So I decided to build another dollhouse…
A few years ago I built my first dollhouse for my daughter Norah, complete with handpainted stones, and a wooden shingled roof. I was proud of it then, but I knew there were a lot of ways it could have been better. Then, I built one for my niece. That one was much better than the one I built for my daughter, it was more architecturally interesting, and had a lot more details than my daughter’s, but there were still a bunch of things I was unhappy with. This year, when I decided to build one for my other niece Ruthie, and my nephew Truman, I told myself I’d document the process better this time, so I can keep track of the lessons I learn along the way.
My first dollhouse, a castle for my daughter Norah, took a very long time to build. The amount of time it took was due partly to the fact that I didn’t even have the right tools (I cut the windows out with a chisel), but it was mostly because I didn’t know what I was doing.
When I finally finished Norah’s castle (working late into the night on Christmas Eve), I had learned a TON about building a dollhouse. When I decided to build another one (this time for my niece, Cami) I tried to put those lessons to good use. (To start, I bought myself a coping saw.) That second dollhouse was magnitudes better than the first, but there were still a lot of lessons that I learned while building that one (example: SCALE IS IMPORTANT, a three-inch high door looks really goofy in a room with seven inch ceilings.)
So naturally, when I decided to build one for my niece Ruthie, and nephew Truman, I figured there would be even more lessons learned this time around. I promised myself I would take pictures and document the process so that I could learn more about this little hobby (heh) and hopefully save others from some of the mistakes I made along the way. The posts on this blog are exactly that.
This is not a blog about ‘how to build a dollhouse.’
This blog is really a collection of ‘lessons learned’ from my experience building my third dollhouse. I’m sure that those who have built dozens of dollhouses will find fault with some of my lessons-learned. And, I assume I will change my mind on some of these when I go to build my fourth (this time for my daughter, Winnie.) At the very least, I want this to be a place where I can look back remember what went right, and what went wrong. At the very best, I’m hoping some other aspiring uncles/aunts/moms or dads will stumble on these posts and have a bit of an easier time in their own ‘Uncle Santa’s workshop.’
Oh, and in case you’re wondering – I didn’t take many pictures while I built Norah and Cami’s dollhouses. But, here’s a photo of Norah playing with hers.
Oh, and in case you want to read these posts in order…
Truman and Ruthie’s Dollhouse: Christmas, 2017
- Scale is Everything
- There are no Useless Details
- Hand Saw vs. Table Saw
- Don’t Measure Everything First
- Focus on the Windows
- No Extra Credit for Doing it the Hard Way
- Wood Filler is Your Friend
- Masking Tape is Your Friend
- Primer is Your Friend
- Wood Glue is your Best Friend
- Craft Paper is your Enemy
- How to Build Stairs