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Tuesday, September 16, 2014

Ceilings with a "Sweet Touch"

“I happen to find ceilings much lovelier than the night sky myself. 
Sometimes I just stare at them for hours and wonder what could be up there.” 

Hello folks!  Welcome back!

I am now occupying my time with the creation of the Grand Parlor ceiling design.  The design must accommodate earlier decisions I made about putting the ceilings together. The photo below reveals the challenge created by two levels of ceiling within the same room.  

I designed the ceiling of the Grand Parlor and Kitchen Room modules to provide a hiding place for the eventual installation of lighting and wiring. It creates a profile which dictates a dramatic treatment in order to help make the ceiling profile believable.  To respond to this challenge, I chose to create a tray ceiling in the front portion of the room.

I started by drawing my ceiling tray shape using my favorite tool, the dinner plate, and a metal ruler.  To create the curved shape, I cut straight lines into the areas that required a curve, called kerfs.   

After the kerfing is in place, the Foam Core board is easy to bend into the desired shape and glue into place. I added illustration board to even the edges of the ceiling tray with the lower ceiling level. 

I used Spackle to clean up the edges and smooth out the cuts in the Foam Core Board.  

And now for that "sweet touch"!  For the lower portion (shown on top in the photo above), I wanted to create the look of a carved ceiling.  I happened to buy some cookies from Safeway a few weeks ago, and got to looking at the packaging.  I thought it would provide a perfect base for my ceiling idea!

I cut the center portion of the cookie tray out of the packaging... 

And cut out additional pieces of two additional trays and overlaid them on one another to create a "single" sheet.  

After cutting several smaller pieces to fill in the missing areas, I ended up with the texture base I want for my carved ceiling!  

So finishes the first step toward a beautifully carved ceiling.  At least I hope so!  The goal is a ceiling that is "much lovelier than the night sky"! 

Obviously, there is a lot of trim and finish work left to do.  Everything, though, starts small, and "becomes". I'll share more of the process of "becoming" in later posts.

That's all for now folks!  

Doug S


  1. Oh Doug, what a wonderful idea for your carved ceiling. I love that you are going to have a stepped ceiling, that really is something different. I see you like a challenge, so do I, but I am so much 'safer' in my little endeavours! :)
    I just know this 'dollshouse' is going to be so much more, and I am really glad I have started to follow your journey (more or less) from the beginning.
    All the best and take care.

    1. Hi Vivian!

      Yes, I am afraid I belong in the "different" category. I really love unique yet beautiful things and often that ALSO means a challenge... I have a bit of a problem I deal with... Grandiose ideas... they are not all they are cracked up to be! :0) They usually end up being a whole lot of work!

      I alluded in an earlier post to my tendency to 'overdecorate'! I really have to watch myself, and often have to "trim" some of my ideas out of the mix as I move forward. Lordy, do I have some fun sometimes! But, I am just very happy to be translating those ideas into a reality, even if it IS just a miniature one! It is such a rewarding miniature endeavor!

  2. Hello Doug,
    I love it! Great idea using the cookie tray. It has a beautiful texture and works very well. The curved detail is terrific. this will be one impressive and grand parlor. Keep up the fantastic work.
    Big hug,

    1. Hey Giac,

      The cookie tray was a "fortunate accident". I love how the most humble things can become important features in the mini world. It is funny too, I have begun to interpret everything I see in the "mini" version... What opportunities are there to turn this into something miniature? Surprising how many "opportunities" there are!

      Thanks Giac!


  3. Hi Doug! Your ceiling is really inspiring... Thank you for explaining how to curve a surface. I will certainly use your idea in my new project. Cooky trays can be very useful. But I never tried to paint them. So I'm looking forward to see, how you will do it.

    1. Hi there Ersilia! I am glad you will benefit from seeing how I managed the curves in the ceiling. I'll post about how I go about painting them. I can already tell you that some of it is going to be aiming in the dark...but I think that is just part of building miniatures! Turning ideas into reality can be a tortured path, at least for me!


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