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Sunday, April 20, 2014

Ruffing It....

That's what Spike calls roofing.  He was the only one willing to get up early on Easter Sunday.

I got all of the wrought iron painted and the top cap on the roof.  Spike did nothing to help, but cheered me on.
I have started applying washes to make the roof look aged now....A little bit at a time.  I have to let it dry between washes.  It is easy to over do it if you don't. 

I see a spot in the iron trim on the cap that needs to be adjusted a little bit.. The loops are too close together.

In case you hadn't guessed, the "iron" is antique lace, that I painted black before installing.

This is probably all I am going to do today...

We all just wanted to pop in and say Happy Easter to those that celebrate.  Happy Sunday to everyone else.

See you tomorrow.

Saturday, April 19, 2014

All Is Forgiven...Kind Of...

The Terrible Two are back together...I will tell you about that part later...

This morning I drew and cut the roof cap shingles for Daisy's cottage. 

I did it with copper scrap booking paper.

To show you what can be done with this technique, here is the roof of Spike's crypt.  It was done with charcoal colored, textured drawing paper.  With a bit of Prismacolor Pencil shading on top. 

The point is, You don't always have to use conventional shingles.  Whatever works is my motto.

I turned the paper over to the back and drew lines across the longer edge at 1/2" intervals.  Then I turned it lengthwise and did 1" intervals.

From there, I did diagonals on every other rectangle, in one direction.
Then I went back and did them in the opposite direction, forming triangles that were half the length of the rectangles.

When I cut them out, I first cut them in strips, with a plain edge on one side and triangles on the other side.
 Then I went back and cut the triangles out on each strip.  Keep the triangles.  They are handy to do the top row, if you do a whole roof.

Anyway....Yes. Those are Tessie's toes that you see.  She's Baaaack.....

Zar let her off the hook with the proviso that she would behave herself for a full 24 hours... Sure she will... It also helped to promise her a chocolate covered graham cracker....All of her very own.
Here you can see the first part of the roof cap.  There are still a few steps to go, to make it look good.  I will get to that by tomorrow.

Meanwhile, I think that I deserve a chocolate covered graham cracker for getting back to work on the house. 

No.  I haven't finished the workroom yet...

See you tomorrow.

Friday, April 18, 2014

All Quiet on the Western Front....

I am continuing and making progress now. 

Working around the room, I am on the western wall... I still have some rearranging to do when I get everything in place, but I am happy with it so far.

I moved the stack or drawers from one end to the other of the bookcases and turned the one on the end sideways to get more room behind the desk.  I even have room for the small worktable, in front of the window now. 

Spike likes the arrangement.  No. Not the dog.  The vampire.  He sits in a copy of King Tut's favorite chair, on the corner of the table...

Walter got him for me one Christmas when Buffy was still on.  I totally repainted his face, so that it would look more like James Marsters.  Unfortunately this one is about the size of a Barbie.  No I am not going into 1/6 scale just to make him a room.  He will have to be happy with the throne.
Here you can see the switch.  It makes the wood far easier to get to.

There is still a lot of straightening to do in here.  I am basically moving furniture right now.

I am getting there....One step at a time.
You may be wondering what happened to the yelling from yesterday...

It is very quiet.  I gave Zar a large sack of pick up sticks, shaped like tools.  Unfortunately, or maybe fortunately, there was a wand in the mix...

Tessie is now approximately 1 1/4" tall. She kept yammering all morning...Zar got tired of it.

When he found the wand...He turned to her.  He pointed it at her and said, "Tessie!  You deserve this!"

She is now sitting on his arm... Still yammering!  Now it sounds like a bunch of crickets.  I don't understand a word she is saying.

It has been a peaceful morning for me, but not so much for Zar... He can't shake her off, or shut her up.

When will he ever learn?  I guess that I should go See if I can reason with him to turn her back to the right size.  Now he knows what I go through every day.  I don't think that it will be a hard sell.

Gotta run before mayhem ensues...

See you tomorrow.

Thursday, April 17, 2014

Tessie Told Me To!

 I heard yelling coming from the workroom this morning...I pushed my way through the mess and saw that it was Tessie.  She was stuck behind a pile of wood in one corner.

Zar was trying to pull her out.  It was another case of forgetting how to zap in a time of panic.

I pulled her out and she stood up, dusted herself off and started yelling at me...That's what I get for pulling her out.  I should have left her...If I had, I could be peacefully working on the roof of Daisy's cottage....
She was really irate and I couldn't blame her.  Just look at the mess!  The wood that she was stuck under is behind the broom in this photo...

After she straightened herself out, she looked down the end of her nose at me and gestured towards the corner she had been stuck in...And she shouted, "How can you live like this.  I can't find anything in this mess!".  And then, in a little calmer voice, she continued.  "You are taking the day off from that silly cottage, that's not even mine, and clean up this mess. You should be ashamed...Very ashamed...!
So...Just to be obstinate, I started at the other end of the room. 

About this time of year, spring cleaning rears its ugly head... I get the urge to move furniture around. Soooo....

I moved the desk.  I like it sideways in the summertime.  I'm not so close to the window and almost directly under the ceiling fan with this arrangement... This is the hottest room in the house.

As soon as I had the desk in place, the Terrible Two ordered pizza.  Two please.  One extra large, with different toppings on each one.

They had the nerve to sit and watch.  Eat pizza and tell jokes while I toiled...

I am going to continue for the rest of the day and see what I dig up... I need a shovel, instead of a broom.  It's really bad this time....

