Owl's Hill Manor
 A One Inch Scale Tudor House, 2021
by Grace Shaw
My husband, Jim, picked this house up (see before photo) for me at a flea market about 20 years ago for about $25. It sat gathering dust for all those years. I love the Tudor look and wanted to do something special with it. Then JBM came out with their Tudor line of furniture and I fell in love. I talked Aztec into putting one of each piece on
 lay-a-way for me. They would send me between $100 and $150 dollars worth of furniture a month and as soon as I paid that off, they would send me another shipment. Sometimes I even managed two shipments a month. Still, it took me nearly three years to pay it all off.
 
Next, I had to find time to work on the house. Another 4 or 5 years passed. Finally when I turned 72 years old last year, I said to myself, if I don't do it soon, I might not ever get it done. And so I started building. First thing I had to do was shore up the foundation. The house was literally falling apart. However installing a good foundation under the house made a huge difference and made it much stronger.

Because the roof had some missing shingles, and because the porch roof was half hanging off, I decided to take it all the way off and use the shingles on the porch roof to fix the main roof. I figured I'd never find shingles that would match completely otherwise. Then I decided to pull the end window panels off both ends so I could work on them and access the inside of the house easier. One thing I hated were the thin plastic windows with painted mullions. I'd also seen the windows with wooden mullions and I didn't like those either. So I approached Alessio Miniatures and asked if they could make the window glass with etched diamonds in them? They said yes and made all the window glass for me. Originally, I had planned to use stained glass window paint on them but they were so pretty just the way they were, I decided not to do anything to them.

I also decided to use one of the Alessio Parquet floors for the foyer, and I carried that over into my regular wood floors in the octagon window rooms. And I decided that I didn't like the narrow staircases in the house and wanted to use spiral staircases, so I used two of Alessio spiral staircases. First, I'd like to say the staircase kits were fairly easy to put together. However, the instructions didn't tell me anything about how to install the spiral staircases and I'd never done them before so I made a huge mistake. I put in my wood flooring before figuring out how the staircases would go in. If you ever plan to use spiral staircases, be sure to figure out how they are installed BEFORE you put in your flooring. They don't always fit into the original staircase opening. The second floor opening had to be opened up but I didn't have to make too much of a patch  to fill part of the original opening. However, you can't put one spiral staircase above the other and I had to fill in the original opening on the third floor completely and cut a whole new opening. Because I use individual strip wood glued to the cheap Lauan plywood, I couldn't take up the floor to make the staggered look over the patched staircase opening. If I had tried, the Lauan would have split and I'd have had to put a whole new third floor in and start all over and that would have been difficult.

I also had the bright idea to take out the dividing room walls and make panel walls like you see in older Tudor and English homes. That wasn't too bad except I was worried that the cats might get in the house and break the floors since the walls below that held them up had been removed. The new panel walls are very sturdy though and do a good job of supporting the floor/ceilings above. I think they give character to the house.

And finally, I decided I wanted exposed ceiling beams in the third floor. Since whoever had built this house originally used hot glue, there was nothing square in the whole house. Putting in the exposed beams was a real job because none of the angles were right. I had to get Jim to help me figure them out then cut the angles for me because my little cut off saw couldn't handle the job. It took us over a week just to figure the angles and even longer to install them. And some of the walls were bowed which caused even more problems. So while the ceiling beams aren't always perfect, we did get them up there.

I also wanted to make unique rails for my balcony and Alessio Miniatures made the diamond shaped parts for my balcony railing. JBM made all the lovely doors in the house, including the front entry and balcony entry which had to be cut down to fit under the roof, and all of the arched interior doors. This house wouldn't have been so special without the Alessio's and Pauline Baker of JBM Miniatures. Hope you enjoy the photos of the house. It was a big project. There will be more photos of the furnishings when I get all the little touches that make a  house look lived in, completed.
Be sure to click on the photos to see the features better.

Before - Greenleaf Harrison
Front of Owl's Hill Manor
Front of Owl's Hill Manor
Front door and balcony door by JBM Miniatues
Looking at it from the front, the left side of Owl's Hill Manor
Looking at it from the front, the left side of Owl's Hill Manor
Window glass by Alessio Miniatures
Looking at it from the front, the right end of the Owl's Hill Manor
Looking at it from the front, the right end of the Owl's Hill Manor
The balcony of Owl's Hill Manor
The balcony of Owl's Hill Manor
Diamond pattern on balcony by Alessio Minatures and the door by JBM Miniatures
First floor - entry and staircases
Inside: First floor. Notice the foyer floor is parquet and in the center of the octagon section you can see a square of parquet to match the foyer floor. Also the spiral staircase both by Alessio Miniatures.
First floor - door and panel wall
First floor. Notice the beautiful arched door by JBM Miniatures. And the special paneled wall that I built to give the house more character.
First floor- windows
First floor. You can see the diamond pattern in the windows. Done by Alessio Miniatures.
First floor. dining room door open
First floor. Dining room. Notice the door by JBM coming from the foyer.
First floor. diining room - window seats
First floor: Dining room with door closed. Has two window seats and the paneled wall.
Second Floor Game Room
Second floor. Game room. Second spiral staircase. Octagon floor with parquet square in the center.
Game room. Spiral stairs, arched door, panel wall.
Second floor. Game room. Showing the spiral stairs, and arched door in the panel wall.
Second Floor bedroom.
Second floor. Bedroom. Has two window seats and the paneled wall. Door is in the front of the room.
Third floor. Largest bedroom. Exposed ceiling beams, paneled wall.
Third floor. Largest bedroom. Exposed ceiling beams. Paneled wall.

