How about a log house to inspire the imagination of a little boy? All of my other sculptures are works of art, not toys. But this one is designed for a friend’s child. I wanted it to be rustic and durable and not have any choking hazards.
Thanks to my friend Jeff for letting me scavenge this hollow log from his firewood pile. It has a perfect, natural opening for an entrance. I carved the door from a slab of oak bark. I used a strap of leather for the hinge and pegged it with oak twigs, epoxied into holes.
I applied a little gold leaf to the back wall so when you look through the bamboo panes you see a mysterious glint. Also I hinged the roof to encourage him to peer inside…and probably drop toys down in to be rescued out the front door.
I made this miniature house as a gift for a friend who is retiring from sales and moving to Tennessee to build cabins in the woods. So I made a cabin out of woods.
He is a Christian and I was inspired by Jesus’ sermon in Matthew 7 “Therefore, everyone who hears these words of mine and puts them into practice is like a wise man who built his house on the rock. The rain came down, the streams rose, and the winds blew and beat against that house; yet it did not fall, because it had its foundation on the rock.”
So I started with a chunk of Tennessee flagstone as the foundation, mounted on a matching slab of Florida cypress. The oak door and windows were cut from a piece of recycled pallet.
One photo I forgot to take would have revealed the 30 miniature LED lights, both in the main floor and tower.
I found this log at a place selling firewood in Plant City, Florida. The rotted knot makes a perfect entrance to a “fairy house” leading into a hollow cavity. It took about three weeks to construct this little work of art. It’s heavier than most that I’ve built because of the solid wood and piles of rocks. (But not quite to Dade County hurricane standards).
A little crooked, that’s o.k.
Recycled oak from a pallet.
Brass knob to match the hinges.
Bamboo nailed down with fence staples for the rafters.
More bamboo with raffia hot-glued.
Melaleuca bark attached…but it looks too much like a teepee, so I tore it off and started over.
Oak branches glued into 3/8″ holes.
Melaleuca bark glued onto a lampshade.
Carved holes for the windows to allow light to shine through the stained glass windows.
Window frames scroll-sawed out of another oak board.
Cardboard templates on the right, finished frames on the left.
“Plaid Gallery Glass” allowed for great flexibility. I made a leaf-pattern to stick with the botanical theme.
Cardboard cut out for the sidewalls, covered with Melaleuca bark.
I capped the roof with a slab of oak bark creating a stained-glass peep.
Aluminum foil is an easy to mold base.
Concrete seal acts as a natural looking, permanent grout with these rocks. I used bark strips to conceal the plywood face.
This little house has gone through several changes. First it had a roof made from Mahogany seed pods. But it seemed too small so I cut it off and replaced it twice.
The walls are made from rocks stacked and mudded with concrete patch. The base is 3/4″ oak, mounted on a lazy Susan.
The door and window are a slab cut from a pine log that was hollow in the center.
I installed five LED lights: Most behind the front door give a warm glow and one in the attic for a peculiar shadow effect.
The foundation to this house is an inverted 10″ plastic pot.
The original front door was Melaleuca bark. I carved three different windows but it ended up looking like a jail door.
Window panes didn’t look welcoming.
Fun making shutters with knobs of clove but it looks like it’s braced for a storm.
The first roof on the right was too small. This roof was too bowl-shaped. I took it off and reframed it.
Oak branches bound with raffia, sitting on a food storage top, bolted down. The roof is now removable to give access to the light control.
The front door and windows are cut from the same old pine log. Even though it is about 1/2″ thick it is translucent to allow some of the light through.
Bark welcome mat.
The three jeweled pieces are made by my wife: The most attractive part of this house, and my life.
Two-part epoxy holds these glass beads onto the plexiglass window.
It took four hours to cut, sand, carve, stain, and paint this little door.
I used a photo of the actual hobbit house in New Zealand to get the right ratios of window and door placement.
The first layer of paint on the front wall looked wrong so I spray painted it with hammered bronze for texture.
Then spray painted two shades of yellow with brick-red mist.
I jig-sawed a 1″thick oak board to make the three roof awnings.
First lay out of the pillars, but bricks go on first.
This first attempt of window panes failed because the bamboo was fresh and the waxy outerlayer would not accept epoxy.
The bricks are Fimo polymer clay, copper color. Rolled, cut, baked and laid out.
Cap it off with moss.
True to the “Hobbit” story, the front door has a carving made by Gandalf: This “rune” means money, directing the dwarves to Bilbo’s house. This door knob is a pine knot but I had to paint it metallic bronze to match the story.
Stepping stones from Landscaper’s Choice, Naples. Bird house and watering can from Driftwood Garden Center, Naples and Estero.
I treated the oak with Danish oil to bring out the grain. Dry florist foam, carved with a knife shape the roof/hill. The base is a slab of 20 year old pecky cypress.
Landscaping was a fun chore. I bought silk flowers and cut them down to size.
The first line of the book written by Tolkien in 1937.