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The Challenge

The Greenleaf Team Builders are challenged by Community Members in this rare event… Battle Orchid!  This blog is the the work of the Team Builders.  See the Orchid Construction Blog (Community) to checkout the fine work of our community members.  Both groups did a fantastic job... they're all winners!  Greenleaf thanks them all for making both blogs possible.

The Orchid Dollhouse Kit is one of Greenleaf's most popular dollhouses. It strikes the prefect balance between price and design. You may find this blog useful for tips and decorating ideas as build your Orchid Dollhouse.  Bookmark the page and visit as often as needed.

Entries in this blog

The Best way to navigate this blog is to select a members name from the tag that is under their post. This will give you a list of only that builders post.  As an example, please see this link:  'Follow Minis On The Edge's Orchid'.  As you can see, only Tracy's entries are visible. Please keep in mind that the order of the blog entries change as people add comments, so we recommend that you look at the dates of the different posts and start with the oldest.  As you move forward in time, you'll see the progression through the building progress.

If you still have questions about the construction of your Orchid Dollhouse, don't be afraid to join our community and ask a few questions.  The Greenleaf Miniature Community has the largest collection of knowledgeable miniaturist on the internet, many who I call friends... its a great place to meet like minded people!

Thank you for choosing Greenleaf Dollhouses and the Orchid Dollhouse Kit and big thanks to all that made these blogs possible!

Mini Man

I am finally finished with the Orchid! Or the little brick house, LOL, whichever one you want to call it. Although I am pleased with the exterior of this house (the pictures don't show it well but the outside is a very light blue), I am not very thrilled with my wallpapering job. It wasn't my best .... Anyhow, here it is!

My wallpaper is now COMPLETELY done, although I am not real happy with it. It is not one of my better jobs .... As of now I'm leaving the stair case out, because I can't find what I did with some of the stair treads...


Time to put the porch posts on the house. Because I bricked the house and the little slots are NOT going to fit in there, I cut the slots off the back side of the porch railing. I'm gluing these on with white glue, but I'm also using a little technique that Rik Pierce taught me. I put the white glue on the back of the rails, and a good dab on the bottom, and then I take SuperGlue and put one TINY drop on the bottom ends and two TINY drops on the back of the railing that goes against the house. The point of doing that is to instantly bond the rails to where they need to go and to hold them in place while the white glue dries completely.


Then comes the front door. I'm not making this to where it will open, and I'm just gluing it in. I still need to put the door knobs on.


Then comes the upper railing, and I'm still using white glue. Actually, once I've painted something, I almost always use white (Elmers) glue. On the very top of the upper railing only (where it meets the house) I put three TINY drops of Superglue to hold it while it dries.


I've got a gap on this, probably where there is wood putty on the house so I'm not getting a flush fit. I'll have to run a piece of wood behind it and then I'll have Jimmy run some caulk in it. I'll get him to wait so I can take pictures of what we do to fix that. Not that I know HOW to fix it, LOL, I just have an idea in my head.


And now we're ready for the roofer! Oh Jimmy! Where are you?!


Hey Nutti, why is it that every time I pick up a can of blue paint I think of you?

Compliments of LPCullen

Now that my wallpaper is done, it's time to install the interior windows, and I use white glue (Elmers) only when gluing in windows. Of course, I have to use my special handy dandy weights for that ....


I'm probably going to leave a lot of the outside trim off the house, mostly because I don't think it will go well with the brick. Here's what the outside of the windows are going to look like.


Compliments of LPCullen

Because this house has double hung windows, cutting the wallpaer at the windows is a bit tricky. You have to trim the wallpaper large enough for the double hung windows to go in, and sometimes the wallpaper doesn't want to come off the wall when you trim on the inside. Like so:


I've already used a razor blade to cut around this window to where I want the wallpaper to be. So, to remove that paper that didn't come off I take a wet washrag--not dripping but good and wet--and wipe it along the paper so that I get the paper throughly wet. Let it sit for a minute to soak up the water.


