Friday, December 16, 2011

i'm a giant... preview

So It's the wee hours of December 16th here in the Northeast, but I'm pretty sure this challenge runs on California hours, so consider me on time. Sort of. I made enough rooms presentable to legitimize my submission. I didn't have time enough for window treatments, bedding, rugs, pillows, art, etc. It's pretty bare bones, and rough draft in there. Bear with my shitty 2am pictures. I'm spent.

Since late October, the entire dollhouse was gutted and sanded to the plywood shell. I added electricity. I refinished my original popsicle stick hardwood floors. I added all trim windows and doors, made from scratch. I couldn't pay for furniture, so I made most of what you see here. I'm going to pull a Lloyd Christmas and 'IOU' the kitchen cabinetry. It'll happen this weekend. "Those IOU's are as good as cash."

Master Bedroom

Top right hand room.

Still to do here:
area rug
window treatments
build bench for foot of bed

Living Room



Ugh, flash. Shows my handiwork though. Sofa and working electric lamp handmade by yours truly.

Still to do here:
finish coffee table
build/upholster accent chair
build credenza
paint armoire
window treatments

This is the only room where I salvaged anything but the floors. I liked the vintage wallpaper, and it matched my fixtures.I replaced the old chair rail.




Here's the showpiece.



There. We'll talk more tomorrow.

Thursday, December 15, 2011

i'm a giant failure

I'm not going to finish. Not today. I'll be finished by this Sunday night though. I've decided to cut myself a little slack around here, for the first time in my life. I've been staying up really late and working on the dollhouse every minute that I'm not at my job or sleeping. So it's not for lack of passion, vision, or hard work. If anything is limiting me it's budget and deadline. I'll absolutely be fighting to the finish and working until the eleventh hour tonight trying to make what I have at least presentable, and will probably be posting some really crappy pictures around 11:59 to show y'all what I could finish in time for submission. There'll be glue and felt and paint and paper literally flying through the air in a frenzy. But if anyone is interested the final product should be ready this weekend. And it's gonna be bitchin'. Even if I miss the deadline by a day or three, it looks like I'm in excellent company. I'm not the only person to seriously underestimate the time commitment. I'm really proud of the work I've done, and the pieces I've designed and made. I'm likely going to start work on a line of minis for my etsy shop (which is pretty pathetic right now, so I'm not posting the link) after a little more R&D.

I'm super impressed with everyone elses submissions for the challenge! Insanely creative and innovative ideas, I'm totally amazed! The full list of participants can be found here. Check 'em out, you won't be sorry!!

Quick shoutout to Miss Emily Henderson, thank you for dreaming up this challenge! I've had such a blast! I hope this becomes an annual offering. I might stick to a roombox or two next time around though...

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

I'm a Giant... extension, please?!

Although I'd really love another month to wrap this dollhouse up, I'd settle for one more measly weekend. Alas, the deadline is Thursday, as in this Thursday. And I'm dying about it. I'm starting to cut corners, and say horrendous things like 'good enough'. I hate 'good enough'. There are projects I won't finish, I'm just having a hard time deciding which ones to scrap. I think I know how they felt on Trading Spaces when the time was almost up and people are running and scrambling and it's a total shitshow. Anyways. I guess I'm just wishing that this challenge had started after Christmas, you know, in those 3 months where it's wicked cold and there's nothing else to do but crafts. Exactly. I knew you'd understand. 

So here's some last minute progress pics (I've been too busy working on the thing to actually post about it):
Cutting custom trim for crooked walls.
Upside down. Whoops. Someone call Lionel Richie, because we're dancing on the ceiling.
Exterior window, almost finished. Real glass. It took the kid at the hardware store an hour to cut 7 pieces this size. He was adorable.
A lot has happened that you probably won't notice until the end. But... know that it took me a whole weekend to put in baseboards and door casings. And another weekend to frame in the windows. I wasn't paying for windows I could make myself. In hindsight, I should've just bought the damned things. Time is money. I'll end up making/putting in the window-pane-grid-thingys someday. Was the trim necessary? Nope. But it's little details like that that really make it look awesome in the end. Once all the wallpaper is in, you'll actually notice my painstaking trim work. Like this:
I try really hard to make the patterns on the paper match up so you can't see seams. Pain in the ass.

Yep, the fire pole is currently out of service, but with a flick of my wrist it's good to go. That wallpaper is ridiculous. The line you see is a shadow, not a seam. Swear.

A few more light fixtures are made:
I love how this ceiling fixture came out. It's a take-out condiment cup from the burrito place in town (so is the shade on the floor lamp). I hand sewed the mini pompom trim, wrapped the cup in white parchment, threw some paint on the rim, and the wire is hidden in a wrapped paper bead. Super cute.

