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First dollhouse - a Greenleaf kit !


_Roxy_
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I'm so excited !!!
After months of careful combing through second-hand market websites and ebay deals, I finally found a local seller for a Greenleaf kit !

Good karma must be a real thing because it's the only one I could find, and no-one had snatched it despite the listing being up for a while already ! The box is said to be open but not missing any component, which I hope for, and the seller sounded like a good, serious person, and the few pictures he sent me made it look like at least most sheets were there. If not, well, I guess it'll be "bashing-with-foamcore-time" : I won't be disappointed anyway given the price I paid, and the fact that I doubt I'd have ever found that kit on this side of the Atlantic otherwise...

It's my first dollhouse and the package should be here by next week ; I'm practically vibrating when thinking about it, hehe ! :D

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Behold, if everything is here, it's not one but TWO kits I'm getting ! :clap:

The one I bought and wanted is a laser-cut Brimbles, and the other he's giving me for free because he needs to make space since he's moving. I think the 2nd one may be a half-scale Fairfield, but that box was more damaged so I'm not too sure. 

Guess it'll be a surprise ! And just in time for my birthday ~

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The houses are here !!! Good thing my father was with me to pick the package, because it was half as big as me, and as heavy, lol !

As I I expected, the full scale Brimbles came with an half-scale Fairfield. The difference in wood is staggering ; the laser-cut Brimbles pieces were pretty much falling out of the sheets as I lifted them, but the Fairfield is rougher and more brittle ! There is very little bending, though, so that's great !

Aaand best news is that both kits are 99% complete : all I'm missing are the Fairfield's shingles !

Now I have to clean up a table to set a proper working space, and start dry-fitting... Maybe I'll bash them ? The Fairfield is adorable but a little small for my dolls, maybe I can make the walls slightly taller ? I think I want to make a public library out of the Brimbles... So many ideas already ! :clap:

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Have fun! The Fairfield is die cut on luan plywood and the Brimbles is laser cut on a different type of wood (I'm not sure what it is), so the difference in quality is to be expected. The Fairfield will require more prep work but it's an adorable house. I don't have the patience for a lot of prep work, so I tend to cover up as much of the plywood as possible (with siding, wallpaper, etc.) and swap out the windows with Houseworks windows.

Personally I wouldn't try to bash the Fairfield into a larger scale house. It's well proportioned and attempting to raise the ceilings would impact the entire assembly. I think it would be easier to bash a 1:12 house into half scale than to turn a 1:24 house into 1:12 scale. Maybe start with the Brimbles and then save the Fairfield for later when you feel like giving half scale a try.

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1 hour ago, fov said:

Maybe start with the Brimbles and then save the Fairfield for later when you feel like giving half scale a try.

I agree, currently building the Fairfield and I definitely wouldn't try to make it 12th scale. But enjoy building your great finds! 

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I did as you both said and got started on the Brimbles ; first because I already have an idea for it, and secondly because it did look easier as a first build. I don't regret it ! Very little sanding to do, and the pieces are big enough for me not to lose them... Speaking of it, I didn't expect it to be so big ! I now have even more respect for people who tackles monsters like the Garfield...

I got done with my 1st dry-fit today ! Most of it went together super easily, barely any sanding required on tabs. So fun ! ....Except for those stairs. I think I'll have nightmares of those stairs for weeks. In the end I gave up and dry-fitted the stairs outside of the house, and then only put the big pieces in. I'm not looking forward to doing it again.

Is there a Brimbles building blog ? I feel like I got my roof building steps mixed. Or maybe there is a trick, 'cause half of the dormers rooftop fell when I tried pushing the main roof down...

large.Brimbles_dry_fit_reduced.jpg.01d45ccbe0b2cbab4bc714411c469968.jpg

I think I either need to plan some LED lights or to add a window, because the back looks pretty dark. Too dark for a library !

I'm also going to cut a door under the stairs to make WC. Or just a mop closet? I'll see what fits. 

And now I need to start thinking about interior decoration : A comfy reading area ? A kid section ? Some libre-service computers ? So many possibilities :p

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1 hour ago, _Roxy_ said:

I'm also going to cut a door under the stairs to make WC.

To avoid cutting, you could just glue a door on the wall and label it "WC"  or "Private" or "Supplies" or whatever :D 

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  • 3 weeks later...

