Sunday, 30 April 2017

Not another new project - Gothic Manor pt 1

I've done something bad. Really, really bad. The first miniature building I ever made - a pub - is no more.
Thing is, it was my first ever building and I made it without really thinking through how it should be made. Each level was split horizontally so you had to lift off each floor to see the rooms underneath. It was 18mm MDF too which made it so incredibly heavy to move around. I struggled with the decision for a while and then finally decided to strip it of anything I could reuse and waved what was left goodbye.

To replace it I've started yet another new building. Yeah, how bad am I when I have so many unfinished projects taking up floor space? I actually started the building last year when I feared I would have to move jobs and lose access to the joinery shop where I work. I didn't blog about it simply because it's taking a long time to make. I can't build anything large at home because I don't have the space. I have more room at work but I can only dedicate an hour of my day to it. It's starting to come together now so I'm going to post what I'm up to.

First, I put a together a list of elements that I wanted and couldn't find in any kit builds
  • It opens at both the front and back for complete access
  • The rooms will be open plan and not laid out symetrically
  • It will be in a gothic style
  • The windows will be a mixture of shape - stone tracery round, rectangle and an oriel window
  • I will be able to add to the structure at a later date
 Yes, you read right. Mrs Contemporary McModern will build an old Gothic manor house. But don't worry modern fans, the interior will be a different style altogether 😃

The start

I bought a sheet of 12mm plywood (for the structure) and 9mm plywood (for the floors) and started by cutting the gable ends. I marked where each floor would be in pencil, (base, first and second floor) leaving 220mm between the floors, (the height of the rooms)


 To fix each floor in place, I routed a channel into the gable ends with a 9mm router bit, which is the thickness of the sheet I'm using for the floors. This will allow each floor to sit into the channel and give it extra stability. The floors will not only be glued and pinned into the channels, the walls below will also support them.



The machine I am using to make the channel is a laminate trimmer but a dremmel trio would achieve the same thing. I've put the depth of the cutter to 4mm which is a third of the thickness of the (12mm) wall

Left and right wall laid flat

In typical Gothic style, all of the roof will be pitched into a point so the next step is to basically cut a triangle into the top of each gable. I marked a point in the top centre of the gable and measured 20mm above the last, (attic), floor and cut it with the laminate trimmer.

Once I had my gable ends, I cut the base which will give me the sizes for the second and third, (attic), floor. The base is 12mm thick, the depth of the gable end and I've made it 950mm wide. Now I know the second and third floors are 9mm thick, the depth of the gable ends and 958m wide, (950 + 4 + 4mm for the channels)

The picture above explains better how the floors sit into a channel in the gable end walls


The building dry fit together. Next, some doors.

If you could make/have made a dream dolhouse, what would be on your must have list?


Pepper :0)


47 comments:

  1. OOOHhh, Pepper I LOVE this building! Maybe because it looks a bit like mt Lovely Old Dollhouse in this beginning phase! I think the Gothic idea is wonderful! And I Love to see eras mixed up.... we just don't all live in one moment of time! I can't wait to see how you manage the doors on both sides... ? I still daydream of adding doors to the open side of my house. I can't wait to see more!

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    1. Thank you Betsy. I hope it lives up to expectations and I get the mix of old and new right :0)

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  2. OH MY! Throwing out your first building is rather sad. ;-( I suppose we all have to make space choices though.
    Your new project is really exciting. True enough, I never thought I would hear you say you were going to build something Gothic. It will be fun to watch your progress. I have a feeling the inside is going to be very modern. ;-)

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    1. You never know Catherine, one day I may tackle a Georgian town house or something Regency :0)

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  3. Oooh! I'm excited and sad for you at the same twill ime. And envious of your powertools. But I agree with Catherine. Can't wait to see how you contrast the outside and inside.

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    1. Me too Sheila. I really hope to get the mix of old and industrial/new/modern right :0)

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  4. It is always sad to throw a realization, there was no way to transform this house by "using" its "defaults"?
    Good reconstruction
    hugs

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    1. Thank you Claude. Sometimes it's just better to start again :0)

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  5. This is starting out to be a wonderful fun scratch build. I will be anticipating the posts of your progress. Sorry about the bar though.... :)

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    1. Ah yes. Many fond memories of sipping wine from a tiny glass in that pub :0D

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  6. Whoa! Way to get all the creative mechanical juices flowing. Go you!

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    1. You know what it's like Nancy, sometimes the fancy just grabs you by the throat :0D

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  7. Throwing away can be a fantastic start of another gorgeous build, and yes, I thought now Pepper will build an old Gothic manor house.......I can't wait to see :P???? But it's a good thing to know that "the interior will be a different style altogether", so we can still follow your fantastic modern miniature work ;O)!!
    Thank you for showing how you put the house together with the help of your powertools, Pepper.
    Have a nice week!
    Ilona

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    1. Thank you IIona. Oh yes, there will still be a lot of modern thrown in there :0D

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  8. I cannot wait to see this new project. One thing I am sure of, it will be original and beautiful, no doubt. Oh, I am so envious of your tools! but mostly of what you can do with them.

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    1. Thank you Alexandra. I wish those tools were mine. Unfortunately just borrowed from where I work :0)

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  9. Sometimes you've got got to throw your past into the bin to give room to the new, smarter, you. Congrats!

    What a great new project, I'm going to enjoy watching your build.

