Before I can add the second floor to my dollhouse, I need to figure out the lighting situation. I decided to go with the round wire setup- mainly because it looks easier for me to understand than the tape method. It consists of a bulb, wire and a plug. OK, I get that. It sounds like a regular full sized house. Also, with the round wire power strip, I can plug in and have only the lights that I want on rather than the whole house.
Pictured below is the power strip, the wired lamp with it’s little plug and the transformer that plugs into your own 12 volt house wall. If you click on the photo it will take you to Greenleaf Miniatures with a full explanation of how to use this type of electric wiring in your house. They also give a great tutorial on all of the other wiring options too. It’s worth the visit if you are new to dollhouse wiring like I am.
The ceiling lamps will be attached to, what else? The ceiling! To do that I will have to drill a hole through the second floor and then route a trough to the edge of the house where the wires will be concealed. THAT has to be done before I can add the upstairs carpet. So what to do, what to do… After looking at several ready made fixtures, I decided that none were quite what I wanted. ie: The really cool ones were way too expensive for me to buy. Browsing stores from hardware to craft, I found some jewelry pieces that would work as well as some bits that I have in my craft drawers. Both lamps started off with a couple components from Hobby Lobby in the dollhouse section of the store. It is a little light bulb that is all wired with the plug. Don’t forget that you can use your 40 percent off coupon every time that you visit the store.
The first light is going to be for the living room. For that, I used a jewelry finding that I found in the resin craft section of Hobby Lobby. It consist of a clear, round dome that looks like glass and a round metal disk that has a loop on it for a necklace. I cut that loop off with metal sheers. Then I drilled a hole in the center of the the disk to feed the wire through. The lamp assembly is propped onto my pliers just to show you the little housing in which the light bulb sits. I have no idea what it is, but it used to be yellow plastic. I used my black Sharpie to color it. I also had to drill a hole into the little yellow thing-a-ma-bob. The white around the bulb is a tiny little piece of packing foam that I jammed in there to hold the bulb into the center of the fixture.
When all of that was done, I glued the dome into place. OH! Don’t forget to test your fixture before gluing the dome into pace. The downside of my cute little lamp is that I will not be able to replace the bulb when it burns out. But, seriously, do you think that I will play with my dollhouse lighting all that much? Nope, I will be making furniture and tiny little floral arrangements to fill the house. By my estimation, the bulb should never burn out in this house.
The other fixtures are pendant lights for my kitchen. (I’m showing you one, but I’m making two.) These started out life as tops to pill bottles and little plastic chess pawns.
First, I cut the flared edge off the plastic bottle cap and sanded it smooth. Then, I sawed the tops off the pawn pieces. The top of the chess piece also got a sanding to flatten it off a bit. I drilled a hole through the cap as well as the pawn piece. I super glued the pieces together. Then I fed the bulb wire up through the plastic housing. The whole assembly got a coating of gloss medium. That made the plastic look a little more shiny and glass like. Cute!
I will paint the cord black when it comes time to hang the pendants. But, first, I have to figure out where they will hang. Well, I know where they will hang- over the kitchen island, but I have to figure out where the island will go. Whooo boy! I can’t imagine figuring out all of the details of a real house build.
Be sure to join me next time for the second floor assembly of Victoria’s farmhouse.