Tips for making dollhouse furniture and decorations out of everyday items.
Pizza Box Support as a Table
If you have a Valentino's pizza near you, they used to put little white plastic things in the center of the pizza to keep the top of the box from getting stuck to the toppings. They look a lot like little tables and when I was younger, my grandma would save them for me and we'd use them as tables for my dollhouse. They worked especially well for the smaller Kelly dolls.
Sink and a Trash Can
The plastic protectors on roll up deodorant are clear and oval shaped. Could be used as a sink. Hairspray tops could be used as trash cans.
Decorating a Room
Small school pictures work well as gigantic artwork on the walls. Also, the "after eight" mints have tiny ornate clocks on the front of their wrappers which dress up a room nicely. I used to use wrapping paper as wall paper in the room and scrap fabric for curtains. If your child has a Barbie play-set many times items can be used from it in the doll house. Also, a tiny drum set can be made with enough Dixie cups!
Dollhouse Furniture With Everyday Objects
Small boxes can be cut to make chairs and then covered with small amount of batting and fabric.
Velveeta boxes make great beds for Barbie.
Kitchen appliances can be made by painting boxes to look like them you can use stickers for the burners and knobs on the stove. When constructing these cardboard furnishings I would make sure you use hot glue or a tough tape as they will get a lot of wear and tear.
2 mac and cheese boxes could be used for a couch covered with batting and cover with fabric. You can get small amounts of fabric at a discount in the remnants bin at Walmart. You may even be able to find real upholstery fabric.
Tables can be made from small food containers by drawing legs on to the container and then taking a pair of scissors and cutting out the legs. Depending on how much work you want to put into this you could tile the table tops with the glass gems.
Hope this helps
By Debra in CO
Strawberry Container Table
When I was a little girl, we used the green plastic containers that strawberries come in. We turned them upside down, and placed a washrag or scrap fabric over the top. It could be a bed or a table, depending on the size of the doll.
By Jill Iannetti
I love making things for my dollhouse from found objects!
Dresser drawers can be made out of matchboxes. Simply glue, cover with pretty paper and add small beads for knobs.
Magazines and newspaper ads are great sources of scaled down pictures of foods, book and magazine covers and posters.
From old makeup: the thin trays eye-shadows come pressed in can be used as trays or picture frames. If you can pop the mirror out of a compact without breaking it, it's a good scale for dollhouses.
Couches and beds, any stuffed furniture, can be made from small boxes, cotton or batting, fabric and glue.
Cotton swabs and round toothpicks make handles for brooms and mops (kite string for the mop head). Buttons for plates, beads for vases and bottles.
I have found that small doilies work fantastically as rugs, tablecloths, bedspreads, etc.
Popsicle Stick Furniture
You can make small (or large) furniture from craft sticks or Popsicle sticks by cutting them to the right length and gluing them together. Most public libraries also have books on this topic.
I've covered those little medicine cups that come with NyQuil with pretty fabric. Hot glue a bead on top for a finial, attach a lollipop stick to the inside center, and a large heavy button to the bottom for a base. Makes a nice sized lamp for 11" dolls.
Russell Stover Bed
Russell Stover candy boxes make an ideal sized bed. Glue wooden beads at the four corners for feet. Cover with fabric.
My mom used the strawberry plastic containers for the shelves in the fridge and stove which she made from balsa wood, she made them many years ago and the are still in my proud dollhouse today! Balsa wood is great for carving things for your doll house!
When I was a kid, we had a book called "Things to Make and Do". It had instructions for a six-drawer desk in it made from matchboxes. You make two stacks of three matchboxes, with a matchbox-width space between them. Cover with a piece of cardboard long enough to fit up, over, and across the stacks. I didn't have the brass prong paper-fasteners for drawer-pulls, so I used thumbtacks. I think tiny buttons would also be cute. I covered mine in denim Contact paper (it was all I had), but I guess you could paint it. Contact paper also comes in woodgrain. Thanks for asking for tips; I'm warm and fuzzy remembering how I loved my creation!
Some time ago there was a lady that wanted ideas for doll furniture. I find that most website ideas are for actual miniatures, not play-scale which means 11 1/2 inch fashion doll size.
Using office supplies, you can make some very fancy fashion doll furniture. Square pencil cases become end tables, especially the frosted glass kind. Letter holders or large pencil holders with multiple cubicles can be used for headboards to a Barbie bed. This works especially if they have a curved edge. Buy them when the stores are trying to change their inventory. Or if you frequent Wal-mart, you need to try every six months. Most of these stores will try to clear their inventories then.
Use glass candle holders for table pedestals with the mirrors or matching glass candle plates glued with epoxy resin or clear silicon glue. These don't break as easily I thought, but you might not want your little one playing with them. They can get heavy, but they are really good looking. Maybe you can use acrylic holders; I have seen them believe it or not.
Place mats make very sensible floor coverings.
Eye glass and contact lens cases make very durable suit cases. They snap shut, so you don't have to worry about attaching snaps unless you just want to make it look authentic. Just add a simple handle and go! Paint them with Krylon Spray paint if you don't like the color. I look for solid color cases so there isn't any bleeding of lighter colors up through the spray paint. Usually, I find a solid color that I like and don't change anything but add a handle.
These items can be used for things other than doll furniture and that is why I like these ideas.
Source: Doll Divas is a website that has some of the same bed and end table ideas that I have, but the suitcase made from eye glass and contact lens cases I found at the local Wal-mart optical store.
One gal made miniature candy bars, she shows how to pull an image from the web and size it also youtube. This might help to make wall paper to size. Curtain rods made from tooth picks and beads on the end. Cups made from glue bottle tops
Go to youtube.com and type in "how to make barbie furniture" and there's a woman who has a lot of videos, her username is "myfroggythings". She is a genius and very simple and inexpensive. Your little ones will love it! : )
Could all crafters that make doll clothespin furniture submit their wonderful works? I am trying to find more furniture to make, they are so adorable! Directions with real pictures showing assembly would be most helpful. Thanks!
Couldn't find any instructions on the internet on clothespin furniture at all 'except' at Thrifty Fun ;-)
Go to this link to look at Barry's G's photo and then scroll down to Ariela's comment which has a Thrifty Fun link for making rocking chairs thanks to Ray :-) Hope you find more patterns or come up with some of your own and share with us :-)