Thursday, September 16, 2021

La Patisserie - the renovation

Well, this lockdown started out being two weeks then it was extended to four weeks and now we're into week five!! I've been working most days on getting this little project finished. 
This is the third and FINAL transformation of this room.

I still love that Rossevelt Rose wallpaper but the time has come to change this room completely and make it look more like it belongs with the two floors above in the maisonette. 

I didn't rip the wallpaper out, I've just covered it up - in case I change my mind again one day, so if someone in the future renovates it they'll find the original paper like in a real reno! 
The ceiling is staying as is. It's vintage tin looking scrapbook paper.

As you can see in the first pic there is a hole in the right wall where there used to be a door. 
I was thinking I could cover it up or put another door there or a window then suddenly - brainwave - it became the perfect spot for a built-in cupboard.
So I built a cupboard!

I decided to panel the walls in a similar style to the room upstairs in the maisonette.
And I added a wall inside the front door to make the space less of a box.

And then...
those of you who come here often will know that I just had to build a glass wall somewhere!

The Farmhouse has a couple of them and the maisonette kitchen has one and I thought this one would make the perfect cosy nook for a couple of cafe tables.

The fact that things fit together is always a miracle!
I've told you before measuring isn't one of my strengths.

I really wanted to paint the walls white but I have no white paint left. I've left it too long to use and it's all gone hard and lockdown means I can't buy any so I had to use an off white colour which I am now thrilled with!
The floor...I have no wood to make a floor with and I went through my vast collection of scrapbook paper but there was nothing suitable. 
This flooring is some vintage wallpaper. It's grown on me and it's the perfect colour with the walls.
I'm hoping it looks like a painted floor. 

I added a scrap of the orignal wallpaper in the drawer as a nod to the past!

So the next step is to make I said I need two cafe tables in there, making two of anything is always a challenge. I don't even want to think about chairs.

Now the light was a challenge. Once I knew what I wanted there I set about making it.
 It took three attemps to get it right. 💃 I don't give up easily!!

There is also a light in the glassed in space but I don't have a pic of it. It's close to the ceiling so it can't be seen as I didn't want it to compete with the stained glass window.

I've finished all the lighting - and it works!
There you can see the other light in the patisserie.

I'm also finishing off lots of fiddly little things that no one will notice - the annoying things that take so much time.

Now I'm working on finishing the exterior - stairs are needed to get into the maisonette. I cannot say that I like making stairs. Frustratingly I have run out of the paint I used on the exterior and there is one wall unpainted.

Our lockdown level is supposed to change onTuesday at midnight.
As I work in a school that means I'll have to go to in from Wednesday to help supervise the children of essential workers. So I'm trying really hard to get this building finished in the next few days.
Don't ask me how I'm going to get to work by 8:30am when I've barely been awake by then during lockdown!

Thank you all for stopping by!

Wednesday, September 1, 2021

La Maisonnette - Entrance Hall

I have no idea what they call the entrance hall in France.

This is the view from where the actual outside door will be.
I am happy to report that after months of the door languishing on my husband's workbench, now we're in lockdown he has fixed it for me.

Just love the lighting in this pic!

I looked through my vast stash of dollhouse furniture trying to find the right piece for the entry.

But it suddenly dawned on me that so far I have made every piece of furniture in this little apartment myself. 
So really there was only one thing I could do!
I would love to have a bow front chest of drawers in the real house but as I can't (too expensive) I made them in miniature (from cardboard) instead. I wasn't going to make them so they could open but I just couldn't bring myself to make them 'pretend' drawers so they do open. 

Because this whole room had to accommodate the kitchen, lounge and dining rooms and the staircase I wasn't sure I should waste any space on an entrance hall. 
(Yes, I've been working on the lighting too...but that's another post!)

But I also didn't want the tiny occupants to walk straight into the kitchen from the outside. 
As it turned out I needed a wall there for the kitchen anyway. 

It think it took longer to decide what should be displayed on top of the drawers 
than it did to make the drawers. 
The angel came from a hairclip I bought on my first overseas trip to Los Angeles in 1992. 
The clip had a row of those little angels. 
It eventually broke and that angel has been patiently waiting for decades for his turn to be upcycled!

It took even longer to find something to go on the wall!
That picture of the water lily is from a very fancy wine bottle wrapper. A friend was about to throw it out when she heard me pretty, I've been waiting a couple of years to use it.

