The Making of the Fair

The new Mouse Mansion book has been available in the Netherlands since one week, so we thought it would be nice to tell you something about ‘the making of’ this book.

As you might know, the original Mouse Mansion is on display at the Central Library in Amsterdam. It’s quite difficult to make the photographs for the books there! Before we make a picture, we first have to darken the entire workspace and than lighten the specific room with multiple flashlights. But the library has so many huge windows that it’s impossible to do this. That’s why we decided to built another Mouse Mansion. Easier said than done, it took us over a year to finish the new set. But much easier to work with, because it’s right here in the studio!

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The new Mouse Mansion functions as the background for the fun fair. The majority of the stories of the new book take place at the square in front of the Mouse Mansion. We didn’t want any ‘blue sky’ behind the attractions on the photographs, so luckily we had the new Mouse Mansion available!

Building the fair was a lot of fun. We wanted to make a rollercoaster, bumper cars, a haunted house and of course several carousels. Besides these attractions we needed candy shops and ticket booths. We started building step by step. Karina built the roller-coaster completely from popsicle sticks!

The cars are made from paper. The wheels come from curtain rails and the headlights are beads.

Next was the carousel. It’s made from wood and cardboard. The animals get their shape from tin-foil and wire. They are covered in papier mache, which gives them a nice finish. After that Karina painted them and glued them in the carousel. The seats of the other carousel are cut from soft wood and hung with a piece of chain.

The bumber cars were made by Tom. He used a tin can and clay to make the shape. The seats are made from popsicle sticks. He made a mould out of that one car, and poured six replica’s in gypsum.  He painted the cars in different colours. The rods that are attached to the back of the cars are made from a skewer.

There is so much more to tell! Next week we will post a sequel to this blog post, with amongst other things the candy shops, the haunted house and the photography!