Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Quarter Scale Retro Kitchen Roombox

I was able to complete this retro kitchen roombox Thanksgiving 2010. The kit is from Luci Hanson of Cascade Miniatures. She taught thisworkshop in Indiana, and I was able to get one of the kits even though I did not actually attend the workshop with the help of Cindy McDaniel. I was stuck with how to decorate the interior until Laura Miller shared a link (American Vintage on Flickr) which had lots of pictures of American kitchens from the 1920s to 1960s. After a few browsing sessions on that website, it took no time at all to complete the kit.
This is the front view of the roombox, which has a kitchen on the left and dining area on the right. I used just about everything included with the kit, but made a few changes to personalize it. I changed the wallpaper to one with fruits to go with the theme of kitchen. For the ceiling, I painted a warm white and added Roll-a-tex to give it a textured popcorn ceiling effect.

All the cabinets were included with the kit and came already painted! You wouldn't believe what a time saver that was. We had a choice of colors for the fridge and stove and hood, and I chose avocado. The cabinets came white, but I painted them all Ceramcoat Eucalyptus (what I had on hand) to add color to the room. In my RL, I am all neutral (tan, beige etc), but for my dollhouse projects, I use color whenever I can. I really liked the look of the fridge and stove/hood---they were just too pretty to have one appliance in a corner, so I had them both front and center to show them off. However, this doesn't follow the triangle principle of efficiency for modern kitchens. I also added the dining table in the kitchen area, which is a departure from true kitchens from this era, which in general did not have an island; but I did this in order to anchor and balance the room so it didn't have a big empty space on the left side of the roombox. Besides, you can think of this as an updated vintage kitchen.

This is a view of the kitchen from the top. The dining table came pre-fabricated (Luci always goes the extra mile to make her kits easy to assemble). Instead of the styrene tile, which was white, for the countertops, I used scrapbook paper I bought eons ago from Michaels. It added color and a subtle pattern while complementing the whole color scheme of the kitchen (I got lucky I had it). On the left cabinet I put cookies, pie, and chocolate roll I made from Janet Smith's chocolate shop workshop (see previous post). I made the clock from a printie and the canisters from wooden dowels and printies. I loved the coffeemaker which was included with the kit---so clever, but simple, and effective.
This is the dining area. The kit came with a mirrored hutch, but I didn't have enough room for both the hutch and the dining table that came with the kit because I had made the kitchen area larger by having both fridge & stove on one wall, so I left out the hutch and made a small dining table from pre-cut wood shapes you can get from Michaels or Hobby Lobby and paper clips for the legs---simple in theory, but tricky in execution. It took me several tries before I got the look I was after. The chairs came with the kit and were already beautifully painted.
The kit also came with a shelf and printies for the plates---half I used for display on the shelf display and half I used for the desserts on the opposite wall. The steps leading to the sliders were made using the spacers that came with the kit. The sliders go on a false wall that helps hide the wiring if you decide to light the box.

The table is all set for supper. Thanks for being my guest!

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