Tuesday, 6 June 2017

Gothic Manor pt 8

Progress on the Manor continues with a solid, four week eggbox/stone cladding torture. I'm tired. I have scissor hand cramp. I'm sick of the sight of eggboxes and I'm so behind with my blog reading that I will need a whole day to catch up with what everyone has been up to.
I know I'm jumping ahead by working on the front exterior at this stage, but project weariness is starting to take hold and I really need to see some part of it finished to keep me motivated. I've been going to work two hours early each day to get this far. So here's four weeks worth of eggbox cladding:

I opted for eggbox cladding because I'm trying to keep this build as light as possible. It does mimic stone pretty well, especially with random dollops of tile grout smudged over it. When I finished cladding, I painted the whole thing with textured ceiling paint because it produced a matt, stippled effect on the stone.


At home I worked on two things - something to sit between the oriel window and the doorway, and something to fill the space in the middle peak.

I loved the idea of a demon/grotesque above the door to greet visitors. Since sculpting doesn't come naturally to me I cheated by taking a mold of a Walking Dead Rick Grimes figure as a base to work on.

I scraped some of the wrinkles off his face
added horns, hair, beard and closed his eyes. He's sleeping shhhhh 😏
made another mold and cast it in resin
This is Bert, (he looks like a Bert to me), above the doorway and supporting the oriel window


The second cast I made was a simplistic family-crest-floral-thingy to sit in the middle peak. I think it balances the two porthole windows to the left and right. I couldn't find anything already made so I made molds of a few jewellery findings. That way I could add bits together, take bits away and find something I liked.



At the moment I'm channelling the skills I've learned from all of you fabulous bloggers, to weather the facade so that it looks more realistic. I'm so grateful that I have a wealth of experience at my finger tips to give me the courage to try something new.

I'll leave you with another type of mini to warm your heart. During a walk last week, I found an orphaned bank vole in the middle of the road. I thought he was dead and picked him up to put him on the curbside because, (and I know this sounds mad), I didn't want him to be flattened by traffic even if he was dead. He gave out a tiny squeek when I picked him up 😆

Ernie the vole snoozing after his milk
I delivered him to a wildlife rescue centre after a sleepless night feeding him kitten milk. Today I got a message to say 'Ernie' is doing very well, is eating solids and will be released back into the wild in 3/4 weeks. Ahhh, the warm fuzzies!

Have a great week
Pepper :0)

56 comments:

  1. carol, with all the wood you used the little weight of the Bromley Craft Product Cement (ah... and using a stencil...) would probably been a little easier than your egg-box experience ;-). But it does look really good with the paint and all. I hope that this was it and there won't be more...

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    1. Hi Marion, I still have the side walls and back to do but that will be for the winter months when I have a lot of time :0D I did consider the Bromley product but because the walls were vertical and I couldn't lay them flat to work on, I thought the eggbox would be better :0)

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  2. Forgot to mention: this wall with these great windows looks stunning!

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  3. Where did you ever get all those egg cartons? You must have a lot of family and friends saving them for you. No wonder your hands are unhappy cutting all that up and gluing it on. PHEW! IT IS GORGEOUS!!!

    You did a great job casting/re-working that face. Hair is one of the most difficult things to sculpt and it looks fantastic. I love the fact you created your own family-crest-floral-thingy! It too looks perfect.

    I don't envy your the painting and aging process one single bit. Paint hates me with a passion and I hate it right back. I can't even open a can of it without getting it all over me or spilling it.

    Awww what a sweet baby. He looks like a mouse to me in that picture. I have never heard of a bank-vole. I am off to Google them. Well done on all counts!

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    1. For the past two months, I asked the lads I work with to save eggboxes and man, do they eat a lot of eggs :0P I think I have enough to cover the Houses of Parliament :0D I'm with you Catherine, paint doesn't like me either. I'm trying to experience new skills all of the time in the hope that I'll get better at it :0)

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  4. Your egg cartons are colorful. Are they styrofoam, or textured paper pulp? I admire your determination. I have to brick a fraction of what you just did, and I'm dreading it. You have inspired me yo get off my lazy butt and get it done.

    Bert turned out great! Fantastic idea.

    Awww, sweet baby Ernie is a cutie.