Third Floor: Largest bedroom. Panel Wall and arched door.
Third floor. Smallest bedroom opens onto balcony.
Third Floor. Smaller bedroom but opens onto balcony.


 

Interior of Owl's Hill Manor
Click on the images for a larger & clearer view. I've left the images larger than I normally do because of all the detail. Enjoy!

Over all front of the Owl's Hill Manor with flowers
Over all front of the Owl's Hill Manor with flowers which my cats keep trying to eat.
Close-up view of the balcony with flowers
Close-up view of the balcony with flowers. One of the arrangements is in a pewter stamp holder. The design on it looks very Tudor.
Close-up of front entry with flowers and coach light
Close-up of front entry with flowers and coach light.
Inside the foyer is a guest book to sign in. Also an original painting by Grace
Inside the foyer is a guest book to sign in. Also an original painting by Grace

Guest book for Owl's Hall Manor with ink quill pen set.
Old guest book below current one.
Old guest book below current one.
Original Painting by Grace for Foyer.
Original Painting by Grace for Foyer.
Unseen Monks Bench in the foyer.
Unseen Monks Bench in the foyer.
Third floor right  corner bedroom. Notice the door leading to the balcony
Third floor right  corner bedroom. Notice the door leading to the balcony
Third floor right corner bedroom, notice the dressed cat photo next to the bed. Dressed Tudor cat
Third floor right corner bedroom, notice the dressed cat photo next to the bed. It was customary to have paintings of dressed pets displayed. This cat photo was an actual cat painting from Tudor times.
The bed came dressed by JBM
The bed came dressed by JBM
Notice the dressing table in the back next to the door and the jewelry on the chest in the front..
Notice the dressing table in the back next to the door and the jewelry on the chest in the front.. Close-ups below.

The wash stand is barely visible in the back corner next to the bed.
Dressing table in the back next to the door.
Dressing table in the back next to the door. It includes what actual combs looked like, and actual Tudor era scissors. I made the combs by making printies of them and printing them on card stock. I then layered them 3 deep to give them depth.
Cabinet with Jewelry
Cabinet with Jewelry. The photos don't do the necklace justice. The jewels really sparkle when you actually see them.
The necklace was made by Grace after the style of one of Henry V111's wife's jewelry.
Close-up of the jewelry. The necklace was made by Grace after the style of one of Henry V111's wife's jewelry. See below.
Left corner third floor bedroom.
Left corner third floor bedroom & nursery. I hope to have a Tudor style dress to hang in the armoire at sometime in the future.
Notice the wall paintings. I took these from actual wall paintings of Tudor times.
Notice the wall paintings. I took these from actual wall paintings of Tudor times. There is also a cradle next to the stairs.
The dog painting is one of Henry V111 actual dogs.Dressed Tudor dog - of Henry V111
The dog painting is one of Henry V111 actual dogs. Also notice that the floor repair is now hidden by the rug. (Whew! I was worried it would show!) There is a chamber pot next to the door.
This view lets you glimpse the dressing table and the jewelry
This view lets you glimpse the dressing table and the jewelry on the stand next to the bed. Grace dressed this bed.
A close up of the dressing table and the embroidered mirror frame
A close up of the dressing table and the embroidery mirror frame from an actual frame from the Tudor era.
Loveseat has an unfinished piece of embroidery complete with tiny needle and thread.
Loveseat has an unfinished piece of embroidery complete with tiny needle and thread. All embroidery are replicas of embroidery from the Tudor era.
Dressing table in the corner with scissors and actual comb style from Tudor era.
Dressing table in the corner with scissors and actual comb style from Tudor era.
The necklace, by Grace, is again styled after one from the Tudor era worn by one of Henry V111's wives.
The necklace, by Grace, is again styled after one from the Tudor era worn by one of Henry V111's wives.
Second floor bedroom on the right side. Grace dressed this bed using a set made by St. Michaels Miniatures.
Second floor bedroom on the right side. Grace dressed this bed using a set made by St. Michaels Miniatures. Grace didn't like the modern ruffle on the set so changed it to lace.
Notice the water color of the owl next to the bed. This is a replica of an actual Tudor era water color. Owl water color from the Tudor era.
Notice the water color of the owl next to the bed. This is a replica of an actual Tudor era water color.

