Wednesday, June 5, 2019
Before I got the doors installed last week, I had a real mess on my hands! The New Orleans was looking like a dumping ground for all the things I had yet to figure out and install. I needed to get the ceiling/roof out for a dry fit to see how things were going to line up. Adding three inches to the interior and exterior mansard walls made getting a perfect fit a challenge!
What I ended up doing was adding 1/8" strips to the tops of all of the walls. Except the interior bedroom/bathroom and bathroom/closet walls, as they had somehow ended up being higher by that much. Once they were all evened out, I attached the crown molding to the walls, before I attached the roof. This seemed easier than reaching in. Because of the angled mansard walls, I "cheated" and used square blocks in the corners rather than having to miter and cut complicated angles. I added the ceiling paper to the ceiling before gluing and nailing it to the house permanently. Then the house went on it's head for the ceiling work. I still had gaps here and there, so I filled them in with wood glue before playing with the ceiling designs.
I had several options at my disposal, so I played around with some layouts. I ended up changing my mind several times.
For the bathroom, I wanted to keep it pretty simple by using just a ceiling rose and some corner brackets. I ended up building a frame around the brackets just to give it a little extra detail.
In the stairwell hall, I had a fancy Unique Miniatures ceiling piece, so I just added some JMG laser cut swan brackets to the corners. To get them all perfectly aligned, I used a couple pieces of 5/8" scrap wood glued into an "L" jig. This way, I could line the jig up against the molding and place the bracket into the jig to glue. Because the Unique Miniatures pieces do not lay perfectly flat, I had to use more wood glue to caulk the cracks.
My original plan for the bedroom ceiling was more dramatic. The oval Unique Miniatures piece I had turned out to be a little more egg shaped, and having more surrounding detail seemed to draw attention to the mis-shape. So I opted to create a shallow tray ceiling with 1/2" x 1/16" strip wood and keep to a simpler design. I really like the center resin frame - it is a perfect piece and the detail is lovely.
Once I had the ceilings painted with white chalk paint, it was time to add the lighting! Installing the delicate bi-pin bulbs on the Houseworks chandelier, testing the lights, cutting down the chain to the proper length and gluing the fixtures to the ceiling was nerve wracking!
But with a lot of patience and praying, all went well!
I'm thanking my lucky stars that this part went so smoothly, but I'm not in the clear just yet. I've got two led spot lights to add to each room which means back on her head she goes while I try to carefully drill the holes. Makes me sweat just thinking about it! But while I am sweating, I am also so grateful that this long neglected project has all it's structural pieces in place! I can see the end now, and because the challenges have been so big, the satisfaction is equally as grand!