Oh, how I love the Haunted Mansion. It is the embodiment of everything Disney parks do right. Its theming is beyond reproach. Simple elements like doorknobs, wallpaper, and stanchions have taken on an iconic level of notoriety. Everywhere the eye looks it will find some hidden reference and secret treat that further pulls you in. Its backstory elevates what could have been just another sitting dark ride to an iconic work of rich macabre lore. The simple and old techniques from old haunted houses and magic shows weave together to create a series of illusions that baffle one right after the other. The song, that has been playing nonstop since 1969, should become tiresome, but rather endears itself. Its house staff (cast members) go above and beyond any other ride or attractions with a dark and chilling manner all done with slight wink. The Haunted Mansion somehow walks that fine line between being scary enough but not too scary and whimsical without being childish. Simply put, you are perfection.
As you probably know trusted reader, my daughter and I began a project to design from scratch Walt Disney World’s Magic kingdom in Lego Microscale. We have shared the entrance, the train station, town square, both the left and right sides of Main Street USA, and Cinderella’s Castle. We quickly realized building every square inch of the park would quickly grow beyond our ability to display it. We decided to move to just building the iconic buildings and ignore the paths, bridges, and random shops throughout the park.
I have professed my love the Haunted Mansion many times here on the Imagine Ears. We turned our entire home into a Haunted Mansion for a party we held for friends and neighbors last year. We highlighted many of those projects (seen above) in a series of blogs including the Madame Leota tombstone, the Monster Clock, the Haunted Organ, a series of smaller projects, and the floating crystal ball Madame Leota head projection centerpiece. So, when deciding what to build next in our Lego project we chose the Haunted Mansion.
To be clear we are talking about the mansion in Walt Disney World. I know the Disneyland version is the original, the classic and is deservedly beloved my millions, but personally I just love the architecture of the one in Orlando a little more. The version in Orlando uses this unique Dutch Gothic revival style structure in brick with odd shapes and lines. I have always felt when looking up at the it from the line that the building wings look like bat wings curling out and around (below) you as you enter the front door, as seen below.
Even the conservatory, or green house, looks like a creepy face (below).
This was actually one of the first piece we made in this small Lego scale. The building has tons of small elements like the chess piece shaped elements, the coffin columns, and bat shaped decorative trim that we would not be able to capture in Lego in this small of scale. Maybe we will have to revisit them in our HO scale train build 😉
Here is the piece from a strait on angle. We included the exit and the ghost carriage.
Here is the mansion from a more recognizable low angle looking up.
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Until next time…
The Imagine Ears features the DIY projects, adventures, and thoughts of a father and daughter who use a shared love of all things Disney to create memories together through encouraging her interests in architecture, design, Imagineering, while exploring history and science.