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    1. Thanks Keli, I hope everything in my head works out how I think its going to work out :0P

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  10. Pepper - I am so glad to hear I am not the only one with lots of unfinished projects! I think we have to go where our imaginations take us and, fortunately or unfortunately, we miniaturists are very imaginative people! I am so looking forward to watching the progress of this project! - Marilyn D., Oromocto, NB, Canada

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    1. I totally agree Marilyn. Sometimes the excitement of a new idea just pushes everything else into the background :0)

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  11. Looks like fun! Looking forward to seeing your progress. And for the record, I am probably the king of unfinished miniature projects!

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    1. Haha, well if you're the King then I'm about the Queens second cousin of unfinished projects :0D

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  12. I'm going to do some routing soon myself! :D I feel for you pitching the old project, but it seems like you're good with the decision. Looking forward to a new type of project from you. Your work is always lovely. :]

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    1. Thanks Brae. I really enjoy uing the router, now that I've sussed how to do it and not let the machine wander off the wood :0P

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  13. !!! Que bonita estructura, con ganas de ver los avances !!

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  14. Over the course of years, I who used to LONG for A DOLLHOUSE, have had to bite the bullet and get rid of some by either donating them to friends, donating them to charities or just letting them sit and moulder in my garage.
    There is a time limit for everything which includes certain items which you used to think the world of, but now make you think "what in the world was I thinking! " Freeing your mind of dead weight lights your spiritual load- so I Applaud your Bravery!
    Your question as to what would be on my list for a Dream house?
    These are The Essentials:
    I) the time and capacity to fully realize it and
    2) Lighting that WORKS! :D

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    1. Totally agree Elizabeth. The sentimental part of me kept the pub because it was the first building I ever made but it had to go if I ever wanted to make something again and try out methods that i've learned over the years.
      Ah yes, electric lights I think are on most miniaturists list :0)

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  15. Me parece un proyecto muy interesante. ¡Hace falta mucho valor para tirar una obra aunque no te guste mucho!

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    1. Gracias Isabel. Mi nuevo proyecto demostrará que hice lo correcto o voy a llorar y buscar en la punta de basura para mi antiguo edificio :0D

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  16. Sometimes letting go is the only way to move forward. You know you're ready when it feels good to thank the thing for the lessons then move on. Good for you for recognizing that you're ready, and for your bravery in learning new tools and techniques! I am excited to see your new build come to be!

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    1. Yup, sometimes it's just time to shove the figurative Leonardo DiCaprio off that big ole door, say goodbye and move on :0P

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  17. id want a bathroom like the one I saw in Hell House with a claw foot tub and old fashioned toilet and sink, I like bathrooms but Ive never built one


    Im excited to see your new creation

    Hugs
    Marisa :)

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    1. Well Marisa, I think it's time to grab the bull by the horns and make yourself that bathroom :0)

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  18. Most of all, I'd just like to finish a dollhouse and then have it remain in pristine condition for awhile. But I do keep building a canal house in my head. I'm a bit sad about the bar- I still remember when I first saw it and all the cool doll figures. I was so impressed with both the bar and the dolls! But I am excited to see your new build as always and happy that you are doing a new build!

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    1. Thank you Penelope. I do like bars and I may have to put one in this build *nods and winks* :0P

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  19. It must have been a tough decision to chuck the old house but I'm so looking forward to following your progress with this new venture. I love to see a project come alive, straight from the empty carcass.

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    1. Me too Irene. When you start, you live on the images in your head to get you through the bare wood stages. When it starts to take shape I think it's the most magical thing about building dollhouses :0)

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  20. Wrong title... it should have been "Yeahhhhh!!! Another project!!!" Although I'm sorry that you had to say goodbye to your first dollhouse I am really looking forward to this new project, a Gothic house in Pepper style sounds good to me for sure. And sometimes it's necessary to sort out old stuff and turn to something new. Why keep a big, heavy house you're not happy and satisfied with just for sentimental reasons when you can keep pictures for memory's sake and use the space for a new project being able to use your developed skills.

    Hugs
    Birgit

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    1. You are right Birgit. Besides, if I had kept the old pub I would have eventually suffered a hernia trying to lift it :0P

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  21. That must have been hard to do! I remember some of the posts on the pub! :) I love old houses with modernized interiors though and I can't wait to see what you do here. You are going to have so much fun with finishings! And front and back opening? This is my kind of house! ;)

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    1. Thanks Kristine. Since having a blog and taking photos of the interior of houses, I thought it's about time I build something where I can see from both sides :0)

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  22. Rest In Pieces old house! :P
    I adore tudor style buildings so I can't wait to see what you come up with!

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    1. Ha, yeah it was in pieces to after I ripped out all of the things I wanted to keep. Ahhh poor pub :0/

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  23. I get anxious just thinking about throwing away any of my miniatures. I can relate to the lack of space and unfinished projects...but once completed your work is always mind blowing. Looking forward to watching you create another fabulous project!!

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  24. This sounds like fun. Personally I love the idea of a gothic exterior but with modern furnishings inside.

    Sounds like tossing the pub was the right thing to do, despite any pangs of sentiment. Part of doing this is that we learn how to do it better.

    When I'm done with my mini modern house I will enjoy it for as long as it pleases me and then if I can't find some place to display it I will gut it and remodel it.

    For me the fun is more in the making of it than the having of it. I am that irritating person who wants to build it, not play with it🙄.

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