Then I just take my fingernail and scrape off the paper. You may have to re-wet the paper several times to get it all to come loose.


After you're done getting that excess wallpaper off, then go back over that area with the wet washrag to finish removing any bits of paper and remove the glue that's there.


Now, the kitchen window was a bit more tricky, because that paper was stuck on that wall good! So, I've cut where I want to remove the excess wallpaper with my razor blade.


Then I just wet the paper good with the wet washrag, let it sit for a minute to loosen. Then I again just use my fingernail to scrape off the paper. Once the pattern portion of the paper is off, I just continue to wet and scrape, until it's all gone.


Compliments of LPCullen

Been working on the wallpaper in the Orchid. It's coming right along.

I chose this for the livingroom.


And this for the kitchen.


And this for the bedroom.


As most of you know, I like to "lay over" my wallpaper at the edge of the walls in my house. This is how I did that partition in the upper rooms. I had to cut it, lay the top edge over first, and the bottom edge over second.


Compliments of LPCullen

I've painted the base coat of the bricks all a nice wash with Brown Iron Oxide.


And then I went back and added some Dark Burnt Umber, some Hippo Gray, and then I changed it out a bit and added Burnt Sienna instead of Red Iron Oxide. Same results, I think. What do you think? I still need to clear coat the bricks, but it's raining here so I will have to wait for it to stop raining ....


Now, on to wallpapering ....

Compliments of LPCullen

I was so impressed with Tracy's porch, that I've decided to copy it, sort of. So, I had Jimmy go ahead and attach the porch to the house.


Then I started covering it with paperclay.


Now, to make my brick patterns. I'm only putting bricks on the outside of the porch, so I have to make some measurements all around and I'm using the little tool that I got from Rik Pierce's class. I make indentions in the clay all around using the smaller end of that tool. I think that's a 5/8 inch measurement, but can't remember.


And I've got my measurement all around the top of the porch. Time to move on to the step.


For the corners, I make a line across it and angled, and then I begin cutting in some bricks. I'm using a little yellow tool to cut the bricks.


I kind of "cut up" the bricks on the edges.


Once all my bricks are cut in on the top, I take my little white tool (you can use whatever you have on hand) and kind of roll that around the edges of the porch to finish the cut for the bricks.


And now we're done cutting bricks for the porch. Have to wait for that to dry and then I can do my "dirty wash" on the bricks and begin painting!


Compliments of LPCullen

The family who own the store are of Asian Indian heritage but proud citizens of the US, so much so that Mamma Ananda named her baby boy Upana Shad; so the store sign quite correctly reads "USA General Store".

I made a parlor stove for heating & cooking out of a plastic egg, a film canister cap, a medication bottle "child-proof" cap, four oval wooden beads, a jeselry finding and a Sonic drinking straw. The sub-assembly is visible in the left side of the previous post's picture of the canned goods' components. I spray painted everything with black glossy enamel when the glue was dry & attached the finding for a door with superglue after the paint was all dry. I used the Corona Concepts diningroom furniture kit to finish furnishing the upstairs:


I made foamcore diningroom chair seat cushions and covered them with scraps of the red acetate scarf.


Here are how the stove, shrine, table & chairs look:


I found an old watch dial I liked a whole lot better for the face of the case clock than the printed one that came with the kit. I stained all the furniture pieces golden oak except the clock trim, I went with red mahogany for that. I used glass beads for hinges and knobs for the hutch base doors (which are fake).


