Sunday, 18 September 2016

Cuban Plantation Owner's House

I needed a house which was a little grander than the others in my small Cuban settlement; I wanted something that would pass as the planation owner's residence. I made the basic structure from foamboard and went for the simplest house shape that you could imagine. The technique for making nice neat joints at the corners is described in my description of building a Spanish Colonial Church here on my blog.  I have also included strengthening braces at the corners as you can see here:

I fixed this basic structure onto a baseboard before adding the roof which is plastic card  slate from the Wills range of model railway accessories. The ridge tile is simply a length of bamboo skewer. I also used skewers to make the supporting columns for the veranda roof:

Another view to give you an idea of the completed work so far:

I spray painted the whole thing in white undercoat to blend together the different textures and colours of the various materials that I had used. I sprayed about three coats to get a nice even finish, once that was done I painted the roof and the veranda roof in a terracotta colour and I added strips of plastic on the gable ends and across the front and back of the building to add interest:

Windows and doors were made very simply by painting and drawing them onto heavy duty cartridge paper. This is a technique I use a lot and I often add layers or strips of cartridge paper to give depth to the different parts. They were then glued in place and window ledges were added later using painted matchsticks.

When I had been looking at Spanish colonial buildings, and particularly those in Cuba, I noticed that there was a great liking for ornate railings on balconies and verandas. To represent this feature I bought a foot or so of lace ribbon from a haberdashery shop; I soaked it in pva glue and hung it up to dry. Once the glue had set overnight I was left with a rigid sheet:

The sheet of lace was then easily cut to size, painted and then glued into place. The effect was exactly what I had been after!

Another view of the finished building clearly showing the "lace" railings round the veranda and the window ledges that I had already added:

A final front view of the plantation owner's house ready for him to move in and ready for the Cuban forces to assault and burn down!

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