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Custom Rehab Week 01

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 ...

Sunday, October 10

The Brimbles Mercantile Dollhouse Day 5

Okay, your going to have some issues you'll have to prepare for when building this dollhouse.

When you stain a laser cut dollhouse with a dark stain, the black edges look beautiful. It really pops out the details of the stained parts but when you use a light stain, it looks bad. You have two ways to deal with this. You can sand and sand the edges until all of the black burning is gone or you can paint your edges to match your stain.

If you do decide to sand down the edges you might loose a lot of architectural details and compromise the parts fit. You would also need a rotary tool that can get into very small places so you can sand down decorative trim. It would take a lot of sanding to remove all of the burnt edges. The more you sand, the more your taking away from the part and its details.

Painting the edges is very time consuming and can also affect the finished look of the stain. Since, I had already set my mind on having light stain, I decided to paint my edges but the very best stain for laser cut dollhouses would be darker stains or painted trim.

I painted all of the edges of the stained parts to match the stain used as best as possible.

I also glued a runner to the staircase. I was thinking of using a patterned runner but then decided not too. It would have been too busy with the print of the wallpaper on the first and second floors. When using a runner you made yourself from fabric, always fold the side edges inwards or they will fray with time. I always glue runners on with hot melt glue.

Second issue you will encounter is the fitting the staircase. After I primed the walls and applied the wallpaper, I inserted this staircase. You must hammer in your staircase, gently and evenly, in order for it to fit properly into place. This kit was designed for you to fit your staircase while the walls are still moveable and flexible. That is impossible if you want a finished dollhouse. Your walls have to be glued, dry and finished before you insert your staircase or you will not have access to this area afterwards. This presents a problem with the insertion of the staircase. It will be very difficult.

You should trim around your staircase in order to give it a more finished look and hide any gaps that it might have.

The third issue will be that the rooms of this dollhouse are much larger than a normal dollhouse's. This is a mercantile so it basically has two rooms, that take up the two floors completely. Because the rooms are so large, you will have to buy more wallpaper sheets and you may have to patch wallpaper in order to have it run the whole length of the room.

Because the wallpaper I had was not long enough, I unfortunately had to patch it. It's something you want to avoid but you can't always avoid things like this. It's best to make your patches in areas that are not highly visible and if your patching side walls always patch with the overlapping edge facing away from you. Some wallpaper patches beautifully but others don't. This one doesn't. It is very thick paper so the overlapping patched edge is very visible, regardless of where it's at.

I patched the far wall behind the staircase but you could still see it. I was forced to add trim over the seam. In order to kind of hide the trim, I decided to add a bit of beam work around the windows and corners so the seam trim doesn't look so out of place. I think it will work well once the second floor is in and the ceiling trim sort of brings it all together.

I've said this before and I'll say it again. Building a dollhouse is more about innovation than anything else. Things will not always be perfect and a work around will have to be used. This is where you can exercise your problem solving skills.

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