I made curtains for the end windows out of the red flowered scarf and had enough scraps to glue to an acetate package "blister" shaped like a bathtub & just the right size to fit under the bathroom dormer window. I made a surround from foamcore and covered that with some vinyl shelf liner with little red flower buds (or strawberries?) all over it. I sculpted a lavatory & commode stool from white polymer clay in flower shapes and sprayed them white when they were baked. I covered a restaurant jelly packet with some of the vinyl for the WC tank: blog-8-1166895482_thumb.jpg

When I installed the fixtures I made the mirror over the lavatory using an idea I got from a "Crate & Barrel" catalog:


Finally, here, at last, is the USA General Store in all its stoned & shingled glory:


I made storeroom shelving using tongueblade-size craft sticks for the verticals and popsicle-size craft sticks for the shelves: blog-8-1166889509_thumb.jpg

I painted them with a wash of yellow ochre & burnt umber: blog-8-1166889753_thumb.jpg

and installed them: blog-8-1166889923_thumb.jpg

I made a rolling set of storage bins from the October '06 issue of American Miniaturist, #42, page 25. DH was delighted to see me actually use some of the table trash I've collected...


From Making Miniatures: Projects for the 1:12 Scale Dolls' House by Christine Berridge I made the open-back counter on page 55; I closed off the back. I used a scrap of 1/8" basswood, foamboard, toothpicks, a tongueblade and a scrap of posterboard. In a Goodwill store I found a ladder-type shelf unit that had an "Avon" label on it (that later fell off). I "aged" the three items with my INdia ink & isopropyl alcohol mixture.


I finished off the bead curtain & hung it in the storeroom doorway. I began making stock for the store by painting some of the "woodsies" I'd collected: blog-8-1166891289_thumb.jpg

I cut acetate to make "glass" shelves for the bay window. Note: Superglue gel "frosts" acetate & doesn't stick worth a darn, I will NEVER use it for that again! I had to cut & paint craft stick sections to help support the shelves. Elmer's all-purpose white glue did the trick.

I painted turned woodsie bowls & acorn cups with raw siena to resemble terra cotta and then painted them with "folk art" designs in red, white, yellow, blue & green. I needed to make more shelves for the store to display "groceries" and "sundries": blog-8-1166891735_thumb.jpg blog-8-1166891985_thumb.jpg

I went bit berserk at www.printmini.com and printed cigarette packs and cigar boxes. I painted over the printies with clear nail enamel and scored the folds with the back of the point of my utility knife before using it to cut out the pieces. I used foam core to glue up the cigar boxes, and posterboard stacked to make the cigarette packs: blog-8-1166892205_thumb.jpg

Then I cut 1/4" diameter dowel into 3/4" lengths with my hobby saw and sprayed them silvery and covered them with the labels I printed from Jim's site: blog-8-1166892462_thumb.jpg

I used printies from www.geocities.com-boopmini40 to make other grocery items.

I used a RED flowered acetate scarf I found in a charity thrift store to cover a styrofoam mattress & make draperies for the bed area I'm using the gable space for (Thanks, Sabrina's mom).


The Ananda family who own this store are devout Hindus so I made them a family shrine dedicated to Ganesh, the Bringer of Prosperity. I had some kit scraps to make the stepped base and two sizes of HH porch punch-outs to shape the shrine around and somt stairrail punchouts for pillars. We had found a wee little metal Ganesh figure in a shop in Racine, WI. blog-8-1166893249_thumb.jpg

I made the body of the shrine with poster board I embellished with paper lace. I sprayed it all silvery and completed the assembly with carved "ivory" (I think they're actually bone) beads & flowers & a filigree gold-colored bead cap for an offering bowl. Once I placed Ganesh's figure within I installed the pillars


and mounted it on the wall of the living space.

I unpacked the Orchid and the lower porch fell off :whistle: . I measured and cut the upstairs baseboards and painted the ones for the bathroom red and for the other room blue and when they were dry I installed them. It was then I noticed I had installed the guardrail backwards... So I removed it and reassembled & reinstalled it.


Since I was on a roll with gluing things I re-glued the bottom of the porch and then I installed the stairs, the handrail and the downstairs divider wall.


Since the way I did the dormers and gable precluded "bricks" I went with shingles stained mahogany. Once they were on I began to paint the "stones" and noticed the mahogany was too "loud", so I toned it down with a wash of the stone colors:


I used blue, umber, siena, ochre & black for coloring the stones and I used a combination of washing and dry-brushing.

