Tiny Victorian House

Oh, this Tiny House confounded me!

From the breakable thin pieces of wood to the cloth that wouldn’t cut straight to the anachronistic Victrola next to the TV set, it was a tough one to figure out.

I Make Everything, Kind of

Before I get to the difficult items and the cool stuff, here’s a demonstration for anyone who thinks I assemble the furniture into the house all pre-made. The kits do include a few pre-formed pieces, but nearly everything else has to be assembled with raw materials.

For this sofa, for instance, I cut damask cloth and glued it around thick cushioned cloth, which in turn I glued on top of tiny pieces of wood. I got the wood from a thin sheet of numbered pieces that I had to push out using an exacto knife.

Every piece looks like a mess, until I put it in place with other pieces, and the whole scene convinces the eye.

The elegant living room made me want to try this sucker in the first place.

The fireplace has a light behind it as well as a grate in front. Who thinks of these things?

The armchair was a bit of a bust. I used a dark pen to outline the form that I glued the cushions onto, and the ink bled into the cloth, twice! It was all the cloth I had left with this house, so I foraged in my stash for this pale green velvet, which matched perfectly. It’s too thick for the small cushions, though; I lost their delicate shape entirely.

Ah, well, the color is pretty, and I love using stuff from my stash.

A Conservatory!

When Finn was a young piano player, he’d get invited to play on the fancy piano at the home of the local university’s music dept. chair, and I swear the room looked just like this.

The piano insides are beautifully detailed.

Too bad I forgot to take a photo until after I’d glued it in place, deep in the house. Still, the lighting is extra cool.

Tea Room

Here’s an example of parts that came pre-molded verses ones I had to assemble.

The turntable speaker came as is, and I added the stylus. Sadly, I accidentally threw away parts to make the stand, so I had to create that from mismatched pieces in my stash. This one I’m not so proud of, so no picture!

On the chess table are tiny packets of tea, and the flowers I glued onto cut stems, and I added little beads as stamens. The coffee cup and saucer came as is, though.

Sometimes it seems illogical what comes pre-made in the kits and what I have to create. All part of the charm of these suckers.

Messy Glue versus Proportion

Part of my frustrations for this kit came from the delicate wooden pieces. They make for an elegant look, but they broke easily as I removed them from their sheets.

To give you an idea, the individual steps would stay level and plumb only when glued to each other and to the upstairs and floor, so they had to hang suspended while I placed their supports. Turns out I got the two sizes of banisters mixed up so had to rip them off their foundations and replace them.

The resulting messiness is worth the illusion that the staircase is functional—you get that only if the size ratios are correct.

Only after replacing the steps several times did I get them to look like a person might climb them without thinking. I wouldn’t lean on those banisters, though.

Bedroom and Bath

There’s no attempt to make this house realistic; there’s no kitchen downstairs and no toilet or dressers upstairs. Who the heck cares, though, when the linens and bathtub are this pretty!

I worked hard to cut the fabric to show off the patterns and to fold them just right with glue to give the impression of a soft bed.

And the 3D frames for photos and the mirror make them stand out from the ornamental wallpaper.

How inviting!

Care to Write a Letter?

The details here are delightful! It’s too bad I was using an old container of glue that globbed up even more than usual for this section.

In the kit was a pen with gold ink that I used to highlight the sewing table and the typewriter keys. I had to reassemble the keys twice because they kept getting stuck to my fingers and wouldn’t glue to themselves in the right order.

The eyeglasses I made from two spoons and two rubber nuts, I believe. They are insanely tiny. And I love how the feather pen bends slightly up. What a desk!

As soon as I prep and glue the clear case, I’ll walk this over to Pat at the office to find a willing taker.

Maybe whoever takes this house will have a mouse willing to wear a top hat while he plays chess!