Monday, November 24, 2014

Quarter Scale Witch House 2 - It's all about the paperclay

I believe the most common use for Creative Paperclay®, among miniaturists, is as a covering on pre-made structures.  Once I had the floor plan designed for my witch house, I started thinking about how I was going to make the structure itself.  I designed the sides and roof, then made a small paper model to see how it would all fit together.  I was going to make the structure out of wood and cover it with paperclay – but, I started thinking that in quarter scale I might as well just make the walls out of clay.  It was then that I decided to make the entire project completely out of paperclay.  As most of you know, I LOVE the stuff!

My first thought was to cut the wall patterns out of dry clay and then assemble the structure, but I wanted a more “organic” feel to the piece.  I came up with a plan to make an interior form, cut the pattern pieces from cardboard, and glued, taped, and glued some more.  I used the floor plan, minus the width of the cardboard on all sides.  In order to accurately follow the plan, I had to figure out where all the pieces where going to overlap in order to make the wall patterns and adjust the widths accordingly.  I then covered the entire exterior of the cardboard with plastic.

cardboard form with foam core windows attached
 I had already drawn the windows onto my pattern, so I transferred them to foam core, cut them out and wrapped them with masking tape (so the paperclay wouldn’t stick) the affixed them to the structure with double-stick tape.
As you can see from the photo, some of these walls are pretty high.  I knew that once I started adding clay to the structure the cardboard would start to bend, so I also glued some additional cardboard supports behind some of the walls.  I also taped wood strips to the cardboard model (not shown in the photo) before I covered it with clay.  The strips were used to create guidelines for the second floor, and for electrical wiring.

I rolled paperclay out to a 1/8″ thickness and applied it to the form, making sure to go around all the windows and doors carefully.

This is how the house section looked when removed from the form, with the exception of the center divider in the front window, which I added with a strip of dried paperclay.

Another view of the form - ignore the fireplace, we'll talk about that later.  In this view you can see the channels for the second floor and wiring on the left side of the wall

For the roof piece, I followed the same procedure but used cereal box type cardboard so I could bend it to the form.
Roof form taped into place.  I will be making the other roof section for the dormer window from dried paperclay

The inside of the roof had to be braced also

I don’t have photos of the roof section when it came off the mold, I was too anxious to attach it to the rest of the house! Already had the doors and windows in, since I started with the gate & doors.  I’m signing off with these last two photos – next time I think I’ll move on to the stairway or fireplace.

Originally posted March 10, 2014

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