Sunday, October 9, 2011

Two Steps Forward...

...And three steps back!  Ugh!  What a busy weekend it has been.  Unfortunately, mostly puttering around the house, trying to ready things for when the weather finally turns.  END OF TIMES ALERT!:  It's still hot and summer-y here, we almost turned on the air-conditioner!  In October?  We usually have the furnace fired up by now.  Spooky.

In spite of the balmy weather, we emptied the fish pond and brought all the gold-fishies in for the winter.  And by 'we, ' I mean Glen!  Don't judge me, yours truly was busy cleaning out the garage.  We finally made the sad decision to sell the little convertible. 'Gia,' poor dear, has been sitting in the garage for ages and we never seem to be able to scrape up the cash to have her repaired. It's only a one-car garage, so the space has been rendered for the most part, useless. 

Until now!

Sad as it was to see Gia towed away, the garage is now positively brimming with possibilities for a new workshop!   And OMG! You would not believe the cache of tools I found. 

Anyway, I did manage to work on Merriman Park a bit, this afternoon.  But I am afraid my efforts were for naught!  OK, you guys: I was once  practically a straight-A student (except in Math) so it's not like I'm a blubbering imbecile.  But whilst trying to hook up the fireplace sconces to the socket strip I blew everything up!  Now, nothing works, and the socket strip warning light is going crazy!  Ugh!

I figured out what I did wrong...I won't say what it was because it's simply too embarrassing for words!  Suffice it to say that it was a typical 'guy-thing': in other words: I should have read the directions. 

Oh, well.  Live and learn, right?

I started cutting the pieces for the cornice --and that was no treat either!  My cornice is made from resin and it's a drag to work with.  And those inside corners all need to be coped which is tough enough on real wood, but the resin --Ugh!-- you have to go slow because the saw blade heats up and starts melting the resin.  It's a gooey mess!

I also added gilt powder to the stair, for extra sparkle.
I got some fireplace stuff:  the grate, fender, andirons and tools are from the local dollhouse store, Little Enchantments, in Edina.  The lady who owns the shop is such a delight --do pop in if you ever find yourself in town.  The vases are from a Canadian source, The Little Dollhouse. (Shout-out to Giac)! They are of an ancient Greek design, I figure the owner of Merriman Park picked them up on his Grand Tour of Europe.

I had to correct a mistake I made in the floor border:  I neglected to factor in the thickness of the wainscot and the skirting and it bothered me that the borders were not all evenly wide.  I have also decided to add a medallion to the canter of the floor.  I could tell by the sound of crickets chirping when I asked what you thought of the old medallion I made up that it didn't quite make the medallion mustard (it's OK --I didn't care for it, either)!  I found a gaw-jess medallion on-line and honeys, you are going to love it!

I need to pick up a pair of lamps for the Hall table.  I bought a frame on-line for the large painting, but when it arrived, it was too small!
What else?  I cut mirrors for the top of the stair, though it probably wasn't necessary--they don't really show.  I'm working on the banister finals, with my new-found tools (no more kitchen knife, thank you very much)! I think I'll take Karin Corbin's advice and buy some 'mini-files.' 

I am thinking about removing the door on the stair landing and replacing it with a tromp-l'oiel view into another room: one of my heroine, Mrs. James Ward Thorne!  Do you think that could work?


Pedrete said...[Reply]

Ay que bonito se ve el hall!! Luego con más tiempo te escribo más cosas!! Un besazo enorme y enhorabuena!!

Simon said...[Reply]

Hey mister, you have acheived loads, despite what you say. Itis all really coming together now. I actualy likes the madalion but simply forgot to mention it LOL, Im sure the new one will be even better. The cornice looks great too. Themerry men of Merriman Park look great in their Entrance Hall - full marks to you my freind.

Irene said...[Reply]

I'm liking what you've done so far - the hall, especially the first pic - looks really homely now.

Just a thought - a trompe l'oiel view instead of the plain door wouldn't make it all look too busy?

Take heart re your electrics - girls don't read directions either!