I'm using this time in lockdown wisely.
Not too much baking...more mini making.
The government just gave us another two weeks!! 
I live in Auckland, New Zealand's largest city - that's where this Covid Delta outbreak is concentrated.
Here are the current rules we're living under:

Today I started installing that exterior door.
The Patisserie has almost been transformed - VERY exciting!!!
Hopefully that will be next weeks post.

Thank you all for your comments! You've no idea the difference they make to my day.

Wednesday, August 25, 2021

La Maisonnette Kitchen

Welcome to a very tiny kitchen!
This little space has been quite a challenge.
No room for appliances in this compact space!

And as you can see from the pic above,  I've used the space right to the very edge of the Maisonette.
I should have probably built that cupboard a bit smaller but clearly measuring isn't a great skill of mine!

Originally I made a marble benchtop but it didn't look right so close to the marble fireplace.

I was making the hole in the benchtop to fit this bowl but the bowl looked too new. 
I prefer a slightly grungy, lived-in, vintage vibe.

You knew there'd be pipework!

I searched everywhere for a better bowl for the sink.
This little bottle of 'stuff' was sitting on my windowsill. 
It was with my mother's art things when she died. I kept it because it was cute.

I had looked at the lid as a possible sink many times and eventually when I couldn't find anything else I tried it in the hole and of course...

it was a perfect fit!
Thanks Mum! xxx

Like I said the kitchen is compact and there's not much storage,
so I made a shelf for above the sink.

There's a pretty pic of the kitchen a couple of weeks ago...but things are always changing!
There's always another idea...

I had the idea to make an old fireplace mantel shelf to go on the other side of the kitchen.
And I thought a French kitchen needed vintage canisters, so I just made those too.

But once I'd made it I decided it looked better here above the sink.
And you may have noticed that in this pic I've added a cupboard door...just because it was too hard to fill the cupboard!

I saw a real life table like this on the internet and I just had to make it in miniature.

This time I measured better!

There's only a little hotplate for cooking here.
I figure as there's going to be a patisserie downstairs the tiny occupants won't need to cook much!

And there you have the kitchen!

We're in Covid lockdown here in New Zealand again because the Delta variant was discovered in the community.
So you know what that means for me - more mini making time!
I'm working on the patisserie already.

Wednesday, May 26, 2021

Working on La Maisonnette exterior

This was the first building I ever built when I joined a Miniatures club that happened to meet 
once a month just around the corner from my house. 
When I joined the club they were building a row of Victorian shops for their biennial show. 
It was a good way to learn the basics of miniature building.
It also made me realise I never want to make or glue hundreds of sandpaper bricks ever again!
And there's the delightful Liberty when she was two and a half years old back in 2007. 
Time really does fly!
In 2011 I changed the building into a bakery.
However there's not a lot of room in my real house for more dollhouses and the bakery needed a revamp so...
Time to add another floor and get renovating.
I was more than ready to get rid of the bricks.
I followed the instructions in Lea Frisoni's book to build the top floor.
Yes, it was annoying making all the tiles for the roof but I'm glad I did it.
Removing the bricks left a nice textured effect on the walls.
I boarded up the side window but I still wanted it to look like there had been a window there.
That's the original front door.
I just added a fancy panel.
I'd always wanted a house with a dormer window.
It was very tricky to get the angles right but where there's a will there's a way!
When I originally built the house I added a spouting and was able to re-use it.
I also had the trim under the spouting lying around...Like I've said before - things just turn up here!
The bakery will still be in the ground floor.
The wonderful Kim Saulter gave me the exquisite stained glass 'Patisserie' window.
The beginnings of the outside door on the second floor which will be the entry to the maisonnette.
This door is currently in the garage waiting for my husband to drill holes in it to make it swing the opposite direction to how it was built. It seems to have been languishing in the garage for quite some time...might have to tell him I'll use the drill myself - that'll get him moving!
Doo-dakkies glued to the front.
Doo-dakkies are incredibly useful little bits 'n' pieces and it's 
very lucky that I have so many lying around the place!
I've made the very top pointy part of the roof but I can't fix it in place until I've done the lighting.
It was a nightmare to figure out all the angles.
And here it is so far...lots more to do.
I need more rainy Sundays!