Tuesday, February 26, 2013

Testing the Farmhouse

As you know, I'm almost done with the log cabin. I have been trying to wrap it up and also plan what I'm going to work on next. I have been sort of at a loss for what to do with Haley's dollhouse. To get ideas, I set up the shell on the dining table, secured with masking tape.

I'm positively going to do some kit-bashing. It's a cute house, but not perfect. I'm very much underwhelmed by the front door and tiny window. I swapped walls around, moved them in or out, imagined bigger doors, bigger windows, new walls, different appearances altogether. I'm doing this because where the heck does the bathroom fit in? 

I'm going to need some new, unmilled MDF. And let me tell you, no one around here, *No One*, carries 3/8" smooth MDF in stock. I'm going to have to special order it so I can make my new walls. Too bad I didn't realize I was going to ignore 4 whole walls a long time ago, but *SIGH*, this is just the way I am.

I already bought tons of wallpaper and new doors (see the first pic above where I was testing out if I liked them or not). I'm even going to bash the doors and probably the staircase. This is going to be great!

Let the fun begin!

Thursday, February 21, 2013

Staining the Cabin

The cabin is completely assembled, except the door is not yet installed. To give it some character, I used two stains for depth and interest.

The two shades of oil-based Minwax stain I used are golden oak and red mahogany. You probably would not have guessed those two colors, but they really look nice together. I used Cabot wood conditioner on the end grain before applying stain.  This really helps keep the stain from getting too saturated on the cut edges. While the wood conditioner is wet, apply a thin layer of stain. Let it soak in a few minutes and wipe off the excess.

To apply the stain, start with the lighter stain for the ladder, the walls inside and out, and on the porch trim. Apply it with a brush and wipe off excess with a rag. Next, apply the darker stain on the roofing and interior floors.  After the walls dry, rub in some of the darker stain using a dampened rag for shading and wear along the outer edges and blend inwards. Also, lightly rub some dark stain onto the porch trim.

Separately, I constructed the new front door out of wood scraps. There are three panels that run the length of the door, with channel molding as the outer frame. My dear hubby helped with the two part epoxy. We used his airplane epoxy to hold the sturdy pin hinges in place. When completely dry and cured, I distressed some areas of the door, then applied stain following the same method as the wall.  I applied the light stain all over.  When dry, I applied the dark stain using a small rag to work depth into the main part of the door. Then, I followed that with a small paintbrush to get "grime" into the corners.

After everything was stained, I went back and sanded. Some areas of the floor received heavier sanding to add wear and tear. I used the Dremel in some places, along the roof and the door opening to fit the door better.

Coming soon, the fireplace and finish!