Friday, 25 May 2018

A Cellar Update

As I may have mentioned before, there are no cellars to view in the RL Dennis Sever building but as the kit I'm using for this project has cellar space, I have to use it.    I found out that there is actually a cellar under the pavement of the RL building and this would have been used for storing fruit/veg etc. so for my purposes, I've put together a space that includes these items and a small Courtyard garden.   There is a little garden space at the back of the RL building but again, for my purposes, I've brought it round to the front.

This is the Cellar space I have been agonising over -

Coming out the back door (from Kitchen) I've started off with some ivy, a cobbled together bench (cardboard box, brick stencil and paving) topped off with a statue.   There is still a lot to do by way of adding bits to these spaces but I was just so pleased at having finally come to a decision on how to deal with them that I had to show you!   I must also give a wee nod of thanks to Elizabeth at Studio E for her beautiful pictures featuring the garden at Green Dolphin Street.   I went through all her garden photos for inspiration on how to kick start my greenery!

Moving through the arch to the central space, I've created an ale and vegetable store as seen through the basement window.   This too still has a long way to go and so far, to the right are the vegetables and to the left the ale and, of course, gin.    I'm just pleased something is happening at last.

Again, through the arch, leads to the coal cellar/log store.   Logs to the right, coal to the left.   Lots to add here and I also have to work out how to create my mound of coal.

On another note - there are no detailed pictures of the DS roof and the RL building doesn't have dormer windows like the property I am using so it's hard to see if there's lead up there (especially as it wasn't built to be super grand) and if there is, it would have been added to comply with our present day Building Regulations.     I went on a quest to find out if lead was actually used for flashing or on dormer windows back in the 1700s and what I was really hunting for was a sentence that would read "they started using lead for flashing in............." but there wasn't!    After quite some time spent hunting, I decided that if the Georgians were mining lead, then they would be using it.   After all, it had been around since the Romans - which leads me quite nicely into something I discovered.

The Romans referred to individuals who worked with pipes etc as "plumbums".    By Medieval times anyone working with lead was known as a "plumbarius" which, over time, eventually turned into...............plumber.   How interesting is that?     I love all these little historical nuggets. 


  1. For chunks of coal have you thought about using broken balsa wood? Painted of course but if you used something under it to make a mound and then glued balsa onto it in broken pieces, you could get a coal look with black and grey paint.

    There's also a product out there made of rubber for miniature mulch and while it's orange if you could figure out a way to paint it, it could also resemble coal.

  2. Hi Irene! I love linguistics.... and when the origins of a word are traced to their first meanings... they often make sense! LOL! Thank you for sharing that! I think your cellar is looking wonderful! I LOVE the little garden area... it looks so restful and private! Your brickwork is really setting the tone for this area and looks really authentic! I hope you find your lead answers... I am sure there must have been lead being used from early on... as soon as they moved away from thatch they had to have flashing of some kind... and lead is soft and easy to use! It was used in window making too....! I am fascinated by the "progress" of home building and inventions... like chimneys... and then cast iron "stoves" which revolutionize living conditions! Even just thinking about how families might have a chimney or hearth but no oven... and had to use the "baker's" for baked goods! But I digress! I Love this project already and you are only in the cellars so far!!! :):)

  3. Great use of the space you have, Irene, and what a happy coincidence that there are actually cellars under the pavement - a little detective work goes a long way, interesting about the plumber name, who'd have thought it!!
    Keep up the great work.

  4. Greta progress, I love how your cellar is coming to life. The garden is getting lovly. Thank you for the etymology of the word plumber, thanks to you I have understood where the French word plombier (French for plumber) comes from. It's the same as in English, plomb is lead in French. I'm glad to have learnt something new.

  5. Intéressant travail, j'aime beaucoup comme vos caves prennent vie, le jardin est charmant.

  6. What fabulous cellar space. The garden is lovely but I particularly love the window view of the beer and veggie store - That is super.
    Not sure I will ever be able to think of a plumber as other than 'plumbum' ever again what a great term.

  7. Hello Irene,
    The cellar is coming along beautifully. The small garden is beautiful and I love the fact that you included a coal and wood cellar, as well as a store...these are rooms often forgotten by miniaturists but they can add so much to a miniature house. You have finished them beautifully. I cannot wait to see more. As of this day I will refer to plumbers as plumbums!
    Big hug

  8. Hi Irene and Thank You for your mention of my garden at Green Dolphin Street, and although mine is an entirely different garden to your quiet intimate retreat, I am glad that you've found something helpful! You have created the kind of atmosphere where one can actually relax with a book rather than anxiously hunting for weeds!
    Meanwhile, I am VERY IMPRESSED with your cellar! I love the cold storage for vegetables and for brews and even though you are just starting to fill the storage, it's already looking as if it's in regular use.
    Regarding pile of coal, have you thought of using actual crushed BBQ briquettes- it would be very dusty and dirty but you can't get more authentic than that! ;D


  9. Your cellar is looking good. I love your little nugget about plumbums!