state of the art
In my last post I wrote I was going to use foamboard after finishing a first rough model with wood board. The main reason for that choice was that it is what the writer of my book “making scale models” prefers. So I ordered in a couple of foamboard sheets, cut 2 pieces of foamboard for the floor(s), and a total of eight pieces for walls; printed and cut the paper flooring, glued it to the foamboard floors. But then the material caused me all kind of headaches: I didn’t really like the glossy white finish of the board, and thought about making wallpaper. Would it hold on with paste? How would I glue the boards together, i.e. what glue would I use? Since the core is synthetic foam I didn’t trust paste, but the foam is not stable with solvent based glues either. Nevertheless I started with the cut-outs for the first window. And they turned out completely awful. Due to the foam core I found it hard to make precise, perpendicular cuts. And so I started over again. This time with matt-board in a creme tone. – Much better! The making and remaking of the main box with ordering in new materials in between took a lot of time. But now I feel like I am finally getting somewhere. And while I was pondering my options for walls and flooring, I got to work on a bunch of other details.

The Bedlinen

printing plate
I glued pieces of linen thread onto cardboard to print faint blue lines into white cotton for the covers


sewn duvet cover
from the printed fabric I then sew duvets and cushions.



I then starches them heavily so that they keep their shape – for beds that look like someone was just in, and two piles of neatly folded extras.

Tiled walls for the wet-area of the room

cutting tiles, first trial
I still had a selection of light blue paint chips, which I wanted to use as tiles for the wet-area in my room.
tiling first trial
after cutting them into small (almost) squares, I painted a square pattern onto a sheet of paper and tried to glue on the tiles as pecisely as possible. – I was rather frustrated by how wobbly it turned out.
decorating first trial
to make it look less flat, I sprinkled some watercolour over the panel.
decorating first trial oops
Ooops! Obviously the watercolour was not yet dry when I put on a layer of matt acrylic finish. argh!
decorating first trial repair
so, new spinkles
first tile trial finished
because I disliked the blue groutes, I decided to scrape out the medium from between the tiles. – And very much liked the result as the resulting edge on the tile seems to give them some more character and depth. – But I need three more of these panels!
tiling again
A quick calculation: I need three more such panels, and the paintchip tiles have no chance to suffice for that. So I cut (with more care this time) tiles from a linen laid paper. I figured that a bit of structure in the paper would be good to make the tiles appear less flat. I also decided against a square pattern on the paper this time. Instead I have marks on the sides, and use a metal rod as spacer which helps me keep my line straight.
decorating 2
As you can see here I made two light green folding panels, and also used the rest of the paint chip tiles to make a pair in case I preferred this. Now I need to paint the light ones, because they are nowhere as blue as I want them.
three tiled panels
there, the panels finished. I ended up using the double ones in the end.


radiators 01

After deciding on teh general size of the radiators, I cut a lot of these pieces from matt board and, slightly bigger from Bristol board. Then I sandwiched them with Bristol board in the middle. Like this:

radiators 02

Next I brough forward my trusty Crop-a-dile and punched two holes into each, one at the top, and one at the bottom, and threaded the sandwiches onto wooden dowels. Then I gave them a generous coat in gesso:

radiators 03

After that had thoroughly dried turning knobs were added, and a bit of acrylic paint to indicate where screws and valves are.

radiators 04

radiators 05

Below a picutre of one of them, sitting in the recess in the wall where it is going to get mounted soon.

radiators 06

The box/room itself


Only when the radiators were attached to the back panel, I started to assemble the room. After the glue dried, I decided to strengthen all seams with a bit of Japanese batik paper. Of course that wouldn’t suffice for the box if it would end up the only means of holding everything in place. But I plan to build another, properly fabric covered book board box around it. And the paper will ensure that the pieces stay together while I am working on them. I was especially worried about the little boxes that form the recess for the window and radiator.

strengthening the box



For furniture I have several plans but have not come very far yet. I have played with building boxes from matt board or foamboard and cladding it in veneer. Then I painted it with watercolours to improve the colour. But I am not yet happy with my experiments. I shall see how to make a wardrobe, a chair, a stool and a table.

Bedframe of the hopsital bed

The hospital bed cost me a lot of time and resources so far. I studied what online resources there are to understand how they look like and work. I was lying in a bed that I could manipulate, raise and lower the backrest, and so on by a control. And I would like this bed to look similar. The next question was from what material to construct it. I first thought I wanted to use metal. But wire that is thick enough to look convinving is hard to manipulate with enough precision. Next I tried cardboard, but anything I can cut well enough, like wood or cardboard soon looks – erm – in lack of a different word – boxy. I am not good enough with polymer clay to make a convincing bedframe of this size from it. Plastic tubes and rods I bought were either can’t hold their shape well enough or are too hard or impossible to bend.

But then I had an idea, and it is ridiculous that I didn’t think of it before: I shall make the bedframe from the same plasic which I used for the first part of the bed as well. This is a mouldable plastic, which can be manipulated when hot and gets rigid when cool.
bedframe 01

bedframe 03

the material is clearn when it is hot and develops a haze when cooling. Finally it is completely white when hard.

bedframe 02

The end of today: I am pretty happy with the progress: Each bedframe needs two of the larger bend pieces, and two of the smaller ones, additionally four rods to connect them all.

Making evenly round rods from the plastic was more difficult than I first thought, but after two days or so of intensive training, I feel like I am getting better. The plastic can then be painted with acrylics, right now a test piece in “silver” is drying in my studio.

Further Plans

That was a long read. Thank you for hanging on! Well, my plans include making many small things to put into the rooms, of course, including the books I had with me, so there will be some minature bookbinding to show of some time soon, I hope. But I should also put some more thoughts into the construction of the scroll and the main box.

3 replies on “Update on 346 – The “Room” is taking shape”

  1. My goodness! This is going to be amazing Hilke! So much work and so many eonderful little details. So far the radiators are my favourite. Can’t wait to see what else you put in your room.

    1. Glad you like them! 🙂 the radiators seem to have a couple of friends, online and offline. I am happy to hear that they seem convincing. Making them myself, and seeing them so so up close, I mostly see what is not quite right. Like that the actual water supply for it is missing. Or that the different panels are not spaced perfectly even or are not completely parallel.

  2. You may be aware of the small defects in the radiators, but I like them very much as well! Though I still also like the little hinges on the windows. ; ]

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