Friday, December 7, 2012

Doll House Part 2: House Built

I've been busy building, and the house is framed and essentially all built!

The back was done in November, and I took a long break from the doll house.
Now it's getting close to Christmas, I need to get going again and have added the two front halves and base box.

In looking around for doll house ideas, it seemed there were lots of modern, simple ones built from bookshelves or just open shelving. 

 I liked the simplicity for building purposes, but then I saw this doll house that's 100 years old and knew I wanted a pretty front that could open up as well.
I also loved the color scheme and decorative windows.
{source}

So I designed Ellie's dollhouse to have the simple base, then have the two front halves to open up.
This way I could have the whole dollhouse contained, but have lots of wide playing room for two little girls.
And then since I was planning huge, I thought I might as well add the storage on the bottom like the inspiration house, but make a drawer instead of doors.
Then as I was wondering where this monster doll house would go, I decided to put the thing on wheels so I could move it out of the way easily.
lame sketch I made to email my mom
So once finished, the front half of the house will be two sides that open up, leaving the little platform with the front half of the drawer box.

So here's some details if you're interested, you'd probably only care if you ever want to make one  too:
-wood: I used 1x8 pine boards for the sides, roof, floors.
The little room dividers in the back half is 1/2" MDF scraps I had
The drawer sides and drawer itself will use 1x6 pine boards
Box top and bottom needed to be stronger and solid pieces, so I used 3/4" thick plywood.

The angles on the top sides and roof were 25 degrees.
The below dimensions give an idea of how it was built.  
The rooms are mostly 8" deep and 8" high and vary in the width.

Construction:
To connect all the grid of boards, I used a Kreg Jig for pocket holes underneath the floors.
The back half required the thinner room dividers, which I connected to the floor above the level with a staple gun.  You build one row at a time then staple them to the sides, (similar to building this cubby system)
The roof was stapled to the sides with a finish nail gun.

The box and drawer will also be built with pocket holes with the Kreg Jig.
I screwed the back of the house to the plywood top layer of the drawer box, then used a finish nailer to nail the thin MDF room divider to the box top.
From there, I could attach the box sides, screwing up into the plywood.
The bottom plywood layer of the box is stapled to the sides.

The front halves that open up will obviously be connected to the base/ base of the house with hinges.



The inside walls required chunks cut out for the front door.
Despite opening up in the middle, I wanted the front door centered in the house.
So I cut away an opening in each center wall of the front halves so when you open the front door, you don't have two walls facing you.

Next I need to finish building the drawer and add the roof--which is baking in my oven right now.

16 comments:

  1. This is amazing! Such a great idea and yours looks beautiful!

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  2. I can't wait to see the finished product! I bet you're working late to get it done-- amazing!

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    1. actually I got a lot done this starting at 6am while the kids were still asleep. I couldn't sleep with the baby wiggling,so I actually got out of bed and started finishing things. Usually I'll just lay there like a slug even though I'm awake.

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  3. That is impressive and looks like it'll provide hours and hours of great play!

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  4. This is going to be SO cool! I love seeing the process photos too =)

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  5. love this -I have a doll house that was my nana's, then my mom's, then mine, and will be my daughter's in a few years when she is old enough - the family tradition is to re-paint and re-decorate it each time it is passed along ;o)

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    1. That is so cool. I would love to have my grandma's doll house. Hopefully my building skills will hold up that long to pass it on! Great idea to redecorate, I would love to see the original stuff your grandma had!

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  6. How talented you are. This is a huge project and I can't wait to see the finished house!

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  7. Beautiful! Can't wait to see the finished project!

    Aloha,
    Charlie

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  8. Um yeah. You're completely awesome.

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    1. well we'll see if it doesn't fall apart...or have weight issues so it tips over and isn't usable with wheels--kind of worried about that!

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  9. i am so enjoying this.I am so curious about the roof in the oven. Are you doing a polymer clay roof tile ??? Dom you just totally amaze your hsb and children???

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    1. OH the roof isn't that fancy, that would be cool to make the roof. I'm just using fence boards, but they were all wet and soggy from being outside and overnight didn't dry them out at all, so the cut pieces went in the oven at 250 for a few hours just to dry out so I could keep working. It made my house smell pine-ish I guess which is nice since our Christmas tree is fake.

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  10. Such a great idea Jessica! I love that yours opens up but it still so simple like the ones that are popular now. I remember as a kid that my favorite presents were the homemade, because as parents they made what fit my personality and needs. Keep up the great work.

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  11. Holy Cow! That might be the most awesome thing. Your building skills are mad crazy! I need to learn from you!!!!

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  12. I am so pinning this for my future little girl!

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