Saturday, 27 May 2017

Away with the fairies....

I have just had a great afternoon playing with an ELF.  No, seriously!

I have finally got round to making the bookshelves for the library which I ordered from ELF ( a very long while ago.

I have had something ELF in every single project.  In this one so far Elizabeth has cut kits for me to make an eighteenth century linen press, an Ikea computer trolley, an Ikea corner work table, another Ikea trolley for a dolls house to stand on, a small 'kitchen' for the mud room, a TV and book unit, a computer unit, again with shelves, and now the bookshelves to go in my library.

Making up these kits always begins with the most terrifying moment of panic when you just know you should never have ordered this.  These bookshelves were no different.  I was facing a stack of little bags containing 113 pieces of wood which somehow were supposed to transform into a recognisable object using, what now looked like, the briefest of explanations.

113 bits of wood

notes from Elizabeth

As always a deep breath and a reminder to 'eat the elephant one bite at a time' and I was off.

Some Radio 4 drama and a bottle of wood glue for company in my sunny hive and a brief stroll to the house to get a cup of tea and biccy and one short afternoon later this is where I was up to when I locked up for the night.

ready for painting

had to have a little play inside the house!

I did discover on my playing with the shelves that the door is not perfectly centered
 on the back wall but I think I can see a judicious way of fiddling the fitting of the shelves so it looks as though it is.  I must have done some tight measuring for these bespoke shelves as the door trims will only just squeeze it in there.

I need to get the walls papered and the floor down and the shelves painted.  I may run all these tasks alongside each other as there will be a lot of watching paint dry and I may as well be getting on with another part of the final fit while that is happening.

I also have two corner chair kits to make up for this room; they can be thrown into the confusion too.  I have already bought a very nice table/desk and matching chair, so if I can ever find a light for over the desk, the bones of the library will be settled.

Is everyone else in this game like me? - two evil twins in your brain doing endless battle - one wants it finished to admire the end result and the other wants it in process because she enjoys the doing of it more than the collecting and admiring.

Huge thank you once again to Elizabeth at ELF for her talent, patience, suggestions and help to get another part of my project on the road.  Please go visit her site, even if what you want isn't there, like all good fairies, she can make it happen for you.

A couple of days later  ............After building the shelves ready to paint I decided I wanted an extra shelf in each bookcase and I also wanted a shelf across the top of the door as a sort of bridging unit between the shelves so this would also need extra trim.  All was duly ordered and, with a couple of email exchanges over a weekend (!!!!), they arrived the following day.  Elizabeth must have cut these just for me as they clearly weren't a standard kit waiting to come out. Her service would take some beating.

 At the same time I decided to order a modern (1980's?) glass topped coffee table.  I have been completely stumped trying to find a coffee table for the the dainty French chairs I have in the sitting room.  The low level coffee table as we know it was a late Victorian invention so clearly a Georgian one was out of the question!!  This I already knew but I thought I just might find some neo-Georgian or at least dainty-legged object that would do.  When I got fed up of searching I decided I would do what I would do in real life and find something that looked OK in the room in hopes something better might turn up.  This, after all, is a house being lived in by my alter ego in 2016.

I am convinced that when the rug arrives and the room is dressed with gold framed pictures and the odd gilded object dotted about the place, the table will probably look just fine.  That's my story and I am sticking to it.


Phew!  a couple of days after writing this I was happily plodding along with the library when I suddenly realised I have to do the music room first!!!  All that thinking and planning and fussing about how to get the music room wall lights in and then I totally forgot that one of them has its wiring behind the bookshelves of the library; so, obviously, the light has to be in place before the bookshelves go in.  This means the walls of the library need decorating, the chimney breast and fireplace in the music room need to go in, the library floor needs to go down......see where we are going...... next week, the music rooms begins.



  1. I love the idea of made to order kits, it is kind of the BEST of both worlds, and you have done a BANG UP job on assembling them too!
    And lest I forget to mention my thoughts on the glass coffee table- GOOD CHOICE. It is visually light enough to not crowd the grouping and substantial enough to not get lost in the crowd. Since yours IS a modernized traditional house with a nod to both the past and present; it fits right in! :D

    1. Your namesake is the bee's knees at this stuff. Thank you for the coffee table comments. I really did think about it the way you describe and thought if this was my real house this is the sort of thing I would use for those reasons and then keep a look out for a pseudo-period table to replace it some time. I prefer a compromise piece to a space. Funny how people differ.... in real life I know someone who will do without for years until the right thing turns up even including basic comforts like carpets and curtains.

  2. Hello Marilyn,
    Those bookcases are beautiful. Good job putting them together. Those are great kits and it looks like the quality of the wood is top notch. I very much like ELF miniatures.
    I love the coffee table. I think the glass top makes the room feel bigger, not to mention that it is very elegant and works perfectly with the rest of the furniture. I love it! I cannot wait to see your music room.
    Big hug

    1. Thank you as always Giac. It is always lovely when people like the things I like.... vanity, vanity all is vanity(!) ELF is very good for sure and will feature largely when I reach the top floor apartment in this house. Marilyn

  3. Replies
    1. Welcome, nice to 'see a new face'. Hope you stay with me. If you are new to the hobby i have made som how-to videos. The link is at the top of this blog, over in the left hand column.