What's old is new again

by brae  

Tonight, I rewired the vintage polka dot Lundby sconce from my childhood dollhouse as well as the two others I recently found on eBay.

I prefer to use LEDs with long life or replaceable bulb units when I hard wire lights, but that wasn't an option for these for a couple of reasons.  First, the holes in the lamp where the wires feed were too small for the NovaLyte LEDs I had on hand.  I couldn't use the ones from Evan Designs, because they have rectifiers along the wires (basically, little circuit boards).  Those definitely wouldn't fit.  The screw type bulb socket I tried was too big, and the bi-pin bulb socket won't work since there is no room inside the shade to manipulate the bulbs and the shade is not removable.

So...I am using the non-replaceable candle bulbs with varnished wires from the Chrysolite lamps I installed in the Heritage.  Since those light kits came with removable shades, I switched these bulbs out for replaceable bulb candle sockets.

Additionally, these three lights will be installed on outer walls.  What I will do is make the wire channels a little wider in one place so I can coil extra wire there.  In case I ever need to replace the bulbs, I can remove the strip of siding on the outside and rewire it with a new bulb.  It might sound like a pain, but it's at least a plan.  :D

Here they are taped in place around the daybed.

They are going to be fabulous mood lighting!

The other one will go above the front door.

I love the way lighting transforms a miniature build even so early on.  :]

Wanted: fabrics and a floor lamp

by brae  

Has anyone seen the fabrics used for this bed?  Specifically the leaf fabric used for the sheets, the red/rust vine fabric for the spread and the light plaid for the throw blanket.  I've contacted the seller and she has only scraps and can't get more.  I need only a small amount, though a fat quarter of each would be great.  :]

Also, this lamp was from The Dolls House Emporium from a couple of years ago.  If someone has one in their stash they no longer want, I'd be happy to give it a new home.

Update: the lamp has been found!  :D

Bedroom swinging windows, part 4, plus bedroom finishing

by brae  

I finished up the side swinging window and installed the trims to hold it all in place.  The side gable and finishing trims will be completed after the attic is completed and the back roof added.

There were slight gaps just below the arch windows for both swinging windows, so I added thin pieces of trim to hide these.

I also added window pulls.  These were brass but have been painted Vintage White by Folk Art.  Nothing says old house like painted over hardware.

The bedroom door has been finished, including door knobs from miniatures.com and keyholes from Bindels Ornaments.  :D

I glued the door in place and added the interior trim.

Here's the furniture placement, though the dresser, bed and nightstands still need final finishing.

The Bespaq vanity and heart shaped chair fit perfectly in this corner.

We are ready for the ceiling!

Front bay window balcony

by brae  

I showed you these quarter scale widow's walk railings by Grandt Line in a previous post.  The railings are very delicate but look suitable in scale for the bay window.

I spray painted them flat black to start and then trimmed them to fit end to end, shown here unattached.

When I asked whether I should paint them aged white or make them look like old black wrought iron, it was unanimous in favor of wrought iron.  :D  I dabbed on some Bittersweet Chocolate and Terra Cotta by Americana and rusty old iron was born.

I attached them with a combination of super glue gel and tacky glue.  These are so delicate that I am certain they will need to be repaired or replaced at some point in the future.  I painted six to use three, so I'll store the extras in the crawl space along with the extra painted spindles from the stairs and balcony.

The plant on the left is from Michelle of Little Rabbit Minis, and I made for The Aero Squadron Lounge.

I added the final trim to the front gable as well as the trim between the main wall and the gable.

The lower trim has been added under the swinging window on the interior side as well.  Ophelia seems to be enjoying the view.

I get the feeling she spends a lot of time on the bay balcony.  :D

Pretty kitty.

Balcony railing

by brae  

With the stair railings installed, it was time to figure out the balcony railings.  I marked the floor where the spindles should go starting with the spindles adjacent to the stairs.  I thought those adjacent spindles should line up, even though you probably won't be able to see that once this room is enclosed.  This made the spindles on the straightaway 5/8" apart.  On the angled section, I just put a dot at the space between every pair of boards.

There was a gap between the foyer paper and the hallway paper.  I cut a scrap of basswood to hide this area and painted it Vintage White to match the trim.

I had to do some math to determine the angle at which the two railing pieces would meet on the balcony.  I took a piece of scrap paper (a wine gift catalog...how distracting) and folded it over the edge of the balcony.

I folded the point in half.

I lined up the fold with the end of the railing strip and marked it with a light pencil.  I had already cut this piece to length, with a 45° angle at the end by the wall.

I then flipped the paper guide over and marked the other side.

You can use an Easy Cutter even if the angle you want isn't one of the presets on the tool.  Just line up your blade with your guideline and cut using the tip.  The tip stays sharper longer because it doesn't get used as much as the lower part of the blade.

The three pieces are cut and ready for spindles.  I will cut the excess from the straightaway railing piece after I get the spindles in place and the newel post position marked.

The floor board is just over 1/8" thick.  I cut down the wires I had glued into each spindle to sit within this depth.

I taped around my drill bit to make sure I didn't drill through the ceiling.

As with the stair spindles, I didn't get the holes drilled in the bottoms of the spindles exactly in the middle, so there was some visual adjustment done for each one.

These are glued in place in addition to having the wire supports.  I also installed the remaining baseboard now that I had the finishing trim glued in place.

I cut a piece of railing with 45° cuts at either end to join the newel post at the top of the stairs with that of the balcony.  Took me three times to get this to work, and it's still not the cleanest cut.  :D  I also had to shave off a little from bottom of the stair newel post since the staircase extended above the hallway flooring.  I needed the two newel post tops to match relative to one another.

I did a dry fit of the railings, then it was time to glue it all in!  Once I had it all in place, I touched up the stain on the railing.   Success!!!!  :D

And, from overhead.  The angle join could be cleaner but with the stain touch-up and the low light in the hallway, the minor gap isn't really noticeable.

Overall, this part of the project was about as difficult as I thought it would be and turned out about as well as I had hoped.  Definitely a success all around.

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