Reintroduction: Been Gone So Long! Hello From Eastern OR

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Hello Everyone!

It was some time ago now that I joined the forum for Community and Advice but I got VERY ill with my juvenile rheumatoid arthritis (JRA) and never did build my Fairfield. I opened it. Tried to gently sand the pieces without taking them out with the included sandpaper, but almost RUINED my kit!

That put me off building for some time.

Then my Actemra injections gave me a nasty case of pancreatitis with the unknown (At that time.) pain coming to a head in mid September of 2018. Ulcers in my gall bladder and stomach had to be healed by both medication and surgery. One surgeon cleaned sludge out of my stomach from a raging infection. So no more injections that lower my autoimmune system for me: EVER!

I've just now recovered.

And I want to get back in to 1:24 (half scale) dollhouse kit building. It saddens me to discover a great many full scale makers stopping production, especially those that made half scale items too. Or simply dropping their half scale lines. (Bespaq I'm looking at YOU!)

Furniture I've been slowly collecting, but it has been difficult to find artisan pieces. What I have discovered is that you can Always ask. Ask for a custom built piece in half scale, ask an EBay seller to hold onto a Dollhouse kit, and the worst they can say is sorry,  I can't.

Most of the time the answer is: yes! I'm fact I've got a Real Good Toys out-of-production half scale Victorian Shell dollhouse kit arriving Tuesday or Wednesday from an extremely kind EBay seller who held in until February and even shipped it when her ad said Pick up. I'm hoping that my arthritis flair-ups take a back seat so that I may begin on my dollhouse soon. (It's storming here so I awoke stiff as heck!)

It's a front opening dollhouse kit, which is a necessity with my (currently) three, soon to be two house cats. (With my poor health my girl kitty is going to live with my childhood Best Friend's mum.) Felines LOVE the box-like shape of a dollhouse and I must protect my little people inside from Large Paw Chaos.

With getting this kit in half scale, and being a Research Type person I picked up 'The Dolls' House 1/24 Scale: A Complete Introduction' by Jean Nisbett off of Amazon to begin my education, but I'm still a Newbie. This will be my first completed dollhouse, and I'm both excited as well as nervous to begin.

What I know:

Work slowly. There isn't any need to rush.

Take zoomed in photographs to see detail and complete the scene with realism.

Plan everything before beginning.

Plans may change once I get to that part. And that's okay!

Test each connection when adding the electric lights. Avoid knives and sharp objects inside the dollhouse once the electrical is in, because it is easy to accidentally cut a connection.

Ask for advice! There isn't anything wrong with getting stumped and asking those who know so much more where to go from there.

Try to include Artisan furniture and accessories! It makes a little dollhouse look amazing to have such high quality work inside it.

IF I try to make something myself as a placeholder until I find something created by an artist, it's good practice for becoming better myself with creating my own pieces. (I say this because I am not an artist. I can't draw stick people, but I would like to learn.)

Use real house paint samples for painting. But DO NOT get anything with a shine to it, as in miniature it shows all sorts of flaws.

For each dollhouse kit use new paint brushes. If I'm working on something very detailed, and it's not coming out right, there isn't any reason to sand off the paint and start over with brand new brushes. Sometimes smaller ones may help too.

Use very fine sandpaper! I already learned this from my Fairfield mistake, sadly.

Is there anything else that I couldn't think of? I'm SO grateful for any help, advice or suggestions! I don't know where I would be without this forum. Thank you.

Drea W.

Edited by HalfScaleDollhouseLOVER
Grammar/ spelling

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Hello Drea! Nice to meet you. Fingers crossed that your arthritis quiets down so you can enjoy the hobby.

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Welcome back!

In case you didn't know, Bespaq's remaining inventory was bought by Debbie Heard and she's selling it on her website and eBay. It's mostly 1:12 scale, but she does have some half scale, so if you're looking for Bespaq it's worth checking out while she still has some left.

The front-opening Victorian is a great house. I have one that I bought already built off Craigslist, that I'll do something with someday (it needs work). I look forward to seeing what you do with yours.

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26 minutes ago, fov said:

Welcome back!

In case you didn't know, Bespaq's remaining inventory was bought by Debbie Heard and she's selling it on her website and eBay. It's mostly 1:12 scale, but she does have some half scale, so if you're looking for Bespaq it's worth checking out while she still has some left.

The front-opening Victorian is a great house. I have one that I bought already built off Craigslist, that I'll do something with someday (it needs work). I look forward to seeing what you do with yours.

You are one my most favorite creators on here! I'm in AWE of your dollhouses.

Thank you for suggesting Debbie Heard!

I have a lovely tea cart and a Bespaq sage kitchen set coming from her as soon as my payment clears. Plus, she is allowing me to set aside to other Bespaq kitchen sets. One in mahogany, and one in white. Both have 'marble counters'.

Which reminds me: how do you make marble like counters on an already painted and built kitchen set? I ask because I want to do that to my sage kitchen set. I was going to start a thread asking for advice on it.

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1 hour ago, Mid-life madness said:

Hello Drea! Nice to meet you. Fingers crossed that your arthritis quiets down so you can enjoy the hobby.

Just looked at your work and I'm in compete awe! Your miniatures are what my goal is: to have people forget it is a miniature and think it is real life.

Wow!

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Welcome back home, Drea.  When I built my Fairfields I discovered the "no-name" 1:24 furniture sets I'd purchased were actually 1:32.  I donated them to a forum friend whose build they suited better and after building the kits and magazine projects I had in 1:24 I grabbed my 1:12 furniture books and resized the patterns to make the rest of the furniture in them.

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55 minutes ago, HalfScaleDollhouseLOVER said:

You are one my most favorite creators on here! I'm in AWE of your dollhouses.

Aww, thank you! :blush:

I answered your marble question in the other thread. Those Bespaq kitchens are beautiful. I have an older Bespaq kitchen, the one where the upper and lower cabinets are attached, and I'm planning to add a backsplash and countertop to those. One thing I don't like about the Bespaq cabinets is that you see the seams between each segment of countertop when you put them next to each other. You might want to glue them together and then either fill in those seams with wood filler, or cover the countertop with piece of paper or thin wood before you do the painting, so it looks like one slab.

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That is a good idea! I do want them to look built in and not as separate pieces.

I'm also interested in doing a backsplash as well. I've been thinking about doing a period house, but I'm not certain as of yet if I want it to truly be Victorian, even though that is the style of the home.

What I've thought was doing the rooms in different styles but tie them all together so the house could have been built in Victorian times, but Updated throughout the years.

Not 100% sold on that idea but it would make for a LOT of period research.

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2 hours ago, HalfScaleDollhouseLOVER said:

Just looked at your work and I'm in compete awe! Your miniatures are what my goal is: to have people forget it is a miniature and think it is real life.

Wow!

Thank you, but I think you might be talking about Jodi Hippler we have similar names.  @My Miniature Madness

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