Foundation Discord

The block of iniquity

I wanted to raise the Sea House Leadlights building up from the project board, to anchor it to the site with a solid foundation and to allow more space for landscaping. For the other buildings in the Sea House compound I have used air-dry clay, as well as our much beloved egg carton and packaging material to simulate boulders and bedrock.

And then.

Eff me, not styrofoam. Wait, yes, styrofoam cut into conveniently sized blocks.

I came across this product, in an ultra-convenient, innocently beguiling craft form. Yes. Styrofoam, one of the evilest manufactured substances on our beleaguered planet.

In anguished indecision, I stood in the aisle of the crap craft store pondering the consequences of my choices and actions. And then, because I had a 40% off coupon, I bought it.

I built a two-tiered foundation on the project board, anchored with glue and toothpicks.

After a couple of base coats of warm and medium gray-green acrylics, I set the build atop the foundation to meld. I’ll add additional highlight details once all of the foundation stones are set.

I added a sill plate? between the structure and the foundation.

On to visualizing the deck surround
Visualizing with measuring and math.
Carrying on.

And so. I am conflicted about the inescapable implications and consequences of my materials choices. And yet, I carry on with this build.

9 thoughts on “Foundation Discord

    • Nancy Enge says:

      Thanks, Sheila! There’s a lot of potential for weatherworn or volcanic rock looks with this material. And it is easily moldable and extremely lightweight and dimensionally stable, all pluses.

  1. 54lizzie says:

    I agree with Sheila’s comment, and may I say as well, that you have made a Beautiful Foundation for your Sea House Leadlights to rest upon: they look exactly like concrete blocks!

    • Nancy Enge says:

      Oh E, thank you. My intention is to make them look like very worn cut granite blocks. Several more coats of acrylics and some strategic moss will hopefully accomplish that.

  2. Bennie says:

    I haven’t seen any new posts from you in awhile. I need to look back and see if maybe I missed them or maybe you just have been super busy. Either way I’m glad to see this update from you. I understand your feeling about Styrofoam. I’m a bit of a tree hugger myself. I’ll let you have a pass on this purchase. The product was already in the store so someone was going to be buy it at some point, why not you. It looks great as well as the rest of the little structure. I hope you’re not near any of those fires that are happening in California. I’ll keep all of you in my thoughts.

    • Nancy Enge says:

      Yes, Bennie, you are correct; I’ve not been the postiest lately. I am both super busy (happily) and super contemplative (less so); I think you know how that goes. I’m with you on the environmental implications of styrofoam, and appreciate your leniency :) Just this once, I promise.
      However. More and more I find myself on the frontline of the impact of my purchasing decisions, in a whole new urgent way. This is not my chosen forum for environmental activism, but I seem to have reached a point when all things collide.
      I am near all the fires happening in California, by proximity or loved ones. I so appreciate your concern, and hold dear your thoughts. Thank you.

      • Bennie says:

        I meant to add, if you didn’t tell me it was Styrofoam my first thought was sponges cut up. Of course the sponges probably wouldn’t be very sturdy in comparison to Styrofoam but looks wise they’ve got that pores kind of look the way that the Styrofoam look too.

  3. Marion says:

    nancy, this material looks very interesting. the scale is a little large, but this does not matter for the foundataion of your sea house – it looks perfect!

    • Nancy Enge says:

      Hi Marion!, and thank you! I was surprised that these could pass muster as believable 1:12 scale foundation building blocks. There are still a few more coats of paint, and then moss to apply, but I think they will resemble the granite rubble from the San Francisco 1906 earthquake commonly re-used in structures on the coast.

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