Monday, October 29, 2012

Upper floors at Stella’s completed

I finally finished the second and third floors at Stella’s.  This seemingly easy project has taken me a long time to complete, and I had to ‘cheat’ to continue to make progress.

I had based the look of the upper floors on a building I drive by everyday on my way to work. The problem was I wasn’t liking the way the model was turning out, and I developed a mental block that kept me from progressing – I was stuck on this one idea about how the model should look. Also, I had sprayed the outer panels the same colour as the Oceanview Hotel, and when I placed Stella’s on the layout, it didn’t look right with the hotel nearby – they matched too much.

'Eventually I remembered to go back to the book space: Japanese Design Solutions for Compact Living by Michael Freeman. It’s one my favourite books to browse through, and the picture of corner angle by Yoshiaki Yamashita (pg 114) was also an early inspiration for Stella’s – it gave me the idea of putting a new ‘top’ on an ‘old’, or pre-existing, base. Originally I thought Stella’s would be something of a hybrid between this Japanese building and the Canadian one I see every day. I guess in the end, it tilted more to the Japanese prototype.  I changed Stella’s paint scheme to black, and added a lot of aluminum-painted styrene framing to outline the windows and edges. This got me back on track.

[Facade of corner angle in space, pg. 114]

The roof panel, and the ground floor ceiling – which also forms the floor for the second level – are removable, and the upper floor unit isn’t glued to the ground floor, but is simply press fit into place so that I can later add interior detail and lighting. For now, the second and third floors were outfitted with black cardboard view blockers.

The box that forms the upper floors is very structurally strong, and I attribute this to using Ambroid ProWeld on the joints. I learned about if from this excellent youTube video on building with styrene.

I’m going to set Stella’s aside while I think of signs to add.


  1. I like the looks of this building a lot! Yeah, a bit Japanese and 50's/60's futurism/modernism! Inspiring!

    1. Thanks Jerry. Over the weekend I hope to take a better picture of the front of the building - the one I posted is a bit obscure.