I sanded smooth the spackled side of the stairs and painted them white and dry fit them facing the back. I cut a length of 1/8" diameter dowel while the stairs were in place, to make a handrail, and I painted that red. blog-8-1165338469_thumb.jpg

I was stymied for the downstairs interior wall treatments because I had left all my siding strips you-know-where, and by this time we were camped at Natural Chimneys. On our way in to Harrisonburg the first time I spotted The Miniature Cottage (it was closed) and when we went back when it was open I found a ten-piece package of basswood clapboard siding that was 3/8" thick X 3" wide X 24" long. One piece was enough to cover completely one side of the downstairs divider wall. blog-8-1165338280_thumb.jpg

I covered both sides of the divider wall blog-8-1165337724_thumb.jpg and when they were dry I primed them.

I made a newspaper template for the stairway wall to make the clapboard for the wall; I laid the newspaper sheet along the wall and creased it along the corners and cut it to fit. I put it back in place and put the stairs back in and drew along the top & bottom of the stairway side along the wall. When I took it all out I cut the newpaper along the stairway lines and taped it together and glued up the clapboard pieces to fit and the retraced my line for cutting the clapboard apart. blog-8-1165343256_thumb.jpg

As only I can do it, I got the clapboard going horizontally instead of vertically, like the rest of the downstairs interior walls (my story is the Ananda family deicided it was too much trouble to install vertical siding against the original interior wall because of the stairs! :) ). I sanded a bit to try to flatten it a tad, then realized I'd sand out all the grooves! :) and stopped. It took six of the clapboard pieces to cover all the interior downstairs walls. I masked the floor. blog-8-1165343574_thumb.jpg

Next I began to make the bead curtain to go between the main shop and the storage room with the stairs. I traced around the door opening on the divider wall to get the measurements I needed to cut a length of 1/8" dowel for the rod and for the length I'd need to make my bead strings. I wrapped the ends of the dowel with bits of masking tape to keep the bead strings from slipping off of it. Once I began to tie off the strings one of the tape bits slipped off, but left a sticky residue. Since I glued the knots of the strings to the dowel as I completed them it didn't really matter at that point.

1) I threaded a regular sewing needle with a long piece of thread and knotted one end around the dowel. I laid it on the tracing of the doorway.

2) I threaded the beads in a design of alternating shapes & sizes and random colors (except for the oval pearl-colored beads) and continued until it was the length I wanted.

3) When it reached the desired length I threaded a small seed bead last and tied it off after "snugging" up the beads on the string.

4) I brought the needle back through the last half-dozen or so beads on the string & cut the thread.

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5) When the dowel was full I ran a bead of Elmer's all-purpose glue along the dowel over all the knots and when it was dry I clipped off all the thread "tails" and removed the other bit of masking tape. I set the bead curtain aside until the rest of the construction is completed downstairs.

Placing the Orchid in the Linda Cullen Position I primed and painted the remaining walls and ceiling.


When it was dry it went into its placc under the camper bed to await coming home to the rest of my supplies :whistle:

I have finished and decorated the Orchid. I will be taking it down to the TV station Friday morning. Here are a few pictures of the outside.


I put a small wreath for the holiday season on the door, since it will be offered at the holiday auction.



The plant on the trellis is from a swap here. I thought it looked perfect and it kept telling me it wanted to live there.

Here is a full pic of the inside


Now for pics of the individual rooms.


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blog-27-1160431743_thumb.jpg blog-27-1160431773_thumb.jpg

I really like how this house turned out.

Today Jimmy got to play with the Orchid for a change. He put the one roof section on the front, and then put the two small windows in. Then he wrestled with the big front section of the house, and taped it ALL up, LOL!


Then he turned the house around so that he could work on something, and I realized that he had not put the bottom support in at the back of the house. Oops. That's something that will need to be bricked, so guess what! We're not done with bricks after all, LOL!


