A Randomly Selected Newspaper Headline:

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

Welcome to my blog. Please feel free to leave a comment. I assure you I always read and appreciate everything you have to say. Unfortunately, thanks to Blogger being, well . . . Blogger, I can not respond to comments nor leave any on your blogs. They simply disappear into the ether. Occasionally I will remember to respond in the next blog post I put up, but usually these good intentions slip my mind. So if you want to ask a question or get a response to any comments you may have please leave an email address or other contact method in your comment and I will get back to you.

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.

Wednesday, August 26, 2015

Romans and Room Dividers

The 48th scale Roman dining room is now furnished.  It has three wooden chaises arranged in a 'u' around a central table.  Romans would dine reclining on chaises quite similar to mine so they must have been more comfortable than they look.  In the Mediterranean climate, piling them with cushions would probably have made them too hot so I've added a single cushion of maroon felt to each chaise just for a little colour and interest.   The room is still missing some food and drink.  I will make this from polymer clay next time I have the clay out for something else as it doesn't seem worth the effort to pull the clay out just to make a few things to sit on a table less than an inch in diameter.

The 24th scale town house is looking a great deal less polished than the Roman room.  Most of the levels in the house have had flooring installed.  The exception is the third or middle level.  This is because I haven't quite decided where I want to divide the rooms on this level and I naturally want to try and hide the join in the flooring under this divide.

The rooms on this level won't be divided by a solid wall though. I took some 12th scale plastic fence railing, cut it into pieces, re-arranged them and glued them back together between strips of balsa wood to create this room divider:

 Now I just need to decide whether it should be dividing the room so that it leaves a narrow passage along the stairs and a large single room space on the floor or if it should be positioned more centrally to create two even areas.

In the basement, the kitchen floor has been started using polyfiller to create a stone effect.  It still needs a few more layers of paint at this point.  Some plastic coated cardboard tiles line the recess for the range/oven.  The right side of the room has been raised up a couple of steps just to add a little interest to the space and to make it really hard for me to get paint down to the narrow bit at the back and no doubt to make it hard to get the furniture to work in the space later on.  That is of course despite the fact the furniture will be custom made for the space.

Wednesday, August 12, 2015

Little Boxes

When I finish one project I always have ideas lined up for the next project. . . . . Okay, for the next half dozen or so projects.  This time however I wanted to hold off on starting something new in order to firstly clean and tidy my workspace and secondly to find a use for the various containers I've collected on the basis they will make a great case for a miniature scene someday.  I have boxes, small shelf cubes, a glass lantern and sundry other items that I still don't know exactly what I want to put in them but I've been tripping over them too long to leave them hanging about empty.

Amongst those containers are this framed white display shelf and a stack of cardboard boxes just the right size for a 48th scale room.  I figured out that if I knock the shelves out of the unit I can stack ten of the boxes into the unit.  So the plan I've come up with is to make ten roomboxes, each with a different theme to display in the unit.  This will get rid of both display unit and boxes.  The catch is that I don't have ideas for all ten rooms yet and probably won't fill all ten boxes straight away but rather work on them gradually between doing other things so the unit and boxes will still be hanging about for a while yet.

Not knowing what to do for all ten boxes doesn't mean that I haven't made a start on a couple of them.  The first box now holds this Georgian style bedroom with canopied bed, dressing table and chaise.  If you're thinking that it all looks a little like the rooms in Le Petit Palais then you would be right as the room is decorated with papers and other items left over from that project.

The second box is going to be something completely different.  This box isn't furnished yet, but it will be a Roman dining room with chaises for the diners to recline on while they sip their wine and eat whatever it was Romans ate that is easy to recreate in 48th scale.  I still need to do a little research before finishing this one.  The remaining eight boxes will be set in similarly different times and places.

I also had on hand a pair of flat packed cardboard storage boxes that I had hoped would hold old dollshouse magazines but the boxes were a little large to suit that purpose.  Now they have a new purpose.  By sticking one atop the other and adding foamboard floors inside I now have a five floor 24th scale town house.  This is actually a case of two birds and one stone as I wanted to find a use for the boxes and a 24th scale town house was already on my list of future projects.  It's going to be set around 1860 and it will be the home of a doctor.  From the bottom up the floors will hold: a kitchen, the main entry and surgery/consulting room, a living space or reception room, the bedroom and up in the attic will be a bathroom and either a private office or a small medical lab.

This still leaves me with a lantern, two display cubes and possibly a few more boxes to find uses for . . . . . . . .

Wednesday, August 5, 2015

Orchid Cottage

Orchid Cottage is now finished.  Well, finished-ish.  There are a few things I'd still like to do such as find a trim to add to the bottom of the two small dormers as there is actually a gap between the front of the dormers and the roof tiles below.  Sadly nothing I've tried looks quite right, so for the time being they will remain as they are.

Each of the two levels inside consists of a single large room.  The kit is designed to have two rooms per floor and an internal staircase occupying part of the rooms.  I found that I kept running out of space working without the dividing walls and moving the stairs into an annex on the side.

 Despite the lack of internal walls, each floor has two separate areas.  Upstairs has a sitting area and a sleeping area in the bedroom.  The sitting end of the room consists of a cosy chair by the fire beside which is an embroidery table.  The wash stand also inhabits this area.

The other end of the room holds the bed with little space left for anything else.

Downstairs the two areas are the kitchen and the living area.  These two areas are squeezed in quite tightly.  Each has exactly fifty percent of the floor area but each really needs at least sixty percent before they could have a really pleasing layout.  The living area in particular does not please me but there is simply no better way to fit everything in (and you'd better believe I have tried every single possible way).

I might have done better to make or buy furniture specifically for the house instead of using so many items from my stash, but you see the whole point of buying the house was to use up some of the furniture from my stash and get it out of the cupboard.  This, and the fact I doubt I'd have had any more success with custom made furniture, is why I stuck with what I had.

 Ethel, the lady of the house is a cheap porcelain doll re-dressed in a plum coloured cotton dress.

My Orchid Cottage looks quite close to the basic Orchid kit despite all the changes I made.  The kit is supposed to be open at the back, mine opens at the front.  I blocked off all the side windows as they just messed up any possible interior layout.  The other major change I made was to add the staircase annex on the left side of the building.