Sunday, 25 November 2012

Demolition: Part 1

Today I ended up taking all the old brick effect paper off the exterior of the dolls' house. I'd been picking bits off it for a couple of weeks so finally decided to sit down and do it properly!

Taking the paper off the chimneys was the worst bit: I guess as it's solid wood the glue had set hard - the glue had also gone all mouldy which was a bit icky... 

I uncovered this writing though, which may well be my Granddad's handwriting - something I've never seen before, or don't remember ever seeing it. This is just labelling which chimney is for which side of the house.
You can also see the mould underneath the paper. Ew.  

I also took all the windows and doors off the front of the house and ended up with something that looks like this for now. 
Next step: Sanding and painting! 

Sunday, 18 November 2012

Bricking it!

My first parcel for the house arrived yesterday!

I was excited to open it and see what everything looked like.

From Bromley Craft Products ( I bought a packet of Realistic Brick Compound in red brick, a can of clear matt spray varnish and a Stretcher Bond standard pattern brick stencil.

I'd never seen anything like this before and the finished effect - from pictures on their website - looks great and very realistic. Bromley Craft Products even has an application video and guide on their website  to show you exactly what to do. It looks pretty simple so I'm looking forward to starting!

I have brick effect paper on the house at the moment, so just had to spend a bit more money on this equipment to get what will hopefully be a much more realistic finish. 

Now, I just have to get myself some repositionable spray adhesive for fixing the stencil while its in use and some cement/mortar coloured normal emulsion paint to coat the outer walls before bricking them as that's the colour which will be visible through the bricks. 
Here goes!

Tuesday, 13 November 2012

The 'Before' Shot

Welcome to my brand new blog. This is a different kind of blog for me as I'm usually blogging about photography and art. But I wanted to document this as, at least, I could see the transformation at the end and you never know, I may inspire someone else to give this a go. 

I've had my dolls' house for over 20 years now; my Granddad made it for me, with my Mum when I was little, just before my Granddad died and, while I played with it when I was younger, it's since been sitting in the loft for a good decade.

However, I've recently moved house where I have much more space for things like this, so I've finally decided to give restoration a go - on a miniature scale! 

As you can see, years spent in the loft have taken its tole on my doll's house; 

This was how it arrived and was how it looked when I opened it for the first time in who knows how long. 
Obviously, a lot of work needs doing to it... 

I'm going to start with the exterior and work my way in I think. Do little bits at a time and hopefully it'll start to look like a real little house soon. The shape and style of the house is quite a standard dolls' house one. But that means I can almost make it any period I like (within the last few centuries), so I've decided to make mine a 1910 house. So very late Edwardian, going into the reign of King George the V. Mainly because I love the fashion then..and Downton Abbey has inspired me!

I've seen some amazing dolls houses; you'd never know they were 1:12th scale - they look like real houses! I've also seen some beautiful hand-made dolls which, if I was rich, I would treat myself to a few but I'm still working on a budget option for the dolls themselves. 

Anyway, I've ordered my first item for the house, so I'm excited to get on with it when it arrives. 
This is where the fun begins!