Posts Tagged ‘granpa’

As you may (or may not) recall, the pre-renovation dollhouse had some inconsistent floor heights. Not that there is anything wrong with that.

And, as you may also recall, I had a bit of a disaster with the interior walls being too thin for the doors to be fitted into them. It’s not a total disaster and is recoverable, but it is somewhat of a setback.

Well there is now a third disaster in that I have lost my amazing little piece of paper with my amazing measurements for my new floor heights.

I have hunted (and hunted and hunted and…etc) through all of my amazing little pieces of paper which include floor plans, measurements, room plans, door measurements, conversions of 1:1 bed sizes to 1:12 (work in progress that I am not ready to discuss) and some notes where even I can’t read my writing (altho I can”t tell you what they actually are,  I can confirm they are not measurements). What I can’t find anywhere in all these amazing little piece of paper are the interior wall height measurements. Bugger.


I have already measured & drawn, cut & discarded the too thin interior walls, so I can’t reverse engineer from them…square one it is then!

Let’s start with what I already know:

…the first (ground) floor is about 24 cm high, while my second (first) floor is 22cm high and my third (second) floor is 18cm high.

64cm plus the future attic renovation = 85.4cm.

85.4cxm minus the height of each MDF floor 3 x 0.9cm (which I am quite pleased to have remembered to factor in) = 85.4cm – 2.7cm =  82.7cm.

There will need to be some variation in floors, but I am currently thinking floor heights will be as follows:

  • First (Your Ground) floor: 21cm
  • Second (Your first): 21cm
  • Third (Your second) : 18.2cm
  • Attic conversion: ~22.5cm

Now what I need to do is revisit my stair flights and confirm that these heights will work and we are go for launch…or at least for floor support attachment 😉


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As mentioned previously, due to visitors from overseas I am in the equivalent of purgatory for the person who has other stuff to do and it is ongoing.

However, the deep, dark secret I have been keeping from you is…that I can keep secrets, despite all appearances to the contrary.

I know, surprising, neh?

No wait – it’s not that secret, it’s this secret (Did I just give away a different deep dark secret? d’oh ;P ).

Anyway, back to seriousness now in spite of my raging tiredness and sore eyes and the requirement for me to clone myself and multi-task at the same time…

(hey – multi tasking clones…that’s an idea worth pursuing. They can multitask, while I sleep.)

Anyway – the deep, dark secret I have been keeping from you is…

The visitor is my uncle, the son of my granpa who made my  amazing dollhouse! And, he told me a story about the making of my amazing dollhouse.

But I don’t know if I should tell you, since you already know two more secrets about me than you did before you started reading this post (make that three  secrets if you count the fact that you’re working out I also am incredibly contrary and four secrets if you’re [only now] realising I am a difficult little princess)…

Oh what the hell.

Apparently my granpa wore a full suit and tie while he was building this house.

So he was measuring, sawing, hammering, wallpapering and painting while dressed to the nines in a suit, with a jacket;, and an immaculate shirt and tie.

He probably wore some sort of gentleman’s cap on his head too. And maybe a nicely folded handkerchief in his top pocket.

[Apparently he used to go fishing in a similar sort of attire too.]

Upperclass buildings by upperclass builders...

Upperclass buildings by upperclass builders...

So I have been letting the side down doing my renovations in shorts, singlet and anything that I don’t mind spilling pain/glue/woteva on.

Quite obviously I should be doing this in a party dress, my grandma’s pearls, 50’s style hat with a veil and some clean gloves.

If I had some pics of granpa in this house, I would share one with you of his potential attire – so you get the full impact of the scene my uncle painted. Unfortunately I don’t, but I trust you can use your imagination.

Instead I leave you with some heraldry I created for an imaginary company this news made me think of (I know I just love to create more things for me to do…argh).

The destroyed heraldry is by one of my heroes, Bittbox. I have been very lazy and just used his image rather than the amazing brushes he created…if I had a clone or two, I would have done it all properly.

No really, I would have.

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I may have taken on dad’s admonishments to “measure twice and cut once” and “make sure it is square” at the expense of taking into account my granpa’s DIY skillset.

It seems my floors are pretty square but the actual house they are to sit in, is not actually square.

Yes. I know. You can stop laughing now.

It seems the house is 3mm wider on one side than the other.

So all those floors I sweated over while sawing now actually need to be 3mm wide at one point. Ooopsie.

It would have paid me to draw his floor plan as a template and mark everything out, rather than measuring and drawing it exactly. One of the probs in dealing with an existing design rather than making something from scratch.

So having cut down all my floors, I now need to add some dowel (1mm x 9mm) to one side and plane it at an angle…yipppeee!

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Well, although I previously said I wouldn’t touch the outside of the house and even tho my dad visited on the weekend and, when I said “I’m not going to do anything to the outside, he said “once you see how it’s going you’ll want to do the outside” and I hate proving anyone but myself right…circumstances beyond my control have forced me to take action.

