Wednesday, March 25, 2015

New Living Room Furniture

We ordered new furniture for our upcoming living room in the dollhouse last week off Etsy and the seller sent me progress pics today and I am so in luuurve.  

Isn't that beautiful!  I am so anxious for them to get here and start setting up the room.  I'm thinking of painting it a very light grey color with accents of teal and yellow on the walls.  

And would you look at how adorable this accent pillow is.

I know right?  Adorable.  I ordered them from Something Handmade and the shop owner Kim has been amazing to work with.  I told her the color scheme I was going with and she sent me pics of fabric for me to choose from.   Everything completely custom.  And fast.  Really, I have been so impressed.

And speaking of the color scheme, here's the palette photo I sent her.  Pretty spot on eh?

If you guys are looking for doll furniture or bedding, you have to check them out.  Like I said, Kim is a breeze to work with.

I also noticed she listed my set on her etsy page.  So now if you want the exact same one, it's there to purchase.  And look at these pics.  swoon.

I'll be stalking the mail until it gets here.


Tuesday, March 24, 2015

We added another fun setup to the classroom this week and I have to say, this one was the most fun to create.  

Our science liquid mixing experiment. 

I ordered a bunch of lab glassware off ebay and we used resin to fill them to look like liquids.

If you're not familiar with resin, it's the same stuff you'd see in a vase with fake flowers and fake water.  People also use it to make fake drinks for dolls.  It comes clear and we tinted it with food coloring.  You can find it in any craft store.  We got ours at Michaels. 

The resin takes a few days to solidify and now we don't have to worry about all our "liquids" spilling all over the classroom.

I think it looks absolutely darling with the AG science set.

Ava had a blast adding different amounts of food coloring in each color and seeing what shade the resin would turn.  Admittedly, I did too!  So much fun in fact, I ordered a bunch more glass and now we're going to do a big science lab setup.  Can't wait!  Design, craft and create on my friends!

Thursday, March 19, 2015

Mia's Room

Mia's bedroom was the first bedroom we created in the dollhouse.  I purchased her bedroom set off Craigs a few years back and it was the first bed/large piece of AG furniture we had.  I remember how excited Ava was when I surprised her with it along with the twins, Mia & Riley (Riley is a 2nd Mia doll = identical twins).  This was back when all we had were dolls and clothes, boy how times have changed.

It lived on the floor of Ava's room for a long time and was part of the reason I decided we needed an AG sized dollhouse.  I couldn't stand having to step around it every time I was in there and all the little accessories that went on it being scattered on the floor drove me crazy.

We based the room color off of a slightly lighter shade of Mia's meet shirt.  The 3D flowers on the walls are from Target and the little frames are from Michaels in the bargain dollar section with pics printed off google images.

The TV is AG (retired) and the little Wii is a gift card tin from Game stop. The teal side table is Chrissa's craft table (also retired) and the little AG doll box under it is an AG mini doll box.  That purple bag and skates are from Mia's collection.  Same with the little blue walrus on the pullout bed.
The things on the bottom shelf of the table are a few wii games, Apples to Apples & Uno games and a Trouble board game which was actually a keychain from Five Below.  All cheap little items that I think really make a room look realistic.

A few more fun details.  Trophy from party city.  Lava lamp was a nightlight that I was able to pull the base off of. The alarm clock is real from Target.  Little glasses case is a contact carrying case and has little AG glasses in them. Starbucks cup is an ornament and the apple laptop is the same kind in the school classroom.  Trash can is a desk pencil holder from Dollar tree. 

The shelves have 3 AG books and a few dvds that I made.  Just some scanned dvd covers printed small and modge podged onto some black foam board.  The little yellow wooden box is a goodwill find for like $0.25.  Has a cute little latch and a stamped metal pattern on top.  Adorable.  

Bottom shelve has more keychain games.  Clue, Life, Monopoly, Battleship and an Etch a Sketch. Ava loves these. They open up into real little boards and have pieces so you can actually play.  Way cute!

And I think that's everything.  This was a fun little room to create.  Not much for furniture pieces in the room but we were sure to add lots of little touches to make it unique.  

If you're creating doll rooms, think about your real life rooms.  I get so many people who say "I thought that was a real room when I looked at the picture."  That's b/c I think about what kind of things I'd have in that room if it were in my house. You don't just have a bed and a dresser in your bedroom.  You have stuff.  And that stuff, those little details, are what makes the room look realistic.  Plus, it's fun finding miniature items to decorate the room with.  
Who doesn't like mini things? Right? 

Friday, March 13, 2015

The Animal Enclosures are done!

We finished up the Animal Enclosures this week and I am so in love with them.  This was such a fun project finding all the animals and the contents of their little homes and trying to think of things they would actually have in their real life habitats.  They actually wound up coming out pretty realistic too.  

