Earth and Tree Dollhouses and Miniatures
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Thatching Dollhouse Roofs

You will need:

Coconut Fiber (Coir). 1 bundle will do up to 1 square foot (E&T)

Clear Silicone caulk (hardware store) or Aleene's Thick White Tacky Glue #AL84 (E&T)

Caulking gun (hardware store) or plastic spreader (E&T)

Sturdy Scissors (don’t use mother’s best)

Twigs (I like cherry but any will do - up to 3/16" diameter)

Nails (1" or 1.25" , #18 or #20 wire nails/brads)

Install tube of caulking into caulking gun. Cut off tip so it is about 1/4" diameter hole. Squeeze handle of gun to make caulk come out. Move the nozzle over a small section of the roof to spread a layer about 1/16" to 1/8" thick. This doesn’t have to be neat, as you can see in the photo on the left. Photo on right show the caulk being applied to the second area of the roof, after the first area is covered. I did this one much neater. Note that this doesn’t really make an even coverage, but rather there are ridges and valleys.

 

 

 

Take a small hunk of the fiber from the bundle, about the diameter of a thumb, and using the scissors, cut it in half, so you have two hunks, each about 4" long.

Take one of these hunks, and set it into the silicone caulk, just above the bottom edge of the roof. Most of the hunk will be overhanging the eve of the roof.

Slowly slide the hunk of fiber up the roof, leaving the bottom fibers stuck in the silicone. As you slide it up the bottom fibers will continue to become stuck in the caulk, making the hunk in your hand thinner and thinner. You should be able to slide it up about 1 1/2" (if you slide it less, it will be thicker, if you slide it further, it will be thinner - you can experiment a little to see what you like).

Notice the beginning and end of this hunk of fiber when it is applied and slid up the roof.

The second row is applied in a like manner, starting at the top of the first row. NOTE: As you apply the hunks of fiber, don’t try to line up the top edge of the fibers. A staggered, random application will look much better when done. In the left lower photo, I included red lines to illustrate the randomness of the application.

When the roof is covered you can use a scissors to trim any wild fibers that don’t seem to want to go in the right direction.

To cover the ridge, use full lenth fiber. Apply 3 beads of caulk, one at the peak, and one on each side, about 2" down from the peak. Take a hunk of the fiber, and fold it in your hands, creasing it in the middle to make a bent hunk as shown above.

Apply this bent hunk over the peak, spreading it slightly sideways to make this ridge row even. Sometime, you will want to trim the overhang of the eve, to give an even line, and a nice thick bushy look.

 

When you have competed the placement of the fiber on the peak, use the scissors to trim the bottom edge of this fiber to make a neat line from end to end.

Use the twigs as shown to help hold the fiber on the peak. I use fresh twigs, so they are flexible . Use 1" or 1.25" , #18 or #20 wire nails to hold the twigs on. Apply a twig near (3/4") the bottom edge of the ridge row of fiber.

 

The smaller twigs that I used to make the diamond pattern across the top, are not glued or nailed, just tucked under the the two lengthwise sticks.