Say you’re a big fan of the holidays, baking and British costume dramas. Say you also, as New York magazine notes, have a lot of time on your hands. Well then it’s possible you’re Curtis Jensen, who’s built an entire scale replica of the Yorkshire manor housed used as a setting for the BBC series Downton Abbey out of gingerbread.
Jensen, a marketing and graphics director based in San Francisco, has made creating extremely elaborate confectionery reconstructions something of a specialty. In recent years he’s built baked-goods versions of Notre Dame Cathedral and Chateau de Vaux le Vicomte in France and Santa Maria della Salute in Venice.
(VIDEO: Highclere Castle: Inside the Real Downton Abbey)
The only difficulty Jensen encountered with the Downton project, as noted in the video, was that the gingerbread pieces didn’t come out hard enough, forcing Jensen to do a bit of retrofitting.
Downton Abbey in real life is an Elizabethan manor house in the Berkshire countryside known as Highclere castle, once the residence of the 8th Earl and Countess of Carnarvon, according to the Telegraph. Redesigned in the 19th century by Sir Charles Barry, the architect who also rebuilt London’s House of Parliament, it’s been used as a location for the British TV series Jeeves and Wooster and the movie Eyes Wide Shut. (The servants’ quarters — where much of Downton Abbey’s lively rumors and gossip is passed along — were filmed elsewhere, however.)