Sunday, November 28, 2010

Sneak Peak

It has been a while since I posted anything about the interior of Merriman Park. For good reason, too, since I haven't done much on the inside. But that hasn't stopped me from picking up a few sticks of furniture here and there!

This is the Entrance Hall, showing the fireplace and Palladian screen in the background with its supporting columns and pilasters from Labre. Here, I tacked up the crystal chandelier, which will eventually light up. Matching, working wall sconces hung over the pair of demi-lune tables will flank the door on the back wall. I've purchased one sconce and am waiting til they go on sale again before I get the other set. (They are not cheap)! I am debating whether the doors on the back walls will be "set" or "working." If they worked, I would have to add on an inch or two off the back of the house so there would be a glimpse of hall beyond the door. Details, details...

You can also see the Regency-style recamier (top pic) and pair of chairs flanking the fireplace. I plan on having working candles on the mantle, which is  from Sue Cook in England. A mirror will be set into the molding over the mantle.

For finishes, the floor will be black and white marble tiles laid in a checkered pattern on the diagonal. There will be a paneled wainscot around the entire room with a scenic wallpaper of ruined, classical architecture (which I have also already purchased from Chinoiserie in Spain. A dentil molding will circle the room end-to-end at ceiling height and also between the columns and pilasters on the Palladian screen. A plaster ceiling rose in the center of the room will mark where the chandelier will hang.

Condifential to cousin Tim:  Yes, I know right now the interior looks "minimal"!! 

Oh, balustrade is finished, too...

I forgot to mention that I finished the balustrade on the roof, including the urns and pedestals. The urns came from Scotland, and took FOREVER to arrive (on back order).

I finished priming everything yesterday --well, except the windows, which I'm still working on. They are such a bore to disassemble and paint but thankfully, I only have SEVEN left.

Speaking of thanks, hope everyone had a lovely Thanksgiving. I, unfortunately, had to WORK, being a common, Retail Drone. The department store where I toil for a living is the last store on Earth that does not put up their Holiday Decorations before Halloween. The owners insist that nothing goes up til after Thanksgiving, so there I was, hanging from a cherry-picker, festive decor in hand, tacking it all up while the rest of yous all was gorging on turkey and pumpkin pie.

Whatevs, I came home afterward to a roast duck and all the trimmings so I should not complain!

Guess I should also be thankful I still have a job.

Sunday, November 21, 2010


So I guess it's been a while since I posted a photo of Merriman Park! There are not a whole lot of changes, as you can see, but I did manage to get the front primed. I changed out the pediments over the upstairs windows and I added keystones to all the lower-story and basement windows.

I really like the triangular pediments as opposed to the "curved" ones. They are more historically accurate, too.

Oh, I also finished the sections on the roof between the balustrades and the large, center pediment. I know there's a technical name for those sections but I can't remember what it is!

I think the house looks great all one color. (Even if it is just primer).

Now that the weather has changed and I've got a start I hope to be posting more often. Stay tuned...

It's Dollhouse Weather!

Surprisingly and rather strangely, Summer in Minnesota stretched languidly from the Dog-Days of August into September...and then into --October??? When the thermometer hit seventy degrees in November, tongues started to wag: "It's the End Times," I heard a lady on the train explain to no one in particular. She nodded as she spoke, her thin lips curled into a tight smile framed by precise, auburn curls. "Yah, I hope my husband gets the gutters cleaned before we're Raptured."

One overhears the oddest things on the train. (That reminds me, the gutters do need cleaning).

But in true, Minnesota fashion, the seventy-degree readings on one day turn to twenty the next. The gardens that til now had sprouted late, guady zinnias and ruffled, purple kale shriveled, gasped their last breath and withered. A cold, autumn rain turned to snow and buried everything under a thick, gloppy blanket.

This morning I rubbed my sleeve over the oval, beveled-glass window of my front door and peered outside.

I remember my Father doing the exact, same thing --only it was thirty years ago, on May first, May Day, his birthday. A late Winter storm had dropped an inch of snow on grass already turned green, the tulips in their neat bed peeking stoically through white frost.

"God damned, Minnesota Winters..." he muttered.

Ah, Winter! Winter in Minnesota. God only knows why any of us stay here. (BTW, my Father moved to Arizona shortly after the above incident). It's not that we don't adore the lovely changing of the seasons, or anything. I live for that! But, seriously! Winter here in Minnesota can go on FOREVER! Snow on the first of May? Really?

But when I rubbed the frost off my window this morning, I did NOT fly into a weather-induced tizzy. Au contraire! I tore open the door, took great breaths of frozen air into my lungs, realized it's NOT the End of the World! It's NOT May first, it's the end of November, for crying out loud! I pounded my chest and exclaiming to no one in particular (take that, religious train lady) I screamed "it's DOLLHOUSE weather!

And with that, I slammed the door and padded down the steps to my basement workshop and beheld the forlorn, cob-web draped image of my neglected Merriman Park.