Even before the lightning strike occurred and my home was turned upside down for cleaning and renovation, I had decided to not enter the Greenleaf Spring Fling this year due to time constraints. The month-long renovation solidified that point. In order to make up for the spotty blogging in September, I'm proud to reveal Mt. Sydney Chalet. I did a significant amount of work on the project right at the start, so I've a lot to show. :] Since this won't be for the contest, it will be a public build (which I happen to like better anyway).
Before the contest kit was revealed, as Lyssa, April, Blondie and I discussed plans for mini builds, I assured them all I would not be entering the Spring Fling but would be entering the HBS contest. I told them there wasn't anything I had in mind to build that wasn't covered by the HBS kit or houses already planned like The Brownstone and Jasper Inlet Light. Of course, then I remembered the Alpine Chalet from La Maison Dollshouses and Miniatures.
The Alpine by La Maison Dollshouses and Miniatures
I said to the gals, "If it's a chalet, I'm screwed." We then awaited the reveal of the Spring Fling kit for 2013.
I exclaimed, "IT'S A DAMN CHALET!!!" Hahahahaha! I was done for. I had to get the kit and build it for the contest. The Chalet was originally going to be a scratch build, and now that I'm not entering the contest, it might have been easier to make it a scratch build. But, I'm glad I started with the kit since it did save me some time in planning and cutting.
I added a lower floor and changed the pitch of the roof. Here's my mockup of the lower floor and the top altered in PhotoShop to make sure it would work before cutting. That's a Houseworks double French door and two 24-light windows.
I used the original kit walls but added additional 1/4" or 1/8" thick plywood (depending on which was needed) to build the final shell. I stained Houseworks clapboard siding pieces beforehand and then cut and glued them to the walls. The color is Minwax Cherry, but there's a story to it. I shook it and stirred it, but apparently, the color was in a solid mass at the bottom of the can. It tinted the wood more than stained, so I had to go back over all of this later with a new can of stain. Those are Squeeze Me trees originally bought for The Brownstone.
I love the long skinny chimney on this build, but mine will be assembled in two pieces - one under the roof and one on top. I have the lower portion built, bricked with egg carton, painted and grouted. Here it is in progress, before the painting and grouting. I left space in the siding application so the chimney would sit flat against the plywood base. I'll add trim to cover the remaining gaps.
The Mackintosh light by the door came from The Dolls House Emporium. These are no longer made, which is a shame. I've shown you the accidental knotty pine stain of the door previously. The doorplate was brass, and the silver knob is from Sussex Crafts.
For the window, I printed an image of the Parker Poppy stained glass panel on transparency. I altered the image to fit the window opening. I will address the upper window insert later.
On to the inside. The first floor will have a living area and kitchenette. Oops...I fibbed. The Prairie rug is actually meant for this build, not the Brownstone. :D
The flooring is Houseworks Southern Pine sheet flooring stained cherry (again, this was before I discovered the stain issue so the wood floor is darker now). I used Greenleaf vinyl tiles for the kitchen area.
I'm using a mix of Minwax Cherry and IKEA antique for this build. I like the way the two colors complement one another. I added cross beams that will actually serve as structural support for the upper floor.
I have the firebox bricked, painted and grouted. I still need to make the insert that will block the wall opening.
The ceiling board will be L-shaped and is still not permanently installed. I want to finish the first floor as much as possible first. As you can see, the turnaround stairs are a little fancier now. :D
The upstairs will have a bedroom and bathroom.
Oops...looks like I fibbed again. The Edwardian bed will live here. :D And, yes, that's another rug planned for this build.
Watch your head in the bathroom! :O
I have no idea when I'll get to this build. I need to really focus on the HBS contest now. And, then I suppose I'll flip a coin to see if The Brownstone or Mt. Sydney Chalet is next to land on the work table. :D
Is there any reason you can’t jump back and forth between the two, you already kinda were. Work on whichever one the mood strikes you for, that’s my vote
WOW. I’m both sad and a little relieved for the other entrants that it won’t be finished in time The small living feel is right up my alley, too, I adore it. And the trim on the stairs…goodness. Beautiful!
Are you planning to do the upstairs rug in punchneedle as well, or a different medium?
Love love love it! So sorry to not see it in the contest, but it’s so much better having it as a public build!
Quick question - love the mini fridge in the kitchen. Where did it come from??
Wow! Way Wow! As always, this is incredible. I love everything you’ve done, and I will be glued to your every post watching what you’re doing! Hooray!!
This project inspires me. I have a lot of time on my hands and no meaningful mini projects right now … I normally just make furniture or room boxes, but this might just cause me to consider a large scratch built project.
Thank you much for sharing!
This is the best idea for a build! I am a bit partial though, I do live in a cape chalet ;P
Can wait to see progress on this
Brae, I love the rug you have planned for the bedroom. Have you decided if it will be needlepunch, petitpoint or french knots. Any hints as to the colours???? I look forward to seeing this in the weeks to come.
I love watching your miniature builds come to life! Everything is so neat and detailed. You can really tell all the time and creativity you put into them.
One on hand, I’m relieved I won’t have to compete with you, because the Chalet is incredible. On the other hand, I’m sad you’re not entering, though I certainly understand your reasons.
I’m glad you’re publicly building this now, I love to follow along.
I can’t wait to see your Creatin’ Contest entry.
Wow Brae, I adore all of this build and am thrilled that it will be a public build for us all to see. Can wait to see how it comes along. The upstairs rug is gorgeous, please share where you got the kit from.
This chalet is going to be adorable! I spent a couple of months working on my Spring Fling and a scratch-build bungalow at the same time…if I, the world’s clumsiest miniaturist (I also have a very bad habit of changing my plans mid-build!), can do it, anyone can.
Wow Brae! Still sorry about the lightning strike but you continue to amaze with your work no matter what. I’m so impressed with you and proud of you too! I love, love your blog and you’re super nice besides! Your next rug looks stunning. Punchneedle or French knot? Can’t wait to see it.
I’m with Keli on this one! Sad to not see you enter (and be in on the behind the scenes happenin’s) but *wipes brow in relief* a little glad not to go toe to toe with you…. again. LOL. This build is so wonderful and I love all the exposed wood, instead of paint. You do it all so well. Now, Imma go break in my boxing gloves for the Creatin’ Contest!
Hi Brae! Your chalet is well thought out and looks really good so far. I love the bed and the rug is wonderful! I know that you will be making another Masterpiece with This One as you did with the others.
Hooray for Public Builds! I really miss my ‘daily’ dose of Brae’s mini building! What you’ve done so far is stunning! Can’t wait to follow along.
The mini Miele fridge is from ELF Miniatures, though you can find them at other mini shops.
The rug was supposed to be punchneedle to save on time, but I’m not sure about changing color over and over for it. If not, then French knot, which should take about about five years.
That fireplace is FAB.
Brae, As always, this is going to be amazing! I can’t wait to see the progress.