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13 posts from October 2018

lengthy build update

I cleaned my studio a bit every weeknight last week, thus progress this weekend was faster, as I worked more efficiently.  This weekend I made the effort to put things back where they belong when I'm done with them instead of pushing them to the back of  my worktable.  Not only do I have clear spaces to work, but it's easier to lay my hands on a tool when I need it, instead of having to rummage through a mess on the table looking for it.  Discipline, Keli, discipline.

I finished painting the windows, built up and painted the porch post, and prepped floorboards for the porch....


The trim under the eaves is in place.  I opted not to attempt to smooth out where the roof pieces don't come together cleanly; I figured if I tried to screw with it I'd make it more of a mess.  I whittled down that end of the trim piece instead.


The corner trim I ordered arrived on Friday, so I got that cut, painted, and installed.  Cutting was very fiddly.


I used matte gel medium to fix the paper at the top of the wall, under the removable roof piece...

20181020_162305 the porch post and floor glued in place...


...and painted and installed the skylight.  Sheila saved my bacon with the skylight; I lost mine, so she sent me hers.

You'll notice that I chose to use a wood strip on the ceiling to help hold the removable roof piece in place, instead of the clumsy wood block that came with the kit.  I repeated that strip on the other side of the room as well, so it looks like purposeful trim.  Since the strip needs to offer support I glued and screwed it in place so it would be more secure.


The windows that came with this kit are different than any I've seen before.  Instead of an exterior trimmed window with loose interior trim this is a two window sandwich.  There are two trimmed window pieces, one installed inside, the other from outside, with a piece of acrylic sandwiched between them.  I like them.   However, because I chose to install the exterior window on top of the siding it widened the gap the acrylic sits in.  I contemplated putting the siding on around the windows instead, but decided I wanted the window trim to be able to cover any edges of the siding that weren't cut perfectly .

I compensated for the gap by cutting strips of square stripwood, painting them the same color as the exterior window pieces, and gluing them to the edges of the inside windows.  This was the first need I've had to utilize the white glue/superglue combo I've read about on other miniaturist's blogs; it works great.


I then inserted the acrylic and glued the exterior piece in place.  This left a deeper windowsill on the inside I can set things on.



Coffee mug by April Wright, succulent by Nancy Enge.

My daughter suggested I repeat the front door's leaded glass pattern in the upper window at the other end of the house.  It was a good idea.


The kit came with a rectangular vent for the top dormer.  Early on, when I was reconfiguring the roof, I made a triangular one.


I like the house better without it, so I'm not going to use it.


The second skylight I made in the loft roof has to be built up, because the roof pieces are thinner than the wall pieces and the window sandwich was too thick.  I could have used only one of the window pieces and cut trim instead, but I like the idea of it sitting up a bit.  I wish I hadn't glued the big skylight in already, that would look better bumped up too.



Saturday, as I was cutting the final piece of siding for the back wall of the house, when I was measuring around the roof support beam, I thought ‘huh, I don’t remember doing this on the front side’.  


So, obviously, that wasn’t my final piece of siding.  

I got the siding for the front dormers cut, painted, and glued in place yesterday, so I am, now, officially done siding.  Whew.

My goal last week was to get the siding and trim done.  I may have pulled it off if I hadn’t taken Tuesday off, but probably not.  The dry time for glue and paint is always longer than I anticipate.  I say that every year, you’d think I would have realistic expectations by now, but no.

While paint on the two dormer siding pieces was drying I tackled the front window I did a poor job of siding around.


I filled in the gaps with bits of toothpicks.  Then because this window came with no trim, I cut four pieces to bring the window up to the level of the siding, and four more to be the exterior trim.


Once that's painted I'll glue it in place.

When I purchased the kit I also got two sizes of stripwood for trim, one square and one rectangular, so I could make my own, thicker, corner trim, that would be the same depth as the window trim.  Once held up against the actual structure it looked very odd.


At that point I began to second guess everything.  The window trim color, would it clash with the landscape...the siding, is it too bright...should I change seasons?  That was when I walked out of my studio and closed the door behind me.