He will not put the back section of the roof on yet, because I will need to wallpaper the upper rooms before that piece goes on. He will add caulk in to give me smooth lines to wallpaper to, and I'll try and get some pix of that.

Compliments of LPCullen

Been working on bricks, painting, etc.

We left off with painting using dark burnt umber. I finished one side, and this is where I ran out of paint on the front. Gotta mix some more paint, still using the two drops and mixing water into it.


Once I've finished with the front and get ready to move to the final side using the dark burnt umber, I want to again look at my corners and see what bricks I've painted on the corners with dark burnt umber so that I can continue it to the other side.


Remember what I told you about not worrying too much if you ran some bricks together (by getting paint in your mortar lines) because you could re-define it later with another color? Well, when I got to the final side with the dark burnt umber color, I found some. The first picture is where I ran the mortar lines together. The second picture is where I painted one of them with dark burnt umber, but the paint is wet in that picture. The third picture here shows it where the paint is dry.


And we're now finished with the dark burnt umber. See?


Next, I will be using Hippo Gray, which looks like this:


I again take two (or three) drops of hippo gray and start mixing in my water with my paint brush to make a wash--also go ahead and get some fresh water in your cup before you start making your color wash with the hippo gray. I'm still staying with the same scheme, meaning I make one gray brick per row on the sides, and two gray bricks on the front per row, but I decrease the amounts of gray bricks when I get into smaller areas, around the windows and at the top of the peaks.


Oops! I've found some bricks that I ran together, so I've used hippo gray here to re-define those bricks.


And we're now finished using the hippo gray.


The next color that I will be using is Red Iron Oxide, which looks like this:


But, before we get started with the red iron oxide, I want to warn you that red or orange tinted paints tend to overpower/take over very quickly, so you should use them sparingly. I also make the wash more thin than the others.

One thing I meant to tell you earlier, if you happen to get too much paint on a brick, like this:


Just take a paper towel and touch it to the brick to soak up the excess paint. Don't wipe it, just touch it to the brick. Very important when using a very strong color. See?


I will not be using the same theme, meaning painting one brick per row on the sides and two bricks per row on the front with the red iron oxide. Instead, I'll just be basically breaking up the monotony. This is again because this is a strong color. So, just anywhere that I think another color needs to be, I'll paint a brick with the red iron oxide.


And now we're done with the red iron oxide, and we're DONE painting individual bricks! Yippee!


I've discovered that acrylic paints tend to rub off if you touch them a lot, so I have a habit of putting a coat of clear coat paint over anything that I paint with acrylic paints. I covered up my windows (where the panes were already installed) and took the house outside to spray it with clear coat.


This is what I use for clear coat. I usually pick it up at wal-mart, I think. I just spray the outside of the house with one coat, but I make sure that I cover it good. Be careful though, because you don't want it to run.


Now we're finally finished completely with the bricks.

So, what if you only want brown bricks, can you just use the brown iron oxide? Yes, you can.

What if you don't want to use red iron oxide because you don't like red? You don't have to do that either.

Can you use different colors, including just using different shades of brown? Yes, but I would still paint all of the bricks first with brown iron oxide.

Can you use funky colors, throw in some pinks and/or purples? Yep (actually I did that on Anna's Emerson Row)! It's your house! Paint them whatever color you want! It really is fun!

Compliments of LPCullen

In our travels to the campground at Natural Chimneys I spotted a house with a turret (brick) with the roof entirely shingled in a diamond pattern. While processing the prior roll of film at Wal-Mart I found wonderful 4-packs of 9" X 11" 60-grit sandpaper that appeared to be in scale to do the job :angry:


The thickness looked mighty close to scale and I figured 1" squares would give the roofing effect I wanted for the Orchid. The first step was to mark the back of each sheet into 1" grids, which is easy-peasy with paper in whole inch dimensions such as this; 9" X 11" yields 99 shingles per sheet of sandpaper.