It looks like the ply that comprises of the walls is discolouring and becoming mildew-y on exposure. You can really see it at the top of the walls and it only seems to be on the outside walls. So, I made the executive decision to strip the outside walls too.

Of course it means I lose the flower grandpa painted on the weathered brick paper on the side:

Wildlife at 31 Kings Farm

Wildlife at 31 Kings Farm

Notice the paper dolls stuck to the side of the house? I had a set of them that I could make using a carbon transfer toy – for some reason I have stuck things like this all around the outside of the house. Can’t for the life of me remember why.

Anyhoo – guess what?

I discovered if you wet the outside wallpaper it peels off – no scraping, not sanding. It’s just slides right off – wish I’d bloody known that a week ago. It appears I did inside of the house the hard way.

The before pictures:

Bam and the dirt is gone!

Bam and the dirt is gone!

Now it might not be mildew, it might be discolouration caused by the air reacting with the ply, an acidity or whatever, but the only way to fix it will be to strip, sand, seal and then I will probably put a coat of anti-mould white paint over the whole house.

Another nekkid shot

Another nekkid shot

Cor look at the backside on that!

Cor look at the backside on that!

The good things is, I will use exterior papers on the outside of the house, so I don’t have to be as neat as I was on the inside 🙂

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Before I tell you about my stairs, I should mention my dad came over today and left me with a jigsaw, saw, tennent saw and some good advice about sawing.

Apparently a normal saw is going to be better than a jigsaw and I am going to have to find somewhere to stand on it, support the other part of it so it doesn’t break off and which also has enough depth for the saw.

In my house, this means standing on a BBQ bench out the back, about 1.5m off the ground with a pergola about 1.5 m above me – I shall look like Iago the sawing monster…

He also offered to do the sawing for me, but I declined. For now, anyway.

As a warm up, I decided to saw apart the staircases:

I shall turn this little flowergirl into a duchess...

I shall turn this little flowergirl into a duchess...

After two attempts with Dad’s saw, I retreated to my balsa wood saw which worked quite well. It has a fine blade and is easy to control.

It is unfortunately quite small, so I may have to hunt through what Dad gave me to see if he has something similar only larger. Otherwise I shall still be sawing in 2010.

It looks a little like a switchblade, so I feel a little Sweeney Todd-ish as I madly saw away in front of the teev:

Anyone need a barber?

Anyone need a barber?

The outcome was satisfactory and I promptly painted the works of art with high gloss white enamel:

White as driven snow...

White as driven snow...

Unfortunately, in my haste to paint my stairs I didn’t think to put the sealer on them first so the wood is soaking up my paint. I reckon it will be four coats (and a valuable lesson in the importance of patience, doing things in the proper order and sealer) before they look as shiney and glossy as I want ’em.

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I have drawn out my floor and wall plans very carefully onto the MDF which has led to me realising I can’t have single flights of stairs in this house.

Here are the interior wall plans I did last night:

Behold my measuring powers!!!!

Behold my measuring powers!!!!

To allow width for the door frames, I will have to have a landing and switch the stairs back on themselves.

This is actually quite good because although it offers a challenge for my rapidly increasing DIY skills it also means I can have a double french door into the room that will be a lounge room. If I had a single set, the stairs would have to be located on the other side of the hallway because of the landing windows.

Of course I have been pondering having a lift however there’s not enough width in the attic for it to contain the lift shaft and also have doors to each of the attic rooms. So stairs it is.

Regardez the floors:

Four to the floor

Four Three to the floor

The floor with the mistake on it (bottom one) has to have a void which is slightly less deep that the other two because the second floor will be less high than the ground and first floor.

And that means that the stairs won’t have as many treads… I know I think that’s quite forward planning-y of me too!

Of course that now means that I have to saw the flights of stairs I purchased into variable heights dependent on the heights of the floors… perhaps holding onto the imaginary lift would not have been a bad thing….

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Had to pike on this eve’s entertainment having put my neck out – I can take pills, but in doing so I can’t drive (they be strong uns, sirrah).

So back to the dollhouse drawing board and the Hitchcock masterpieces collection – another Jimmy Stewart special. Yeee-hah!

For a crappo night, it’s been quite good as I think I have managed to sort out something that has been puzzling me for a while – not being gifted in the spatial measurement-y spectrum.

I don’t want to alarm anyone, but I think I know what I am doing with the stairs.

It was elementary – solved by mapping out what I need to cut for the interior walls. Eureka!

Now I can progress to the floors which I previously had a moment with where I drew the ground floor plan onto the first floor thereby confusing myself somewhat significantly (that special DIY gene strikes again!).

If course it does mean I am going to have to do some fancy jigsaw work with the pre-made flights of stairs I purchased, but life is filled with challenges 🙂

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