Thursday, 29 December 2016

Christmas 2016

Hello all. I hope you have all had a lovely Christmastime......I'm afraid I've not touched my minis over the holidays but I did get a little time just beforehand to finish off the downstairs hallway and first floor landing. These are the first two areas to be completed and I'm happy with how they've turned out.

After getting the lighting sorted out and the wallpaper done I got the flooring laid and the cornice and skirting boards fitted. Then it was just a matter of making some curtains for the window on the landing....I needed to do that before the staircase is fitted leading up to the second floor as it won't be accessible after that.
You can just see a glimpse of this window in the photo here.

The doors aren't glued in yet until the rooms on the other side are decorated. I found a good way of making 'porcelain' door knobs by using nail polish! I'm pleased with how they look and they make a change from having brass ones.....

I need to fit the stair rods and put back all the spindles I knocked off whilst fitting the carpet....but I just wanted to see how it is going to look! 

The downstairs entrance hall is now complete apart from the door which needs gluing once I have decorated the shop area. I'm really happy with it and especially pleased that my working grandfather clock fits just right in there and is the first thing I see when I open the door.

At the other side of this landing wall is the kitchen and parlour. I think these are the next two rooms I'm going to be working on. 
The chimney breasts are fitted in both the kitchen and the parlour and both the fires are wired up.....

And here we are looking all festive! 

Monday, 5 December 2016

Some inside progress!

At last I've moved indoors but not until after I had done lots of staring and thinking before doing so! I really had to do this to be sure of my work plans so that I get everything done in the right order as I go along. Building, decorating and lighting a 3d building is abit of a mind boggling affair! To work it all out I sat down and wrote a plan of action - where to route the wires for the lighting and which piece of wall can I stuck in and when?  Can I lay this flooring now, at which point will I need to glaze that window and add curtains....? etc etc.
Well the first thing I decided to do was to make the channels for the lighting wires to go through to the back of the building....I knew I had to do this before any walls could be stuck in place or flooring laid. The chimney breasts were glued into position at this stage too so that I could get the wires lined up for the fires....

So far so good - the channels for the wires from the shop lights downstairs and for both fires on the first floor

My channels are a little wonky as I used the Dremel but they will still do the job.

The shop light coming up into the sitting room and the wire coming into the back of the fireplace ready to connect to the kitchen range and the sitting room fire.

Here you can see the wires laid in and covered with masking tape

And both the fire lights working! Hooray!

Next I needed to get the hallway and landing wallpapered so that I could glue in the two back walls. I also fixed the wall lights into place before sliding and gluing the wall between the landing and the other two rooms on the first floor. It maybe a challenge putting in the cornice and skirting as this area is quite deep. Wish me luck! I will be able to remove the window to glaze it and add curtains.


This is the first floor landing. I'm so pleased with how it's looking so far....

The stairs leading to the attic floor and the doors to the kitchen and sitting room not glued in place yet.

This next picture shows the downstairs entrance hall with the stairs and wall now glued into position and the doorway leading into the shop area.
It took me ages to fix the brass stair rods and I have another set to do yet!
Skirting boards, cornice, door knobs and light switches to add....

Having done all this I had to have a little play and see how my shelving would fit into the shop. I bought a few at the York Fair as I was undecided in how I was going to arrange them. I toyed with the idea of blocking off the
trade entrance door entirely, which would have added more shelf space but I feel I would lose some of the 3d aspect doing that which is what I really love about this building.  I'm thinking this arrangement in the following photos is how I'm going to go.... As you can see there will be a little back lobby area near the tradesman's entrance door and I plan to put another door leading into my Orangery on that back wall next to it. I think this will add extra interest. All I need to do now is decide on the finish for those shelves! Stained or painted...? I suppose to be in keeping with the Edwardian era they would probably have been in oak but I'm afraid that will make it look terribly dark in here....I'm wondering about a distressed cream or pale green colour....? Mmmmm....? (The light fitting on these pictures is only temporary.)

So you are up to date with where I am up to for now...thankyou for looking in! 

