Kitchen floor

by brae  

I liked the look of the dark wood flooring by Handley House I used during the planning phase and it is super easy to install, but I wanted to give something else a try before going ahead with the wood floor.  I think travertine tile floors look beautiful in real life, so I attempted to recreate the look with Greenleaf vinyl tiles in tan.

For the layout, I printed out grids with 1" squares.  The floor will be removable since the tiles will be glued to this paper template and not the base floor itself.

Even with the grid set on the diagonal, I quickly realized my floor and wall pieces were not completely straight - or my grid was slightly off.  Either way, I tried to get it as close as possible, piecing my paper and cutting a template along the border.

Since not all of the tiles were the same color and pattern, I traced where my kitchen cabinetry would be onto the grid.  I glued the pieces that were either darker or more patterned than what I wanted in these areas since they wouldn't be seen.

A lot of the real life floors I've seen have very little space between the tiles, so I tried to keep my tiles close together.  I kept checking the fit along each edge, but baseboards would cover any minor gaps.  As you can see, I got off the grid pretty quickly, but the tiles themselves are mostly in line and the grid won't be seen in the end.

The tiles continue under the sink and corner cabinet, but I cut it closer to the door on the living room side.  I plan to have the wood floor under the dining area, and I didn't want the black cabinet to be half on the tile and half on the wood floor.


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The tiles were very easy to use, and I am very happy with the way it turned out.


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Divan and tray

by brae  

I had no idea what a divan was, but when I saw one in Dolls' House Furniture: Easy-to-make projects in 1/12 scale by Freida Gray I knew I had to have one.  :D

I opted for the same fabric that I used for the entryway chair.  I used the instructions in the book as a starting point but ended up making my divan a different size and height.  I also changed the way it was put together compared to the book's construction.

I eyeballed the size I wanted and cut the top and base from 1/2" balsa.  I added a frame of 1/4" balsa to the base to make it thicker.

I used 1/2" wood blocks for the feet, painting them Bittersweet Chocolate by Americana.

I hemmed a strip of fabric and wrapped it around the base, leaving just a tiny bit of the legs exposed.

This project was made much easier by using Peel-n-Stick Fabric Fuse.  It's an adhesive on a paper backing that you stick on, peel away the backing to expose the other side of the adhesive and then press in place.  It comes in different widths; I bought a 5/8" wide roll.  I tacked the excess fabric on top of the base with tacky glue and set it aside.

I put a thin layer of batting on the top piece.

I have a vintage Tot 50 stapler by Swingline, and this is the first time I've used it in years.  :]  It made it very easy to upholster the top and get a taught surface over the batting.

I glued the top to the base with tacky glue and set the assembly aside.

In order to create the band to cover the seam between the top and bottom pieces, I used a strip of crinoline covered by fabric.  Crinoline is a stiff fabric that makes it very easy to get a crisp band of fabric with no wrinkles.

I used the Peel-n-Stick fabric fuse to attach the band.  There is a seam for both the bottom fabric and the band, but you would have that on a real life upholstered piece as well.


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I love it!  :]  It now serves as the coffee table for the study.


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The green of the divan fabric brings out the green in the Bespaq plaid furniture in the room.


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The tray is a replica inspired by the shabby chic trays made by Pei Li, an artisan who makes some absolutely beautiful 1:12 scale miniatures.


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Entryway progress

by brae  

For the chair, I updated a mahogany and red velvet chair from Concord Miniatures.  This was part of the box of minis my friend gave to me when he helped me cut my garage panels.  In order to remove the cushion, I popped the chair into the microwave and then gently pried up the pad.  I upholstered the pad without removing the velvet since the cotton was thin and needed the extra padding.  With a coat of black paint and a fresh green cotton print, it has a much more contemporary look.

For the side table, I painted another Concord Miniatures creation.  This table looked dated in its original brown stain, and it had a bad place in the finish besides.

The lines of the table work well in black, again leaning toward a more contemporary look.  The vase and bowl are from Manor House Minis.  The paper flowers were a clearance item from Michael's; I used only a few of the flowers that came in the bunch.  Under the vase is a single venise lace flower left over from my faux crochet afghan project.

That's a set of keys on a ring in the bowl.  Those are from S P Miniatures.

Living room and entryway

by brae  

The inspiration for the colors in this room came from a trip to the local Sheraton.  Now, don't go getting the wrong idea!  It was a tour given to our company since we often use local hotels for guests and out-of-town employees, and they want to be our hotel of choice.  The lobby was beautifully decorated in pale teal blue and chocolate brown.  Very tasteful, modern and cozy.

The scrapbook paper for the walls is Sea Salt by Bazzill Basics.  The overhead fan is from a supplier in the UK; it lights up, and the blades spin manually.  The sofa is scratch built using a kitchen sponge structure.


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I haven't built the fireplace yet, but I am leaning toward something contemporary.  In the photo, I've used the one I built for the study.

I would like to delve into making needlepoint and punchneedle rugs in the future, but in the meantime, I've been replicating rugs by printing them on fabric.  I found several images of round rugs online and first printed them on paper to decide between designs and to figure out the appropriate size before printing them on fabric.

The four designs shown here are (clockwise from the bottom left): Seed Rug by Thomas Paul in both kiwi and cream, Piazza by Dynamic Rugs, , and a brown multi rug from Walmart.

So far, I am leaning toward the one shown in the room photo: Parasols by Thomas Paul.  That's the paper print.

The front door rug is a print of JCPenney's Floral Vine Rug by Chris Madden.  I actually own this rug in 5' x 8' in real life.  Once printed on fabric, I glued the rug to stiff felt for stability.

For the entry area, I wanted a simple, clean look.  There's one window in the room since the second window is now housed in the powder room.  I wanted to add curtains to soften the overall look of the room, so I used Paint to replicate some fabric images I found online into drapery panel lengths.  I printed them on paper first, just as I had for the rugs, to figure out which fabric I wanted.

I love the look of long curtains hung from a rod well above the window.  It always looks so nice in design magazines.  For mockup purposes, I folded the paper rather sloppily just to get a feel for the design, and wouldn't you know I like the way the paper mockup looked as is (that's the paper mockup in the photo).  The design is Lumimarja by Marimekko.  I plan to print the fabric version to give it a try but I might end up using the paper, just need to add curtain rods.  The bird figure is by Falcon Miniatures and is actually sitting on the outside sill.  The plant was purchased from HBS.

The chair is a miniature Argyle Chair by Charles Rennie Mackintosh that I bought from another supplier in the UK; I have a pair for in front of the fireplace.  Here you can see the removable wall I built out of foam core board to hide the powder room while photographing the living room.

I need to decide on a coffee table and some other accessories, but so far I like the look of it.

Porch soffit

by brae  

With the second floor lined up on top of the first floor, I marked the outline of the porch soffit with a pencil. I wanted to finish it before permanently attaching the second floor so I wouldn't have to work upside down.

Since I had added a piece of plywood to extend the front porch forward, I had two different levels on the porch soffit.  I glued thin sheets of balsa wood to even out the surface.

I then framed in the outer edge with 1/8" x 1/8" strip wood.

Using 1/16" x 5/16" bass wood, I cut pieces to cover the soffit.

I numbered the pieces on the back as I went along just in case things got knocked apart before I had the chance to glue them in place.


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Before finishing, I placed the second floor onto the house structure to make sure it fit properly.  It did.  Hurray!  :]


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I had originally planned to paint it white, but I think it looks awesome as is.  I'll paint the nosing and porch posts and rails white, but the soffit itself will be sealed to keep the natural look of the wood.

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