Friday, August 15, 2014

Hi Guys,

I haven't gotten all of the pictures I need to make the washer, yet, so I'm off schedule for this month.  The project will take some head scratching so I need lead time to get it made and have it ready for you.  In the mean time my husband's garden is coming in!!  I've processed 150 pounds of tomatoes, put up over 50 pints of corn, that was 2 batches and the green beans are ready this weekend.  I have more juices to make, a second batch of green beans and I will make pickles, too.  All of this amounts to no tutorial this month, I am sorry!!!!  He grows it and even helps with the processing!! So, I can't put him off.  I hope you all understand.  I haven't been able to make new furniture for the site in a couple of weeks, either.  Excuses, Excuses . . .  I will be up and running next month and should have figured out the washer for you.

Remember, if  you have questions e-mail me at and if you want to sent me pictures of your finished tutorials send those to the same address.

Talk to you all later,

Monday, July 21, 2014

I need your help, again????

I want next month's tutorial to be a ROUND WRINGER WASHER, MAYTAG OR SPEED QUEEN.

I want a round washer, not a square one.  It's on legs with the wringer on top.

I need pictures and measurements.

Chrispy Critter has sent me a fantastic idea for making one.  I had wanted to make one for years!!! Just hadn't figured an easy way to go about it, Chris sent me a gem.

I've been on the net and can't get any response, DUH . . ."I'm a miniaturist and I want measurements for a wringer washer."  There are collectors out there (some have buildings full of them) but they think I'm crazy.  I have searched the net for a long time for dimensions.  I've missed out on a couple at used appliance stores around me.  The best thing would be if I could find one to see for myself and measure it.

Does anyone have access to one of these washers?????

Contact me at:


Here's a picture of what I am looking for.

Judi has contacted me, she has one, raised eight kids washing their clothes in it and it still works.  Says  a lot about they way things used to made!!

Thanks to all of you that researched for me!!!!

Friday, July 18, 2014

MAKING A 1 INCH SCALE WINDOW FROM MAT BOARD - How to make a 1 inch scale dollhouse window from mat board.

What's doors without windows?

Since I showed you how to make doors last time I thought I would show you how to make a simple window this time. Remember, once you know how to make the window you can change the measurements to suit your needs.

These are some windows I am making for a kitchen I am making.

A note to Chris . . . . I will make the wringer washer in the next tutorial.  I had these planned for July. Chris of Chrispy Critter sent me a wonderful way to make an old wringer washer and I am going to share that with you next time.

This is the kitchen.  I used 1/2" foam core for the walls.  I used toothpicks to "dowel" the walls together and the walls to the floor.

My husband supplied the flooring for me.

I've been painting, sanding, painting, sanding, painting, sanding, . . . . .

I've slipped my finished windows in.  I don't have the apron, (that's a piece of casing that is put under the sill) because these windows are over the kitchen counter.
There's a half round window that will be in the center.

On to our window.

I checked with the Hobby Builder's catalog and there were different sizes of window openings.  I chose 2 15/16"" x 5 1/4".  I rounded off the measurements.

I drew that on a piece of paper.

I know the picture says 2 7/8", it's wrong.

I have now drawn the frame, that's the 1/8" lines I added to the opening.

Notice that the sides go all the way to the top and the top fits between the sides.

I've added another line representing the sill at the bottom of the drawing.

I've added this picture of my little paper cutter.  Paper cutters with a sliding cutter are available in larger models and I recommend the larger models if they have some kind of a "stop" or good markings to measure narrow strips.  A "stop" would be good so that you could fix it to cut the same width over and over.
The cutter doesn't cut through but I can finish cutting through with my craft knife.

We are going to build the frame first.

Cut strips of mat board 3/8" wide.  I've cut 4 that are about 18" long.

I cut my strips with my little table saw from Micro Mark.  You can use a larger paper cutter with a sliding cutter as I showed above or use a mat board cutting system.  I have seen mat board cutting systems at art stores or arts and crafts stores like Micheal's.

Use yellow carpenter's glue to glue one piece onto the other.  I had 4 pieces of mat board, now I have 2 pieces that are double thick.

I've measured and cut two pieces 5 1/4" long.

If you are doing multiple windows it's very important that they are all the same size.  Make some sort of jig that allows you to make the same cut over and over again.  Just measuring, marking and cutting over and over won't be good enough.  There will be slight differences that will add up to different window sizes.

