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Monday, October 20

The Beacon Hill Dollhouse Revisited Week 31

French Door Installation
It's called a French door but I call it a gothic window since I'm not sure how this "door" could be hinged to make it operable. The middle sash, which would be the hinged area, is mostly covered with trim both on the interior and exterior. But I suppose with patience, trial and error it can be done and you can make the porch roof into an outdoor patio. Just add a widows walk fencing around it. For those that don't want the complication and really want the patio, you can always make the "door" inoperable and add a knob to it.

For my design though, this will be a gothic stained glass window and this is the best way to install it.

First, you have to paint all trim and sashes completely before installation. They have to be finished on all sides. Even the sides that will be glued to each other. You don't want to run the risk of seeing raw wood from any direction once this window is installed because you will not be able to fix it then. It is too small and completely inaccessible for that.

I had made my windows stained glass using markers and clear nail polish as I showed in the beginning of this project. They looked really colorful then and quite bright. It almost made you think that maybe it wasn't such a good idea to have added so much color to them but once all of the trim layers were added to this window, it paid off. You can see how all of the color goes to the background and creates a very elegant stained glass effect. This gothic window is the focal point of the dollhouse and making it stained glass causes it to stand out without being over done.

Laminate all of the layers for your exterior trim before installation and clamp with binder clamps.

Also assemble your sashes with the window inserts now. Clamp with binder clamps. Use glue sparingly on the window sashes. They are not load bearing and they do not need much glue to stay together. If you add too much glue to your sashes, it will squeeze out into your window inserts when clamped and even though tacky glue is clear, it is visible when applied to clear acetate. You don't want to see clear globs along the edges of your windows once dry. They can not be removed.

Always add your interior trim first. Center it evenly on the window opening and clamp with binder clamps. This is going to be the easiest way to install the windows because you can't clamp the interior trim correctly once the windows are installed. Because of the wallpaper, masking tape runs the risk of damage to the interior so avoid it as a clamp on the inside of the dollhouse.

Once the interior trim is dry, you can add the sashes. These sashes have to be sanded until they fit.

Then you can add your exterior trim. You can use masking tape to hold it in place until dry.

Keep In Mind
Because the dollhouse is made from stamped dyes, which are not 100% square, make sure you tweak your exterior trim to make the window look straight. Do not use the porch roof as a guide. Your window might look better slightly lifted from the porch roof on one side. Your main priority is for the window to look straight, not for it to be sit completely flush with the porch roof.

If your painting your interior trim all white, as I am, it will take more work to finish your window on the interior. White brings out any gaps that occur between your interior trim and sashes. Use spackle to hide any large and obvious gaps but use paint to go over all of the other joints. You do not want to use spackle all along your interior trim as it will make the situation worse, not better. These areas are very small and spackle can become heavy and cake with time. It should be used sparingly and only when necessary. Let there be a nice line between your interior trim and sashes, it adds to the layered, detailed look of your dollhouse. You also want to apply your spackle in these areas with a paint brush, rather than your finger. This will ensure you are not adding too much spackle and taking away from the windows detail.






 

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