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The hunt for a fantastic Creative Competition entry is over!

October 20th, 2010

We absolutely loved The Brambles Hunting Lodge by Tanya Searle of Somerset.  The attention to detail – from the stags head and the leopard rug in front of the fire, to the roasting pheasant over the fire and the outside toilet – was fantastic!  We could have happily sat by the open fire with a glass of special reserve waiting for our bird to roast!

Here, Tanya explains where her inspiration came from.

My inspiration came from the shape of the Village Hall, as I thought it resembled a lodge and I was immediately taken with the idea of creating a hunting lodge.

I wanted it to look old so I decided it should be made of grey brick rather than wood and should have weathered slate tiles.  I also wanted a little more floor space inside for a bedroom, so bought a sheet of MDF to create a mezzanine level and made an outhouse for a toilet and a kennel for the dog.  I added a chimney to the roof, together with a bell and working pull chain to the bell tower by drilling holes through and feeding the chain through a straw.

I painted the door and window frames with grey paint to look like stone.  I replaced the clear windows with leaded ‘glass’ to make them appear to be older and added antique wood stain to the doors and the spiral stairs.  I then stained timber lengths to create shelves; a banister for the mezzanine (timber lengths glued together on their sides with one along the top); ceiling beams; a shelving unit in the bedroom; the outhouse door; a chest with a hinged lid for clothes (timber lengths glued together to form a box then a lid added with the same hinges I used on the outhouse door); and a pedestal for a candelabra in the entrance way (made by cutting timber lengths into squares and adding a stair spindle in between).

I used the same handles throughout the building for consistency – they are on the doors, the outhouse and the clothes chest.  I created a chimney breast out of card and paper bricks, grouted it with the grout I had used on the exterior brick work and rendered the chimney.  I built the fireplace out of miniature bricks, painting the inside black to look like soot and adding coat hooks to make a spit.  The spit roasted pheasant is made from a cocktail stick painted silver, pushed through the shape of a plucked pheasant made out of air drying clay painted off-pink.  I also made two shot guns in the same way, by sticking two cocktail sticks together and making a butt from air drying clay.  The fire embers are made of pieces of miniature coal painted white and red and stuck together with PVA glue.

I used the same coat hooks throughout – in the entrance way for the coats; in the outhouse for the toilet paper holder (the paper is made of tissue cut in to squares and tied together with a strand of string); outside to hand the pheasants; and for the spit.  I used air drying clay to make a shield to stick above the door as a family seal.  I also made the bread, cheese and eggs on the table for the hunter’s supper!  A dog bowl complete with food for the dog, and two hanging pheasants (painted using a photo as a reference for authenticity), tied together with a strand of string and hung on a coat hook completes the outside!  I cut two leopard skin rugs out of a scrap of fake fur, one for in front of the fire and one for a chair.  I made a coat for the coat hooks in the entrance way out of an old jumper I was throwing away, cutting out the pattern and sewing it inside out, using the sleeves of the old jumper to create the differences in material.  I also made trousers and a jumper for the clothes chest in the same way.

I used jumbo black drinking straws to create drainpipes and cut them in half for guttering. I also used them for the plumbing under the sink, using the bendy necks to turn corners.  I painted some timber strips black to make the soffit around the roof and lined all the roof joints and ridges with real lead.  I then added the finishing touches, like moss on the walls and roofs, and climbing plants outside.  Finally, I hung the pictures and added candles for lighting inside as well as two stag heads and a rug in the bedroom.

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One Comment to “The hunt for a fantastic Creative Competition entry is over!”

  1. Karen Steenson Says:


    The house looks brill it should have won a prize

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