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    1. It's the really rough part of paper pulp egg boxes Keli. It's really bumpy but works well for natural stone :0)

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  5. Hi Pepper! I am GOB-SMACKED by your Cleverness and Applaud not only your stone re-surfacing ( tedious work) but the gargoyle as well as your new family crest! Truly Fantastic Work!
    Not that it matters, but did you just happen to have a Walking Dead guy hanging about the house, or did you have to go and search him out specifically for this project? I just LOVE is that you saw potential in his face and although you've "poo-pooed" your sculpting skills, being able to change his face so dramatically says loud and clear- OH YES YOU CAN! :D

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    1. Thank you Elizabeth. My Hubby collects action figures so there was a lot of faces to work from :0)

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  6. Wow! I am so impressed with your egg carton stone! It looks wonderful and I'm so excited for you! I read your noted picture out to my husband and got him laughing so well done there too!

    Aww... sweet little Ernie. Glad he's doing well.

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    1. Thank you Sheila. Yes, Ernie is just the sweetest thing and growing fast :0)

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  7. Wow what a workout! My sympathies with what you went through but it does look just great! I haven't caught up my blog and have been having my own dramas. Finally decided to rip out my shower and start over and sounds like it was almost as much grief as your egg carton stone!

    Love that you rescued that baby. Ernie's a cutie and I'm so glad he survived.

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    1. Hi Franny, hope you solve your shower dilema. Sometimes you have to start again to get it just right, don't you. Good luck :0)

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  8. Oh this post is incredible! Every technique on the house is so very effective and I love it all, very nice. And the tiny vole, what a sweet story and a wonderful thing to do. Precious little Ernie :) I get sorta mad at the voles we have here because they really tear up the property, but I still love all animals and would have rescued him too---

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    1. Thanks Linda. I couldn't let any little critter be hurt and I'm really please he has a chance at life now. Sounds like you have a community of voles at your place! Little terrors :0D

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  9. This build is fantastic. The front looks great. Your windows are a work of art and I salute your patience with the egg boxes. BUT - I can't believe you would do that to Rick after all he's been through!

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    1. Haha, Elaine, your comment really made me laugh. Poor Rick has really been through the mill :0D

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  10. Thoroughly enjoying this build and I'm very impressed with Bert!

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  11. Super clever woman!!!! Good work!. I love the result.
    Hugs

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    1. Thank you Mara. Such a lovely comment coming from someone who is so talented :0)

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  12. Hello Pepper,
    The stone looks absolutely fantastic. It was well worth the hell of going through all those egg cartons. The grotesque and family crest are absolutely beautiful. Every detail looks so realistic. Well done.
    Big hug
    Giac
    N.B. I am so happy Ernie is doing well.

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    1. Thank you Giac, I appreciate your comments so much :0)

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  13. OMG! It looks amazing and I can totally understand why your hands were cramping from cutting up egg cartons. Great job! And that mold you made, awesome! Thanks for looking out for that little critter, I've never heard of a bank vole.

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    1. Thank you Bennzz. Voles are really common in the UK but most people confuse them with field mice. I did have to Google what I should feed him though because I didn't know what they eat :0)

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  14. Aw, hooray for Ernie. :D That's so great!!!

    I hear ya on egg boxes -- that was me and cedar shake shingles. =shudder= The molds are a great idea, and a great addition to the manor. Bravo!

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    1. It's funny because my hubby asked where I got the idea for eggboxes from. I told him I had seen it on your blog first so now we affectionately call the process 'Brae's Torture' :0P See what you started!! :0)

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    2. hahahhaaaaaaahhahaaa whoops. :D

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  15. Alot perseverance, patience and alot of tedious handwork, but it was worth it: your house looks gorgeous, stunningly real!
    I like both of the Bert and Ernie stories, for Bert: great find and amazing result. Regarding Ernie, this baby bank vole will be thankful to you for ever, so nice he made it and he looks so sweet!!
    Ilona

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    1. Thank you so much IIona, that's very kind :0)

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  16. I bet when you got to the yippee stage you considered leaving it with the rainbow look. Job well done, such a difference.....transformed from dolls house to Gothic Mansion. Marilyn

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    1. Thanks Marylin. A few people said it would look muh better with all the colour showing through as some sort of modern take on a gothic castle :0P

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  17. El resultado es espectacular !!!!!!

