It has been colder than usual in this part of the world this winter. So it is not surprising that this has people thinking more than usual about keeping warm! Sitting beside a roaring fire in your cozy livingroom fireplace is one timeless solution to keeping warm. Not so very long ago it was the ONLY way of keeping warm in the long nights of winter. But with the advances of technology in the nineteenth century, people built furnaces that heated water which flowed through iron pipes to radiators to give a steadier warmth to the room. This allowed them to heat many of the rooms of a house with less mess and little effort. The Folly, being a very Victorian house, relies mostly on the fireplace to heat the main rooms. Will Peters Ott is keeping warm here while Arthur is out.
But the Folly has been modernized to some extent. There is a new steam radiator for the bathroom! This helps keep the pipes from freezing in a winter like this one!
And the Lovely Old Dollhouse has steam radiators as well. Even though it was built well before the time of steam furnaces, as soon as they were invented a former owner upgraded to the newer technology! Here you can see the beautiful silver painted ornate cast iron radiator in the bathroom. It is EXACTLY like the ones in the house I grew up in! So you can see that it is JUST RIGHT for the Lovely Old Dollhouse.
And there is another one in the Front Hall of the Lovely Old Dollhouse, probably because there is no fireplace in this room. It is the perfect place to dry wet mittens in the winter! There are no other radiators in the Lovely Old Dollhouse, probably because there ARE fireplaces in the other rooms, and therefore the radiators are not necessary. The fires would keep the room warm.
And Of course, the Great Hall fireplace is the ONLY heat source for the main part of the Castle Dollhouse. You may remember that I remarked that the fireplace had not been used in a very long time, and the fire was not as ROBUST as I wished it were! Well, now that we are in the depths of Winter and it is BITTERLY cold outside, the Castle fireplace needed an upgrade!
Guard Ian is seeing to it! He has piled on the firewood and we now have a blazing fire that just might take the chill off the Great Hall!
You can see here below that I have painted in a much more vigorous fire than the tiny electric unit makes. Even though this is quite un-realistic, I am using it as the starting point for the larger fire.
With the electric fire turned on, it adds a slightly more realistic glow to the painted fire.
I painted a sooty background too, and added wisps of my favorite glittery "smoke" gauze.
Then I decided to try adding a more three dimensional painted "flames" to the foreground of the fire. I am not finished with this step, and am not sure how well I like the results. But I thought I would share them with you anyway. I painted some strips of clear plastic packaging material to look like flames and added them at the front of the fire. This picture doesn't really do it justice.
Here you can see the painted plastic packaging material. I used curved pieces as I wanted them to curl around the burning logs..... maybe they will look like it when I'm done!
And here's a slightly better view. You can see the "sparks" on the gauzy smoke cloth!
Charles and Helen are up early. Charles wishes Helen a Happy Valentines Day......Because it has been SO cold, Pollyanna is sitting in front of the fire in the Livingroom. She is wondering if she should invest in MORE radiators for the Lovely Old Dollhouse! It is a lot of work to keep the fires burning! This one has burned down to just the embers.... it is not enough!
While she is thinking, Arthur has arrived to bring her a Valentines Bouquet of Roses...... one for each year they have been dating...... has it already been FOUR years, she thinks? It does not seem so long!
she wasn't quite sure he was thinking of this...... could it be?
Fire And Ice!