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CDHM The Miniature Way feature, chocolates in dollhouse miniatures

Miniature chocolatiers at work for
Valentine's Day in the Dollhouse
By Alice Bell, Editor

CDHM category feature, Chocolates Display By IGMA Fellow Betsy Niederer for dollhouse miniatures

Chocolate. Rich, dark, smooth...

Is there a single adjective regarding chocolate that ISN'T pure decadence and makes your mouth water?

All hail the ancient Aztecs who first decided the precious cacao bean needed to be ground up and put into golden goblets as a drink fit for royalty. Further kudos to Columbus for bringing the chocolatl to Spain and deciding sugar needed to be added to mellow out the bitter brew. And finally, a salute to Switzerland's Daniel Peter is needed for his brilliant idea of adding milk to the sweet concoction and creating the first candy bar.

And would any ode to chocolate be complete without mentioning Milton S. Hershey, the American creator of the most popular chocolate bar in the world?

Flowers, sappy cards and chocolates are the currency of Valentine's Day. What's not to love?

Miniature chocolates for Valentine's Day are just as delectable. Just like making chocolate confections in a full size kitchen, making tiny scale chocolates is all about achieving the right color, temperature and shine. CDHM gallery owners agree there is nothing like the real thing for inspiration and practice, practice, practice.

CDHM category feature, Chocolate Cake By IGMA Fellow Betsy Niederer in dollhouse miniatures "When I make miniatures, I always try to work from real life. I buy the chocolate, taste it, then put it on the table and try to make a similar-looking miniature one. The good quality melted chocolate has a silky shine, the milk chocolate isn't too shiny, the baking "chocolate" is dull, the bitter chocolate has a high gloss, while a chocolate kept in hand is a bit melted, deformed and not shiny at all," said IGMA Artisan Orsolya Skulteti.

"Initially it was hard to get everything perfect, I had to play around with different types of clay, varnishes, molds and things like that. It was sort of like a science experiment!" agreed IGMA Fellow Betsy Niederer.

"Color is very important and in my opinion there is no polymer clay with the true color of chocolate. I always do with a mixture of several colors. The texture and brightness are certainly more important and that's where I had more difficulty. But I tried several times and I think I now have good results," said Ana of All Tiny Delights.

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