Friday, June 3, 2011

Raise the roof!

Deaun, a dollhouse collector and restorer, recently wrote to me about her Gothenburg roof renovation. The results are impressive! Here is what she says:

Thank you for posting the Lundby wallpaper and roof tile pictures; you have helped make restoration much less frustrating! Almost a year ago, I bought a hard-to-date Gothenburg with a 1980s extension. Many of the room papers are faded to a nondescript beige color—your papers worked wonders!  

Today I started printing off sheets of the roof tiles to fix a big problem: as you can see, this is all that's left of the original tile color. The other portion of the roof doesn't even have the pink tinge:

After I printed the tiles, I was concerned with the loss of color using standard paper; photograph paper improved the quality, but still appeared washed out when compared to other Lundby houses I've seen. 

I collect and restore houses, primarily Keystone of Boston, so I have become pretty handy with thinned acrylic washes. I also didn't want to lose the tile lines by simply painting over them. I chose an opaque acrylic and held my breath for the first few strokes.

Here is what the roof looked like halfway through. Please pardon the glare—the color is much more uniform in person after drying:

On the far left/back of the roof, you can see a water spot that the paint did not negate; I used printed shingles as a patch before finishing and then glossed over the patch with opaque, and it blended in well. Without knowing the patch it there, no one would suspect.  

I thinned out enough paint to cover each section and ensure a uniform appearance. When the paint had dried for several hours, I applied a moderate coat of Modge Podge over it to seal and protect. The roof looks amazing.

So, it is possible to repair sun damage to the whole roof without trying to match up patches! I am so glad!

Holy roof tiles!!! Deaun's restoration really does look amazing! I'm so glad she took the time to share the process with us.


  1. So cool, I have to keep it in mind!! Such a great idea to restore the roof!

    Thanks for show & tell!


  2. Yes, I never would have thought of using paint. Deaun really sounds like a pro!

  3. I have never seen a Lundby house with so much fading.
    The result is really impressive.
    Well done!

  4. Definitely an impressive outcome! It's amazing how much damage the sun can do.

  5. I have the same faded red roof Lundby...must keep away from direct sunlight. Thanks for the helpful info.

    Just want you to know that I have several Keystone/Boston houses. Two or three of need work. Suggestions? Thanks in advance. It's wonderful that you "heal" these special homes.

  6. Thanks for visiting! I don't have any knowledge about restoring Keystone/Boston houses--sorry. When it comes to dollhouses I pretty much have a one-track mind: Lundby, Lundby, Lundby!

  7. Anonymous,

    The materials you will need to repair your Keystone houses depend on what/where the problem areas are. Please feel free to email me at mcneelyhomestead at yahoo . com and I will be happy to help--if I don't know what you need, I will know someone who does and can find out for both of us.


  8. Deaun, thanks for chiming in. And thanks again for sharing your awesome roof restoration with us.