The Den of Slack

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Turret House – floral trim and corbels

I like how resin trims and appliques can be used on dollhouses to emulate the accents on Queen Anne Victorians. These are the Four Seasons houses, located at Waller and Masonic in San Francisco (image credit Wikipedia).

I tried to do something similar on my original Queen Anne Rowhouse, using resin trims from Unique Miniatures and 1:12 trims from Victorian Dollhouse Wood Works.

It doesn’t have the delicacy of the trims on the San Francisco houses (or the Little Belle, for that matter), but I like the idea and was thinking about this when I picked out trims for the Turret House.

I wanted to use a resin trim on the 1/2″ front surfaces of the porch ceilings, but I couldn’t find anything I liked that was the right size. (The flower and vine trim on the Queen Anne Rowhouse’s gable is 1/2″ tall, but I couldn’t find it in stock anywhere.) I ended up using laser cut trim with gold paint behind it.

On the sides of the house there’s a 5/16″ strip under the roof, overhanging a larger piece of 1/2″ trim.

Lawbre carries this 5/16″ resin trim. It comes in a package of three.

When cutting it, I couldn’t make the cuts just anywhere — I had to be careful to make sure the design would be nicely centered and not abruptly cut off at the edges. The three pieces gave me *exactly* enough trim to use under the roof on the sides and back of the house, above and below the roof of the dining room bump-out, and above the front door.

After painting it blue, I went over the details with red and gold.

Here’s how it looks on the front door. This space is slightly taller than 5/16″, but the crack at the top is camouflaged by the shadow.

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Turret House – bashing Victorian pediments

Quick post today! I’ll have a bigger one soon about the trim I’ve been working on for weeks, but first I want to revisit the brackets and window pediments I left off with last time.

In order to make this window pediment fit under the bracket, I initially tried cutting the corner off both parts of the pediment.

This worked, but I thought I could do better. I tried again, this time cutting the peaked part and the flat part separately. I only cut off a small part of the corner on the flat part, and then sanded a groove in the top to allow the bracket to slide in over it.

I realized once I saw it in place that the corner of the bottom part didn’t need to be removed at all, so I gave it a third try. We have a winner!

I did this by cutting and sanding the back corner of the pediment, leaving the front corner intact. I’m able to slide the window in under the bracket, and then set the peaked pediment on top.

The whole time I was working on the brackets, I didn’t have any windows in the turret. When I put the windows in I realized the bracket gets in the way of one of them. Ooops.

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Turret House – redoing the front facade (again)

People keep telling me they like my blog because I show the mistakes I make and how I fix them. I don’t do this on purpose! But it’s true that sometimes (okay, a lot of times) I go down a rabbit hole, and then I can’t stop myself from meticulously documenting what went wrong.

This is one of those times, because I’ve redone the Turret House’s front facade. Again.

I’ve been working on the Turret House behind the scenes but haven’t posted about it in a few months, so here’s a refresher. This was my first attempt on the area in question:

The chunky corbels seemed busy and out of scale. On my second try, I ripped out all of them but the ones on the ends, and I covered up the wood where the corbels had been with laser cut trim on the bottom (with gold showing through) and half scale crown molding on the top.

It’s an improvement, but I was still lukewarm about it. The detail of the crown molding gets lost in the shadow, so it just looks like a big blue blob on top of the fancier trim. And those corbels are still pretty chunky.

I also wasn’t really feeling the dentil molding on the bay window. I’d planned to use dentil molding on the sides of the house and thought there would be a nice smooth transition, but it didn’t look great. And as I started thinking about porch trim, I realized the dentil molding in the background would compete with the porch trim in the foreground.

So I did what I do best… I ripped it all out. I love how I can spend hours and hours on something and destroy it in a matter of minutes.

(Sorry for the blurry picture, but this is the only one I took at this stage. It looked so bad, why document it?!)

Removing the corbels left me with two 5/16″ spaces that needed to be filled in. And I wanted brackets that look substantial, like they’re holding up the porch roof. After a lot of looking around, I found these brackets at Earth and Tree.

These are unusual because they’re made from five 1/16″ pieces that get glued together for a layered effect. The fan design is reminiscent of the apex trim.

I had to make a notch for the bracket to fit over the wood piece. I carefully did this on each piece using the belt sander rather than cutting, to avoid splitting the wood.

Before gluing the pieces together, I painted areas that I wouldn’t be able to get at once the bracket was assembled.

Once all five pieces were glued together, I cleaned up the notch on the sander. Here’s how the bracket looks in place. I also had to sand the front a tiny bit to make it fit under here.

Once this is glued in, I’ll fill in the gap at the back with wood filler and paint over it.

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