I had to cut strips 3/4" wide along the 11" side to give me flat-edged strips for the roof tops & bottoms, as well as 1" wide strips to cover the peaks. Next I cut out my edge strips and the individual squares.


The first step I did to shingle the roof was to cut 1/2" wide strips of aluminum foil to glue over the roof seams for "flashing".


The roof I'm copying had copper flashing, but my copper foil is, you guessed it, at home!

Next I glued the 3/4 strips along the flat edges of the roof pieces (and below the dormers) and I began to glue the square shingles on in the diamond pattern.


Using paper, any sort of paper, for shingles makes trimming for odd angles to get fit along the joining seams a whole lot easier! :huh:

I wound up making shingles from both packs of sandpaper, although I have some left over. I shall probably use the wooden shingles that came with the kit to cover the dormers and gable when I get home.

Beware the smug feeling of accomplishment, I missed the lower edge of the back roof opening with a straight strip of the 3/4" wide sandpaper, but here is the completed shingling job ready to pop back under the bed to finish drying.


Let's see, where were we? Ah yes, painting bricks. I remember now.

The color that I use for the base color of the bricks is Brown Iron Oxide. Looks like this:


I now have all the bricks painted brown, see?


Whaddya mean all bricks are not brown? You mean I'm not finished yet? Nope, I'm not. Gotta add some more colors in. I'm going to use three different colors, Dark Burnt Umber, Hippo Gray, and Red Iron Oxide. I'll start first with the Dark Burnt Umber.


I'll put two drops on a plate (you can use either paper plates or styrofoam, doesn't matter, whatever's handy), and you only want to start with two drops. I'll then take a cup of water and dip my brush into it and then put the brush into the paint. What I'm doing is thinning out the paint with water to make a "wash".


And I keep dipping my brush into the water and swirling it around in the paint until I get it really thin. If your paint is too thick, then you end up losing the texture of your bricks that you worked so hard to make, so make sure it's thin.


When you think you're done add just a bit more water. Then take your brush and tap it on the plate just to check the thickness of your wash and to remove the excess paint off your brush. Add more water if you need to.


For the sides of the house (and because I'm left handed and drag my hand across things, I have to flip the house the other way and start at the bottom), I'm going to paint one brick on each row with the wash that I have just created. Try to look for bricks that you've run together with the brown paint and paint one of those so that you can "re-define" your brick, if you need to. Just dip the very tip of your brush (I use a soft brush for this) into the paint and start randomly painting bricks.


And now I've got the bottom of one side of the house painted with the dark burnt umber, see?


When I get close to the window, because I'm working in a smaller area, I'm going to switch and paint one brick on every other row. Remember, we're still adding two more colors after this one.


When I get to the part above the window, well that's a really small space, so I'm going to switch to every third row. Don't want to make too many bricks different, because it wouldn't be realistic. Just use your eye as you're painting, and see what looks right to you. If you need to skip more rows, then do that.


And now I've got one side of the house painted with the dark burnt umber.


Next I'll be moving to the front of the house, and I'll paint two bricks on each row with dark burnt umber. First though, because you're rounding a corner, look for bricks on the edge that you've painted with dark burnt umber.


See this one here?


You'll need to continue with that brick in dark burnt umber so that you stay consistent with your bricks.


That's all for now. Next we'll move into the painting of the front of the house.

Compliments of LPCullen

Really rotten weather for paint to dry has delayed things, we got in a lengthy hike of the Iron Ore Trail...

In Clifton Forge we found a True Value Hardware store that carries its own brand of sample decorator paints for about 75% the cost of the Benjamin Moore version and I found a shade of blue that matches the shade in the wallpaper border. By now many of you may have noticed I am VERY partial to blue front doors! :angry: :lol: :huh: I used it to paint the exterior door and trims.


Wow, this is turning out to be a patriotic color scheme such as I haven't used since my very first build, the Dura-Craft San Franciscan. I find it very appropriate in light of the 5th anniversary of 9/11!

