The Etsy Blog

Fresh Shop: Chisel & Mouse

Etsy.com handmade and vintage goods

Every day, our community grows in unexpected and delightful ways. For our Fresh Shops series, sellers who have been on Etsy for a handful of months or are waiting for those first few sales introduce themselves. Here’s a warm welcome to all our newbies!

We are Gavin and Robert Paisley, brothers and business partners on a mission to bring great architecture into the living room. We started Chisel & Mouse in 2011 to follow our passion for architecture and model making, and we create distinctive, eye-catching models of beautiful buildings. We have our own strengths in different areas; Gavin is very artistic and hands-on when it comes to designing and crafting the models, whereas Robert is focused on the marketing and sales side of the business.

Our models are stylish art pieces that can grace any bookshelf, desk or mantelpiece. Each one is handmade to a very high standard, and we pride ourselves on being able to reproduce the architect’s original design in exacting miniature model form. The restrained use of color allows a focus on form and detail. We use a plaster with a very hard resin, which gives the models a reassuring weight and smooth, cool feel. Some models also have fine details, such as window frames, etched in metal. All bases and backs are covered in felt.

We use 3D printing for rapid prototyping of our models before returning to the traditional techniques of sculpting, mould making and plaster casting to build the finished product. By blending state of the art techniques with traditional model making skills we are creating an inspired collection of models beautiful to the eye and touch.

We take our inspiration from the built environment that surrounds us; buildings speak through their beauty, and we try to reflect this in our models. Although we appreciate many different architectural styles, we have a particular fondness for the Art Deco period. Our list of admired architects is long but includes Le Corbusier, George Val Meyer, Charles Rennie Mackintosh and Frank Lloyd Wright. For model making, we are big fans of the Fouquet family and Timothy Richards.

Our collection is varied and celebrates architectural design in both Britain and America. Our British Heritage collection includes Buckingham Palace and 14th century Bodiam Castle; the Art Deco London range includes the Hoover Building, Battersea Power Station and Freemasons Hall; and our American Classics feature Columbia Heights, the Empire State Building and the Guggenheim Museum.

Our workshop is nestled in the Ashdown Forest, and although we work all hours, all days, we love the fact that we can step aside from work and get out onto the South Downs for some much needed r-and-r. We both have young families, and while running your own business can be demanding, we feel fortunate that we’re able to interweave our working and family lives together. Chisel & Mouse is very much a family business, and while being brothers and business partners can sometimes have its drawbacks, we consider ourselves very lucky that we have a shared passion and desire to see our business grow.

All photos by Chisel & Mouse.

More Fresh Shops