That sounds like another tutorial, doesn't it?

Cut the top 2 5/8" long.

Use yellow carpenter's glue to glue the top between the sides.

Showing a picture of the top between the sides.

I've added more to the drawing.
I've divided the frame in half between the top and the sill.
Centered a 3/16" wide piece on that center mark.  Drew another 3/16" wide piece at the top and a 1/4" wide piece at the bottom.  For the sides of the windows I drew more 3/16" wide pieces.

I also drew the sill and I will explain that now.

In the door tutorial I explain how to make simple casing, review that to make the casing for the window.

Set the casing onto the frame, set the edge on the second piece of mat board leaving a 1/16" showing, that's called the "reveal".

Measure from the inside of the frame to the outside edge of the casing, also add an 1/8" so the sill will extend an 1/8" beyond the edge of the casing.  I couldn't show me measuring because I had to hold the camera.

My sill is going to be 5/8" wide.  Cut 2 pieces of mat board that width and 4 1/2" to 5" long.

Glue those two pieces together.

I have the sill cut to length.

When I measured the width of the casing added onto the frame I added an 1/8" extra to extend beyond the casing.
I doubled that measurement, 2 sides, and added that to the width of the opening between the long sides of the frame, 2 5/8".
All that adds up to 3 13/16".

Do you remember how to find the center without dividing?

For this piece I measured from each side 2" toward the center and made a mark.

Now, you can divide that distance by eye or you can measure with your ruler to mark the center.

From the center measure toward the ends 1 5/16" (that's half of 2 5/8"), and mark.

Measure 3/8" from one long side, that's the depth of the frame.  Do this at the 1 5/16" marks at each end.

That should leave you with a 1/4" to the other edge of the sill.  Draw a line to the ends of the sill.
The "X's" are what you will cut out, that's waste.

I've got the sill cut out.

Glue the sill into the bottom of the frame, use the yellow carpenter's glue.

I'm using my Chopper again for the mitres.

I start by cutting a 45 degree angle on one end of my casing.

For the length I place the mitred end at the top, leaving a 1/16" on either side of the cut.  Remember the "reveal"?

Now, mark the casing at the bottom on the top of the sill.

I cut another the same length.

This is where cutting multiples comes up again.

Figure the length you need, cut those strips and then just cut the mitres on one end one after the other, all the same size.

Showing what the casing looks like at the back.

Some days I'm a whiz at cutting this piece.  You know, I had to cut this 7 times for the kitchen above and didn't have to redo one cut!  For this tutorial I had to cut this piece 3 times.

Measure from the tips of the casing . .


Turn the frame over and place a strip of casing that's all ready got one mitre cut and draw a line where the piece ends at the other side.

Cut on the line you made.

This is another note about cutting multiples.  When you have the right measurement cut the strips, both ends will have straight cut, then you will cut the mitres on each end.

So, I've glued the third piece into place.

That's why when you make casing you make extras for the days you just aren't going to be a whiz at cutting mitres.

This is a piece of acrylic, it's a 1/16" thick.  I buy poster frames from Wal-Mart for this stuff.  I can score it with my craft knife and brake it apart on the line I scored.  I cut the plastic covering to get it apart.  Don't strip off the plastic covering.  Acrylic is very unforgiving, leave it on for protection against marks, glue and paint.

Score the acrylic the width of the opening of your frame, 2 5/8".

I ran my craft knife over the line 4 or 5 times, then I bent the acrylic and it broke on the line.  I set it back down to cut the plastic covering with my craft knife.

I measured my drawing for the height of the window.

We are going to build the window onto the acrylic.

Cut two pieces the same size.

Do a trial fit, trim if necessary.  The acrylic should be snug.

I've cut strips of mat board 3/16" wide and 1/4" wide.

Cut enough for both sides of the window.

I am using tacky glue to glue the mat board onto the plastic covering.

Lay the 1/4" wide piece onto the bottom of one of the pieces of acrylic and mark.

Cut the mat board to that length.

I've got one side glued on and I have applied glue to the other side of the acrylic.

I know I am gluing to a plastic covering, not the acrylic.  By the time you have all the mat board glued on, you have painted the window and you have glued the window into the frame those pieces of mat board aren't going anywhere.

