This miniature chateau is world-famous! Featured on two magazine covers, American Minaturist in March 2013 and the UK's Dolls House World in March 2014, it is a four-foot-high re-creation of one of several magnificent homes owned and restored by Suze's mentor Lillian Williams and her husband Teddy.
The original chateau is a 17th century pavilion, circa 1630, which was built as a hunting lodge. The chateau is one of only five or six located in Aix-en-Provence, France. These homes are both rare and highly desirable. Complete with crystal chandeliers, fireplaces, real provençal tile floors, ornate furniture and furnishings, including a majestic horse stable, the miniature Château Bidaine has many features of the real one.
The dolls in the miniature building were custom made from photographs of Lillian and Teddy, and are wearing reproductions of their actual costumes. The Cavalier King Charles spaniel dolls were made from photos of some of the 40 dogs that live on the estate.
Of particular note is the creation of a shell grotto on the walls of the stables underneath the house. Lillian created the mosaic effect using shells that she collected; Suze did the same thing in miniature.
Suze was first inspired to create this magnificent building when she saw a magazine photo of the château where Lillian had seated twelve of the dogs around a fully set dining room table. Naturally the miniature château had to have a dining room table with miniature dogs seated around it!