado.
    Feliz Año Nuevo.
    Un saludo

    1. Muchas gracias Marian, y Feliz Año Nuevo tambien!

  3. Dear Jonquil, the room has turned out very well. A great combination of different furniture pieces and miniatures. The white colourscheme looks good. tranquil but without the danger of looking bland. And if I have to choose a favorite, that nightcap is still a stunner!


    1. What I forgot to ask, Do you perhaps know why the heart is a popular motive in Schotland?

    2. Hi Huibrecht, I know what you mean about the white often being bland, but this shade is almost cream, which makes it nice and warm. I didn't want the walls to dominate, as the bed will be the star attraction!

      Also, hearts, I am currently researching that. It is a very old motif, but I don't know why it was so popular - probably to represent loyalty... or perhaps we Scots are just particularly romantic!

  4. Es precioso con y sin luces. ¡Está todo tan cuidado!
    Me encanta el escritorio.

  5. Un trabajo fantástico, te ha quedado muy fino y armonioso. El blanco realza todos tus muebles y elementos que has colocado , son todos ellos un lujo

    1. Muchas Gracias, estoy muy contenta de que te gusten!

  6. Oh my goodness, Jonquil, you have made an amazing room in such a short amount of time! And you started by ripping out the old one! Wow! I am so impressed!
    Over here the eighteenth century houses often had a central chimney and the fireplaces all shared the same chimney, the front two rooms each with a corner hearth, and the back room a large central cooking hearth. The corner hearth placement made a separate chimney unnecessary. I agree that it makes for a lovely viewing arrangement! You have chosen such beautiful treasures for this bedroom... that mother-of-pearl jewelry box is simply awesome! As are the mirror, brush and comb! And that writing desk is intriguing! But I think the most amazing thing is the embroidered nightcap! Wow! And Wow oh wow, close-up it is just unbelievable! But I do happen to know what an amazing needle-woman you are! :) You have furnished a beautiful, elegant and inviting bedroom! I can't wait to see what you will do with the bed! :):)

    1. Hi Daydreamer, thank you so much. I was a little nervous ripping it all out, but I had struggled for ages with this room, so I am really glad that everything came together so well. I wish I had more hours in the day to embroider the bed hangings, but it will just have to be a Work In Progress for this year!


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