With the shell now assembled — at least the first floor was glued — it was now time for the fun part – decorating the walls/ceilings.
I knew the house was going to be furnished to be something more on the modern/contemporary side but frankly, wasn’t sure what furnishings I was going to use. I did a recent purge of my minis (I gave away a couple of items some fellow GL forum members – thanks for helping me clear space off my bins of crap!), so will need to dig around and start picking them soon. But until that’s done, the wall and floor colors need to be flexible and neutral.
For the floors, I just resorted to using my favorite walnut wood planks. Never realized how many of these I bought before I got engaged. Guess in a way it’s good because it means it’ll be awhile before I officially run out of these planks (since the vendor on EBay doesn’t currently have them in stock). While I love how they look when installed, sanded, and varnished, finding the right adhesive is a bit of a challenge. I tried using regular carpenters/wood glue, but the planks just curled up because they’re so thin. I used QuickGrip in another project, which worked great — problem was that the stuff can get so darn expensive*. So that option was out.
Then I read on the Greenleaf Forum that some folks used contact cementwhen installing flooring. Was initially hesitant because the stuff not only smells but it’s pretty flammable (yeah, last thing BK and I need is to make our apartment burst into flames). But then again, the small bottles are relatively inexpensive at my local Lowes. Why the hell not, I guess.
The verdict? It’s actually not bad.In fact, I actually think I found my adhesive of choice for the plank flooring. Granted, it does smell awful (definitely have your windows open when using this stuff. And wear a mask if you can handle it), and it’s a bit messy at first try. But so long as you work quickly in spreading the cement both on the floor AND the plank you’re installing, the stuff bonds them instantly. Though just to be sure, once I finished a whole floor, I covered it up with wax paper and stacked some heavy books on top. After 24 hours, I’ll peel off the wax paper and sand the flooring down before putting a couple coats of beeswax varnish.
Once the floor was done, I started taking measurements of the walls and ceiling for my wallpaper. To make this easy on me, I did not glue on the roof until the second floor was wallpapered. Especially since that area has a dormer that I’ll need to cover.
I really wanted the walls on the first floor to be a solid color. But because of the size of the Primrose, figured there’s no point buying paint to cover walls that small. And since there are very few solid colored wallpapers on the mini market (*cough* freakin’ BIG-ASS HINT *cough*), decided to just make my own using cardstock.
After checking out the Behr website and picking out the colors I wanted, I did a screen capture of my selections and basically used Photoshop to print them out on plain white cardstock. The purple color (“Gypsy Magic” – who comes up with these paint names anyway??) turned out great. But the coffee/cream color always looks grey whenever I took photos. Imagine that.
For the second floor, I wanted to use a blue floral wallpaper I bought from DHEMinis awhile back. But when I realized I didn’t have enough….I just turned on my scanner and scanned the pattern before printing it out on cardstock. Granted, it’s not quite the same as the original (it looks a little blurry if you ask me). But until the wallpaper is in stock…it’ll have to do. So note to Dollhouse Emporium/DHEMinis — please restock this pattern and its variants soon. You got a crazy Asian chick in Washington DC that’s resorting to rationing this particular wallpaper for her projects. And oh yeah, she’ll love you forever if you make this available again.
After printing out the wallpapers and cutting them down to size, it was time to glue them to the walls. And man, did I realize how much I hated this step. I wasn’t able to take pictures of this process — but in a way that was good because I screwed up the first floor big time. I used a PVA bookbinding paste as an adhesive, but both the cardstock and the walls (despite being primed and prepped) soaked it up. So I peel it off, wiped down the walls free of adhesive, and do it all over again once the walls were dry. Oh yeah, and that meant reprinting my wallpapers all over again in my printer.
For the second round — it was a success. I used a different adhesive (YES! Glue), and the wallpaper installed like a dream. I had to use an old/defunct credit card to help smooth and crease the wallpaper in place. Once the first floor was done (I had to let the paper dry before cutting out the excess paper in the door/window openings), I started working on the second floor.
Because of the gable shape on the sides, the easiest way to work around this was to simply glue a panel of the wallpaper, and just cut out the excess when it was dry.
Same thing with the dormer – I had to cut out a rough shape to fit the interior of the dormer and glue it in place. Then once the glue was completely dry, use a sharp blade to carefully trim away the excess. Once the paper was cut, I was able to finally glue it to the roof, and the roof in turn be glued on the wallpapered first floor.
While the glue was drying, I started prepping and painting the wood trim for the Primrose. To keep the costs down, I had to make do with whatever I had on hand. Good thing the kit was relatively small, because I was able to stretch my existing stock to accommodate it. Plus, I need the wood trim to cover any gaps in the wallpaper. Luckily they were few, but at least this helps reduce the amount of eye sore I was seeing. 🙂
At the moment, only the second floor has the molding installed. I couldn’t install the ones for the first floor until I get the kitchen cabinets installed and finalized.
So again, so far so good! Hopefully it’s smooth sailing from hereon.