Showing how the acrylic is sandwiched between the mat board.

I've glued on a 3/16" strip to the top of the acrylic and now I am marking for the sides.  The sides will use the 3/16" strips, also.

When you apply the tacky glue make sure you apply the glue onto the edge of the previous strip so the pieces of mat board are glued together.

The bottom sash is done.

This is the only one that has the 1/4" strip of mat board at the bottom.

This is the top sash done, it uses only 3/16" strips all around.

Glue the top and bottom sashes together with yellow carpenter's glue.  Overlap the top of the bottom sash onto the bottom of the top sash.

The bottom sash should be in front of the top sash.

Do a trial fit to see if it all fits as it should.

I paint my jamb separately from the sashes.  I paint 2 coats and then sand using 220 grit sand paper, paint again, sand with 300 grit and paint a finish coat.  Use your craft knife to cut at the sides of the mat board around the sashes.  You will probably have to run the knife a couple of times, then carefully lift a corner of the protective plastic and peel it off.  I then glue the sashes into the frame.

Measure the width of the window from the outside edge of the casing to the other outside edge of casing, on this window that's 3 9/16".  Cut a piece of casing that length.  After you have glued the window into your wall glue the strip of casing to the wall right under the sill, that's the apron.

I don't usually do houses so I don't have to worry about the other side of the window but it will be finished just like the inside for a frame house with wood siding.  A brick house won't  have the apron under the sill.

If you have any questions e-mail me at:

If you have pictures of your finished tutorials send them to the address above.

Have fun, Expand on it, Make it better . . . .


TTUL  Kris

Wednesday, June 18, 2014

1 INCH SCALE DOLLHOUSE INTERIOR DOOR AND JAMB TUTORIAL - How to make a 1 inch scale dollhouse interior door and jamb from mat board.

I thought I would show you how to make a simple interior door and jamb from mat board.

I took the opening measurement from the Hobby Builder's catalog so this door is standard for today's dollhouses.

Once you have learned the method you can make doors of different dimensions.

I have bought lots of books from Dover  This book is very good for doors and windows.  It doesn't give measurements but the ideas are great.

Some examples of the pages.

I will begin with the jamb or the frame in which the door sets.
The Hobby Builder's catalog listed the opening as 3" wide, 7" high and 3/8" deep.
Cut strips of mat board 3/8" wide.  Cut at least 40".

I am going to be using yellow carpenter's glue through out this tutorial.

Cut 4 pieces of the mat board 7" long, that's in the picture above.

Glue two pieces together and glue another two pieces together.

You now have two pieces 7" long that are double thickness of mat board.

Cut from the mat board 3 pieces 2 3/4" long.

Glue two of these pieces together. Leave the third piece for later.

Cut 1/8" wide strips from mat board, at least 20".

Measure and mark on the doubled strips of mat board the center, 3/16" from either side.

Glue the 1/8" wide strip along the line. There will be 3/16" left on one side.

This is called the "stop".  It stops the door so it only swings one way.

Here are the three pieces of the jamb with the stop glued on.  There are two sides and one top.

Pay attention to how I have this laid out.

With your craft knife cut off 1/8" of the stop at the top of one side.

Do the same thing with the other side.

This is what the top of the side should look like after you've made the cut.

I am holding the top of the jamb in my hand.  The side in on the table.  The top fits down onto the side.  The stop should line up all around.

I have the sides glued to the top.  Do you see that the sides are covering the ends of the top?

Look at the stop, it is lined up all around.

Now, for the third piece of 3/8" wide mat board you set aside earlier, this is the bottom of the jamb or threshold.
Measure and mark the center, then mark 1/8" away from that.

Use your craft knife to cut on the marks.  Cut 1/16" deep.

This is the threshold with the cuts made.

Use 220 grit sand paper to round off the long edges of the threshold.

Glue the threshold to the bottom of the jamb.  The stop is in the openings you cut out.

Showing another view of the threshold.

Please let this dry.

I measured the inside of the jamb for the measurement of the door.  I left a little play, that's carpenter talk for extra space between the door and jamb.

This measurement is 2 11/16" x 6 3/4". Cut this from mat board.

This is my cut sheet.  I've drawn the door in 1 inch scale and then measured what I need to cut.

