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Posts posted by Kells

  1. I don't know why I'm asking this other than it's been bugging me as one of those "I really should fix that" sort of things. When my mother passed, I inherited (along with 30 other houses!!) three of Franklin Mint's dollhouses: the Hummingbird and Rose cottages, and the Norman Rockwell Christmas Brownstone.

    The Hummingbird Cottage has a trellis on the front but the one on Mom's is broken. The sides are intact but the arched top is completely smashed beyond all repair. I'll put pictures below but they're off the Internet, not of the actual house or broken trellis. I'm loathe to take it out of the box until I figure out what to do with it.

    I'm at a loss. I don't think I could convincingly fix it using paperclay. I *MIGHT* be able to pull off the trellis, but I know I could never get those flowers right. Any thoughts of what I could do?

    I thought of just cutting off the top portion and leaving the intact side portions of the trellis and flowers. I think it might look stupid without the arched top though. Two tall trellises to either side of the door? Hmm, I just can't see it. Maybe cutting the sides off so only the bottom third was still there then put a flat railing atop both sides so it was sort of just a little fence to either side of the door? Any thoughts on the matter would be appreciated.

    Hummingbird Cottage.jpg

    Arbor Close-Up.jpg

  2. Lee and Holly both mentioned foam board so I'll add my experience with that. I've used it a number of times to block window openings and stairwell openings. I had one house with the stairs right in front of the front door. I moved the stairs to the side, which required cutting a new stairwell opening and filling in the old one.

    3/16" foam board is cheap, readily available at craft stores, and is easy to cut. Gluing two 3/16" thick pieces cut to size makes it 3/8" thick, the same as many dollhouse walls and floors. By the time you cover filled-in window/door openings with siding outside and wallpaper inside, you'd never know there was an opening there. Same with stairwells or interior door openings for that matter, which I've repositioned more times than I can remember. The ceiling paper underneath and the flooring on top holds it into place perfectly. Some of mine are years old and they have never buckled or sagged - even with furniture on top! - and the seams remain completely invisible.

  3. You may also want to look for Tudor style furniture. Much of it is dark wood and heavily carved, and can easily pass for Spanish style antique furniture, which is so popular in Santa Fe-style decor. I used these Goebel chairs around a Reminiscence dining table (both pictured below) in a Spanish roombox with stucco walls and quarry tile floors. I thought it looked quite good, IMHO. The barley twist carving on the table legs seemed very Spanish to me (more Portuguese, actually, but who's quibbling?).

    You can find loads of Tudor style dollhouse furniture on Ebay. Just be careful of some of the English pieces, which are available in abundance. Many are 1/16th (3/4) scale. Pay close attention to the dimensions.

    Here's another example I found with a quick search. Not sure about that bed, but the side cabinet could easily pass for an antique Spanish piece in a southwestern style house.




    Reminiscence Table and Chairs.jpg

  4. Well, here's a spot of good news. My left hand hasn't improved but I saw a specialist about it. He thinks it's just a pinched nerve in my neck and not permanent damage!! He sees it often after people have been in the hospital. I can believe it. I was trussed up to so many tubes and wires that I could barely move. It was quite uncomfortable, as you can imagine. He wanted to send me to a physical therapist. That may still happen if things don't improve, but in the meantime I opted to just try some exercises and stretches he recommended to try to work things out. Honestly, I am just relieved to hear someone tell me they don't think it's permanent nerve or muscle damage! It's been very worrisome.

    • Like 1
  5. I prefer mine to be realistic and historically accurate but I very much enjoy the creativity others put into whimsical houses. I could never come up with some of the things they do!

    Speaking of whimsical, my grandmother had a tree trunk dollhouse from the 1950s. I wish I knew what happened to it; it vanished ages ago. It was a multi-story mouse house in about 1:24 scale with that colorful old German painted dollhouse furniture I'm sure most of you have seen. She'd made curtains and bedspreads out of small print fabrics, tea sets out of beads, plates out of antique buttons. My family's love of miniatures goes back generations. I come by it honestly!

    • Like 1
  6. 23 hours ago, fov said:

    I did. No response but he ended it like a minute after I sent the message.

