The Beginning of the Shepherdess’ Cottage

 
 
Now it’s time to begin the shepherdess’s cottage – a truly big job!  I began by constructing the cottage from cardboard, then took it apart to use each piece as a pattern.  That’s when I ran into the first problem.  I had ordered the clay a few months ago but hadn’t unwrapped it from its shipping box.  When I did, I found that the plastic bag around the clay wasn’t sealed – so the clay was hard!  Workable, but very stiff.  And that made it difficult to roll out these large pieces with just a rolling pin (my low tech slab roller).  The back of the building is about 14″ x 11″, so you can guess at the effort of rolling that out.
 
(As an aside, I’m thinking of keeping the pattern for a possible gingerbread house.)
 
Since this house is bigger that the other ones I’ve made, I have an opportunity to do more with it, and an example would be the window.  The cut-outs will go in behind the windows once the four walls are up.

 


Here’s the end wall with the bay window.  And here, also, you can see that the roof will be thatched.  I looked on-line for photos of 16th century English cottages and they are breathtakingly beautiful, especially the detail work on the thatched roofs.

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