Monday, 16 February 2015

Lighting - getting started!

I have decided to use a combination of miniature lighting items as well as LED strips from the hardware store.
My lights are going to be relatively simple with two chandeliers a  lamp for the desk and then hidden strip LEDs to light the cabinets and the rest of the room.  These would be great for anyone lighting those rooms that you have a glimpse of but cannot see inside the whole room.
I have chosen a beautiful lamp for the desk from my good friend Raymond Storey.  He did a limited run of lights with this beautiful finish and I think this will work nicely on the desk.  His amazing glass that he blows himself enhances all of his lights making them quite unique.
I drilled a hole through the floor and used my dremel to make a channel for the wire underneath.  The wire comes back up underneath and behind the panelling in the corner of the box.  I will use a permanent brown marker to colour the white wire so that it "disappears."
I am also using two chandeliers from the Getzans.  I think they will enhance the box as it is meant to be rather formal.
The LEDs are ones that I found recently and they will provide a great deal of light for the shelving at the back of the box.  The LEDs come with a little battery pack so that you can light them up and see how they work. They plug into the power cord that comes in the package.   They will definitely work well in this box.

Saturday, 7 February 2015

Detail added to walls

I did decide to go ahead and add the detail to the walls.  I used the tip from Sophia's friend Bill to cut my pieces of decorative strip wood. My cutting mat already had the crosses for my angles which simplified cutting my corners. Sophia's tip is here....
Cutting the proper angle is easy

Duplicating shorter pieces

Duplicating longer pieces

Covering up the gaps!
For the longer pieces of trim, I turned the box on its side and used the weight of some heavy batteries to hold the pieces in place while the glue dried.
Long pieces held in place to dry
I touched up the corners with a tiny bit of stain on the upper crown as well as the trim pieces on the walls and under the shelving.
Stain touch up
I am rather pleased with the results - lighting next!
Just needs some lights!

Friday, 23 January 2015

Stripwood Applied, Shelves Assembled

The shop is taking shape now with the addition of the stained and varnished strip wood.
I had a few difficulties with the wood shrinking over the time lapse from the summer.  I managed to cover the corners with trim pieces so it ended up working out well.
I have made my ceiling so that it will screw on and off easily if necessary. It makes working inside that much easier.   I did not attach the ceiling crown moulding to the ceiling but to the wall instead. 
I have cut some pieces of strip wood and inserted them under one shelf.  I am trying to decide if I want to add more detail below each shelf unit or leave them relatively plain.
I am almost ready to electrify this room - more to come......
Not quite finished!
Lighting will be added above shelves

Gap in corner from wood shrinking

Corner pieces

Room box flipped upside down to add crown moulding

Needs stain touch up in corner
Possibly adding more wood details?

Taking Shape!

Tuesday, 20 January 2015

Lessons Learned Again!!

I found some time to work on my wood panelled shop over the holidays.  I had left too much time in between a few key steps while assembling this miniature box. As a result, I discovered that my veneer had come loose in a few places.  Perhaps it was my spray glue but I believe that applying the walls in the humid summer and then coming back to it in the middle of a Canadian winter was not great!!! I was able to fix the walls by injecting glue with my glue syringe and clamping firmly to salvage my walls. 
I did a trial run of my shelving units before staining the wood.  The other lesson that I learned was that I should have stained and varnished my required strip wood at the same time as it took awhile to replicate a matching stain even though I had written down my proportions.  I think the maple veneer and the basswood stripwood absorbed it a little differently so the colour was off until I finally got it right! 
More to come.....
Assembled walls - trial run on shelving
Veneer coming loose
Mixing stains again

Strip wood to be stained

Stained and varnished
Final configuration for shelving before staining

Sunday, 7 December 2014

Getting Ready For Christmas!

We celebrate Christmas in our household and in my dollhouse!  With the holidays approaching quickly, I will not have much time to post again. I will, however, check in on others' blogs when I have a few spare moments.  I would like to wish my followers and their families a very happy holiday season however you celebrate!
I recently discovered these personalized stockings.  If anyone is interested - they are made by Barbara Hill and are available in her Etsy shop under the name of  HillCountryMinis.

Thursday, 30 October 2014

Filled China Shop

I enjoy the process of building a miniature room or structure but the most fun comes when it is ready to fill!  It seemed that it would be a good size for some of my collected pieces.  It turns out that  I actually should have built glass shelving along the side walls too! 
I have had a few of Jane Newman's pieces tucked away safely in a drawer waiting for someway to display them. The colour of her furniture was lovely to use as it went well with the flooring.
I have collected miniatures for awhile now so I have some wonderful china from various artisans.  Most readers of this blog will recognize the workmanship of Stokesayware, Terry Curran, Jack Cashmere and Teresa Welch of the China Closet.  I have displayed a few other pieces by various artisans and would be happy to identify them if someone is interested in a specific piece.

I thought afternoon tea might be nice so I have put it on the dresser on the right.  Lesley Burgess made the Stokesay Soverign Blue and Red tea sets up with her delicious looking food and it was too hard to resist one show a number of years ago.  The combined talents of two artisan's working together is always fun!

I had one casualty with a vase which was upsetting while filling the shop. I could not bear to throw it out!  It was a clean break so I was able to glue it together carefully and promptly filled the vase with orchids for the desk.

The washstands may or may not stay in the shop but they were made by Jane to use with Karen's porcelain pieces so it is fun to use them here. I particularly like the larger one with the hole in the stand for the wash bowl and the tiles Jane used were either Karen's or Terry Curran's work.

I thought that I would mention that I was in a dilemma about how to finish the front piece.  I found it a little odd that the trim on the sides of this kit extends out over the end (you can see it in my previous post.)  I decided to paint it to look like cement so used some textured paint and added Richard Stacey's  grey modelling dust. He suggests mixing it with glue and water but it worked well with my paint.

And finally, I thought you might be interested in my plate stands as they are sturdy and disappear for the most part.  They are actually something that I picked up online - miniature easels for buttons - which would be easy to make but I bought mine and clipped off the fronts a bit for the plates.  I also like the wooden stands if anyone comes across them from Bespaq.  I am not sure if these are still being made but they work quite well for me in both sizes.

Tuesday, 28 October 2014

Shop Shelving and Assembly

I managed to spend some time in the past few months on a kit that I have had for awhile.  Shops are an easy way to showcase a collection of themed miniatures.  In this case, I am going to fill it with miniature china.

The floor veneer pieces are a pleasure to use and come from Graham Simpkin in the UK.  His website is and you will find a great range of flooring items. I just glue them down, give them a light sanding and three coats of spray varnish.

Veneer square for flooring

I have taken a number of classes over the years and learned some techniques that made this shop easy to put together.  I have always enjoyed my classes with Ray Whitledge and in one specific class, he demonstrated how to use his table saw.  I have experimented with my own saw for awhile now and have used it for a few of my projects to build shelves. As this room box is not large, I wanted shelving all across the back wall.  I painted them with a gloss marine oil paint which gives a lovely shiny finish.
Shelves cut and ready for assembly

Sliding table which I modified to fit my saw protects my fingers!

Cutting my shelf grooves

Vacuum attached helps with sawdust mess!

Shelving with spacers

I have made a wood shelf to match the flooring and the back wood shelf pieces. 

I am close to completing this project so hope to show you it filled shortly.