It’s been awhile. But now with our travel trailer all winterized and put away, it’s time to turn my attention to the dollhouse. In case you need to refresh where we are – or if you’ve never known, you can read the last post here.
Now that everyone is caught up, it’s time to address what I am calling the grand staircase. Many of the railings and spindles on the main floor steps had fallen off before I began the renovation. So to start, I removed any spindles that still remained and put them to the side.
In addition, the railings and spindles on the middle and upper section were also in disrepair. You can see from the feature photo none of the spindles remained on the right side of the upper hallway. This could be quite dangerous. So I removed all of the upper and middle landing railings and spindles, too. Time to start fresh.
I did not have enough of the original spindles to use on all the levels – upper, middle, and lower. So, I decided to use the original spindles, which were hand-notched by me 40 years ago, on the lower staircase. For the middle and upper sections I used wooden toothpicks and stained them dark brown.
I haven’t met a miniaturist yet who likes building the railings and spindles on a dollhouse’s staircase. It’s very tedious and tricky especially when the house is already built.
After much fiddlement (that means fiddling around), I managed to come up with a process that worked okay.
First I used my little hand drill to make a hole on the step where the spindle would be inserted.
Next I inserted the spindle. For the lower staircase, I would use a drop of super glue gel to secure the spindle in place. I could only do two at a time as my hand would invariably knock one over if I reached too far.
For the middle and upper sections, I could just push the stained toothpick into the hole, no glue needed.
Once all the spindles were in place in a section, I would glue a piece of stained trim along the top on one side of the spindles.
Once the first piece of trim on a set of spindles had dried, I glued a second piece of stained trim along the top of the other side, carefully aligning the top and bottom with the top and bottom of the first piece of trim. Once the second piece of trim had dried, I would use my little clippers to snip off any tops of the spindles that stuck out above the trim pieces. Then, if needed, I used the clippers to even out the trim pieces on the end.
Lastly, I glued a piece of stained trim along the top. This really made the railing look finished. I also glued trim on any open end pieces to complete the finished section.
Working on the dollhouse’s railing and spindles, I had to be patient. I had to come up with creative solutions. And I had to accept that my work was not as perfect as I wanted it to be.
The next section I am going to tackle is the dollhouse’s kitchen. I will have to be patient. I will have to come up with creative solutions, and I sure as heck know, I will have to accept that my work will not be perfect. However, I am going to try my best. You know what would be perfect ? If you follow along.