Wednesday, 25 May 2011


unfortunately I was ill on Saturday until today so I missed all work from last Friday onwards.


I have started the flooring now that I have done all I can on the doors. We as a group have been working a lot with varnish allowing us to use natural wood grain to our advantage and I have used this effect with our flood. Originaly we were planning to use 6mm MDF to make our flooring but it either didn't get ordered or it was uses so i was left with ply wood which unfortunately bows when painted. I started the process off by staining the wood with one coat and by the time i had just finished one board i could then re stain from the dry end. this gave me the dark wood that worked very well with the rest of the room. once the varnish was tacky i then started to use a pen to mark out faint floor boards and i continued this until 7.

Saturday, 21 May 2011

Overall work.

I feel really glad to be apart of my group. The fireplace is now done and all of the tiles have been stuck on by Fiona as I have been focusing on the doors. The doors are almost finished and me and rob have finally hung the first two compleatly although they seem to stick at the top. I am planning to sand this down some point soon. I am also ready to start the flooring. Most of the furniture has now been finished or is on its way to being done all that is left is the floor and the pannaling which seem to be the most daunting. perhaps that why we left them to the end.

Monday, 16 May 2011

Doors and Tiles

I have now been working on the doors for about a day and a half. The doors are built in very much the same way as the flats but all of the wood is laid flat. All of the doors are 8ft by 2ft to fit in the 4ft gaps. Unfortunately the gap into the study is off so badly the doors will never meet up so I had a chat with Andy and he suggested that we keep the doors open all the time. I eventual plan to stain the doors dark brown and Fiona has mentioned that she has an idea for the centre of the doors.

All of the tiles are now painted but we are trying to get the right amount of shine on them which at this moment is proving troublesome.

Saturday, 14 May 2011

Fireplace, Curtains, London and Paint

I feel that my fireplace is coming along very well Fiona and I have finally base coated the tiles and Fiona has started to work on her exquisite Dutch imitated patterns that the Russians were quite fond of at the time. The tiles are white and blue and have specific patterns on them. The fireplace itself has finally got a top and bottom that have been routed to look nice. I have also painted the base white so that it blends with the tiles.

Four of us also went on a trip into London on Henrys suggestion so we can buy some cheap material for the curtains. After much haggling and cheekiness we managed to get the curtains for £130 which was the cheapest we could find in the area. I feel annoyed as others in our group don't seem to be happy with the fact that we spent £130 for curtains but I feel we relay tried and as henry said if we want to be serious we have to go to these places.

On a cheeryer noat the paint has gone up and I love the green.

Wednesday, 4 May 2011


Today the wallpapering went up. To keep budgets down we decided to buy simple wallpaper and then stencil it afterwards. As I was concerned with my fireplace I stayed away from the wall paperers but I agree that their work is brillent.

Monday, 2 May 2011

The Rooms

Today we finally erected our rooms. We started with a corner in the study and tried to work our way out from there. Unfortunately we hit a hitch when we noticed that somewhere along the line we had miscalculated and made one flat to little. This became a big problem for us as we couldn't complete too much of the room until the flat was made. After the flat was made we hit another problem when we noticed that the floor was not level making our flats wobble and our walls rise. We fixed this by putting a door jam under one side and making the flats level.

While this was going on we needed to construct braces to go around the walls and stop them from swaying and wobbling. These were made by screwing two bits of pine wood together to form and L shape this is then added to the back of the flats. the large room needed two sets of braces while the smaller room needed just one.

Monday, 25 April 2011


Went to the Titanic today and it was very interesting a lot of the furniture and fixings were very grand even though they may not be the style we wanted.

Saturday, 16 April 2011


Our group have been given specific things to concentration on and mine and Fionas are the fire place and the doors. For the fireplace I have build a corner unit that is hollow to simulate the stove the Russians had at the time while Fiona has devoted her time to thinking about the tiles. For the Easter holidays it will be my job to paint and sand all 60 tiles ready for work after Easter.

In greater detail the corner unit consists of two pieces of large 6mm MDF that has be braced with an inside L brace as well as two L Braces for the floor and three normal 45degree angled braces up the middle.

Flats Again

Unfortunaly the flats we built were not quite the sizes we wanted them due to the fact that the pine wood bows in uncontrollable ways owing to the fact that its natural. I recommended that we try to force the pine to fit the ply wood as the plywood is straight but the group decided to save time that we should router the edge off the plywood off so that it fit the frames. We have also started to paint the lower 3ft of our flats as a base for our pannaling. We are using a mahogany wood colour and we are using painted woodgrain as we feel the rubber woodgrainers would not look right.

Some members of the group have also stated working on furniture such as the What not and the Desk chair.

Thursday, 14 April 2011


The tiles fireplace are now sanded into a tile shape but Henry says we should have used a saw at 45 degree angles they now need to be varnished and painted.

Saturday, 9 April 2011


this week Henry showed us how to make our first flats. The design is quite simple, strong and easy to replicate making it perfect for us to try. You start by cutting your pine wood in to 2 - 8ft hight lengths and 5 - 4ft wide widths.(the widths actuality have to be 4ft minus the width of 2 bits of wood so your flat when constructed equals 4ft as a whole) You build the flats until they resemble a ladder and then you have to skin them as the skin makes the flat more stable. The skin is already cut into 8ft by 4ft so the frame fits well underneath. To fix the skin you have to glue the skin onto the flat so that when you pin it together the skin doesn't move away.