We started with the enclosures themselves which are from Mckenna's loft bed.  I was able to get them from the outlet when my husband was in town for business, but you can also find them sold separately on ebay.  Unfortunately they're more then twice the cost.  But I think they'd be reasonable enough if you were only doing 1 or 2.  

They all had identical hot pink lids so we decided to paint them all different bright fun colors to make them really stand out from one another.  Conveniently enough, I have a pretty extensive collection of spray paint. 

The little critters themselves are from Michaels and they are the perfect size for these little tanks.  Some came in a toob and some from a little mini pack (mini tree frogs & hermit crab).  Both in the same section.  Here's the link to the toob on Amazon so you can see what to look for in Michaels or order online.  

The backgrounds are all just google images resized and cut to fit the backs of the tanks.

The cage bedding is the real deal.  We have a hermit crab already so we had the jungle dirt bedding on hand and the shavings we got for free when we asked a girl working at the pet store for a handful of the stuff they already had open that they use in the pet store cages.  A little explanation of what it was for and she was happy to give us some.  Score!

Obviously, these little guys needed food so we used contact lens case covers from Target and hot glued in fish food we had on hand, crushed up oyster crackers in one and crushed dog food in the different covers.  The covers were perfect b/c they weren't too deep like soda bottle covers (my first choice) and they already came in these fun colors!

The ferret habitat is one of my favorites b/c of the little hammock.  Just some fabric with 3 pieces of string strung through the ends and hot glued to the lid.  She can really sit in it too! 

The plants are all from Dollar Tree.  They're mini potted plants that I cut apart.  Sticks are authentic and from our backyard.  Ha!

Here's Mckenna's hamster.  This tank I got with her bed set and it came with the food dish and wheel.  We just added the cage bedding to make it a bit more realistic.

The wheel on this one is half of a cat toy that came with a little bell in it.  Also from Dollar Tree.  We hot glued a pony bead onto it then hot glued it to the side of the tank.

Random little red toy I stole from my kids.  

Another Dollar Tree plant and rocks from the yard.

You guessed it, authentic real life sticks from the yard again.  How very realistic of me.

Another Dollar Tree cat toy this time used as a little igloo.

An extra piece of unused wood I broke off from our hermit crab habitat.

Now we just got to find spots for them in each of the rooms, or create a pet store.

Tuesday, March 10, 2015


We finished painting the covers to our animal enclosures. Look at that rainbow! heart emoticon

Just a few more items needed for inside and they'll be all done!  Will post pics at the end of the week. 

Monday, March 9, 2015

The Life Cycle of a Frog

Every year in the spring we go to this park with a tiny pond and catch tadpoles.  My girls love to bring them home and grow them into frogs and then release them back.  It's fun to wake up each morning and see how different they look so quickly.  Literally you go to bed and theres no legs and you wake up and they have full on legs.  So weird.

So, when I saw this little Life cycle of a frog set at Michaels, I knew it'd be perfect for our doll school.

It came with all 5 stages and all of them fit perfect into the 3 section divided acrylic containers I got from the Target Dollar spot last week.

We added a little yellow scrapbook paper to the bottom and labeled each stage.  The magnifying glass we had already and the frog chart is just an image I found through google and printed out.

I love sets like this b/c they're fun but you can also sneak a little learning in there.  While Ava & I were setting it all up, we studied the specimens (they're very detailed) and read up about the life cycle and what happens when. Ava LOVED it!  Super easy fun little project to quickly throw together and looks adorable in the classroom! 

Friday, March 6, 2015

Kit's attic

Kit's collection has always been a favorite of mine.  I LOVE her desk, her typewriter, her camera, her binoculars, her treehouse, her phone, that tiny metal harmonica (ok you get the picture) and she's one of the historicals we actively collect for (and Julie).  So having a room for Kit when planning out the dollhouse was a given.

I had so many ideas for this room.  I wanted it to look authentic since we have so much of her collection already, which meant it needed to look like an unfinished attic.

And after hours of measuring, cutting, staining, leveling & glueing (yes, by me), this room was a labor of LOVE and was presented to Ava on her 8th birthday!

Thursday, March 5, 2015

American Girl Ideas

Have you guys heard of the blog American Girl Ideas?  If you haven't, you need to go check it out!  It's basically this amazing AG blog with tutorials, small & large DIY projects, free printables, fun finds for your dollhouse and featured rooms & projects by other AG fangirls like myself (among other things).
The other day, the super sweet Rudy from over there contacted me and asked if I'd like our Classroom to be featured.
Ummm, yeah!  No brainer there.  I love that blog!

So go check us out over there at American Girl Ideas and while you're there, be sure to hop around and see all the other fun stuff going on.

Rudy, thank you so much for featuring our classroom!  You're blog is one of our favorites and I'm honored to have been featured on it!

Wednesday, March 4, 2015

New Pets

We decided the dolls all needed some new pets for their rooms and started on them this past weekend.