I installed the acetate door inserts and prepared to assemble the front door.


By now we all know I left everything DH & I considered unessential at home, now expecting to be gone this long... I have two sheets of chamois at home for hinges & not about to go buy another to hinge one door, so I found some 1" wide twill tape to try, instead. I glued it to the doorframe edge and clamped the door parts together to sand all the edges even & have them fit in the doorframe, and then I glued the door parts together. I also installed the acetate inserts into the exterior window trims.


I installed the exterior doorframe and window trims and painted the porch blue and the porch trim & railings white; I painted the door & window pediments white & the pediment trims red. I'm leaning toward having naturalized American citizens own this store, the proprietor's initials being U. S. A. (this thought began buzzing in my brain long before the 9/11 anniversary hype). The gable trims, naturally, have to be red.


I painted the bay blue on the outside.

I like the eaves, I'll paint them metallic when we get home & install them then. I installed the windows and door, the pediments and porch & porch trim. :lol:


Next I sanded, primed and painted the upstairs stair rails white with a red bannister. This time I dry-fit the stairs the way I'll install them, facing the back of the house, and installed the stairrails (backwards! I have since corrected this, <mumble, mumble>.


I spackled the outer side of the stairs and when it was dry I painted the stairs white & the handrail red.


I primed the porch, railing, all the trims and the stairs.


I painted the interior door and downstairs window trims white and interior upstairs window trims red.


I used two of the porch railing punchouts to trim the lower panel of the exterior front door instead of the rectangular pieces so provided, and painted them red for contrast. I installed the acetate window inserts to the interior window trims and installed them.


I trimmed the wallpaper border. I didn't mention it earlier, but I applied the "prepasted" border with dilute white Elmer's all-purpose glue.

I noticed a BIG "oopsie", white primer from the exterior "stones" had run in at the bottom of the left dormer & all acros my lovey striped wallpaper & dried :angry: ! I stripped off the old paperand primed over the green. Judith Abraham's suggestion of warm water & vinegar worked a charm! I spackled the seams & gaps generously.


I found Linda Cullen's method of ceiling painting to be most effective.


SERENDIPITY NOTE: We stopped at a charity thrift shop in Johnson City, TN, where for US$1 I found a strip of "prepasted" wallpaper border and a sample pot of Benjamin Moore paint in a red that coordinated with one of the colors in the paper's pattern. How good is that?

I spackled the downstairs front and left walls , carving the "stones" to match grout lines.

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As soon as the carving was done I carefully removed the masking tape. I smooth-spackled the porch ceiling and when it had all dried I primed all the exterior spackle.

I masked off the large upstairs room floor and painted the walls I wanted white.


I masked off the lower part or the dividing wall to paint it red.

I gathered together the assemblies & parts for assemblies and sorted them into ziplock bags so as not to lose or mix them up.


Next I assembled the stairs and dry-fit them with the dividing wall to get a "feel" for the storage area.

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Last I applied the border strip upstairs. I shall wait to trim it until it's dry.


Now it's time to pack it all away, we move again tomorrow!

Here is the little amount of progress I have managed to do while ill.

The bedroom dormer area is finished. I put a tulle net curtain suspended from the ceiling, made some pillows, and used an old earing for a beaded curtain over the window.

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This is the curtain for the larger room with the dormer.


The small room upstairs has a curtain now.


I am starting to put on the shingles. I still have 2 more curtains to make and to finish the kitchen area and build some furniture.


This is not all my progress, I decided to save some pictures for the next post. I got both sides of the house sided and the bay window attached.


I made a curatin for the bay window. the flash sort of washed it out, but it is a purple tulle net material with sparkles in it. There will be a nice pediment shelf across the top.


To make siding the dormer peek easier after gluing on the window frames I founf the peice the frame punched out from and used it as a template to cut the siding.


The living room has been carpeted and the coffee stirrer stick wainscoiting applied;


The bedroom has been carpeted and the baseboards attached.


