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The following is a randomly selected newspaper headline from many years ago:

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I have also added a separate page to the blog for the Tower of Magic with a brief summary of all the rooms of the ToM in the one spot. The link is just below this and above the main body of the blog, or you can just click here.

Tuesday, January 28, 2014

Filling in the Blank

The large, empty hole in the back wall of the Hall has been filled by the installation of a truely massive fireplace/surround.

The entire structure is about 30cm high (just under twice the height of the average 1/12th scale doll) and as ever is constructed primarily of balsa wood.  The hearth and firebox are cladded in the same paper tile as the floor.  A pair of laser cut brackets (from Fairy Meadow Miniatures) form the arch at the front of the firebox.  Inside the firebox is a firebasket made of mesh with bead and jewellery finding andirons.  These still need to be painted and filled with "fire".  Cotton lace trims the top of the fireplaces first and second tiers.  Flat jewellery findings decorate the central panelled section while the top tier boasts a blue and purple dragon pendant.

Given the beams, a single, central chandelier hung from the ceiling wouldn't look right and as the ToM is inhabited by magicians, why would they need to rely on candle light?  So instead they have eight glass marbles hung from the beams which the resident magicians can use a spell to make them glow with a bright, steady light.  The marbles were decorated with some faux leadlighting outliner in gold and a blue flat backed crystal at the bottom of each.

On the side walls between the beams, faux windows have been added.  These are simply done using more faux leadlighting paints directly onto white cardboard cut into window shapes and glued onto the walls.  When you look at them head on like this, they are highly unconvincing as windows, but when you view them from the front of the Hall, all you can really see are glimpses of colour between the beams anyway.

With the central table in position, there isn't much room left for other furnishings.  I've made a simple balsa and chess man bench for the left wall and flanked a pre bought side table with two of the chairs along the right wall.  Now I just need to decide what colour to paint all this furniture . . . . .

 You may have already spotted Orville among the rafters, proof that pigs really do fly!  Orville is a Schleich brand piglet (with a highly inappropriate name given his undercarriage is definately not that of a male) with a pair of butterfly wings glued onto his back and is my first step in the campagin to make the blank areas of the rafters more interesting.

I have also spent some time playing about with the Mystery Tower.  Ex-blogger Linda who now follows my blog through Facebook suggested a steampunk-wizard theme for the tower.  As this was one of the ideas that had already passed through my mind for the tower, I've decided to go with it.  At least until I change my mind again.  Not having a great deal of 24th scale furniture on hand to play with to get an idea of what to put in the tower and how to arrange it, I pulled out my trustly Lego blocks and put together some crude sample furniture.

 Downstairs will be the wizards office with a kneehole desk at the back with a small stove beside it and a pair of comfy leather armchairs in the centre of the room.

The upper floor will be the wizard's lab with a central worktable surrounded by smaller tables, hanging shelves, a long case clock, small chaise and stove. I'm not particularly happy with the layout up here and may need to rethink this.