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This upcoming project is a little different from my usual ones. This is a rehab. This custom dollhouse belongs to a neighbor and she was ...

Saturday, May 31

The Westville Dollhouse Day 3

Now that the wallpapering is done on the first and second floors, I can put in the back walls and attic floor. I didn't wallpaper the back walls because they are hidden from view. I painted them the same color as the ceilings.

While the paint dries on these pieces, I’m going to glue on the bay foundations.

I’m holding the bay trims with binder clips because since the dollhouse will be basically all one color, it doesn’t matter if I put them in now.

After the paint dried on the back walls, I put them in. I clamped them tightly and straight.

After they are glued and clamped, you can put in the foundation back. The edges go behind the back side walls. Binder clips clamp them perfectly.

My back foundation piece was very warped. It wasn’t warped when it came out of the sheet, but warped later on. Just to show you that warped pieces do not impede in building your dollhouse, I did nothing to straighten out this piece before putting it in. I just clamped it real tightly against the other parts and it straightened out by itself. I used the plastic clamps because they help making things square. Before I put in the plastic clamps to hold the piece in place, it was curved outward. This is because of the warp creating a C shape from the first floor edge. If you keep it clamped in place, when the glue dries, it will stay straight and in place. So don’t let warps stop you from building. You don’t have to do anything special with them. Just straighten them out as you glue them to the dollhouse. As the dollhouse comes together, all the wood sheets will straighten out.

Now the attic floor. You will probably need a mallet for this. Thankfully, it's not difficult to put in. Clamp it on all sides with masking tape. The best way to do it is after all the parts are in and you’re able to clamp gable to gable. That will keep it nice and square all around. Check all of your joints before putting it aside to dry. Check that none of other clamped areas have loosened in the process and for any glue drips.

Plan out the staircase closet very carefully. First dry fit the closet wall into the staircase opening to see how it fits. You don’t want any surprises later on because this whole door will have to be put in before the wall is. It’s the only way to comfortably work with it. It's pretty narrow. Mine fit pretty good, and with no struggles. So now I have to wallpaper the little wall. Prime it first. I also want to wallpaper the closet top wall, so I’m going to prime that one too. You only have to wallpaper the outside because the inside cannot be seen. You can stain them if you want, but I’m wallpapering it to match the kitchen.

Think ahead. There are exposed back edges on the back of the staircase opening which will have to be covered. Plan on how you’re going to apply your wallpaper, so they can be hidden. I’m leaving a little over an 1/8th” overhang of paper on all sides of the closet and top wall. You have to make sure the overhang is a continuation of the wallpaper pattern on the staircase wall. Once the walls are ready to be put in place, these overhangs can be cut to fit over or around the edges. Dried wallpaper paste that remains on them will actually be a good thing when you get ready to glue them over or on the edges. It makes the paper stronger and resistant to warping from the glue.

Keep the inside edges of the closet wall, where the door goes, free from wallpaper, so that it doesn’t interfere with the door movement later on. I stained the door and door trim. The door trim has to be put on before the door, so you can make sure it will not interfere with the door movement later on. The dark flap you see in the opening is the chamois that will make the door movable as I chose to use a chamois hinge for the door. It will be hidden behind the door once its put in so you won’t see it.

Since the door opens outward, I had to find a way to put the chamois in the back of the door where you can't see it and at the same time, have the door open.

After the door was “hinged” in place, I glued in the closet wall. I have to glue it before the top wall, so I can tweak the door a little. The chamois worked fine. Yes, you have to tweak the position a little when you open and close it but it won't fall off and the wood was not broken in any way.

Since the chamois is behind the door, it's not visible, even with the door open. The little closet is just to dark for it to be seen. I found a door knob and decided to use it for this door because the knob is what will make it possible for the door to be opened and closed once the top closet wall is in. You can't reach behind the door once that’s in.

Once the door was in position so it can dry over night, I went ahead and glued in the top corner wall.

Leaving the overhangs around the walls of this closet project was the trick that saved the day. It allowed for everything to fall into place without any seams around the wallpaper joints.

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