Saturday, September 4, 2010

Weekend #9: September 4th and 5th is massive mini weekend!

See, I promised at the end of the weekend I would have stuff to report on and pictures to share!! And, caution, this is a LOOOONNNNNNNNNNG post. :)

French doors. Stuff in garage. Front doors. Lamps. Balcony. Planter. I was hecka busy this weekend. Well.... this is just today, on Saturday. So. What to start with?

I had been working on the French doors first, so we can start there. These are actually from Houseworks, but with all the bashing I had to do to get them to fit, you probably wouldn't know it.

First, they had to come out of the casing trim (I'm sure that has a proper name that I just don't know) so I just had the doors to work with. I made sure to keep track of all 4 pins that would act as the hinges, allowing the doors to swing back and forth. Since there was cutting, there was also lots of sanding. Gosh, I really despise sanding! After they had received a good sanding, they got fitted into the door with a top and bottom trim. I carefully measured the gaps between the doors and the sides of the trim to make a new filler casing. That, too, was a pain. It was tiny slivers of wood, but it had to be done this way so that the doors would still work. Those pieces were cut and then the whole thing was glued, clamped and set off to the side to dry.

During drying time, I got to work on some of the stuff in the garage. I started with items that were not actually made by me: the washer and dryer. They will probably get a good bashing before I am through.... or at least thoroughly accessorized. Will need to make a hamper.... I had a potting table that I thought would look nice in here, but it turned out to be way to big in scale... I ended up bashing it into two pieces. I took the top part off and the table part off. I broke the table in half and used it to make two shelves. I then hung this on the wall above the washer and dryer to act as the laundering shelf. It will hold all the goodies for doing laundry.

The bottom half became a sort of work table. The table was very clean and shiny originally, and I didn't really care for the look. I decided to dinge it up a bit by taking a utility blade and slicing off chunks of the varnish and wood. When I was sure I had gotten enough off, I went back over the bare sections with walnut stain. It ended up giving the table a very "dirty" appearance. I added a piece of stained and dinged up balsa wood for the table top. Along with this table, I made a larger work table from balsa, dowels and skinny sticks. Both tables got pony beads for casters. The garage was looking small and James is forever wishing that his RL work tables had wheels on them for easy rearranging.

The peg board is made from a frame I had and some very thin balsa wood that I poked a zillion times with a stylus. It will have all sorts of tools on it. It will also feature this miniature drill from a tutorial I found. There will be many trips to the RL garage for inspiration!

The front doors got sanded and a window cut in them. I gave up trying to sand them perfect since the wood is so crummy AND there was so much spray paint on them. The windows got trimmed out with skinny sticks and the gaps filled with Elmers wood filler. Then there was a good sanding all around and a fresh coat of white paint. As of right now, I have yet to finish those....

In some poking around, I made a couple lamps (still unfinished) from some wood turnings I found. I really like them and plan on putting them in the living room. I will need to find some other stuff like that or think of other useful components for the bedroom and study. That second picture there is for James' enjoyment. I had just set them in the garage to dry and he thought it was fun that there was work happening in there. :) The bases are going to get a couple coats of varnish. I like the wood look.

In the January, 1999 issue of Dollhouse Miniatures, I found a quick tutorial for an awesome planter. I really like how it turned out, too. My lines are nowhere near straight, but I think it gives it character to be all cockeyed. :)

Finally, my last project for the weekend was the terrace/balcony. After some input from my Mini Soul Sister, Brae (check out her blog here), I painted the French doors (but still have to decide whether or not to leave the mullions on.) The trim is painted the same brown that the rest of the trim is painted and the door is the same color as the house itself. The inside will match the white trim and wainscot of the study/den.

I was originally going to make the porch like the original design included on the Highland, but decided it was more aesthetically pleasing to the eye for the shape to resemble the silo. I used the top part of it as a pattern so the porch is not only the same shape, but the same size. It is a chunk of balsa (because it is light) that I carved planks into and stained with a mix of walnut and mahogany. The braces underneath are skinny sticks and it is secured to the wall of the house with these wood bracket things I had. I really like them!

The posts are made from some sort of attractive post I had. There were two of them, so it was perfect. I sanded the tops of them down flat and secured a dowel to the top of it. The roof is a duplicate of the floor and while one side is painted to match the trim, the other is shingled with real asphalt shingles. These were included in our phenomenal Craigslist find of the century. You can see those goodies here. The posts were glued into place in pre-punched holes and painted to match the trim. I also installed tiny hooks for hanging plants, feeders or windchimes!

After some time discussing it with some friends on the Greenleaf Forum, I am going to use a wrought iron looking railing. I don't have quite enough of what I need, so some of it will need to be replicated and fabricated on my own. Nothing I am not used to! :P

I wanted to get more done, but we spent the entirety of today over at a good friends house eating great Latin food, playing Domino's and watching the boys ride Powerwheels and splash in the pool. It was a great day.

Happy Labor Day everyone! Have fun and be safe. :)


  1. Wow you've been really busy! Here are my comments as I'm reading your post since I agree with you, it is a long one!

    The french doors look great.
    Where did you get that washer and dryer set? Is it plastic or wood?
    Good job on the texturing of the tables.. you really dinged it up!
    Don't you just hate crummy wood? Such a headache
    Love the lamps! Love the new balcony's look too! Good job Lyssa!

    All in all a fun post to read!

  2. Unfortunately, the weekend ended with my hard work being demolished! The front doors were forgotten to dry outside.... and then it rained. They totally fell apart!!!

    Washer and dryer came with the mega hoard of dollhouse stuff... but I think they were originally scratch built.

    Thanks, Ann! I had a lot of fun doing what I could this weekend. :)


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