Note the steps to get into the high bed.
Actual jewelry I fashioned my necklaces after though I used green stones and pink.
Actual jewelry I fashioned my necklaces after, though I used green stones and pink.

 All of the rugs are replicas of actual Tudor era rugs.

All of the window seats have pillows. Some were bought but many were handmade by Grace. Some have lace and some don't.
Window seat in second floor bedroom also has an unfinished embroidery.
Window seat in second floor bedroom also has an unfinished embroidery.
Dressing table with mirror.
Dressing table with mirror.
Close-up of dressing table with scissors, comb, shaving implements.
Close-up of dressing table with scissors, comb, shaving implements.
Full view of the dressing table.
Full view of the dressing table.
Game Room on second floor
Game Room on second floor
Billiard Table by JBM - Got the balls from SDK Miniatures.
Billiard Table by JBM - Got the balls from SDK Miniatures.
Coat of Arms on wall coming up the stairs. See close-up below.
Coat of Arms on wall coming up the stairs. See close-up below.

Window area contains reading chair, backgammon board and (not here yet) a chess table set.
Reading chair with book made by Grace using pages out of actual Tudor era book.
Reading chair with book made by Grace using pages out of actual Tudor era book.
Backgammon board made after the style of actual Tudor era backgammon board, by Grace
Backgammon board made after the style of actual Tudor era backgammon board, by Grace
Buffet with beer pitcher and beer steins ready for guests of the Game room.
Buffet with beer pitcher and beer steins ready for guests of the Game room.
The Welwyn Chair made from kit by Templewood Miniatures.
The Welwyn Chair made from kit by Templewood Miniatures.
Fancy cross bow.
Fancy cross bow. Painted by Grace. Bow from Metal Miniatures
Coat of Arms designed by Grace as seen coming up the stairs in Game Room.
Coat of Arms designed by Grace as seen coming up the stairs in Game Room.
Coat of Arms
Coat of Arms
Perhaps not a true coat of arms but this is a dollhouse.
Chess table by JBM
The game room is still missing it's chest table which is being made. Chess was becoming one of the most popular games during the Tudor era.
Dining room on right side first floor.
Dining room on right side first floor.
Note the Tudor style hanging lamp. I used the top of a pewter stamp holder for the sconce.
Note the Tudor style hanging lamp. I used the top of the pewter stamp holder for the ceiling sconce.
Buffet has an old lamp on it from early times.
Buffet has an old lamp on it from early times.
Notice the lace pillow and the replica of the embroidery in the window seat.
Notice the lace pillow and the replica of the embroidery in the window seat.

The "China Cabinet" has extra pieces of dinnerware inside to make a complete setting for four.
The painting is of one of Henry V111's wives.
The painting is of one of Henry V111's wives. Princess Sybille of Cleves (1512-1554) by Heather R Darsie
Dining room table set and ready for dinner.
Dining room table set and ready for dinner.
The cabinet in the back corner has a utensil drawer that has all the extra pieces of silverware in it.
The cabinet in the back corner has a utensil drawer that has all the extra pieces of silverware in it.
Front Hall - the entry
Front Hall - the entry
Note the spiral stairs and tribute to
Note the spiral stairs and tribute to
Henry V111
Front Hall entry into common area with windows
Front Hall entry into common area with windows
Paining of Edward V1 by Hans Holbein son of Henry V111 over the cabinet in dining room.Edward V1 by Hans Holbein son of Henry V111
Paining of Edward V1 by Hans Holbein son of Henry V111 over the cabinet in dining room.
Common area, a place to relax, and read.
Common area, a place to relax, and read.
Close-up of tribute to
Close-up of tribute to
Henry V111
Shield for the Owl's Hall Manor
Shield for the Owl's Hall Manor
Of course it had to have owls on it.
Desk with book which has leather cover and is styled after actual books from Tudor era.
Desk with book which has leather cover and is styled after actual books from Tudor era.
Day bed
Day bed dressed by Grace.
Table with plant made by Grace. Don't know if they had plants like this in Tudor era but I liked it and so I used it. Artists disgression.
Tudor table with plant made by Grace. Don't know if they had plants like this in Tudor era but I liked it and so I used it. Artists discretion.
Hope you have enjoyed the tour of my Tudor home. While not everything is accurate, I did try to keep as much real Tudor as I could. I may in the future fill some of the cabinets with linens and house hold items. However, they will be difficult to see in photos. This Tudor house has become my second favorite piece.  The SW Adobe  being my first favorite, of course. I love hearing your opinions of whether you liked my house or not.