Preparing for the overhaul...

Thursday, February 3, 2011

The Dreaded Warp--Egads!

It's happened to everyone at some point: horrible, uncontrollable warping.  A little warping is, sadly, not to be avoided.  I live in an old (by American standards) house; I know.  But, sometimes, the warping is so bad that it takes your whole setting out of scale.  Awhile ago, I purchased a number of roombox kits, and finished the insides.  I was just getting into roomboxes, and didn't fully appreciate that I needed to finish the outside first.  Ideally, as with any fine carpentry, you want to build a frame first, attaching virgin wood to virgin wood, and thus stopping the warp in its tracks.  There is, after all, only so much that weights and clamps can do.

I was foolish; I didn't realize.  My husband, who's just left the District Attorney's office (our equivalent of the Crown Prosecutor's office) for private practice, requested a barrister's office roombox.  Now, when I see it fully furnished, I see it occupied by Mr. Toad in a wig.  Perhaps he does not.  In any case, I realized that one of my half-finished, badly warped roomboxes would be just the thing--if only I could fix it.  

Eventually, it'll have a glorious front facade, featuring, naturally, my great love: turned columns.  The overall theme, here, is beaux arts; it justifies the encaustic tiles (a find from Germany), dark wood, and odd furniture I plan to use.  Stay tuned!

First, I added a foot to the box, clamping it firmly in place to try.  That alleviated some of the warp, but not all.  Then, I wetted down the sides (and, most especially the bottom) and clamped and weighted it in place to dry.

That enormously heavy box is our silver casket.

Also included in the pile are my anniversary Lord of the Rings tomes. 

 The drawers are in safekeeping, as one of our cats loves to chew wood.  The moulding is made from walnut and pine; the tile is from Germany.  I really built the roombox around the tile, because I loved it so.  I can't wait to furnish it.

As you can see, we have a heavily stocked bar.  Necessary for this sort of work?  My husband would probably say "yes". 

I may have used every clamp in the house. 

But at last, when everything came off in the morning (I let it dry a solid 24 hours, just to be sure), the warp was GONE!  

Now, on to the facade, and then...decorating the inside.  Any suggestions, inspirations, or insights into that particular area would be greatly appreciated.  While I've worked in several offices, I've never decorated one in miniature.

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