Saturday, May 4, 2013

My Undersized Urbanite Entry - The Steampunk House



Here it is, at last, my entry for the Undersized Urbanite Dollhouse Contest!

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Voting is now closed. Thank you everyone that participated.

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The before photos;


Just a weird little cabinet. Bought it for $20 at a local antique co-op. The new materials and, "Made in China", sticker was a dead giveaway that it wasn't really an antique, but hey it was neat, I hadn't seen one of these before, and I knew I could use it...

...So in the basement it sat, for years, until the opportunity came along to turn that blank white house above into this beauty;


 Come on, I'll give you the tour;


First, let's just enjoy the Exterior for a minute.





A 12 oz. can of Loganberry for size reference (guess where I'm from)

Because it was a cabinet, this house is more of a flat outline than a true dollhouse. So to make it visually interesting, I used an assortment of textures. Old brownstone influences, vertical wood elements, scalloped shingles and 'tarnished metal' paint detailing.

I wanted this house to look like an old, slightly run down building. Some interesting people showed up, loved it, and decided to make it into their own little quirky townhouse.
And I got to cross, "Try to make egg carton stone work", off my creative to-do list. :)

Exterior Materials;

Egg cartons
Paperclay
Balsa wood
Acrylic paint
Corrugated scrap booking paper

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Ok, Now let's go inside,

And start with the Basement.

It's old and unfinished.
The floor is just packed stone,

and the ceiling could use some work too.
Although the basement is half the height of a typical room, the tiny tenants of this house have plans to renovate the space...Assuming that they stop using it to store the "artifacts" that they've been finding, first.
  Some of this stuff is pretty neat though. 
That large metal piece was part of a very heavy necklace. And the pottery:

I made these out of paper, gesso, paint, & polyurethane.

Basement Materials;

Egg cartons
Paperclay
Balsa wood
string
Popsicle sticks
Acrylic paint
Other props

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Next, we head up the stairs to the Kitchen.


I think that, if this were a real room, the first thing that you'd notice walking in is the eclectic tile floor,

Hand cut, baked polymer clay tiles, along with some paper, sealed with polyurethane.

Then you might notice the re-purposed industrial spring bar stools,

Pipe-cleaner + a ton of paint and Polycrylic.
The seat is a cotton/fabric covered bottle top.


And then you'd turn and see the rest of the place.



Regular readers of my blog will recognize that almost everything in this room/house is handmade and was created over the course of this project. If you'd like to read about all of the handmade items in detail later, just follow the, "Undersized Urbanite", tags on my posts. There's not enough room to talk about them all here. :)

I will highlight the counter though because: A). It has a real glass mosaic top;



Along with some black acrylic paint, all sealed with a thick coat of Polycrylic.

And B). It rotates out into an island, for when the tenants are entertaining guests.


 Steampunk ingenuity.


Plus a few more photos of the top monitor fridge because it took so long to make, and because I only made that specific type of fridge because it fits into the non-modern electricity Steampunk theme, it deserves a little more face time too.




I think these people have a tiny drinking problem. 
(Thanks again for the bottles Neen)


Kitchen Materials;

Scrap booking paper
Balsa/Bass wood
Polymer clay
Acrylic paint
Other props
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And with that, we go up another flight of stairs to the Bedroom.

A little sparse compared to the kitchen, but it's got everything these little people need.
 An oil lamp (found it) & big book (painted gift) for night time reading, 
a piggy bank (purchased item) for safe keeping,

Steampunk bunkbeds (handmade),


And a pewter alligator to live underneath the Steampunk bunk-beds. :)  

The carpet is upholstery fabric and, believe it or not, the wallpaper is a crinkled up paper bag + some paint.

 (This is my favorite door, btw)


Bedroom Materials;

Brown paper bag
Upholstery fabric
Balsa/Bass wood
Acrylic paint
Other props

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Now up the stairs, one more time (this is a tall house) to the Observatory.


Prior to moving into the Steampunk house, the tiny tenants did some traveling, and they are very curious about the world. So when they discovered their spacious attic, with a window letting them peer out into their town or up at the night sky, they declared it their personal observatory and filled it with all of the souvenirs that they've acquired during their adventures.


A Popsicle stick and Polyurethane  hardwood floor makes for one classy observatory.

 

And a handmade upholstered bench makes for a comfy place to sit,
as long as you don't have a problem with mummies,

Or bugs.
(bought the mummy, photographed and miniaturized all of the bugs)


Observatory Materials;

Brown paper bag
Balsa/Bass wood
Mixed Media
Acrylic paint
Other props

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So that is the now finished Steampunk House. I hope you've enjoyed your tour and the dollhouse (vote for me! May 5-12). Please be careful walking back down all of those stairs on your way out,and have a wonderful day.

Thank you Christina, of Little Victorian, for hosting the Undersized Urbanite Dollhouse Contest,
I really enjoyed it. :)

And good luck to all of the other entrants!










47 comments:

  1. That glass mosaic top is fabulous Kyle! What a clever idea. Your steampunk work is fabulous and I wish you all the best xx

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    1. Thanks Jazzi. Glad you liked it. :)

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    2. LOL, Kyle. I 'know' Jazzi from one of my online miniature groups - she's in Australia too. Nice work. (I'm Michele's Aunt Char)

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    3. I think the world has gotten a little smaller this week. I've been talking to a few Australians online for the past year or so. I'm surprised we haven't run into each other already. ^_^

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  2. Wow! It is wonderful to see all the pieces put together! Your house has a wonderfully unique atmosphere and all your hand made and original pieces are so creative! I LOVE the bugs in the boxes on the wall of the Observatory... and your swing-out counter and the "spring" bar stools are a Great touch! The basement has a wonderfully creepy atmosphere... although it is just a little too clean...:( ...it needs some more dust and cobwebs...! You have used so many materials to make your surfaces... and all with marvelous effect! You have made this funny little cabinet into a Unique little Home!!!
    Well Done! And good luck!