Saturday, 26 November 2016

Thinking about the lighting

I have begun to think about where all the wires need to be routed so that I can plan the sequence of decorating. With the house being viewable on all three sides and with having landings behind the rooms it's important that I get this right. If I don't give it alot of thought at this stage it would be so easy to stick something in place and then not be able to 'get at' another area later on.... The shop rear wall and the landing wall are both removable and will need to be decorated on the hall /landing sides then stuck in place before I can begin to decorate the shop area, kitchen and living room therefore wires will need to be in place.
I have drawn a plan to help me work that out. 
In the meantime I have done the outside lights and just placed a few table lamps in each room connected to a socket strip to give me an idea of how it's going to look....

So I have brought you up to date with my progress so far...
I'm so excited to be at this stage and I'm really looking forward to starting the interior decorating now but I was determined to finish the outside first so that the house looks nice sitting in the corner of our living room. I have lots of fun times ahead and lots more planning and thinking to do but the wallpapers, cornices and skirting boards and quite a few of the lights have been bought just waiting for me to start!


Some more serious building - The Brick Work!

I knew from the start that there was going to be alot of brickwork on this building and I knew that it was going to be fiddly in parts! As the house was already built when I bought it, with all the details stuck on, there was no way it was going to be easy so my choice of Versi Slip bricks was the best way to go and the best choice for it. These little brick slips are easy to cut and apply so working around all the added features would be after laying the pathway with fibreglass sheet I started the little brick wall and pillars.

The curve on the wall was a bit of a challenge but I'm pleased with how it's turned out.

The pillars were quite fiddly.....

So that is one part completed

Moving around the corner....

This part was very hard....

It's a good job I have small hands!

Getting there!

I had to use tweezers in places!


I had a little 'helper', Mia our cat, overseeing the work....

Mia sat with me most days keeping me company and now it is finished

Some little buys

I've started to collect a few bits and pieces to go inside even though the decorating hasn't even begun on the inside! It just has to be done sometimes when you see something you know will look just right.
My Phoenix Kitchener range is one such thing! I know it will look lovely in the kitchen.

Using oddments of wood I've made a chimney breast for it making sure it was a good fit

With some moulding I made the surround

Here's how it looked in place on the chimney breast

Again with some oddments of moulding and a brass tube I made up a towel rail

I cut two pieces of cornice to make the end pieces, drilled a hole in the side of each and slotted in the brass tube

Two coats of paint on the surround, hearth fitted and it looks ok I think.....

I will hide the wire for the fire behind the chimney breast

I plan to put the sink under the window. 

I can't wait to start decorating this room now!

My next little buy is a beautiful, working grandfather clock which I'm hoping will fit in the hallway, but if it doesn't it will look just as nice on the landing I think. As long as it's easily seen when I open the door of the house as  I've waited a long time to have a working one and I'm so pleased with it!

Another little bargain I found was a Bodo Henig treadle sewing machine. This is another item which I've saved up for and it really is such a beautiful piece and well worth waiting for. It has a lovely inlaid table top and the handle can be turned making the needle actually move up and down! A little work of art.

Some serious building work - The roof!

In all my time in this hobby I've not yet tiled a roof by laying each tile individually but on this property I thought I would have a go! After much searching and sighing at the price this was going to cost me in real slate tile, I finally decided on a method which I found by accident at York Dollshouse Fair in June.
Whilst there a friend and I saw a wonderful house with a very realistic roof and when we asked the gentleman whose house it was, he said he'd done it using sticky back vinyl floor tiles from the well known diy shop! Well I just had to have a look so off I popped and sure enough there were some tiles that would just do the job! Slate grey!
First I would need to cut them to size......a harder job than I thought!

On the reverse side I marked out the size of each tile (1" x 3/4") with a very sharp pencil and steel ruler. Next I started to cut it into strips with a Stanley Knife. I got through quite a few blades doing this....  

Once I had all the strips cut I found it easier to use scissors to snip them into individual tiles.
I wondered at this stage whether I should stick the chimney on or not. My thinking was that it would be easier without it but realised it would be difficult sticking the chimney stack on top of read layed tiles so on it went and I tiled around it.
So I started at the bottom of the roof and began working my way across. It was all going well until I saw that the tiles kept moving and slipping even though they were sticky backed. I decided to use pva to give them extra 'stick' and it seemed to do the trick.


And as you can see I've been having a little go at the brickwork!