Whilst nominally at work today, I have been musing over the adaptations I will make to the shop kit.
Firstly the stairs will have to go.
The kit has three floors and two long straight flights of stairs, which take up a lot of wall space on the ground and first floors which I desperately need for display space. As a concession to reality I will have a dummy door with trompe l'oiel 'corridor' beyond, leading to stairs in an unseen part of the building. I had wondered about a spiral staircase leading up to the attic workrooms from the first floor, but even that would take up too much precious space, so I will have another door, marked Staff Only, and under lock and key to prevent curious children taking a peek.
The downside of this is having to cut out two infill pieces to fill the holes in the floors where the stairs would have emerged. Luckily, the packing pieces with the kit included 4 long pieces of MDF, which will be cut to fill the holes, and also provide a pavement area to run the length of the shop frontage. Excellent.
Secondly, I am going to make the windows, which should fit flush with the wall, into large, square, bay windows, which will give me useful additional display space to create tempting window displays. This means buying another two windows to cannibalise for the sides of the bays. Still not decided how to finish the bay window roofs yet but that will be easier to do when the bays are in place.
Thirdly, no ceiling lights. With a ceiling height of just 8 1/2 inches (which incidentally is just perfect for the Tudor oak beamed period of the building) ceiling lights would hang dangerously close to the shoppers, and detract from the look I'm trying to achieve. Instead I have opted for concealed lighting on the first and second floors, hidden behind beams and inside the top of the display shelving. Since they will be hidden, I only need bulbs and not complete light fittings, neatly saving £££'s.
Having originally planned to intall a wired lighting system, I have now reconsidered, and will use copper tape instead. Almost all of the wall space on the first two floors will be taken up with display cases, so a myriad of connections running to and from the copper tape will not be seen, and I can solder the wires from the bulb fittings directly onto the copper tape, doing away with the need for plugs. With foresight born of experience (!) I will be using screw in bulbs with simple holders, so that I can easily change blown bulbs.
So far so good.