simple toddler doll house

In handmade, projects + tutorials, toddler activities on 01/13/2010 at 11:41 am

I never got around to showing you the handmades I scrambled to finish for Christmas (except for the quilt, of course). I’ve wanted to get her a doll house…something small, portable, and simple. She’s at that age where “less is more”, if that makes sense. This was actually an unfinished CD rack that I purchased from Michael’s for a meager $5. I just painted it with acrylics and used Mod Podge to adhere some colorful scrapbook paper to the floors. This little family seems to be settling in quite nicely. Happy momma. Happy toddler. Happy wallet. In case you weren’t here yesterday, I’m giving away a vintage hand-tied mini quilt. Details here.

UPDATE 1.14.2010: Yesterday evening I received an “anonymous” comment from a reader who was kind enough to point out that the very talented Amy Karol originally introduced this idea back in 2006 and reprimanded me for failing to “give credit where credit is due”. I can honestly say I had never laid eyes on Amy’s version (which is actually much cuter than mine!) until last night when it was brought to my attention. Obviously concerned, I immediately contacted Amy and was graciously assured no harm done. The truth of the matter is that two crafty mommas purchased a pre-made item from a craft store, painted it (the same colors…yes, we had a good laugh) and blogged about it four years apart – a reminder that there is really nothing new under the sun. There are probably a zillion other mommas who have done the same thing. I hesitated to share this little diversion with you but thought that my experience might help you in the future. Misunderstandings and miscommunications are inherent problems in the blogging world. And unfortunately, if you blog long enough, it will probably happen to you in one form or another. I’d like to offer one piece of advice. If you suspect something is amiss in blogland, please address the “offending” party in person. A sincere attempt at rectifying the situation can go a long way. This morning I am happy to report that Mrs. Karol has a wonderful sense of humor and I have a clear conscience.  

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  1. what a great idea. I completely understand the more is less stage. Hope you both create wonderful memories playing with it.

  2. I love the simplicity of this doll house…and how cute it is;) did you cute out the windows?

  3. What a great idea! I had a dollhouse when I was growing up – when I was a bit older, though. My mom and I decorated it with old wallpaper books and my dad made me furniture on his skill saw. It is one of my most cherished memories and possessions.

  4. I love this idea!! I paint spoolie dolls for my girls all the time and have sewn them a plush travel dollhouse, but I would love something for home that is a bit smaller for the littlest ones!

  5. Oh those windows are precious. And what bright colors. Perfect for this time of year.

  6. i love the simplicity of your design. this would make great birthday gifts, too.

  7. Ahhh, I am just loving this! Oh, and my toddler would go ga-ga. 🙂 We have a wonderful wooden dollhouse handed down from my eldest, but it hardly ever gets played with. Now I’m seeing the whole less-is-more concept you’ve got going on, and am inspired to clear out all the extraneous furniture and maybe do some redecorating! 🙂

  8. great idea.I love the windows too,she must love it so much.
    beautiful,cheap and unique!

  9. This is such a good idea! I’m going to have to impliment it– my son is wa y into dollhouses lately, and his fave is one from Land of Nod which will probably set me back a car payment. Nice way to test the waters and see if they are as cool at our house as they are at other people’s!

  10. How super cute! I love that you found it for $5 and it was so simple to make something so wonderful!!

  11. This is amazing, what a simple and beautiful treasure

  12. This is a great idea!, will have to keep an eye out for something similar to paint up for my DD 🙂

  13. A cd rack? You would never know. I like your color choices as well. The Girl has a mass-marketed plastic number that her Gramma got her.

    I’d love to replace it.

  14. Great – saw this on Ohdeedoh!

  15. How adorable! This would also make an impressive and fun gift!

  16. What a cute dollhouse! I had a handmade dollhouse when I was little – white with a red roof!

  17. i totally agree with you! you have a beautiful blog.. I’m so happy to discover it!

  18. I love your dollhouse and I think my grandgirlies would adore it too. Can’t wait to show them your photos. Sorry about your ‘ordeal’. I feel bad for you that you must have suffered some very uncomfortable moments. You really do have a very fresh and interesting blog.

  19. The dollhouse is so sweet. Wonder if my Barbies would fit in one like that?

    As for giving credit where credit is due – I agree, if one is upset they should contact the “offender” directly.

    BUT, I know from many, many, many years of crafting, knitting and sewing that without knowing it I too have “stolen” ideas. With so much crafty goodness swirling in our brains there is not much room to exactly remember if and where we may have seen something before!

    As I read your story I had no doubt you would be forgiven for your “transgression.”

    [i](Is it just me or can some folks be overly sensitive? [/i]

  20. This is a good one. I have seen people make houses for blythe dolls out of ikea book shelves too, but those get pricy!

  21. A simply wonderful idea and I love the colors you chose too! I have a little collection of doll houses.. so does my mom. I love when my Mae gets them out and makes a little village and we set up house and spend the afternoon playing.

  22. That is a really wonderful and adorable dollhouse! With three boys, I think *this* dollhouse will be the one I do for ME 😀

  23. oh the house is really really lovely! Would love to make one!!!

  24. […] A simple toddler doll house via bright and […]

  25. What a lovely dollhouse! Beautiful, simple and classic! This is my first visit here – I found you via Ohdeedoh! I was just thinking about doing a dollhouse like this along with a rocketship that are both on sale at Michaels this week – saw the ad in the papers today and got all crazy-excited. I am so glad you and Amy worked everything out so nicely. You’re so right – it isn’t surprising that some of our ideas could very well have been done somewhere else in the world at some other time. And, conversely, it is just as unsurprising that someone else might have made something we did, in another part of the world, at another time. We just get to see the ones that are blogged about! Good on you writing to Amy even when you had done nothing wrong at all – it took courage nonetheless and must have surely felt so good to find out how gracious people can be! What I am saddened by (but not surprised at), though, is that the anonymous commentor hadn’t left his/her name.

  26. This is a wonderful project you’ve made and I do indeed remember seeing it on Amy’s site long ago. We cannot read every blog on the planet and there’s going to be a certain amount of “overlap” in terms of projects/ideas created and tutorials shared. It’s mostly inadvertent, just as in your case.

    I’ve created something a time or two that excited me because I thought it was useful and new. Come to find out later, it’s one of those “been there, done that” things. An example would be my knitting needle sleeves tutorial. Later I found it this was already out there in Blog Land. Blog Land is a big country and I cannot travel all its roads every day.

    So you’re right about the fact there’s nothing new under the sun. If a project has been done before, I cite the source — if I know about it. I’m impressed with how you handled this situation, but you’ve really nothing to feel bad about.

  27. […] Bright and Blithe to check out this […]

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