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Tuesday, January 3, 2012

The Folly Finished

The Oriental Folly is complete!  As you probably gathered from my last post, I spent my Christmas break making funiture for it and adding the other finishing touches.  The outside was finished off by adding pedestals for the foo dogs flanking the steps, gold medallions on the doors and windows on the side walls.

 The chairs in the photo below are made out of balsa wood.  Despite starting out as a flat sheet, the backs of the chairs actually curve thanks to some very nervous carving.  The table between them is also balsa wood while the stands flaning the chairs are houseworks legs, two cricles of mountboard and some beads for feet.

This side table is again made from balsa wood except for the scroll brackets at either side which were pre-bought.  The dragon is handblown glass.

The opium bed (or day bed if you prefer) is again mostly balsa wood with some precut panels.   Dan certainly seemed to approve of it.

The stepped unit is yet more balsa wood.  All the drawers and doors on the front are fakes, but look quite convincing.  I've trimmed the bonsai in the pot since I took this photo as it looked more like a sappling than a bonsai.

I'm not sure exactly what part of Asia the costume on display is meant to come from . . . . It's a little Japanese, a little Chinese and I think there's even a youch of Thai in there too.   I made a dummy from a lump of air dry clay and basically made up the outfit as I went along.

The circular shelf unit started with some cheap drawer units glued together to make a long base.  On top of this I made the shelves from balsa wood and wrapped the outside with cardboard to create the circle outline.

 With the Folly finished I decided to make a start renovating the Old Castle.  This is what it looked like before I started:

 As you can tell from the ripped stonework, the bodies strewn about the floor and the general denuded nature of the castle I had been pilphering items to use in other projects and letting this one fall to ruins.

This is (or was) the solar (sitting room) and it shows some of the reasons why the castle needs renovation.  The chair you can see at the back always falls over.  The lights are so low that to walk accross the room means setting your hair in fire from the candles and the shiny brass doesn't seem quite right for a castle.  the edges of the tapestries have curled and one has fallen off the wall entirely.  And the chairs that do stand up are kind of crooked and the seats are too low for an adult to sit in; the lady in the picture is sitting on a shoebox on the chair. 

So I decided to give it just a small, light renovation.  You'll hardly be able to spot the difference when I'm done . . . .  

Yeah Right.  This is how it looks now:

The top floor walls have been removed to create on massive space that will become the bedroom suite incorporating the bedroom, washroom and wardrobe.  The solar moves one floor down where a large hole in the wall will allow people in the solar to look out accross the gallery and down to the great hall.  The armoury wall has moved across about an inch making the armoury bigger while the room adjoining the armoury which never really has a purpose has disappeared becoming part of the Hall and a little bit of the armoury.  While the crypt will remain virtually unchanged the kitchen next door to it will become the magician's cave.  Next up I have the most onerous task of carefully removing the lights (this is the only property I have where the lights are real and working) and either moving them within the castle or replacing them with something I like better and saving these lights to use in the Georgian later on.


  1. Brilliant work on your folly! It will be interesting watching your ruined castle brought back to life - like one of those BBC grand renovation shows which were on recently. :D

  2. Your folly came out so wonderful!

  3. Your Folly is very impressive and I'm very taken with all the bits you created yourself, especially the stepped drawer unit.

    Good luck with the renovation. Looking forward to see it's changes.

  4. The folly looks amazing!! Lovely details!

  5. The folly is wonderul. I like the little things you put here.
    Bye Faby

  6. I love the folly. You have done amazing things in it. Fantastic details. Cant wait to see what you do to your castle.
    Hugs Maria

  7. Una locura con fantasticos resultados.
    Me encanta esa maravillosa escena oriental, no le falta ni un detalle.
    Beuna suerte con la renovacion del castillo.
    besitos ascension