Now that we have our new floor plan we can work out how many flats we need to fit the new sized rooms. The rooms are now 8ft by 12ft and 16ft by 16 ft.

To complete this we need theses required flats. 17 - 4 x 8'

1 - 3' x 8'

7 - 2' x 8'

1 - 31/2' x 8'

1 - 11/2' x 8'


3 - 3' x 3'


2 - 4' x 11/2'

Floor Plans

After the autocad we constructed a miniature version of our set to see
if we needed to tweek anything. My desk came out well and I was pleased with its size and shape. The rooms looked good although we had to change some furniture to fit with the sizes of the rooms.

We then had a meeting with Andy and Simon to discuss their opinions of our rooms. After much discussions we decided to loose the heater from the study and some small furniture, the screen was initially taken away now remained as I feel that a lack of idea communication may have occurred, this leading to the fact that Andy and Simon did not understand that the screen had become corrupt through death influence.

Thursday, 24 March 2011


Front on
Top veiw

Side view

These are my desings for the writeng desk. I used a collection of images from the time to produce the legs and bord.

Autocad Front on

My Desk desing

Wednesday, 23 March 2011


Image 1:

I am not sure where this writeing desk is from but I do know it is late 19th Century. I love the black area in the middle as I feel it shows some class and sophistication. The desing is very ornate and complex but I feel its a wonderful example of craftmanship.

Image 2:

This desk is from america and is a very simple desing for the time allowing for the fact that america was a very new country and had only started getting on its feet. I wanted to show this as it gives me a reprisentation of the 'other end of the market' for the time of Ivans death and although this desk is not russian it may have come from or been based upon a desing from england allowing that the trade routs would have also brought international desings to russia.

Image 3:

This desk is perfect for what I am looking at as I want to add cubby holes to Ivans desk. I also like the style of desk as it hints to my first pictue with the ornate work surface but it also simple in desing like my second picture.

Wednesday, 16 March 2011

Mood board

i feel that glass will play a big part in the medical equipment.
I hate leeces but they were commonly used and i thought we could tie them in with the horror some how.
old school stethascope

Some images i thought i would use for my mood board.

Ive seen alot of velvet associated with medical tools at this time verything screems rich upper classes and I like the quality and craftmen ship of the tools.

Potions and Pills

This chest was chosen as as the front cover illustration on Anne Young's definitive book "Antique Medicine Chests". It is a superb example of a cupboard style mahogany chest C1860. A rod on the upper right of the front opens a hidden panel in the rear of the chest. Bottles labeled "Taylor Bros Cavendish Square London". 300 mm wide (closed) 370 mm wide (open)

This set looks apsolutly amazing and its full of the type of bottles that would find at the time the book was written.



Cocaine for children?

Cocaine was legal, even as late as this ad (1885), and was not considered harmful in moderate doses. Many other drugs, now restricted by law, were also legal then, including opium, which was sold under city permit on the streets of Victoria.

In the nineteenth century many substances were used as medicines, some of which are now known to be harmful over the long term, such as mercury and lead. "Patent medicines", like these Cocaine Toothache Drops, were very popular and required no prescription; they were indeed "For sale by all druggists."

By the 1860s, the practice of medicine was going through many changes. The germ theory of disease was a controversial idea and not yet widely accepted. The first of the general anesthetics , chloroform and ether, had recently become available, making surgery potentially life saving rather than life threatening, though the routine use of antiseptics was still some years in the future.

Many medical practitioners still subscribed (at least in some form) to the ancient theory of the "four humors" developed by the Roman physician Galen (131-199 AD). According to this theory, the body is made up of four humors - blood, phlegm, black bile, and yellow bile. The relative amounts of each humor in the body determined state of health and temperament (a person with more blood was "sanguine"; with more phlegm "phlegmatic"; with black bile "melancholic"; and if yellow bile predominated, "choleric" or "bilious"). Too much or too little of any humor was said to cause illness, which could be cured by restoring the balance. Many nineteenth century medicines and practices were intended to do this.



[sfig-moh-muh-nom-i-ter]–noun Physiology .

an instrument, often attached to an inflatable air-bladder cuff and used with a stethoscope, for measuring blood pressure in an artery.

This device was invented in 1865 by an italian. Although its very very unlikley that Ivan however rich he was would have been able to get a holde of one of these its good to see the style of medical inventions around this time.

Medical Equipment.

I found this on a website

These are the basic surgons tools of the era although our character didnt need surgery its a start. Im quite compelled about how grusomly simple these tools are it must have been very painful for anyone who needed any sort of surgery. I love the fact that this set comes with a brush it reminds me of the brush you get in a barbers tools.

Just found a quoat on

"Until the 19th century, medical technology was a small specialized world. Doctors in the 1800’s where solely dependant on their own senses and any instruments they possessed would have been designed and made by themselves or the local Blacksmiths."

"The late 19th Century saw the advent sanitary engineering, clean water and safe sewage disposal. This did more to improve general health of the developed world than any clinical medicine."

This Shows that any medical equipmet would have been in a style that the docotor wished it to be.

Medical Equipment

Ive started looking into 1800's medical equipment espechaly equipment around 1880 as this is most relevent to the text.

Death Of Ivan Ilych
This is a direct link to Tolstoy's Death of Ivan Ilych and is also the starting point of my project.


"But what really was the matter with him?"

"The doctors couldn't say -- at least they could, but each of them said something different. When last I saw him I though he was getting better."

This shows that he may have many diffrent remadys and medical aparatus beside him while he is ill.