After distracting myself with more episodes of The Great British Baking Show (which husband has now become involved in too), and catching up on housework, I used the last of my Beach House winnings to order some corner trim from HBS.  Now I wait again, this time for the postman.

While I'm waiting I have to decide what to do about this...


Double house update

I  spent most of yesterday at my daughter's house.  She needed help reassembling a metal storage rack I gave her that came out of my office.  She is in the midst of more renovations,  a stonemason has been working on the exterior of her house for about  a month, on and off; mostly off, due to all of the rain we’ve been experiencing.  This summer has been much like I imagine living in England is.


A  before picture of a section of the stone wall...




Once the exterior stonework is done I think it’s on to the new roof, but I’m not sure if there is enough time left before winter.

She has also engaged the new contractors to finish the attic/loft, and re-do the remodel of the shower because the first builders didn’t do it correctly and it’s falling apart.  She has been living at her house but showering at mine for the last year.  (There is a longer story there, but it’s not for the public.)

The bathroom in her house is comically small, so this time she’s stealing some space from one bedroom to set the shower further away from the toilet, so one can pee without setting one’s feet in the shower.  That is something her mother suggested during the first remodel, but mothers don’t know anything.  ;)


I was tired and in need of a nap when I came home from my daughter's house. Instead of napping I decided to finish the siding on the front of the house. I did a shit job of it. It’s nothing that can’t be hidden with trim, but I will have to glue in shims so that I have something to glue the window trim to.  I’m unhappy with it, but it will be okay in the end. 


I have been watching TV during drying times. I should be making books and accessories for the inside of the build, but that would entail cleaning off a work surface, and I’ve recently discovered The Great British Baking Show on Netflix.

I did did get the third side sided and painted today, correctly.  On to the fourth side, tomorrow.


an update while paint dries

The roof has had a coat of gesso and paint, as have the windows.  I also made a new studio shirt and sweatpants, because I forgot to change into something already ruined before I started.


Sheila is putting bargeboards on her Tudor build.  I think they are fabulous!  I dumped out all my stripwood and trims onto a worktable....


Pulled these out, to test...




Sigh.  I don't know.  They don't suit the architecture of my build the way they do Sheila's.  I'll get the exterior sided and painted then test them again.

I started cutting siding this morning.  Because the front door is already installed I have to paint the pieces adjacent to it before gluing them on.  Since I'm already a couple of hundred dollars over my zero dollar budget I'm going to use leftover paint from refinishing my kitchen cupboards last year.


The windows and corner trim will be white.


Loft progress


After giving the roof adequate dry time I made and installed the built in desk and dresser.  I was planning shelves for toys left of the dresser but there may not be room, I have to experiment, the slant is tricky.  Looking at the picture just now I wish I had made the dresser a bit longer, so the edge was even with the edge of the window above, but it's a bit late for that.


The bedding nest fits perfectly.  And YAY for the added skylight!


Susan's vintage rhinestone bead, meant to reflect light doesn't really, but I love it, I have to have a little Bestie in each build....two Besties now, with all the Nancy here too.


And shit, I remember now something that I forgot to do before I glued the roof on....the loft ceiling was supposed to have stars....

Roof achieved

The new beads whose coloring I like wouldn't work as pendant lights because the hole through the bead wasn't centered and they wouldn't hang straight. :(

I decided to use the copper ones, walked to Joann's this morning for small copper lobster clasps, and found these.  Perfect!



Coincidentally, they remind me of Nancy's hip implants.

Nancy is doing great by the way, she went home Wednesday afternoon, days ahead of schedule. :)

Then I hung a vintage rhinestone bead Susan gave me in the added loft window (picture later).

With the faux lights taken care of I moved on to the roof...finally.  I put it in dry fit, fussed around with the fit, because houses never assemble perfectly square, decided where gaps would be, then took a few deep breaths and glued it on.


Here's where the largest gap ended up...


Now...dry time.