Tuesday, December 8, 2020

Building a 1:9 scale fireplace, part one

Every year about this time I find myself dreaming of a 1:9 scale fireplace for holiday photos.

Christmas 1976

So I open Google, type in "dollhouse fireplace diy tutorial" and spend the next hour watching YouTube videos. Then, of course, I never actually get around to making anything. A lot of would-be hobby projects suffer this fate.

But not this one, at least not this year. This year I have the dual motivations of the "December Celebrations" and "Hiberanation" classes at the Winter Fun Photoshow. I've decided that now is the time, so today I rewatched those videos. Then I sat down at my desk and got to work.

As the daughter of a woodworker, my inclination is to build things out of wood. Unfortunately, I don't really have the tools for that so I decided to take an easier path. I found a right sized box in my shipping stash and used that for main part of the fireplace. I did use a piece of scrap wood for the hearth.
I cut an opening in the box using a straight edge and x-acto knife. I taped over the exposed cut edges and primed and painted the pieces.
Using a trick I learned from all those YouTube videos, I cut the stones out of cardboard egg cartons. I glued them into place with tacky glue. This stage took a really long time.
Next, I painted the stones with multiple thin washes of acrylic paint. I let it dry and sealed with Mod Podge. 
I'm going to seal it again before I go to bed, and then tomorrow, I will add grout. If all goes well, the next steps will be the fun ones - adding a mantle and decorating!


  1. What a good idea! I love the idea of making the stones out of an egg Cartons!

    1. I wish I could take credit for it, but that's a well known miniature building technique.