Some updates ! :p

The weather finally agreed with me long enough to get the dremel outside and do the big bash of this project : adding a skylight in the roof to make the 2nd floor brighter !

large.skylight.jpg.6cbea660f71f0c7be07f98a7233828d9.jpg

 

I'm also 95% done on the hardwood flooring of the first floor. I used cut bamboo placemats (thank you everyone who used them here before, a great idea !) and some acrylic ink to "stain" it. Unfortunately I had a little accident... some spill. And now there's a distincly darker patch. I guess I'll have to darken the rest as well. And do some touch up, because despite my best efforts (sanding by hand) there are some glue spots left... These I can cover with acrylic paint.large.1stfloor_harwood.jpg.2d2fec6cf1c937545f2ff1f84ea4edf1.jpg

And I got started on trim priming/painting, with a little helper to supervise my work... :Dlarge.20211022_160031.jpg.d3891393b9b4882fb2d6c7b5445777a8.jpg

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  • 4 weeks later...

Whew ! Trim painting took muuuch longer than I expected, but I'm now mostly done. Everything is white for now, although the more I think about it, the more I may switch some window trim to blue...

I'm mostly done with the stairs ; Miss Brimbles decidedly went for more modern than I had first thought ! But we've both agreed that we like it that way. The color scheme is now decided ! :clap:

large.20211116_101405.jpg.b152d77a9b9144a6302a71a642882a2b.jpg

I need to finish staining and building the big shelf, since I'm planning on using it against the lower floor back wall. I'll probably leave that wall white, and I'll see if I make the top of the stairs handrails white or blue.

I also have to come up with a solution for my left wall... I was planning on wallpapering it, and I have the perfect pattern... But I only have 1 sheet, and it's smaller than the wall. And despite my best effort, I couldn't find a second sheet at the shop I had brought it... So either I don't wallpaper (but this is boring), or I have a small part of the wall that will be left white (not likely), painted blue (possible), or wallpapered with a plain (or different?) blue pattern. That last solution sound best, since my perfect wallpaper would stop kind of right before the stairway... it would make it look somewhat 'wanted'. But then, does that mean I wallpaper only that sliver of left wall, or do I use the same wallpaper on the part of the back wall the stairs also occupies..? :hmm:

Maybe I should do a quick photoshop test...

 

(Also, why is it that the dark-colored cat is always stepping in the white paint, while the pale-colored cat steps in the dark brown paint ?!)

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If you could find some narrow millwork like I used for this door frame:

Washngton 2.0 farmhouse

you could use it to separate the printed wallpaper from the plain and paint it a contrasting color (like on the stair risers, which I like very much).

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4 hours ago, _Roxy_ said:

 

large.20211116_101405.jpg.b152d77a9b9144a6302a71a642882a2b.jpg

I wouldn't worry about the floor, especially when all the interior walls, stairs, furniture are installed. You could always throw a rug over the darker part too to help break it up.

 

I purposefully used a popsicle stick that had a burn hole in near right next to my fireplace. Ooops! Someone let an ember get away! It adds character imo.

I think it's all looking good! Coming together. And it's normal to agonize over the decisions. I think everyone here does to some extent or another. As long as the agonizing doesn't stop you from taking the next step.

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2 hours ago, Medieval said:

I think it's all looking good! Coming together. And it's normal to agonize over the decisions. I think everyone here does to some extent or another. As long as the agonizing doesn't stop you from taking the next step.

Agreed! And even if you take the wrong step, there is always a way to do over. Sometimes you just need to see it to know that a step is not the best one. :) 

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  • 2 weeks later...

I put Brimbles together in a second dry-fit today. Thankfully, the wallpaper isn't that short, and I feel like I can make something rather natural with where it stops. I photoshop'd quickly my two ideas for now : either use plain blue wallpaper all on the walls where the stairs are, or try to make  a triangle pattern like the stairs. I like the second one, but I need to measure IRL to see if it would look centered and not too weird !

large.all_blue.jpg.60c8095daaef3750ab8ffed8dbb94f2f.jpglarge.blue_triangle.jpg.9c39fed18296a0083791ca6226963996.jpg

(And yes, I did sew a tiny tiny security vest to take a picture of my doll supervising the building process :p)

 

I need to pretty up that WC door - probably print an actual toilet logo, perhaps add some trim or something on the border. For the beam hiding the wallpapers' seams, I have leftover bamboo sticks... I could make some texture by sandwiching that between kebab sticks. Another thing to test !

Next steps are to finish the shelf unit, work on the top level bench (probably by adding some shelving to it too), and get started on lights. I finally received the LEDs I bought online, and despite their small size they shine very bright ! Now I gotta search my beads/caps stash to make some lamps, and think about where to hide the wires.

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