I loved the classic lines and the solid wood construction. I wasn't in love with the dark, orangey-brown stain. It's just not my style, and it makes the doll's house look a bit old and dated. So, I decided to freshen it up.
I removed the internal shelves and got to work. The house needed two coats of stain-blocking primer. After just one coat, the stain was still seeping through in places and turning the white primer a dirty yellowish color like nicotine stains. Not exactly the fresh look I was after! Two coats did the trick beautifully. I followed with one coat of matt white spray paint.
This was the finished result! So much lighter and happier.
The next step was to "wallpaper" the rooms to inject some color and personality. For this task, I raided my supplies of scrapbooking paper, and used a larger piece of wrapping paper for the attic. I just creased the paper firmly into the edge of each "room" to mark the dimensions, then took it out, trimmed the paper down to size and affixed it with double sided tape.
Here's where we ended up!
I was so pleased with how well the colors and patterns worked together. Each room has a different feel, and the overall effect is so sweet and cheerful.
Now the fun part - time to furnish the rooms! I bought a pack of doll's furniture from Toyworld shortly after I purchased the doll's house. I enjoyed unwrapping all the cute little miniature pieces and arranging them in the different rooms. But of course, I couldn't just leave it there. The house needed a few extra special little touches to make it feel like home.
I began by picking up a few little bits and pieces from Spotlight (my local craft supply store). For the attic bedroom, I cut a piece of white fleece to make a floor rug, then layered a miniature crocheted doily over the top for a warm and homely feel. I spray-painted a little monogram letter "A" for my daughter's first name and propped it on the dresser, then raided my fabric box and cut out some fabric to make little bedcovers.
A crocheted bead became a ball fit for a little dolly to play with.
Lastly, I spray-painted a wooden coaster white and affixed a smaller circle of cloud-print paper over the top to create a window with a view.
For the living room, an off-cut of chevron fabric became a floor rug, layered over fleece. I found some chipboard frames in my scrapbooking stash and painted them white, then used them to frame prints clipped from a magazine.
In the dining room, I made a table runner out of the same chevron fabric, and tacked up another magazine cut-out straight onto the wall for a casual, poster feel.
The bathroom didn't need much - just a doily rug. That gorgeous peacock wallpaper is the real star of this room!
Finally, in the master bedroom, I made a polka-dot bedcover, then turned a magazine clipping of flowers into a work of art by displaying it in a chipboard frame.
All those small details help to make this little house feel like a real home. For miniature-sized wooden people.
Best of all, Allegra absolutely loved her doll's house. After spending a while tucking her little dollies into the beds and plonking them in the bath, she then proceeded to empty out all of the furniture and pile it back in haphazardly in one big jumble. Ahh, that's better. Now it looks more like home. ;)
Speaking of which, how funny is it to compare this doll's house to a couple of my real-life rooms?! Seems that I love doing the "theme" thing!
|Stencilled playroom wall|
Let's chat: Do you like doing different themes for different rooms? Do your kids have a dolls house - and does it still get used? And what is it about miniature furniture that's so addictive?!