You will notice I've got my 3/8" measurements together then I've got an oddball 3/4" measurement and then the 9/16" measurements are together.
If you are using a table saw or mat cutting system this makes it easy to follow.  Set the width once and make those cuts and move onto the next one. You will have all your strips cut to width.  All you will have to do is measure for the length and cut.

I've got my 3/8" strips cut.

I've cut 4 of the 3/8" strips 6 3/4" long and glued them along the sides of the door.  I've done this to both sides of the door.

Although I have the length written down I usually just dry fit and mark with a pencil where I need to cut for length.

I will do this for the rest of the door, both sides.

I use my square and craft knife to cut the strips to length.

I've got a 3/8" strip at the top, 3/4" strip in the lower middle and a 9/16" strip at the bottom.  I do this for both sides.

Just a word here, this would make a fine door right now if you want.

I am dry fitting and marking for the center pieces, they are from 3/8" strips.

I've got the center strips glued in, both sides.

I want to show you something.

Do you see the two pencil marks on the top strip?

I am measuring for the center.

This is an old carpenter's trick, the old carpenter being my husband, HA!

You don't have to divide fractions.

I'm using a scrap of mat board.

Lay your ruler down, it's length is between the 1/16 and 1/8 inch marks.

Make a pencil mark at what looks to be over half to you.  Remember the measurement, mine is 1 11/16".

I am measuring from the left side.

Now, I've rotated the mat board and I am measuring from the other side, 1 11/16".  I've made a pencil mark.

You should be able the "eye" the center without measuring.

Use 220 grit sand paper to round off the square edges of the mat board. Don't do the outside edges of the door just the inside of the rectangles you made with the strips.

Just a note here, this makes a fine door right now.

To imitate the raised panels we will cut from the 9/16" wide strips of mat board 4 pieces 3 1/4" long and 4 pieces 1 1/4" long.

Use 220 grit sand paper to round off all 4 sides of these pieces.

After you have rounded off the edges glue these pieces into the center of the rectangles of the door, both sides.

I've got the door just setting in the jamb.

I am using scrap mat board from a framer.  Got a good buy on some large pieces for $3.00 and $5.00 a piece. They were discontinued colors.  Last time I bought a piece from Michael's it was $15.00!

Going to make the trim for the jamb.

Cut from mat board a few pieces, enough for both sides of the door, a fat 1/8" wide and 5/16" wide.

Glue the fat 1/8" strip to one side of the 5/16" strip.

Use 220 grit sand paper to round off the the edges of the strips.

I use The Chopper for my mitres.

I've made the first cut.

I have no trick for you in cutting mitres, I am sorry.  It's all in the measuring, measure twice, cut once.

Glue the trim onto the jamb, on the outside piece of mat board.  Leave the inside piece showing, that's called the reveal.  That's why I doubled the mat board on the jamb so we would  have something to glue to, even if it is a single piece of 1/16" thick piece of mat board.  The jamb is going to be glued into a door opening.

I have the trim glued on.  Cut two of everything so you have trim for the other side of the door jamb. You will put that on after you have the door and jamb in the opening.

I used 180 grit sand paper to sand round one side of the door.  This makes it easier for the door to swing with a pin hinge.  The rounded side is the side that will have the pin hinge. That's all I use.  I haven't gotten to putting real hinges on, yet.

I have a small stash of these short thick brass pins, I don't know where I got them from.  You can use a straight pin or dollhouse nails for the hinge.

Putting the pins in is a little tricky.  Place the door into the jamb and mark on the door and jamb, have the marks line up.  You want to be 3 /32" from the edge of the door.  Your door is 3/16" thick, you want to have the pin in the middle of that.  Transfer the 3/32" mark to the top and bottom of the jamb and drill using a tiny drill bit.  You don't have to drill into the door, only through the top and bottom of the jamb.  The pin will go into the door pretty easily.

Insert your pins.  Don't worry if you don't succeed on the first try.  If you make too many attempts just put glue in the holes, let dry and try again tomorrow.

Tigger's on my table.

I hope you try this out.  I had this made in a couple of hours, that beats waiting for it being shipped.

Have fun, Expand on it, Make it better . . . . .
Just Keep Making Minis!

TTUL   Kris

P.S.  I added a picture showing one of the pins in the bottom of the jamb or threshold.  A pin goes in the top of the jamb, too.  The pins are inserted into the side of the door that you rounded off with sand paper.  I hope this helps a  little more.