Until last year, Bobbie Matthews had quite a conundrum on her hands. She had moved to a smaller home and no longer had room to display her impressive collection of miniature homes, people, lights and scenery.
Then, the longtime member of Enumclaw’s Seventh-day Adventist congregation had an inspired idea.
“I finally got up the nerve last year to ask the decision making body of the church if they would like me to display my Bedford Falls ‘It’s a Wonderful Life’ ceramic miniature collection in the narthex of the church,” Matthews said. “They told me that they felt like that would be a great way to adorn the big blank interior western wall.
“It just seemed like such a shame to have the collection sitting out in my garage stored in boxes, when I could be sharing its colorful beauty with folks,” said Matthews, who has been slowly adding to her Bedford Falls theme of miniatures for close to 20 years. “I just procure the pieces that strike my fancy and try to keep with the Bedford Falls motif.”
Matthews, who works at Enumclaw’s Ashley House, a facility for medically fragile children, said she enjoys collecting miniatures and that each pieces in the collection holds a special memory for her.
“When I was in Luxembourg I came across this lovely old replica of a miniature apothecary. I was so glad that it made the trip home in one piece,” she said. “I cushioned it by wrapping it up in some clothes in my suitcase.”
Matthews accumulates pieces from a variety of sources – from department stores to garage sales – and adds that she doesn’t get too caught up in the items being too close to exact scale. “The pieces that are a little bit bigger I put in the foreground and smaller pieces go in the background, so the collection has some semblance of perspective,” she said.
The public is invited to stop by and check out Bedford Falls during the holiday season. The best time, without disturbing church services, is from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. Saturdays. The display will remain for viewing until the end of January.
Reach John Leggett at firstname.lastname@example.org or 360-802-8207.