Wednesday, 14 July 2010

Gertie's Little Industrious Cottage ~ the roof!

' Gertie loved her little cottage, set deep in the forest, surrounded by trees and wildlife. There was just one problem! The moss wouldn't stop growing on her roof! A spell gone wrong maybe? She'd had lots of those!!'

As promised, here is how Hywel made the roof :0)
He began by glueing down one layer of wood shingles at the bottom edge of the  roof and then covered the whole roof with a fairly thick layer of Art Mache. He scored out diagonal lines, right across the roof and left it to dry for a day, before adding the next layer.

The next layer added the bumpy effect to the roof. Hywel then matched up the score lines over the bumps!

We left this to dry for about 4 days before painting. We have in the past rushed to paint before the Art Mache was fully dry, only to have to redo it a couple of weeks later because it had gone mouldy!

When we were happy that it was dry, I painted the roof with a coat of brown emulsion, which I had watered down with about 25% water. I left that to dry overnight. The next day, I dabbed on patches of Burnt Sienna and Forest Green Acrylic paints. After about 20 minutes I  wet brushed the whole roof with at fairly large artist's paint brush dipped in water, applying more water in the places where I wanted the original brown to show through. Don't over wet your brush though and drag the brush across the area rather than use a painting action. I only left the roof to dry for about 1/2 hour this time and then I spread PVA glue in patches on the roof. I must admit, this bit gets messy, especially as I use my fingers to do the spreading!! Then I sprinkled on some fine moss and squished it into place :0) It mixes in with the damp paint too.

Ta da...the roof.....


I'm really happy with it :0)

I have also had some mail :0)

I was reading Kat's blog and saw the perfect hat for Gertie. So I emailed Kat and she very kindly agreed not to list the hat in Etsy but to sell it to me :0) It has arrived this morning and it's fabulous, the colours are perfect and I love the little mouse. It will take pride of place in Gertie's mezzanine level bedroom.

Thank you Kat :0)

Julia xxx


  1. I love the roof! Kat's hats are always great!:)

  2. I hope you are feeling better Juia xxx That roof is wonderful and I love that hat that Kat made too.

    Debie xxxxxxxxxx

  3. Hi Debie,
    I'm getting more good days now thanks. I still feel bone numbingly tired most days though :0( I can't wait to feel up to doing some new stuff on Gertie's cottage, all I seem to be doing lately is online shopping and showing pics of work Hywel has done :0( Never mind, I'll get my get and go back soon :0)
    I hope your ankle is healing nicely and that all is well with you and yours.
    Julia xxx

  4. Hi Julia. Thank you for showing this roofing technique which looks great. I especially like the way you can make it look like it has sunken in places.
    Hope you feel better soon.

  5. You are most welcome, glad my little mouse hat went to such a good home. And thank you for your advise it's nice to have someone who understands my illness :-). I hope you keep feeling better and better yourself and I look forward to seeing more of Gertie's Cottage.

  6. That roof is looking great and thanks for the tip, I've been dreading putting on the shingles so this type of roof looks so much nicer to do :D

    And Kat's hat is fab, it really is like custom made to Gertie :)

    Hope you start feeling good and can do some minies :)

  7. Que maravilla de techo, me encanta como te ha quedado.
    El sombrero de Kat, es simplemente genial
    besitos ascension

  8. The roof looks really weathered and its a great colour too. :o))

    I do worry about Art Mache a bit though as I found it goes a bit soggy when you wet it again (paint it!) lol I guess it's okay! :o))

    I haven't forgotten to email you. ;o))

    So glad that you are starting to feel the benefit of the pills and I am sure your energy levels will come back as soon as your body is recovered. :o))

    Michelle xx

  9. Thanks Janice, the credit for the roof goes to Hywel though, I am hopeless with Art Mache, I try to smooth it on and it bunches up into one lump and I end up flinging the tub at him!! lol

    Thankyou Kat and you know I am always at the end of an email xxx

    Julia xx

  10. Thanks Ira, Art Mache works well for the roof, but I must admit, I like wooden shingles too :0)

    Hi Michele,
    I know what you mean about it going soggy, thats why I leave it so long to dry now before I paint. A few weeks ago I painted the side chimney the same day that Hywel had Art Mached it and it went mouldy even though we were having that heat wave at the time! Now I make sure it is fully dried out before I add anything to it.

    It's a relief that the pills are working and I'm sure it won't be long before my energy levels pick up with all the vitamins and iron the docs are throwing at me! I'll soon be back boreing you all with my stitchings and terrable atempts at flower making!!
    I hope your feeling ok too.
    Julia xx

  11. I agree the hat looks like it was made just for Gertie, one day maybe she will wake up and go out in it!
    Love the roof effect. Where do you get such a fine moss Julia, is it just the railway stuff? off to Hobbycraft this weekend so will have to try and get some similar as its much better than the bulky stuff I have on my roof! Kate xxx

  12. Hi Kate,
    Thats so funny, I was thinking I need to email Jain and ask her to make me an awake Gertie, I'm fed up of her snoring! lol

    Yes, the moss is the railway stuff! I get it from the railway section in Hobbeycraft. Michele is also great at getting all theses different mosses.
    Julia xxx


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