Bedroom ceiling, part 1

by brae  

The original kit attic floor was a poor-fitting board to begin with, and it was pieced over the bedroom causing a noticeable seam on the ceiling.  Additionally, since I added two walls on the second floor not originally intended as part of the house, I needed an attic floor that covered more area than the original.  Trying to cut one board to span the entire house without having any fitting issues didn't seem like something I wanted to attempt.  :]  So, I cut each ceiling board individually, having the seams over each new second floor wall.

The bathroom ceiling had its wiring channels cut prior to installation.  All wires lead to the outer wall and will be hidden inside the chimney.  The notch on the left side is where the back roof piece sits.

To make a template for the bedroom ceiling, I used a spare piece of Cellfoam 88.  It's the same thickness as the plywood I would be using for the final board, and it was easy to cut and adjust.  First, some rough measurements.

I snipped and angled and adjusted.  I was still off in the end, so I marked where I needed to add more.  I also marked where the tabs should be.  Since there were slots on the front and side, I figured I might as well use them.

I traced the foam template onto a new piece of 1/8" plywood and cut out the ceiling board using a utility blade.  Here you can see my foam template was just of the front cuts...I projected the full length back from there.

Here are the notches I cut for the foyer light and bedroom table lamps previously installed.

The hallway ceiling has been started, too, but it remains separate.  It needs to be installed last since it is a snug fit between the two outer sections.  Here are the hallway and bedroom boards in place.

I made minor adjustments until the new ceiling board fit...mostly.  I have to tell you, this is the most lopsided board I've ever had to cut for a build.  That ought to tell you just how out of square this house is.  Haaaaaaaaa!  Even at that, it's still not a great fit, and I cannot figure out where the rub is that's causing the problem.  So, it stays its 95% self and I will add flat molding along the edges of the ceiling.  Crown molding on all those angles makes my head hurt just thinking about it, so flat molding it shall be.

With the ceiling in place, I plugged in all the lights for the room.  The lantern on the dresser is battery operated.  :]

The Ray Storey ceiling fixture adds a good overhead glow to the room.   I had thought about using a smaller, simpler ceiling medallion here with the fixture, but when I looked at the resin piece more closely I just didn't like it.  It was rough and uneven, and spending a lot of time to get it in paint-ready condition wasn't something I wanted to do.  Besides, it is a relatively short ceiling so it's probably not a good idea to lower the light fixture any more.

I had also thought about putting in a lamp over the comfy chair, but I think there is plenty of light in this room.  Besides, grandma might just have a clip-on LED lamp for supplemental lighting just like I do when I cross-stitch.  :D  Once I get the ceiling painted bright white, it will reflect more light as well.

Next up will be the remaining wire channels, cutting out the right side notch for the back roof piece, then priming and painting.

Slippers for grandma and me

by brae  

I spent the better part of today cleaning and organizing, so there isn't much to show in the way of minis.  But, I am hauling out five large cardboard boxes whose former contents are now consolidated and packed in a more sensible manner.  I can actually walk into my walk-in closet now...and find things!!!

Now I'm packing away the Christmas scene and organizing the dining room where I work on the Heritage.  While shopping for some lights for The Artist's Studio, I bought grandma a new pair of white fuzzy slippers from The Dolls House Emporium for Christmas.  They're quite cute.  :D

On my mom's side of the family, the adults participate in a gift swap.  You buy something for your gender to put into the swap and take out a gift from that pile when your number is drawn.  I ended up with an insanely cute pair of bee slippers that came with a scrub and lotion set for soft feet.  Haaaaaa!

They are a little bulky like clown shoes, so I have to watch what I'm doing when I wear them.  Jasper isn't quite sure what to make of them, so I make sure they are locked in the closet when not on my feet.  :D

And, no, I'm not that pale...I had hosiery on when I modeled them for Jasper.

Bespaq bed makeover, aging the paint

by brae  

I started aging the Bespaq bed by removing some of the Krylon Almond satin paint using a sanding stick.  I picked up a package of these at Hobby Lobby.

I went for a little less wear than my inspiration photo.

image from European Paint Finishes

Detail of the wear patterns on the inspiration bed.

Detail of the wear on my bed.  I wanted to emphasize the lines and details of the bed without overdoing it, especially since miniature finishes tend to work best when they are subtle.

I dry brushed some brown paint into the grooves and recesses, again using only a little.  It added some nice depth.

I cut new foam core board pieces to replace the original mattress.

We're ready for bedding!

The bed looks heavier now than it did in plain almond, don't you think?  :D

Rustic crate bookcase

by brae  

Of course, I can never fit all the items I want into any particular build, so things get pushed out and saved for later.  One item that I love for The Artist's Studio is the unique rustic cabinet.

But, I've had this image in mind for the Studio all along, so out the cabinet must go!  :\

image from Recaptured Charm

Could I have made nine identical crates?  Yes, but why do that when Minimum World offers perfectly suitable ones already made?  :D  I bought these for $2 each instead of trying to make a bunch of identical crates, which would have taken days.  With the angled front wall, I thought an offset stack would look best.

A set of nine in straight columns is not as interesting, and twelve (as shown in the original photo) wouldn't fit in the allotted space without crowding the daybed.

For reference, here's a narrow configuration in the main living area.  Again, the full stack of twelve would not have fit.

With the rustic cabinet in its original place, it's just too crowded in my opinion.

I stained the crates with two washes of grey, black and brown.

Already much better.

Once dry, I sanded them as needed.  There was slopped glue around many of the seams, but that was easily masked by stuffing the shelves full.  :D  I put my wheat back penny in the bottom row for size reference.

I'll make some additional items appropriate for a studio, but I love the way they look so far with some minis I had on hand.

In fact, many of these items will have to stay...they just look so completely at home.


by brae  

While buying supplies for The Artist's Studio, I picked up a battery operated flickering firelight from Minimum World for The Aero Squadron Lounge.

If you recall, I had hardwired the fireplace bulb, which hampers the removal of the removable fireplace.

Close-up of the recess and fireplace wire.

I have to slip the bulb out of the hole drilled for it in order to truly remove the fireplace.

Before deconstructing any of the hardwiring, I made modifications to see if the new battery light would work for this instance.  I fed the bulb and wire into the fireplace to see if the wire was long enough.

Since the back wall of the fireplace is made of foam, I was able to cut a space to house the battery mechanism, switch side down, as well as some excess wire.

It worked!  :D

I will probably paint the wire black to blend in more, but it doesn't really show with the fire screen in place.

The flickering isn't as smooth as the LEDs from Evan Designs that I used in the jack-o'-lantern, but it is bright enough and relatively convincing.  Even a solid red bulb with this battery setup would be nice to have for fireplaces and stoves.

I decided to leave the hardwired bulb in as a backup since it is already in place, so I curled the wire and bulb into the recess made for it.

The fireplace with its new battery firelight sits perfectly in place and is now quickly and easily removable.  :D

My final assessment is it's a great light for easy access with the caveat that it does not have a completely realistic flickering motion for imitating fire.  It is somewhat pricey, too, but overall I'm pleased with it and would likely use it again in the right situation.  If I had enough room for full hardwiring, however, I would use the orange flickering LEDs from Evan Designs I did for the Heritage parlor.  Those are brighter and more realistic, but they have a larger battery adapter that's not as easily hidden as this unit from Minimum World.

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