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    1. I figure that basement will fix it's dust problem in good time-it doesn't need me for that. XD

      Thank you, glad you like it. :D

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  3. That's lovely stonework...especially the medallion. Very creative! The pottery in the basement is wonderful! Love the rotating counter! The beds look wonderfully cozy, and I would spend most of my time in that observatory! :D

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    1. Thanks Brae, if you can shrink yourself down, you're welcome to move in. XD

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  4. This is amazing, Kyle! I love that you took a very plain cabinet and completely transformed it into a very interesting piece! Best of luck in the contest!

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  5. Whee! It looks great! I love that swivel bar. I could use one in my real life house! You did a great job. Congrats!

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    1. I got that idea from a show on HGTV, and since I couldn't do it in real life-into the dollhouse it went. XD

      Thank you!

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  6. Thanks for the tour Kyle. Fabulous house. Great to see all the things you have made.

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  7. It looks fantastic! You did a great job capturing the steam punk vibe!

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  8. Hello Kyle,
    Fantastci work. The exterior is wonderful and very realistic, and the interior is just ebautiful and I love some of the original ideas you came up with!
    Terrific work!
    Big hug,
    Giac

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    Replies
    1. Thank you Giac.

      Glad you like it. :D

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  9. Amazing, Kyle! The outside is gorgeous, still can't believe those are egg crate pieces. I love your rotating counter too, but I think the bunk beds are my favorite piece of furniture. Great work!

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    1. I am so glad that the egg cartons worked out. XD

      Thanks Christina. :)

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  10. This is really, really cool. The egg carton stone looks incredibly realistic, I'm going to have to give that a try! The flooring choices work beautifully, I love how meticulous your work is. Job very well done!

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    1. Thanks Meagan.

      You should try out egg cartons. I have a feeling that you'd make something amazing with them. :)

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  11. it's really cute, the basement is very well done! I wondered how that turned out and the counter top is pure genius.

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  12. Hi Kyle!
    I've been following your progress, haven't had a chance to comment yet, (I've been busying building!). I LOVE how it turned out. It's a huge transformation! I am packing my mini bags to move into the observatory now! Those bugs are amazing!
    Good luck! Can't wait to see what mini project you have in store next! :))

    Rebecca

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    1. Ha, I haven't gotten to comment as much as I wanted to either.

      Thank you. :)

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  13. What vision! I was going to have a swing out countertop in my full-size kitchen renovation, but it didn't end up making the cut. This house is genius. I'm glad you got to try out new techniques. It seems like you had quite a good time.

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    1. I'd like to have one too, but I can't right now so in the dollhouse it goes!

      Thank you. :D

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  14. I too am really impressed by the egg carton tiles. You are such a talent, it looks so realistic.
    The minimalistic bedroom is just to my taste, love the beds. And the creepy crawlers in the observatory are just perfect.

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    1. Thank you, glad to hear you like it. ^_^

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  15. Kyle, I love your steam punk house, very cool and very well done!

    Cheers, Neen

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  16. Hi Kyle! I love the way you have done the exterior of this little cabinet house! Your usage of the egg carton and the way you made that medallion for the exterior walls is just brilliant! You have a great imagination and the house is very creative. Thank you for the tour!

    elizabeth

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    1. Thanks Elizabeth, glad you liked it.

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  17. Wow! This is great!! I love your stone work. Hannah

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  18. Hey Kyle, this is fabulous! Every little handmade goodie is eye candy, such creativity, and you have some serious texture goin' on! I'd like to snatch up the pottery and RUN with it! Good luck to you!

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    1. Thank you. :D

      Yeah, a lot of my planning stage was thinking about textures, so I'm glad you liked that part. ^_^

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  19. You really made this thin little house come to life with so many wonderful details. Love the paper bag wall paper and the bench seat.

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  21. The house is so beautiful. I am making a church for a Christmas cookie exchange party and I love the stone work you did. Did you use the egg cartons for the stone and the paper clay for the grout//

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    1. Yep, you got it right. Egg carton stones and Paperclay grout.

      I painted the stones before filling in the gaps with Paperclay. A couple spots had to be touched up at the end, but I think it worked out really well.

      I also recommend using a toothpick to smooth out the paperclay in-between the stones, it works better than just using your fingers.

      Good luck with the church, hope it turns out as well for you. :)

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  22. Thank you ,very much, for helping me. I'm going to get the things later on today. Your and artist. It is just amazing what you do. Even my daughters and hubby can't believe how life-like your house is.

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    1. You're welcome.

      And thanks for the nice compliments-much appreciated. ^_^

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  23. Hi Kyle. I was just looking for some ideas on the internet for my Timeless Toys exterior and I saw a picture of the medallion on this house that took my eye. Imagine my surprise when the picture led to your blog. Fabulous build. At the moment I'm trying to decide between egg carton stones or a plaster and wood build. I want old and quirky. It was a nice diversion coming to your blog and seeing this house but I had better get back to my research.

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    1. Thank you. :)
      The medallion is one of my favorite mini building projects so far, the house wouldn't have been the same without it. I've re-stumbled onto peoples' blogs while researching too-For this house actually. It's a fun surprise, like bumping into a friend at the mall or something. Glad my blog could distract you for a moment. XD

      Never tried plaster, but I do know that egg carton will get you an old and quirky look for cheap, and it's pretty easy to work with. I'd recommend it.

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