I still have a pot to do. I need to find something to use on the kitchen floor and baseboards for that room. But am currently working on decorating. I am not in the mood to sand and paint thr gingerbread yet. and and I do not even want to think about shingles. I need to get the shingl;e at least up to the bottom of the dormers before siding them.

Now I'm setting up outside our camper in a campground 9 miles from Abingdon, VA. I've had marvelous luck finding store fixtures & merchandise. So far I have

  • 4 Country Crock serving packets (empty & clean) for galvanized tubs
  • ceiling covering found at AC Moore
  • beads for a bead curtain divider
  • signs
  • buckets
  • flower pots in two sizes
  • 4 barrels
  • 6 finial dowel caps for planters
  • 10 round mini mirrors

I primed the house exterior (it decided it wants to be "stone")I masked off the areas I don't want to be stone and bought a new tub of spackle (KISS). The new primer takes a second coat (!)


I installed the downstairs ceiling, which required piecing.


The plastic didn't much care for diluted Elmer's, but reinforced with undiluted Elmer's made it much happier! :angry:

Next I primed the business out of the bay.


I have great trepidations regarding installing ANYTHING that can be ruined by paint (I have found some really awful paint damage on my pretty striped paper bad enough it'll have to go, <SOB!>), but I have to install the interior & exterior bay casing with acetate inserts to install the bay roof.

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I used the bay bottom piece to make a paper pattern for display shelves for the bay. My only complaint about the instructions so far is that they only give the location for the bay top & bottom, I had to use the schematics to find the casings & roof. I primed the casings & assembled & installed the bay.


Once the bay was dry I installed the roof (note: It makes more sense to run the masking tape across the outside of the bay roof pieces).


Next I R & P the porch parts and one door casing so I could mark & mask the house front. I primed both sides of the porch ceiling and assembled & primed the trim & railings.

As soon as I installed the porch ceiling I saw what a good idea Suzy & Sabrins had to make it into a bed :huh: . Since this space will be the proprietor's living quarters, it'll free up much-needed room for other items.

I began the spackling process by rubbing it over all the raw edges of the plywood. I began with the rear foundation and carved "stones" with a toothpick (tool of choice). next I smoothed the raw edges of the bay and then "iced" the right wall & "stoned" it.


I also assembled the porch floor & step.

I'm set up in DS' basement next to the stairs, lots of horizontal surfaces to spread out on when no one else is home.

First I dry-fit the shell and it was sweet!


No "surgery needed to fine-tune the fit! Assembled & glued the shell & reinforced the edges with heavy-duty staples.


The downstairs shop & storage room have informed me they want to be finished with vertical boards (like the second floor of the Coventry Cottage). The siding strips for this are sitting next to my worktable in Havana, FL; I'm standing in Burke, VA <mumble, mumble>. I set aside the downstairs divider wall & marked the placement for the upstairs divider wall.

Next I dry-fit, assembled & installed the dormers into the roof front without any sanding or "shaving".


Wow, is this kit a honey to put together! The gable also fit & installed without any problems!


Way to go, Dean & crew! :huh: :angry:

Next I masked the floors and and primed the interior roof front & back and both sides of the gable & dormers, which want to be either brick or shingle (all in Havana, FL). I also primed the window areas inside & out, and the divider wall.

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I papered upstairs with really great scrapbook papers from Michael's. Oops, the bucket of wallpaper paste is in FL; I cut down an empty Dasani bottle and mixed half & half white Elmer's & water & painted both the walls & the paper with it and it seems to be working very satisfactorily.


I painted the unpapered surfaces. Need I say where all my paints & small brushes, etc, are? DS offered his unused set of acrylics (all my boys turned into wonderful men, BTW). Some of the needed colors were dry in the (unopened) tube, and went on much more transparent than was consistant with the look I wanted. I must look for a Benjamin Moore paint store. Thank you, Linda Cullen, turning the house upside down makes painting a lot easier.


I installed the upstairs divider wall & roof.