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 . . . .

Monday, January 7, 2019

Ballroom (Ceiling) Dancing

Getting the Mansion's ballroom ceiling painted has been quite a dance and an effort in patience.  The house is upside down so that when I glue the ceiling panels in I won't have to clamp them in place (I'll let gravity do the heavy work for me :) ).  Plus the ceiling panels could lay flat on the ceiling in between the times I had available for painting them (i.e. they didn't take up space on my dining room table when I wasn't painting them).  I used Unique Miniature ceilings (needed 3 of them to fill the giant ballroom ceiling space)!

Cut the panels to fit
Painted everything a light ivory
Realized when I was cutting the ceiling panels that the ballroom will have crown molding.  And crown molding won't fit up against the ceiling since the medallions make a drastically uneven surface.  So I had to install a filler piece of stripwood for the crown molding to sit on once it's installed.
Burgundy painted stripwood for the future crown molding - it will go all around the room, even the stairway opening.
Started with the burgundy accent paint on the ceiling (view looking in the window)

Just ivory and burgundy, looking a little plain...
Added some light blue!

There's blue there, honest!

Tiny swirls of blue on the corners and blue diamond points in the burgundy inset
Beige accents (can you see my fingernail? That's roughly the size of these medallions I'm painting!)
View looking in from the window....

3 colors (burgundy, blue, and beige) in addition to the base light ivory
Time to add green!
Looking good, but still needs that last touch of color!

The design is not only small, but in several places the tiny details in the design were not fully imprinted/cast so in some areas the design details are simply what I painted to give the illusion the design is there.
There's the gold!
Ceiling was finally sort-of finished!
After weeks and weeks of repeated attempts to paint neatly, followed by repeatedly going back to touch up paint as I didn't paint as neatly as I wanted all the time, it only needed one more final review (in which I discovered 2 medallions I had forgotten to paint the green sun rays on one side, an entire row I forgot to paint the green circles, 2 swirly bits I missed with the blue paint, and a few gold half circles in the center of the medallion I had not painted).  Out of 100 medallion designs I am not going to beat myself up for having missed these...at least, I won't beat myself up as much about it anymore (it's been a few days since I discovered and painted/fixed them).
All done and with stripwood crown molding spacers/fillers in place

I have not glued it down yet - there is a gap near the back wall that I need to fill in with plaster and paint light ivory to blend in with the ceiling and I think some of the crown molding stripwood fillers need to be trimmed slightly...But it's almost done!  So close!  And once it's glued in, the house can be flipped right side up again and the exterior finished!
With sample of crown molding in place

Using 2 pieces of crown to create a larger crown molding
Future vision of ballroom (ceiling part with furniture, flowers, flooring, and wallpaper):
Crown molding wasn't painted the exact shade of burgundy I decided upon but this was my brief "put it together to see if it all works" staging.

In the meantime, my beautiful curtains (made by Designs by Janet) arrived and although I was very intimidated and nervous I would mess them up, I did finally get them glued into place in the lady's sitting room and bedroom!
Curtains in sitting room bay window

Right side of sitting room (opposite the curtains)

Whole view of sitting room (although I had removed the wing chair and forgot to return it for the overall photo).  Like my note reminding myself to not glue in the door trim (or else I'll accidentally glue the door in which will make wallpapering the next room very difficult)?
However, when I went to glue in the bedroom curtain, I realized that the bedpost will hit against the curtain and if I move the bed over a bit it crowds the rest of the furniture in the room.  So the bedroom needed to be rearranged...
Trying to fit the curtain with bed in the corner (old furniture arrangement)
After rearranging:
I like this arrangement better than what I had before!

Not liking the walnut window pane trims being seen with the rest of the room.
I believe the Lady's bedroom needs some ecru sheers on the window too -- I don't like seeing the gold window trim and walnut stain window parts.  So ecru sheers are being purchased soon....and I have to find a new spot of the rug (currently under the bed mostly) so it's seen more.

But Mansion is getting some love right now.  As are some other projects!  I'm hoping to do an update, once a week or twice a month (depending on how busy I get), regarding other projects I have going on this year!  Hope everyone had a fabulous New Year!  2019 is going to be a very productive mini year (I hope)! LOL


  1. Hi Lori - I have just stumbled upon your blog and have been enjoying catching up on your posts the last couple evenings. The ceiling is wonderful, as are your tiny painting skills for details like these! Looking forward to more catching up, and I hope the New Year brings you lots more time to make your own mini dreams a reality!

    1. Hi Jodi,
      Glad you are enjoying the posts!
      Thank you for stopping by!
      Lori K.

  2. Un proyecto fantástico, las cortinas me han dejado admirada,felicidades.Te deseo un feliz año nuevo:-)

  3. Hi, Lori - I'm so glad that you're back to work on your lovely Mansion. That's a great way to start the New Year! I love your choice of paint colors for the ballroom ceiling - I can hear the waltz music and see all those beautiful whirling gowns! The curtains for your sitting room look very elegant. I had to laugh at your note to self to NOT glue in the door. I leave myself notes, too, but sometimes can't decipher/interpret them when the time comes! I hope yours works out better than mine. I like the new furniture arrangement in the lady's bedroom and am glad to see that the curtains now show to advantage; this is such a pretty room! I'm looking forward to seeing updates on the Mansion and also on your other projects. (How do you find time for "other" projects???)

    1. With 15 or so dollhouses and over 55 roomboxes (might be closer to 65 now) in various stages of incompletion, there's always some other project I could be working on! I'm great at starting the projects...it's finishing them that I stink at! LOL

  4. Lori - you have done such a fabulous job on this ceiling and the intricate painting!