Sunday, May 20, 2018

Vintage Gottschalk Dollhouse update

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I made some progress on restoring my 1920-30s Gottschalk. The left is how I received it.

After sealing what I discovered was lead paint with shellac I gave it a wash of new paint to freshen it ups a bit. Then I distressed the paint and rubbed on some brown pastel here and there so it didn't look too new.
I also had to repair the roof framing on the top left. The entire frame was unattached from the house!
I did a lot of research online to try and guess what the colors it may have originally been. I have not seen his house as of yet so my guess is it is pretty rare. I added the window framing and found some vintage flowers that were used back then to fill the holes in the "planter boxes".

I mixed my own acrylic paint and added a wash over the more damaged areas of the roof and then sprayed it with polyurethane clear satin. The age still shows through.

I wanted to lighten up the doors so I painted them and trimmed them out with white. After sanding the doors a bit I could see where the original white framing was.

I took the curtains out because they were disintegrating and not salvageable. They were glued onto the white panes with so much glue I had to take out the panes as well to scrape them off using my knife. Come to find out the panes are made from cardboard not plastic as I had thought. I gave them a wash of white paint and will reinstall after I resolve the wallpaper inside.

I couldn't help myself and started ripping up the disgusting blue carpet inside. I was very excited to see the original floor was there but sad that they were not salvageable.
The good new is I can now replicate it on my computer and print out a new floor.

Then I went upstairs to see what was under the carpet. Thankfully whoever installed it left the paper backing on the carpet when installing it so I was able to use warm water with palmolive and scrap it up. I had to use my fingernail under the rubber glove anything else took the floor print up.

So HAPPY about this! I will be able to have the original floor here. Only a few nicks.

The wallpaper will be next. I have already seen clues to what the original was.
Tiny piece of red paper under there!

This process has been very rewarding and I look forward to bringing this beauty closer to what a true Gottschalk would have been. There may be a few things I will alter to make this my own, but I still want to respect the time period. I do hope one day I will find another like this model out there.
Until next time, thanks for stopping by. :)

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  1. What a truly beautiful house this is turning out the be. The upstairs floor is just amazing. I am really enjoying following your gentle rejuvenation of this lovely little house.
    Anna x

  2. Wow! That's a lot of progress. I love that original floor and good luck with the wallpaper.

  3. Your restoration work on this little house is Fabulous and I am glad to see, that due to your patient efforts, you were able to save the patterned floor! :D The old rose vintage wallpaper is sentimental but I am eagerly anticipating the replacement print you'll choose.

    1. Thank you Elizabeth. Oh I hope I can choose the right patterns. I have the upstairs one in mind but need to keep searching for the others. So many to choose from!