Monday 9 June 2014

Mrs Puddifoot's gets steamy windows and a dress rehearsal.

Well it's been hot, sunny and humid in my part of the UK...we went from 14 or 15c to 27c in a day, I'm not liking too much!  I don't fry as much in the cabin as I did in my Summerhouse in my last garden, but it's hot enough!  

Anyhow, enough of all that! In case you're wondering what the first photo is all about, it's just a mini dress rehearsal of the downstairs of the teashop...but more of that in a minute. ;o))  I've also included some photo's with and without the flash on, the colours ring more true without the flash on...though shades of blue's and green's the camera has a habit of telling little lies! lol   
Hmmmmm! Steamy?

One of the descriptions of the shop was for 'steamy windows', that look isn't easy to recreate and I've never seen it done before. I used a form of glass paint that emulates the look of engraved glass (sorry I forgot to take a photo of it, but I think it's by on of the well known American brands that make the acrylic paints). It said on the bottle that it takes 4 days to dry if left out (you can cure in an oven...but I can't do that to acetate! lol). Anyhow, I have no idea where it was tested but it was more like 4 seconds! Maybe they tested it in the Antarctic?! As soon as it was out of the bottle and onto my little porcelain dish the clock was ticking away (that was on a cool day too)! I had 4 practises on some old spent acetate in order to try and erm emulate steamy windows. The stuff dried so fast that it was challenging to say the least to get the stuff how I wanted it on my window. So, from painful experience, less is more (on the brush) and work that around and around as fast as you can, before nasty white bits form. :o/ I emulated condensation by using a clay sculpting tool and drew a squiggly lines downwards...fingers helped smooth and blend the overall look. The side window is more misty than the front one (it was the first one I did). You can kinda remove some of it once dried, it does take effort and mine were tweaked.
 You can see into the teashop through the windows...the side windows are more opaque.
 It gives the suggestion of something on the windows...maybe it looks more like dirty windows! lol Still it is Harry Potter and nothing is that salubrious! lol      
This window is glued on, I wasn't going to add the tongue and grove on the opening wall because you have to leave an unrealistic space where it closes. I will have a think about whether to add it or leave it as it is.    
This is how the window frames will look. Finishing touches need to be applied...still WIP!
You must be thinking Arggghh what a colour, far too in your face! It wouldn't be to my taste or choosing, but Mrs Puddifoot seems to like it! The piece on the right is the first version of the shade I mixed up, the one on the left the last version...I'm not sure the camera is picking up the differences!   
The piece on the left has only had one coat. Lots of sanding etc to be done too. I may leave the finished version sanded...not entirely distressed, but maybe not perfect either. The top rail will sit on the upper front of the tongue and groove.
The fireplace will be painted a rather unusual shade of a brickish pink like some pieces of the furniture, it's a colour I have to mix up myself and I had to buy a particular colour just to get the right shade, so I can't paint the fireplace until the furniture is made. The fireplace will also sit off-centre, like in the real shop.
An idea how the other window will look. Lots of filling and painting to do...this is just to show how it will look. 
The door is a problem too. I bought some lovely architrave to go around it. It hides all the nasty raw edges,  not forgetting the hinges too! Anyhow, as  you can see the architrave is far too wide for above the door! 
It looks nasty and bare without anything...and I'm not sure whether to bother with the tongue and groove etc either, because the odd angle that the door is fitted in, could prove more trouble than it's worth and could hinder it fitting well.
So I had a look in my wood supplies (as  you do!) and found a plain piece of wood...not entirely exciting though! lol
So I opted for a fine and thin piece of dado rail instead, only I forgot to take a photo of it along side the door! lol   
I did a dress rehearsal of the shop too, this was to show how it will look. I'm not having that actual table or dresser (my one will be wider and have doors), these are just to show you what will be there. 
The door isn't finished at all! All the tables will have table cloths and the large round table is piled high with stacked cups with flower patterns etc. The chairs have cushions too. 
The real shop is quite claustrophobic and crammed full of stuff! The dresser will be filled with cups etc.
In the corner by the fireplace, I will add a tea trolley and under the front window a half moon table.;o) 
Waste not, want not and think before you throw in the bin! lol Yes, even that tiny green piece! I was dressing the teashop and there's a tiny gap between the back door and wall and I was planning just painting the gap...well that slither of wood fits perfectly! lol  
My Mum has made my table curtains, they are all separate for ease of use. They hide all the boxes of stuff! :o)) 

  My delphinium's are out!

I will be adding an air drying clay tutorial on my other blog Michelle's Mad World 2 tonight, I will be adding more text/data to it and also photo's. You are welcome to ask questions as I fill in the gaps and of course when its complete etc. I will be back to check for editing of this post too! lol 

I hope you don’t mind my ramblings and madness! :o))

Michelle xxxx

Tuesday 3 June 2014

Mrs Puddifoot's gets its kitchen fire surround, and work commences on terrace of shops in Diagon Alley and more!

Well I have been busy, and mostly not doing mini work!  Time has been taken up for other things and for the cabin to get its final decorative touches. I just need to purchase the fabric for the display tables curtains and it's just about finished. A few things need tweaking (my little what-not on the wall needs a proper re-dressing), but at last I can have an idea of my display space.  

