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About CTYankee79

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  • Dollhouse Building Experience None
  • Dollhouse Preference I like them both
  • Online Community Building Projects Yes
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  • Real Name Kris
  1. New to dollhouses and this forum

    thank you holly 
  2. My first dollhouse is complete!

    Thank you both! I love the Poe portrait too
  3. Next dollhouse??

    I always keep a bottle of debonder nearby...if you’re not stuck to anything (except thumb to finger) soak your hands in warm water. I rarely use thin CA glue anymore, that stuff is downright dangerous.  I have experience building RC aircraft and they are all laser cut nowadays. Happy to hear that dollhouses benefit from the precision too.  Thanks for the input, and it’s good to know about the MDF. 
  4. Next dollhouse??

    Just finished my first dollhouse, a haunted Orchid. I'm already looking for my next one. There's 3 things I know I want: a laser cut Greenleaf house, a Real Good Toys house, and a colonial house (because I grew up in one).  So I'm thinking either the laser cut Jefferson or Tennyson. If I do the Tennyson I would get one of New England colonials from RGT. If I do the Jefferson I would pick a different house from RGT. I want 1" scale.  The Orchid was awesome for the price but really took a lot of work to get it finished, a lot of flaws with the wood. I mean what can you expect for the price? So as much as I don't want to spend so much more $ I'm guessing the laser cut and the RGT houses will be a lot easier to assemble and finish, and look that much better.  Anybody have thoughts on that?  
  5. So it took me quite a while but my first dollhouse is done! Its a haunted Orchid. Still quite a bit of decorating/furnishing/haunting to do but the hard part is done at least. I had worked on it for a few months last fall, put it away, and got it out again this past August. Quite a bit of time but to be fair I barely worked on it some weeks, other weeks I spent close to 20 hours on it. I learned a lot but there are quite a few things I'd do differently for my next dollhouse. I'd like to share what worked and what didn't to get peoples thoughts and opinions. There are definitely some things I should have done prior to assembling the house and there are some things I should have waited to do. It was really tough having the vision to create what I wanted until it was, well, created. So I mulled and pondered and researched and planned all the colors and decisions I had to make but started getting discouraged, so I said I'm just going to work on this step by step and follow the instructions. Whats the worst that could happen, its supposed to be haunted anyway so it definitely doesn't have to be perfect. And in the end that was true. Next time I will definitely wait to install the windows and doors until the end.  It was incredibly difficult working around them, both with construction and painting. I had to touch up all the trim after I painted the house exterior anyway since the trim was already painted. Originally I had wanted to do clapboard siding but decided I was taking on too much and had to simplify. I also had primed everything on the interior, which bit me in the end because my door and window casings I ended up wanting to stain and now I wasn't able to. Hence the sloppy gray chalk paint around the interior window casings. But, again, its haunted so who cares. I definitely should have painted the interior walls before the house was done, it was so difficult painting inside...I also should have put a skim coat of spackle or compound before I painted, you can see the brushstrokes. I used satin interior latex all around which worked pretty good, definitely important to have quality paintbrushes for larger areas.  I also should have waited until the end to put all the gingerbread on, was unable to paint underneath it on the exterior of the house. The base and crown moulding came out pretty good, luckily any imperfections in my miters are covered up easily on such a small scale. If I was creating a masterpiece perhaps not but it worked for what I was doing. Mitering was definitely easier than coping for me. For the floorboards I snipped popsicle sticks, glued stained and polycrylic them. For the bathroom and kitchen floors I jigsawed 1/8" inch hardboard, and bought some glossy dollhouse flooring online, used Stovers glue to glue it to the hardboard. Then could insert the whole thing into the house. I bought a package of assorted dowels from walmart and used square ones for trim to separate the kicthen from the living room and the living room from the bedroom (where the staircase opening is). I probably should have swapped where the kitchen and the living room is, but it seemed strange to have stairs in the kitchen. Looking at it now though its kind of funny having such a huge kitchen and small living room lol. I used wood glue all around and E6000 to glue the shingles. The roof was probably the biggest timesink it was very difficult cutting around the dormers and gable. But I think it came out awesome I stained it using a foam brush after the glue was dry. The yard I used foamboard, sand, gravel, moss, and glow in the dark glass for the pond. All materials bought at Home Depot and Michaels.  Furniture is so expensive, its hard to justify spending so much after buying a $39 dollhouse kit lol. However after researching it seemed like the Melissa and Doug sets were the most bang for the buck. They're good enough but not great. I got the bathroom set from Amazon. I had to leave out the armoire and the bathtub, house is too small.  Oh and I forgot to paint the inside of the front door. LOL Anyhow, I thought the house came out pretty good. Thanks for your help along the way. Please share your thoughts, comments, and  suggestions! Happy Halloween!
  6. New to dollhouses and this forum

    Well its been over a year but dollhouse is finally complete in time for Halloween! Just thought I'd share a photo to this topic. I will post more photos in a separate post. Thanks for the help. 
  7. hardwood flooring

    I know its been over a year but dollhouse is finally complete (mostly). Here's a pic of how the floor came out. I ended up just snipping the popsicle sticks, gluing them, staining them, and a couple coats of polycrylic. Not perfect but it came out pretty nice.  I'll post more pics of the dollhouse in another post. 
  8. hardwood flooring

    Thank you everybody, a lot of great ideas and photos here. I may just use the square ended craft sticks from Walmart in the interest of saving time...then I'm guessing a bed of wood glue and lay them all down with some weight to keep them flat? Do we try to alternate lengths so they don't all butt up to each other at the same spot on the floor? Then I'm just planning on taping off walls (which are primed, I doubt I'm going to do much with them this year as I want this in time for mid October), and brushing on some stain.  Was also planning on staining the stairs the same color and spray it with some spar.  
  9. hardwood flooring

    I just found those too--they seem perfect and will definitely save time. As long as you you don't need wide floorboards typical of old houses they are fine. I think the ones I bought are 1/4" wide, so equivalent to 3" wide boards. It definitely works. 
  10. hardwood flooring

    Oooh, a mini miter saw! I love it. 
  11. hardwood flooring

    Working on my first house, the Orchid...haven't gotten to the interior yet but thinking ahead I was planning on doing hardwood floors using popsicle sticks, any handy tricks to making the round edges square? Or just dremel or snip each one by one? My floor is slightly under the front door entrance right now. Directions say to ensure its level with doorway, but it seems better to have it be a little lower to allow room to install the flooring. 
  12. New to dollhouses and this forum

    What a great idea with the bamboo skewers for the bay window. Thank you! 
  13. New to dollhouses and this forum

    Thank you everybody for the warm welcome and pointers :)
  14. Hello, My name is Kris and I live in western Connecticut. I’ve built quite a few balsa airplane kits and have tried my hand at model boats as well, but I just started building my first dollhouse. I have two young children (3 and 1) so realizing that they are too young to play with a dollhouse I decided my first one will be a haunted Orchid for Halloween. Although I normally don’t need an excuse to build something I figured people that don’t understand the joy and complexity of a dollhouse may question why a grown man has randomly decided to start building dollhouses! I hope this orchid will be the first of many. I’ve been scouring these forums and the web in general and have gained a lot of knowledge but as it goes with the internet there is almost too much info, so I wanted to join this forum to be a part of the community and to focus my questions a bit. I started finishing the windows as that is the first step, and I’ve already run into a question I have about the interior/exterior window sashes...I imagine this isn’t the place to ask that though? Forgive my ignorance as I’ve never been a forum guy and I’m a little in the dark as to the etiquette. Thank you and happy to be here! Kris