Friday, January 10, 2020

Something Current, Something Old, Something New

Happy New Year, Friends. Thankful that the holiday season is behind us, I am ready retreat into my mini world where I am most content these days. I can't start just yet since I'm hosting ladies from my DAR chapter to make Valentines for Veterans. Tomorrow there will be five other ladies come for lunch and then we make 60 Valentine cards that will be distributed at the Cheyenne, Wyoming VA nursing home and  sent to a military nurse serving in Qatar. I spent half a day cleaning the room, putting away all of my mini projects, setting up tables, and putting out card making supplies.

I am, however, anxious to get on with mini making, having come up with a list of projects that I want to finish by spring. Here are my projects for the next few week--months.

I love this house, the Dura Craft Bellingham Farmhouse. I think I started it 2017. My daughter bought the unopened kit for me for $25. on Craig's list and my dear husband drove to Boulder to pick it up. It was a hefty build for a beginner. I made some bad mistakes in assembling it that I have had to  hide, yet is a great house. It is at the top of my list to complete it. You can see that it needs shingles. I've procrastinated on the roofing project simple because I couldn't face dealing with hundreds of individual shingles that needed to dyed and glued on one at a time.

Project 1: Something Current

Rather messing with those individual shingles, I am going to order speed shingles, shingles in strips that will be much easier to glue in place. I just need to get them ordered. More on them when that project begins.



It is a very large roof that will require a lot of shingles, so you can see why I've put of the project for so long. 


This photo amply shows how hard it was to piece the roof together. I didn't get things lined up, so now I'll have do some creative shingling. We'll tackle that later, too.

The chimney has been attached to the side of the house with little issue, but the part of the chimney that sits on the roof will present a challenge. 


I used "real" bricks that I purchased from HBS. They are made of plaster of Paris and are fairly easy to work with, but they are very heavy. For grout, I use patching motor for brick wall, a product that added more weight. I wrote about the problems I had with chimney back in 2018 in a post called 'Keeping Warm'

I was very unhappy with this project. The bricks weren't straight, the mortar was gloppy. I just felt like I totally screwed it up, but now the chimney looks aged and warn just like I wanted. I used chalk pastels, charcoal color, to make the top smoky. I thought it worked nicely.

Now I have to glue it in place before I begin to shingle. It is a heavy piece so I have to figure out how stabilize it while the glue cures. 


Inside in the attic, I have to figure out how to finish the floor. One thing that I've learned about building an entire dollhouse is to have a plan in place--I mean the entire plan: color scheme, finishes, wallpaper, lighting, and flooring.  I built the house then decorated it room by room with a general idea of what I thought it would look like. That was fine for other rooms, but in this room, really an after thought, the flooring should have been installed before the roof went on since there is no access to the very back of the room where the front peak is. 



So how am I going to install a floor?


I decided to make floor template by piecing computer paper together to a pattern of the floor. 


I had planned on using the tongue depressor size craft sticks glued to cardboard then I realized that it would not fit. Once made, I wouldn't be able to install the floor.


This room was supposed to be young girl's refuge--her hideaway as she scavenged bits and pieces of furniture to make herself a bedroom in the attic furnished with discarded family heirlooms for furniture, and I am going to leave the floor bare and create a large area rug, that probably came from her granny's house, aged and warn, but full of sweet memories of granny's house. 


There are other projects left to be finished, like the trim on the outside of the house. I will feel a great sense of accomplishment when the Farmhouse is finished.

Project 2: Something Old

My first big project was this house. I called it the Blue Farmhouse, then I painted it pink. You can see it here: No More Blue Farmhouse. It was a renovation and I had such fun and being brand new at the hobby, I made mistakes in the make-over, especially in the kitchen. It isn't horrible, but I know so much more now about making cabinetry. I am either going to build cabinets from kits made by House works or try Julie Warren's hand made cabinets. I love her work and enjoy her videos, too. Still thinking on that. I bought a corner upper cabinet that I tried to adhere is museum stickum and it stained my pretty wallpaper, so I think I'll install upper cabinets to cover the stains.




So I have Something Current, Something Old, and now--

Project 3: Something New

While I love buying gifts for family or making them sometimes, I don't necessarily need gifts--not for my birthday and not for Christmas. I hate to have the girls spend their money on me when they have children that have wants and needs, too. At my age (old), I really don't need stuff, so when they ask me what I wanted for Christmas, I gave them ideas for miniature projects. 

My husband bought me the metal jig with magnets to help create pieces are straight. I've read where builder have made their jigs out of Legos. Cool. But I like the magnets that will hold pieces in place.

For my birthday 5 days before Christmas, Heather bought me three tiny  1:12 circus wagons  from Robin Betterley. These are going to be fun to build and will go in the toy store--which I'm thinking of relocating. More on that in the future.



So in between the various real life projects, duties, and obligations I'll hide away in my basement emerged in a little world.

What projects do you have planned for the new year?

Thanks so much for visiting.



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