Firstly though my truly wonderful fire surround that I had made is here, I had to wait a while, but it was well worth it!!! I couldn't decide what type of stove to many of the Harry Potter kitchen's have old fashioned black ranges that I really didn't think this project suited it. So it will be a choice between the very earliest AGA available in the UK in cream (which fits this surround as it's made by the same makers) or the quirky stove kit by Chrysnbon which I have loved for years. So I've bought the latter to see what it looks like and if it doesn't suit the project I have lots of other projects it will suit. ;o)
I chose the larger one as it gives me more options with the type of stove. I will most likely go with the old fashioned cream AGA. I was going to have it on the back wall where I think it would look better, but because the fireplace downstairs is on this wall, that means the chimney breast has to be on this side...I have to be authentic! lol

It's not small, but as it's gonna be a key piece in the room, I didn't mind. The other one in the same style is only slightly smaller.
I've also completed the wallpapering for this wall, and I had to join it. I prefer proper dolls house sheets or scrap booking pages where you get much bigger sheets. I glued on with YES! Paste, the best thing since sliced bread in my opinion! It's extremely low in water content thus does not damage the paper in any way and you can slide it around to ensure it's in the correct position.    
I also trimmed the interior window frames that I made so they fit better and I've repainted where I've trimmed them. I've also cut the acetate, no it isn't blue! lol That's just the protective film to stop it getting scratched! :o)  I will glue  into place using Glue 'n' Glaze and then I will apply some 'steamy windows' effects. ;o) 
I've also made interior window frames for the door. These are still very raw. They've had their first coat of homemade primer (white emulsion paint and PVA (white glue), I make mine up 50/50, quite strong. I will apply 2 or 3 coats, sanding inbetween coats to I get a smooth and even edge. Once painted they are as strong as a thin piece of plywood. 
This is my latest kit to being built, my terrace of 3 shops for Diagon alley, as you can see it has three floors. I'm in the middle of priming and that will take a while! lol  I used homemade primer for the interior, but a bought one for the outside. If you are just going to wallpaper and paint, then priming a kit isn't so important, but if you are going to use bricks with mortar, or clay then it's essential that you do. Also, the larger the front panel and kit, the more prone it is to warp and warp it will....MDF is known for it! Priming also alleviates a lot of the fluffy bits and once sanded is a lot smoother to work with.     
I have a way to go yet! I do a bit of priming and let that piece dry and then go and do something else on the tea shop! lol 
A rough idea how I might have the walls, though with the downstairs shop ones  you don't have a choice about the shop walls, the windows and doors positions dictate that.  
The shop on the left will be Scrivenshaft's Quill shop. As you can see I will be adding false doors. :o) 
Where the door will go, I was going to have it on the back wall, but it doesn't fit in with that unit there. ;o)
The Magic Neep, the magical grocers. These aren't the stairs supplied, just an example to show you the planned layout. I will dress and adorn the stairs with goods for the shop I think! lol
 Twilfit and Taffings clothes shop, again with a false door.
Twilfit and Taffings work room, I will add a false door on the back wall. I don't want a huge room for this. 
The remainder of the project? Well, it's likely to be Brews & Stews B&B. I have no idea what it's like, but it won't be too salubrious! lol  This room will be the kitchen I think.
The living room..a busy room? 
 Overall look...
I'm going to change the window and make them Georgian.
To something like this, I will use the proper sized piece of wood though! lol
Most of my time has been taken up with decoration of the cabin! The last thing to do is buy the fabric for the curtain under the table's, I think my Mum is going to get it tomorrow. This is not the final look of my Diagon Alley layout, not all the shops are down from the top shelf and I want to play with ideas. ;o)   
 The joke shop will stay in that corner though as it's big.
I may have some shops jutting out and some on turntables. I don't like the idea that you can only pose the corner shops one way (so you can access them inside), if they are on a turntable they can face one way in the alley and to open them, turn them around. ;o) 
 I will have minis scenes along the alley. There are many stalls and stands.
I plan to add stairs incorporate my layout with my real life furniture! lol
My Hogwarts will go on the back chest of drawers, I plan to make my own. The Hogshead Tavern will become The Three it will be the first project to the alley (like in the films), so I will remove the beams and paperclay on that side and add aged and distressed bricks instead.   
I don't plan to have this shop jutting out here, but further up the other end near my Centenary House.  
My cabin has been decorated with items I bought ages ago! I will have the balloon dressed. :o) 
My Mum has made the curtains/blinds...all in one day. The blinds don't work, just there to soften the look.
 My Mum bought me this in our local market town. ;o))
 This area needs attention! The what-not on the wall isn't dressed how I want it or finished!    
 My Sister made all the pictures, some were in my old craft room, ;o) 
 I've had this witch since I was 21. My sister bought her in Whitby, she's an old favourite and graced many walls. 
 The wooden hearts for my blinds. I painted them in the same paint as the window  boxes.
Here they are in situ! ;o)
 My garden's growing... 

All taken today...very cloudy at times as you can see! lol  

I hope you don’t mind my ramblings and madness! :o))

Michelle xxxx