    You got off lucky. I saw a Greenleaf Garfield on Ebay some years back listed at $3,000 (!!!!) stating that it was an antique built by the seller's great-grandfather in the 1920s or 30s. I was super tactful and kind in informing the seller what the house actually was. Oh boy, did I ever get a nasty reply!

    The seller did remove the listing shortly thereafter, however. You should have seen that house though. It was completely unfinished, not even a drop of paint, and looked like it had been slapped together in a hurry using a hot glue gun. Truly a mess.

  7. Not a question about the Beacon Hill but this seems as good a place as any to put this. Scrolling around pretty decorating ideas on the Internet, I perused a multi-million-dollar apartment in Paris. Thought you all might like to see what these millionaires had prominently displayed in their foyer!!! :cheer:


    Beacon Hill in Paris.jpg

    • Like 4
  8. Thank you all for the kind wishes. I feel great, not sick at all! The left hand is still a concern, though. I can't so much as pick up a spoon. Good thing I'm not left-handed! It is very weird. I can stretch my fingers out and wriggle them, but if I try to pick anything up my hand just says, "I think not."

    My husband tested positive for antibodies, which means he had it and never even knew. Pretty sure I got it from him. His job requires public contact, and although he's been careful, that's where it most likely came from. He feels so bad. I reassured him I could just as easily got it from a gas pump.

    Okay, so you can all whup me upside the head for not playing this to my advantage. I could totally have used this to guilt-trip him into another dollhouse!

    "Oh, Kells, how can I ever make it up to you?"

    "Funny you mention. I just happened to be on Craigslist . . ." :cheezy:


    • Like 2
    • Haha 1
  9. I don't know what forum to put this in. Moderator(s) feel free to move it to wherever you feel it belongs. Just giving an update.

    I'm recovering from the dreaded Covid-19! I was so careful too, doing everything I was supposed to do: social distancing, wearing a mask, obsessively washing my hands... Fat lot of good it did!

    I didn't get any respiratory symptoms but it attacked my heart. Thought I was having a heart attack. Agony. Trip to the hospital, out in a few days, and then a few days after returning home my husband heard a crash in the kitchen. I was overcome by waves of dizziness and thought, "Oh, I should go lie down..." He found me lying amongst broken dishes I'd been putting away when I collapsed.

    That resulted in a return to the hospital for nearly a week's stay in the Covid Ward, or what I called the Leper's Tower. Everyone dressed in near haz-mat suits and no visitors. My dear hubs has been more upset about all of this than I, God bless him.

    I'm home now but tests have yet to reveal if my heart has suffered any permanent damage. I can't get my left hand to work properly. It won't grip anything. No signs of a stroke though, so that's a blessing. Hoping for full recovery, only time will tell.

    Now lots of catching up to do with all of your posts and projects. I'll have to enjoy miniatures vicariously through all of you for a while!

  10. On 8/19/2020 at 7:58 AM, Shelly N said:

    I love in Fort Collins, CO where do you live?  There are a ton of miniaturists around.

    Welcome! I grew up in Fort Collins, on the eastern end of Lindenmeier Lake. Such a lovely town, how I do miss it.

  11. On 2/29/2020, 3:24:49, Delilah1003 said:

    Does anyone know of places to buy miniatures in Las Vegas?  

    I check local Craigslist whenever we're on vacation. Las Vegas and San Diego have been particularly fruitful in the past; loads of Bespaq for 10-cents on the dollar, and a couple signed Clell Boyce houses for $125 apiece. I just had a look and don't see anything that excites me, but we all go for different things so your mileage may vary.

  12. And with my little lead rant over, haha, I use simulated liquid leading. I get mine from Michael's but a quick search shows it's available in lots of places. Only snip off the tiniest portion of the top so the opening is not too large. I cut mine too small then just widened it by working the tip of a metal kitchen skewer into it. It worked well to make nice Tudor style diamond-paned leaded windows, but it does take a steady hand.

    EDIT: Always a P.S. afterthought with me! I remembered that I didn't care for the perfect black look as the leading. I used silver leaf Rub 'n Buff and just swiped it onto the leading with the tip of my pinky finger. I was concerned that it would look too shiny, like actual silver. Thankfully it did not, and I found it to create the perfect finish.

