Welcome to my life . . . .

This is a blog about my passion: dollhouses and miniatures. This particular blog was started to follow my miniature dream: to create a Victorian Mansion. But work on my Mansion is slow. Very slow. Sloth slow. Ice Age glacier movement slow. Why? Because I am easily distracted by other personal miniature projects (I have 50+ roomboxes and 15 dollhouses in various stages of incompletion) and because I work for a miniature shop and am often up to my elbows in miniature projects that aren't mine! So, I thought, some artists work in a particular medium (woods, watercolors, clay, oils, etc.), I work in progress . . . .

Friday, March 25, 2016

Little Lost Cause Flooring

Customer wants a tile floor that resembles the floor in her real life house.  Unfortunately the pic she emailed to us didn't fully capture the "orange" color of her floor...
Customer's real life kitchen floor
Customer picked out an orange tile here in the shop that was similar in color, but didn't have the variation of color that her real life floor has.  So customer was willing to "settle" for the plain, monotone, perfectly-square orange tile we had in stock.  But this lady is super sweet and so pleasant to work with and I wanted to give her what she had envisioned.  And I always wanted to experiment with a popsicle stick floor -- of course, I thought I would be using the popsicle sticks to create a wood floor and not a tile floor, but how different could it be?
Taped together
I grouped a few sticks together (and taped them together so they'd all be cut the same) and marked them.  (In the future it would probably be best to give them all a coat of paint FIRST, and then cut them into individual "tiles" instead of the other way around -- hindsight is 20/20).  Used the jeweler's saw to cut them all...
Piles of tiles
This was when I realized that it would have been better to have painted them BEFORE I cut them up.  DUH!  Let's blame lack of coffee for not thinking of that sooner!

I painted them each in various shades of orange.
And glued them to a template that fit the room.  I like to use a roller to squeeze out any excess glue and to firmly adhere the wood down to the template...
Then I had to polyurethane it to seal the wood because it would need some grout (to better replicate the real life tile floor)...but I use wall spackle as grout and in order to wipe away the excess with a wet rag I would need the "tiles" sealed.  So, after polyurethaning the flooring twice to make sure the tiles were sealed, I then put the grout in it:
I like Dap Fast 'N Final Wall spackle, but any spackle will do (including the one I used for this project which was a purple-but-dries-white spackle).  Then it got another coat of sealant and it was put in place:
I had fun - and learned a little bit too from my experiment.  It has the variation of color and the slightly haphazard nature of her real life kitchen tiles! Can't wait to do something similar for another project I'm considering -- a future Birthmas (half Birthday/half Christmas) gift for a friend....this isn't half bad for a little pro bono kitchen floor!  I hope she likes it!


  1. Hi, Lori - I just visited your blog and was impressed with the tile floor that you've made. I will soon be laying tile in several rooms of my miniature Tuscan villa-fattoria, and I haven't quite decided on my tile-making approach yet, but your post gave me some ideas. Your tile looks so realistic; that's a great encouragement for me as I begin my tile project. I enjoy your blog immensley and always look forward to a new post.