The wainscotting in the nursery is coming along slow. Just got those 3 pieces in last night.
And some plants:

I might not be able to get the kitchen cabinets made by the deadline, so I'm (most likely) going to make some convincing falsies out of cardboard for the challenge and replace them with working wood cupboards as I find more time.

Still on the to-do list...

kitchen cabinets
loft bed
accent chairs (2-3)
bathroom sconces (2)
ceiling fixtures (2)
end tables

kids room
living room

window treatments (all rooms)
bedding (two beds)
area rugs

coffee table
kitchen chair(s)
sofa (needs legs/feet)
wainscotting/chair rails (two rooms)

In all my free time, I'd like to work out a rooftop patio as well.


Wednesday, November 30, 2011

say hello to my peeps

These are the Jones's. Yep. Try to keep up. They just bought an old firehouse, and are turning it into their dream home. Well, Callista is anyways, with the help of a big-shot contractor. She's a stay-at-home-mom with discerning taste, and her devoted and devastatingly handsome husband, Trent works in the city. The kids, Piper and Evelyn are stoked about riding the fire pole down to breakfast. They don't even care about having to share a room. And they never fight or make a mess. Apparently they got the memo that children should be seen and not heard. What a happy family.
Anyways. These guys were my black Friday splurge at 30% off. It's a Melissa and Doug set called "Victorian Family". They're adorable, but they strike me more as "yuppie" rather than Victorian. At any rate, they're perfect. Renovations should be mostly complete by December 15th (God-willing) for them to move in. I'm done making up stories now.

Monday, November 28, 2011

i love lamp - long weekend, long update

There are so many light fixtures happening in my dollhouse. Most of them will actually light up. And I made them. To date, I have about 8-10 fixtures in various stages of completion. I love making lights so much that I've decided to ban myself from making any more until I actually wire the dollhouse for electricity, ya dig? (you can see most of the fixtures in the pics below). I made a priority list, and I'm sticking to it. Sort of. Here it is:
-sand off all old wallpaper
-prime all walls, inside and out
-stain the hardwood floors
-paint and install trim/windows/fire pole
-wall paper/paint
-build more furniture
-make more lights
-decorate and accessorize
I hate that all the fun stuff is at the bottom of the list.

Since I started drafting this post, I've completed a ton of projects. I'm really making good progress on tedious, no-fun, necessary tasks. I'll be glad to put all that behind me. Since I've finished so much stuff, I'll try to keep it brief and mostly pictures.

 I tied up a lot of loose ends...

Electricity is in, and it was incredibly easy. Serious. I  had absolutely no problems.

 Hardwood floors have been stained. I remember years ago having problems getting the stain to take to popsicle sticks. This is only one coat of stain. No sweat.

Cork floors have been cut and installed. They could have come out better. But they're not terrible. I don't know if anyone will really notice the flaws too much, since there'll be so much more interesting stuff going on in there. See?...


I"m almost done making that chair, and I'll probably make one more. Kind of like a retro dinette chair. Real leather. I made that pedestal table out of this stuff:
That's a giant souvenir penny (3"ish diameter), a jar lid a hose nozzle, a knurled nut, black spray enamel,  and an aluminum tube. And hot glue in copious quantities, but you can't see any of it. It came out pretty cool.

I finally made the mounting flange for the range hood.

These lamps came out great. The shades are really shiny. I kind of wish they weren't so shiny. They plug into outlets behind the headboard.

Since you can't really see them in those pics, here's another:

The industrial cart coffee table is coming along. I decided not too paint all the metal components black. It almost looks a little campaign style, a little steampunk. I like it.
The arc lamp is so badass. I've outdone myself.
I'm not sure about the wallpaper option. Maybe.
I still have to put legs on the sofa. Procrastinating.

 Converted the old electric range to a deluxe seven burner gourmet gas range. Obviously.

Way shitty picture. I threw a few things together to make this little guy. His name's Eduardo.

The dishwasher is complete. Except for the knobs, which I'll add after I decide what color to paint the cabinets. It has a leather hinge and a magnet closure.

I made this stainless steel farmhouse sink. I love it. I now have to design and execute the cabinetry to hold it. I ordered the rest of my granite countertops today. Tomorrow I'll order the double oven setup I've been salivating over.

The copper pot rack is finally done. The only thing I'm changing here is the chain. That stuff is whatever I had laying around. I picked up a gunmetal cable chain, and I've already replaced it.
I've primed the trim I'll be putting in this week. I had the windows cut, and I'll install those this week as well. The nursery is getting a beadboard treatment. So adorable.

Ah, my "black friday" purchase. This idyllic little yuppie family by Melissa & Doug. I've had my eye on it for 3 weeks. At 30% off. Shwing!

Grabbed some mini clutter accessories at the bead store.

That's all I can think of right now. There's definitely more. What a great long weekend, I really feel like I made a dent in the to-do list.

And. I'm. Spent.