Dollhouse 6 – Two Steps Up

Dollhouse

I’m back at it! Now that the holidays are over, I am making progress once again. Slow but sure. As shown in my last post, I have painted all the rooms, except for the kitchen. I used leftover paint. The roof is just sitting on top; it hasn’t been reattached yet. The steps you see in the upper, right room, which I will refer to as the library, have been redone.

I debated whether this room should be a library or a home office. Since this will be a more traditional home, I decided to go with a library.

Here’s what happened to the first set of steps I made for the library.

Dollhouse staircase falling apart

Let’s call it a learning experience. I used hot glue on the spindles. I also used Dollar Tree foam board to make the railings. And I painted the steps rather than use stain. This staircase would be perfect, if I was making a haunted dollhouse, which some do. But that is not the idea for my dollhouse.

So, live and learn. Plus, I got a nice Christmas present from Michael and Allie. They gave me a toolkit designed specifically for working on dollhouses. How cool is that! This toolkit has proven to be very helpful. Here’s the new set of steps I made using the toolkit:

Two newly made staircases unstained
Newly made staircase  stained

For these steps, I used a small hand drill to make holes in the stair treads. The stair treads are made from craft sticks (kind of like popsicle sticks) bought from the Dollar Tree. The spindles are toothpicks inserted into the drilled holes. No glue. The railings were tough. I had to figure out what to use to make them, but I also had to figure out how to attach the railings to the spindles. I ended using the Dollar Tree craft sticks again. I cut these to size and then glued them on each side of the spindles. I then topped the railing off with a narrow piece cut from a craft stick. Lastly, I stained all the wood.

Staircase showing spindles being glued to one side of the railing
The clamps came from the toolkit.
Staircase with two railings
Close up of the handrails.

Next I have to figure out the flooring for the library and the upstairs bedroom. I figure these should match each other, but not necessarily the rest of the wood flooring in the dollhouse. If you look in the library and the upstairs bedroom, you can see the channel where the wiring once lay. I could fill in this with wood putty, but I found a peel and stick tile at Menards which I think looks nice. My goal was to select a tile that cost $0.69, but I caved and bought one that cost $2.79. Yep, I’m a real spendthrift! 🙂

Left bedroom, wood floor
Left bedroom, tile floor

Which do you prefer for these upstairs rooms – the wood or the tile? I am also considering changing the color of the doors and/or the window trim. Thoughts?

You know. I could have just bought dollhouse steps that were already made. And I could easily buy dollhouse flooring. But that’s not my approach. I want to redo this dollhouse while minimizing how much I spend on it. It’s very satisfying to make something I really like, for little cost or using something I already have. It forces me to think creatively. I hope it inspires you to approach “opportunities” with a new mindset.

For those of you who are actually working on dollhouses, I am happy to answer more specifically on how I did things should you have any questions.

Here’s the library at this point:

Close up of library with staircase and tile floor

Any ideas for the area on the left side of the staircase?

More to come. Thanks for reading, and I look forward to your comments below.

Small hand drill for dollhouse work
I love this baby!

33 comments

  1. What an intricate and challenging project! I admire your commitment and patience. When our daughter was small, we purchased a doll house kit for her one Christmas. When the gifts were opened, hubs opened the big box, took one glance at what seemed like a 100+ page instruction book, and that was the end of that. It was never built. We sold the kit in a garage sale the following summer.

    Liked by 2 people

    • I am sure yours was not the first dollhouse kit sold at a garage sale. LOL. If I think about all I want to do, it can be overwhelming. So, I just take it bit by bit. Thanks for reading, and enjoy your day!

      Liked by 2 people

  2. What great progress you made! I love the new staircase, and I like the tile floors. I think the color grounds it nicely and anchors with the doors and trim. Are those real hinges on the doors? What creative work!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Yes, the hinges on the doors are original. I am guessing I bought these at a dollhouse store back then. I can’t remember anymore! Thanks for the compliment, and enjoy your day! Snowing like crazy here and very, very cold!!!

      Like

  3. Your dollhouse project and reading about how you are restoring this treasure is a highlight for me today! The tile floor might be my preference, and as for door/window trim colors, I grew up with a dad who would never let any doors or trim or cabinetry be painted. He was a lover of the beauty of finished wood. That being said, I do think color can add a nice contrasting element maybe. Either way, you are so very talented!! .

    Liked by 1 person

    • You are very kind to say this! I appreciate it. I like the tile floor as well, and I agree with your dad. Finishisd wood is really pretty. I think I am way more persistent than talented, but mostly I just enjoy being creative. Thanks for reading, and enjoy your day!

      Liked by 1 person

  4. So fun! I love that there is a dollhouse size tool kit. This project is making me think of my knitting and spinning and weaving projects. You have to enjoy the process, as there will be mistakes. There is always something to learn each time you try something new. I think hardwood floor would be nice if it was pristine, but your tile floor solution looks very nice.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you! I love looking at your textile projects. They are a real work of art. And yes, I am always learning – which is the fun of it. I do like the tile, too. It’s a nice clean look. Thanks again for reading, and enjoy your day!

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      • I’m loving your dollhouse. It has me thinking about how I could morph this into a project to do with my grandchildren. A single room they could create at Camp Grandma as a keepsake.
        My husband’s grandfather was a carpenter and specialized in staircases. When it was time for the stairway, he would travel to the building site and get to work. I think he would be impressed with your toothpick spindles!
        Thanks for the inspiration!

        Liked by 1 person

        • Thank you. What a fun idea to do with your grandchildren! A single room sounds like an excellent idea. That staircase was a challenge! I look forward to seeing what you come up with to do with your grandchildren. There are one room kits to purchase. There are also a number of dollhouse Facebook groups. My favorite is “Dollhouse Miniatures including Made From Trash to Treasure & Found Items.” There is a ton of creativity in that group. I hope your project is a big hit!

          Like

  5. A perfect winter project! It is certainly coming along very nicely and I like your idea of making your own stairs rather than buying them. It makes the project more meaningful for you and extra special when completed. I think I like the tile floors.

    Liked by 2 people

    • Yes, I will stick with it, but it will take a while! But that’s okay, as I am enjoying all the challenges it brings. Thanks for reading, and enjoy your day!

      Like

    • Thank you! I love being creative. To me, making a staircase out of foam board, craft sticks, and toothpicks is way more satisfying than just buying one already made. I’m glad you’re back, and I look forward to your posts. You are very creative, too! Enjoy your day!

      Liked by 1 person

  6. Great to see you back at the dollhouse project. It is really starting to come together. I love the new staircase, and I like the tile floors. I think the color is perfect. When I read how you made the staircase I just marveled at your talent. It is going to be one fantastic dollhouse when it is finished. Have a great week

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you very much. You know what they say – necessity is the mother of invention. I had to really think about how I could attach those spindles and the railing. I like the tile, too. It’s a nice clean look. I hope you have a great week, too!

      Like

    • Yes, it is fun! I like the tile floor, too. I like the idea of a bookcase next to the stairs. It can be a tall one, and thus hide the back of the steps. I was thinking a closet, but a bookcase would be easier and fit in with it being a library. Thanks for your comment, and enjoy your day!

      Like

  7. I really love the remade staircase! I usually find that wood glue or tacky glue works a lot better for me than hot glue. And I agree it’s definitely so satisfying and fun to make things yourself rather than purchasing! Looking forward to seeing more progress!

    Liked by 1 person

    • I like how you put that – “more of you in the finished product.” I do find it much more satisfying to create my own components rather than just buy them. Thanks for reading, and enjoy your weekend!

      Liked by 1 person

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