Pedrete said...[Reply]

Enhorabuena John!! Estás consiguiendo un resultado maravilloso!! Espero que el problemilla de la electrificación lo puedas solucionar, seguro que sí!! Me gusta mucho como luce todo el conjunto, y con respecto a colocar en el fondo un trampantojo, no sé, yo lo veo bien así, con la puerta, pero puedes probar a ver que tal. ¡¡Un abrazo enorme, amigo John!!

jeffry said...[Reply]

How wonderfull to create such a workshop will foget that car in no time when you can sit and work there! Working with the electric can be very annoying.
Great news you've found some new tools!! I did like the door in your hall but I can imagine it will give a more spatial effect.

Iris March said...[Reply]

I love the entrance hall! and I absolutely love the idea of a "tromp-l'oiel view into another room"!!! Yummy stuff!

Andy said...[Reply]

Hi John, the hall is looking great! Fantastic work. I found wiring my house tricky, I'm sure you will overcome the problem, hopefully without any trouble. The tromp-l'oiel could look good, but I like the door in the centre too. Please don't let the little setbacks get you down, it's all going so well!!

John said...[Reply]

Hey everyone! Thanks for the support! Hope everyone has a great week.

Pedrete, Muchas gracias por su ayuda! Perdón por el error con respecto a Chicago. Debe haber sido la traducción! Tienen una gran semana. Un gran abrazo a usted, John

razzslady said...[Reply]

Wow, now that the 2 men are standing in the entry hall the room doesn't look big at all, does it? It looks great.

It almost seems a shame to cover even one of those pretty marble tiles but I'm still anxious to see the new medallion.

Barb in MN

Giac said...[Reply]

Hi John,
THe room if absolutely gorgeous! It has such chartacter and charm... you really did an excellent job...more and more I think you lie about being new to the hobby!
I tend to agree with Irene, Trompe l'oeil might take away for the strunning detail you've created so brilliantly.
As for your setbacks...I don't think there's a miniaturist out there who hasent done the same mistakes... or worse. You're doing such a fantastic job you just keep on going!

John said...[Reply]

Thanks a lot, Giac, I think maybe I will instead have a 'corridor' running along the back side of the house. That way, I can leave the doors either open or closed.

You would know without a doubt my 'new to the hobby' status if you had watched me blow up my lighting system!

I get a few things right just out of sheer tenacity, but when it comes right down to it I'm a hot MESS!

Kathleen said...[Reply]

Hey John, I will definitely add your blog to my list. I will be reading from the beginning to catch up! I'm positive your work will inspire me to proceed with my dream of creating a home of my own.

John said...[Reply]

Hi, Kathleen,

Welcome, and thank you! Hope you enjoy reading my older posts and best of luck on your house.

Fi.P said...[Reply]

I'm glad to hear I'm not the only one that makes silly mistakes. I once dragged my Electrician brother in law over to work out why my lights weren't working any more - all he did was touch an eyelet and they came on. I hadn't banged it in hard enough......dugh!

I like the idea of the opening door to another room, it will give depth and a sense of intrigue.

The room is beautiful - so detailed, i'm expecting your chaps to start receiving their guests any moment.


Miniaturas said...[Reply]

A wonderful job, John! Greetings!

John said...[Reply]

Thanks, Fi --that's too funny!

Muchas gracias, Madelva! Me siento honrado por su compiment. Buena suerte con tu blog!

Karin Corbin said...[Reply]
Place to bookmark for buying small tools such as diamond coated needle files plus burrs in various grits that are diamond coated. If you put the burrs in a pin vise handle you will have a wide variety of shaped sanding tools for tricky moldings!

Also get some diamond coated cutoff disks. Terrific for cutting things to length such as brass tubing and also for sanding too. I even use these disks for cutting tiny glass tubes and sanding the rough edge of the glass. Cut a quick slot into a piece of wood, metal or a bead for a small wire to run in such as when making a custom table lamp out of findings. Hundreds of uses around the real house too.

John said...[Reply]

Thanks, Karin! I'll do just that!