It would be easier if Tessie hadn't decided to ride the black dragon around my head and shout orders in my ear as I work..."You missed some dirt over there!  No, a little more to the left!"

Hey!  I just realized that I cleaned off the desk chair and the footstool that I keep under the desk... Maybe I can do some sorting, with my feet up, a Pepsi in one hand and some beads in the other...  So much for furniture moving...

Now, if I could only get Tessie to stop buzzing around my ears....

See you tomorrow.  Maybe with a room that you can walk through.  Maybe.....

Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Walls and Windows..

I knew that there was going to have to be a bathroom wall... It's not included in the kit.  Here we go again.

I slid a piece of plywood in to see what it would look like this morning.

Tessie kept mumbling, "I need a little privacy, please." 

"Wait a minute!  Who is going to live here?  Tessie, if you need privacy go back to the townhouse and use your own bathroom!" I reasoned.... Well, I tried anyway.

She just ignored me and kept making plans.

She claims that Daisy sent her a message and told her that she didn't want a swinging bed.  I have my doubts... She zapped the oldest, carved bed with roses in.  The one with the tall headboard wouldn't fit.

This one covers the window, but I am not that crazy about that particular window anyway.  Shutters on the outside and curtains on the inside, will solve that problem. 

The next thing I know, she had a dresser in place.  I left before she zapped me down to her size... Yes. She had the nerve to threaten bodily harm!

When she gets that mad, it is safest to just leave.  And I did.
I went and found fencing and planters for the roof top.   The plastic baskets were part of a package of candy cups for Easter, years ago.  They make great planters when painted.
 It's quite easy.  I painted the planter with charcoal gray and then put a dry brush coat of turquoise over that.  Almost instant old iron with a copper patina.

They can also be painted to look like a wicker basket.  For that, you just do a brown, with lighter brown dry brush over it.

Anyway, I am going to try to avoid Tessie for the rest of the day.  I'm leaving altogether.  Wednesday Witches mini meeting starts at 1:00.  Safety in numbers.  Let's see her go up against a half dozen big witchy people.

See you tomorrow.

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

A Rough Guesstimation...

 Remember all of the dip and dye I did a few days ago...?

I either got lucky or I am getting better at estimating how much material need for a job!

I finished gluing all of the shingles on this morning...Now the fun part begins...Washes and shading.
Spike is closely guarding the leftovers...Yup.  That's all there were.

He wants them turned into fetching sticks.  I am going to leave that job to Tessie and Zar.  They don't seem to have anything to do this morning...I know that they will avoid putting more color on the roof, for fear of getting dirty.
Meanwhile, on the Steampunk front.... I did a mad scientist experiment last night. 

Maybe fuel additives or stuff to make steamy stuff more powerful?

I saw a photo on a Steampunk Pinterest website of real sized bottles that someone had concocted in layers like this... A challenge...  My solution.  A large supply of nail polish and lots of time to let it dry...

These are the glass bottles from the nail section at Dollar Tree.  I bought quite a few.  The goal was to make layers of color.  I did just that with the first one.  The one with the turquoise paint was a layer of that color that I let dry.  Then I put a layer of matte finish on top of that.  Let it dry.  Finally I topped it off with plain clear. That one worked pretty good.

Then the mad six year old got in the mix.  From left to right....I filled the bottle with clear and then dripped another color into it. The color sunk to the bottom and separated...  I did the same with red and clear in the fourth bottle. 

The third and fifth bottle  I put in one layer and let it dry for a while...Then I put in another color and stuck a toothpick down in and pulled up the bottom color on the side of the bottle.  The third bottle has a distinct marbled effect.  The fifth one just kind of seeped the yellow into the metallic green.

The last bottle is plain old boring weird pink and I tipped it up to coat the inside of the glass on the top part.

I will probably cut off the little hanger thingies on the tops of the bottles and put something else on top.  I am going to let them dry some more first though....

I think that I will go watch nail polish dry for the rest of the day.  And twiddle my thumbs and whistle a happy tune, whilst I am doing it.  The alternative is yard work... Which would you rather be doing?

See you tomorrow.

Monday, April 14, 2014

The Albion Inn...

This is the Albion Inn.   I really didn't do much work to it.  Cleaning and repairing a few bits here and there.

It is one of the most unusual miniature buildings that I have ever had the pleasure to work on.

The whole thing was made of cork! I suspect that sheets of cork were used to ship bottles.  Someone very clever decided that they looked like brick.

A couple of years ago, I needed some brick for a fireplace in my colonial kitchen and decided to follow suite.  I used the sticky backed shelf liner kind, but it worked well.  I can see how the original artist made the connection.



It is a replica of a corner pub that actually existed before the second world war.  As the sign says, the real one is no longer there.


The person that had it, also had a map of where the original pub was located... Unfortunately, we went to London twice and I never thought to see if I could find the location either time.  Now I wish I had looked for it.

I did, however, buy a piece of land in the center of London, while we were there..

OK.  I admit it.  It's only a four page deed for a piece of land in the center of London.  I got it at the Portabello Road Market, one Saturday. 

It is a real deed. It is four pages on sheepskin and when unfolded it is about two feet square and  covered with fine handwriting.  It has all of it's seals.  One of which is the blue strip at the left.

I "translated" it from it's 1636 language and we did find out where the land was... I really wish I owned it!  I would be filthy rich!

Oh well I was a few centuries late to cash in on the deal.  Now back to the Steampunk thing. And Daisy.  Time Travel?  Hmmmm.... Maybe there's still a chance....I have to think about this.

See you tomorrow.