from the jazz age to the space age

Category Archives: mystery

i love mysteries~ human, eleusian, and literary. agatha christie’s miss marple was my introduction to the genre. at 12ish years old somehow, someone one left a volume of her short stories at our house. desperate for reading matierial i picked it and fell under their spell. however, dame agatha was soon replaced in my heart by conan doyle. what can i say, i was a victorian nut at the time.
flash forward 25 years! following our move to so-cal so my husband mikael could begin working on his masters, i picked up christie’s “tuesday club murders”.
The.. Tuesday Night Club, a random gathering of people at the house of Miss Marple. Each week the group tell thrilling tales of mystery, which are always solved by Miss Marple, from the comfort of her armchair.”
{thanks wikipedia!}

soon after this i started collecting any agatha christie books i could find at our local used book shops. the older the edition, the better, for the older editions boast delightful painted covers. in addition to miss marple i discovered christie’s stand alone mysteries such as, “murder with mirrors” and “towards zero.”. while i’ve read most of poirot’s cases many times, these we’re new to me. i was instantly charmed. 

in my characteristic over-enthusiasm i decided to make my own set of dolls inspired by the common stock characters in english country manor mysteries from the 1920s to the early 1960s. after making a two page list i whittled it down to five character types:
the spinsterly sleuth, the clever vicar, the dark horse, the it girl, and the good sport.
each is a jointed doll, held together by brads. there are changes of clothes, accessories, clues, red herrings, and possible bloody murder weapons. their clothes are drawn from the general styles of the 1920s to early 1980s, with much mix and match between the decades. 

*covers are from my personal collection of pocket sized paperbacks.

now i can fulfill my desire to daydream grisly murders and their solutions by my paper creations!

“english country murder” coming soon!

i’m so excited for my new project. as you may or may not know i’m mad about paper dolls. so, i’ve been sketching & painting a new series of 5 dolls. one is finished & 4 more are sketched out in photoshop. i’m just trying to decide who gets what accessories & and trying to decide if the gentlemen should wear trilbys, or fedoras. decisions decisions!

on a related note~ as i’ve nearly finished agatha christie’s novels, i picked up my husband’s volume of dorothy sayers’ “lord peter wimsey” stories. so far, they are completely funny & decent mysteries. not at good as dame agatha or arthur conan doyle, but extremely entertaining none-the-less. lord peter is described in the first story as medium height & blond, with a long nose & a rather stupid looking face. i had a lot of trouble imagining him. what exactly is stupid looking? is he a boring hunky guy? that’s who i usually associate with stupidity. but that was definitely not the description given of him. who- who- who? 
suddenly, simon pegg popped into my head. not that i really consider poor simon to be particularly stupid looking, but he does do slack-jawed confusion very well. how wonderful would simon pegg be as lord peter in a movie? don’t believe me? look at this:

now imagine pegg & frost as wimsey & bunter:

it would be completely amazing.