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    1. Muchas gracias Eloisa. Eso es muy amable de tu parte :0)

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  18. Poner la piedra puede ser tedioso e incluso doloroso, pero el resultado es estupendo. También han quedado muy bien los moldes de las figuras.
    Me ha encantado saber que Ernie está bien.Debe ser muy satisfactorio saber que has salvado a una criatura tan tierna como esa.

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    1. Gracias Isabel. Tengo un corazón muy suave para las pequeñas criaturas y me sentí tan aliviado al oír que él está haciendo bien y puede regresar a su hábitat natural :0)

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  19. Great job on the stonework and the cast pieces. The house is really coming together! Did you add sand to your paint to give it texture?

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    1. Thanks Troy. I added powdered grout after seeing Elizabeth's post about stone work -
      http://studioeminiatures.blogspot.co.uk/2017/05/dont-fence-me-in-stone-arch-tutorial.html
      It's really effective and gives the paint a gritty texture. I bet sand would work too :0)

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  20. I find your progress inspiring and it's wonderful to see you mastering your skills.

    P.S. Wishing Ernie a long & prosperous life.

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    1. Thank you, that's very kind. I've just clicked to have a look at your blog and see that you haven't posted yet. I do hope you will and let us know. Looking forward to seeing another fabulous mid modern blogger :0)

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  21. A great work. The stones look perfect and realistic.
    Ernie is so cute.

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    1. Thank you Faby, I'm glad you like it :0)

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  22. you are amazing, I teared up reading about Ernie I hope he does well in the wild and I love Bert I didnt know we could do things like that but now that I do guess Ill have to give it a go

    hugs
    Marisa

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    1. Hi Maris, well I'm not casting someone's sculpture entirely and claiming it as my own. Just taking elements of it as a base. No different than buying an plastic animal, altering its shape slightly and adding fur :0)

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  23. 'Not good at sculpting' she says, then proceeds to make this amazing looking Saytr! Bert looks fantastic, as does the egg carton stones - well worth all the sleepless mornings!

    Ernie (Bert and Ernie, LOL) is super cute and I'm so glad you managed to rescue him!

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    1. Ha, I knew you would spot the Bert and Ernie reference :0P

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  24. Dear Pepper, Your Facade is Fantastic! I can feel your pain... I am always amazed at how slow the egg carton rocks are to build.... but I think the results are worth it! And your Sculpture and crest are perfect! Your disciplined application has paid off (Gee, maybe I should finish the Tower on the Cloud Palace one of these days....).... this Manor is looking Gorgeous! And little Ernie is as cute as can be and lucky too... but just don't let him near your tulip bulbs.... you won't think he is cute when they all fail to flower!

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    1. Thank you Betsy. I hope Ernie will be released well away from anyone's garden :0P

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  25. Are you in need of the number of Eggbox Haters Anonymous? *LOL* Your first picture really made me smile with full sympathy because of knowing a bit about cutting eggbox too like most of us (although so far I preferred free-style "stones" *teehee*) But the result is awesome, the facade looks stunning. Well, and about Bert... do I have to mention at all that I love this guy? You've made a fantastic job and what could a Rick Grimes figurine ever achieve more than becoming a Bert watching all visitors at your Manor? It's fascinating how you're playing along with stuff and ending with the perfect matches for your project. Oh, and about Ernie... he's a lucky little chap because you were the one to find him, good to hear he's doing fine.

    Hugs
    Birgit

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    1. Ha, I think if there isn't an eggbox haters society, then I should start one. I bet it would be very popular with miniaturists :0P

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  26. So exciting to see some of the exterior come to life! I really like the pattern for the stone you made. Doing it in sections like this will probably help keep your sanity too ;)
    The transformation from Rick Grimes to Bert is LOL amazing! He looks spectacular all plastered on. I can't wait to see the colours added and all the weathering.
    Hopefully Ernie will be back out running around soon :)

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    1. Thanks Kristine. I thought doing one facade at a time would let me ease into eggboxing. Now I know I need to set aside a few months in winter to finish the other three O_o

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  27. I love the stones and the arrangement. It does look much better using egg cartons. I just hate the tedious cutting of the stones. So happy your little "friend" is doing well. Glad you were there to save him!

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  28. I love love love your creative ideas!!!! Never mind the egg forms.....
    Neomi

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