My Little Corner of the Net

Monday, December 19, 2011

Victorian Mansion Ideas

I have had this project on the back burner for quite a while.  My daughter and I received a Duracraft - Marquam Hill Mansion kit from a friend in the Tulsa Miniature Club a couple of years ago.  I have had all kinds of ideas for a great Victorian house for a long time.  I have also been collecting things here and there - a fireplace, pieces of furniture, wood brackets, wallpaper and even windows and doors.

Manufacturer's photo on the box
Manufacturer's Photos on box

After studying the plans and a few completed kits online, I began to sketch. The kits advertises 8 rooms, but in my architectural mind.. 8 rooms isn't really a "mansion". and that is counting a small attic space as one of the rooms.  I have all kinds of sketches of ideas on how to add on to the kit, but I knew it would be hard to replicate the same materials in the kit with an addition.  Not to mention that fact that I would need to be able to construct it in a way so that I could get it in and out of my house if I needed to.  I began sketching ways to add another wing or an addition to the original house.  I saw another Marquam Hill house kit come up and eBay and I had the idea to combine the two kits and create a house that was nearly twice the size.  I got the idea to double the size of the house and make it a true mansion.

There are a couple of things that bother me about the kit.  The biggest thing is that there does not seem to be a way to do anything with the top/3rd floor of the tower.  In my design, I will make that another room.  The other complaint about this kit, is the small single story kitchen that is applied to the side is too small.  I noticed that a lot of people make the kitchen larger and some even add a second story to the small kitchen.  Most make the second story addition into a bathroom.
A kit with a kitchen addition on the right

A kit under construction with a 2-story kitchen/bath addition on the right
So here is one of my initial sketch options to combine the two kits into one house.  My hope is that by getting this down in writing, it will be a reminder to keep working on this project throughout the year.  So this is where I am at... I have toyed with the idea of 2 towers, but I like the idea of the house being a little more symmetrical.

As always, your comments and ideas are appreciated and if any of you have worked on a Marquam Hill kit, I would love to hear from you.

Here is a preliminary room layout.  I have not totally committed to the upstairs room layout.  The library may move to the space above the parlor.  The actual bedrooms may be a nursery, a master bedroom, and a maids quarters.  I am considering a kind of wrap around porch at the kitchen.


  1. I like the front elevation with the addition. Great idea to use two kits. It really looks like a mansion now. I'm sure it will be beautiful!

  2. I like the two kit approach and I like the symetrical plan you have with a kitchen-bath addition. Your floor plan makes sense, although I don't exactly know why, but I would put the bedroom next to the bath, perhaps to make a nice master bedroom suite?

  3. Hi Iris, I thought about that too. I guess the architect inside me has a problem with having to walk through a bedroom to get to the only bathroom in the house. lol how silly is that?

  4. Hi Troy, I always liked the look of this house from the outside but I agree with you about the flow of the floor plan. I like your idea of putting two kits together, but it's going to be huge and heavy! Sometimes I think it would just be easier to build a house from scratch instead of trying to modify these kits. Good luck!

  5. Did this project get finished? I'm so intrigued by your design! Looking forward to seeing it finished!