  13. 15 hours ago, havanaholly said:

    DO wear rubber gloves to prevent absorbing any lead through the skin of your hand & fingers.

    Glad you shared that advice. I ordered rolls of leading from a UK supplier to do a lead roof on a slanted roof addition (similar to Greenleaf's Baslow Ranch kit) for a farmhouse. The instructions that came with it had at the top in big bold capital letters a warning to wear gloves so you didn't get lead poisoning.

    Okay, good enough for installation, but then what? Do you have to never touch it again, or make sure no one else ever does?? No thank you. I just put on some stripwood for the battens and age-painted the whole thing in slightly varying shades of gray. Looked fine and I don't have to worry about lead poisoning, TYVM.

  14. I could see styrofoam working for brick, although I've never tried it. I definitely prefer egg cartons for stone, however. It's already perfectly textured, IMO, so that saves a lot of work. I wanted a cut-stone-block of mixed colored stones for a foundation on one of my houses. I'm happy with how it turned out. Here's a close-up picture that shows the texture of egg cartons. I painted, obviously, but did not do any extra texturing.

    Egg Carton Foundation.jpg

  15. 7 hours ago, shamrockgirl18 said:

    Well, I know others who have gone one direction with a house, not liked it or kept it for some reason, and then re-do the house in a whole new way.  .  .I'd hate to get rid of it and then come up with a new idea for it.  .  .right now I don't have any other ideas for it b/c it's always been Snow White's house, but it just doesn't do anything for me anymore.  .  .



    As you said, some people re-do houses. You could try doing it up as a stone cottage. Another current thread talks about that method here. Be sure to watch the video in that thread. She is decorating the exact same house as yours. That might inspire you.

    In my experience, it's more difficult to re-do a house that's already built. You could try selling yours on Ebay with all the contents. It's cute and unique done up as Snow White's cottage. You could use the proceeds to get something that does excite you. I'm terrible at guessing what anything would sell for, but I think it reasonable to expect that you'd get enough to buy a new Greenleaf kit and start afresh.

    • Like 1
  16. 23 minutes ago, EarlyMom said:

    First time poster, new dollhouse builder here. I’ve just finished building the RGT Vermont Farmhouse Jr and I’m looking for a way to make it easier for my kids to play with it. What ideas do y’all have about finding a “base” for it to sit on? I’ve considered building a platform with casters on it, finding a similarly sized end table and cutting the legs to make it short enough for little ones to easily access the top floor, and building a low table.

    I have an RGT lighthouse (thrift store find, cheap!) that sits perfectly on an Ethan Allen round side table I found at a yard sale for $15. I'd go with cutting down an end table or side table if possible. You can find very sturdy pieces for next to nothing at thrift and consignment stores, or on Craigslist. Unless you're a furniture maker, they are probably better built than anything novices like myself could create.

    Oh, and "brown furniture" (that's what the industry calls those old stained wood pieces) are very much out of style, so they go cheap. One word: PAINT, lol. Look for good manufacturers such as Ethan Allen, Drexel, Henredon, etc. Don't get IKEA, it doesn't hold up.

    • Like 1
  17. 1 hour ago, madtex1967 said:

    It's the Little Orphan Annie House by SW Crafts.  It has been added onto one side with the bay window added.  A dormer has also been added to the attic, along with the porch alteration.

    Thank you! That's what it looked like to me but that porch was really throwing me off. There's a Little Orphan Annie House listed on Ebay right now. Below are comparisons. The first is the house in question (with the porch and bay window modifications). The second is the Little Orphan Annie house done without modifications.



  18. 12 hours ago, Mid-life madness said:

    Does anyone know what house this is, by which manufacturer? Just curious, not that I'm buying it. It does have some nice features. The stained glass looks real, not printed on acetate. Those bay windows are Carlson, per one of their old catalogs. They are next to impossible to find. And the front door is Lawbre. I agree it's likely not going for a thousand bucks. I would think $500 a fair price for such a large house, but we all know dollhouses are a tough sell so who knows.

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