So far we've picked out all the animals, 8 in all.  Mouse, Tree frog, Iguana, Hedgehog, Snake, Ferret, Turtle and a Hamster.
But we're still gathering the contents for the enclosures.  I'd like them to all be a little bit different and I haven't found everything I have in mind for them.  Especially since I was hoping to gather some of it outside (think free!) like the rocks, bark, etc.  Do you know how hard it is to find those things under 4+ ft of snow!

I'm hoping to finish them all up in the next 2 weeks.  For now though we've finished 3 of them and they are so cute I couldn't wait to share!

The Iguana - Ava's favorite

The Mouse

The Tree Frogs - MY current favorite

And a photo with Caroline for scale

I'll post all the details on how to make them once the other 5 are done!

Tuesday, March 3, 2015

Our School Classroom UPDATED

About 2 years ago when we first started the dollhouse and were planning out the rooms, my oldest daughter Ava knew she definitely wanted two rooms; a bakery and a classroom.  

I kept my eye out for little school supplies, mini notebooks and basically anything that I thought would look good in a classroom and casually after a few months we finished the classroom and were thrilled with the results:

But 2 years later, and the classroom was starting to go stale.  We hadn't really done much to it and I could tell by the lack of playtime it got that she was getting bored with it.  

That obviously meant one thing, it was time to spruce it up!

As you can see, the bones of the room didn't change.  Same overall setup and we kept the cube bookshelf, teachers desk, trash barrels, american flag and students desk all the same.

But we added a few more big pieces that hold lots of new details that I think really make a big impact on how fun the room is.  
So get comfortable b/c theres LOTS of little details in this room, and I'm going to tell you where I got everything!

First are these bookcases.  These are actually drawer organizers I found at TJMaxx. 
They're the perfect size for all our mini books.  They remind me of ikea bookcases.  

All the books on here are real books except for the ones on the top right which are blank page notebooks covered in scrapbook paper (will touch on that in another post).  

The blue binder is from Molly's school set and the green binder came with a retired AG backpack set.  
The antibacterial wipes on the bottom shelf are real wipes that came as a keychain.  Walmart maybe?  
The pink and orange boxes are paper mache boxes that they have at all the craft stores that I covered with scrapbook paper.

The alphabet border is from the AG school set and the clock is a real working clock from Hobby Lobby.  

The flag was found at a random store around the 4th of July.

Next we added 2 more of those TJMaxx drawer organizers turned on their side and 2 diy floating bookshelves to house more books and a few science items.

All the books on the floating shelf are from AG.  

The mammal skull came in a tube with other various skulls from Michaels.  I added the stand.  I'll be making a few more and I'll share some more detailed photos on those in a later post.

The dino skeleton is from Michaels in one of those fossil dig kits.  

The corked jars are from Michaels as well and they have various Gemstones in them.

The plant, thats from target.  Fish tank = Michaels. 

The mini scrapbook paper pad is from Michaels.  So cute right?!  

The mini colored pencils came in a coloring kit in the dollar section at ACMoore.    

Mini crayon boxes are images printed and folded.  Love that!

The 3 pattered notebooks are more of the scrapbook covered books I mentioned from the other bookshelf.  

And the 4 books are post it holders from ebay.  Go China!

The two paint pallets are from Michaels.  

Paint brushes, paint tubes and drawing pad are all from AG Saige's paint set.  

The four paint sets on the bottom shelf are from Party city and the mini crayons are from ACMoore in another one of those art kits in the dollar section.

More mini books from ebay.  Tape dispenser and yellow lined paper pads are from Party City.

Flash cards from AG Molly's school set.

Mini mason jars are from ACMoore.  Originally with gold lids that I painted.  The mini tags are from Hobby Lobby.

Stapler from Five Below.  

Scissors from various OG sets.  

Ruler from Kit's school set.  

Mini mechanical pencils from various AG sets.

Two larger books are more of those mini post it books and the thinner books are notebooks both from ebay.

Bags both AG.  Green one is obviously Lanie's.

We've got some fun stuff stored under the school desks as well.

Laptop came with Lanie's bag. Various AG notebooks, folders etc.  Pencil case came with the desk.

The apple Macbook is a compact mirror from ebay.  And more AG notebooks and folders.

The geode we had.  Magnifying glass is from Hobby Lobby.  The glass really magnifies, it's metal and it has some weight to it.  Love mini stuff that feels real.

Gemstone card another ebay Gem.  (See what I did there? Me so funny)  Moving on.

This may be my favorite item in the school.  The Ant Farm.  

This was a fun little diy project.  And super cheap too.  For us, it actually didn't cost anything, but even if you were to buy supplies, they're pretty minimal.  Perfect for our nature girl Lanie!

Found our smallest unused plain frame which happened to be 3x5.  Spray painted it green.  Took a wooden paint stirrer stick and cut it to size for the base.  Sprayed it green and glued it on with some wood glue.  Cut the farm scene out of some green cardstock.  And now the fun part, the ant trails.  Just some coarkboard cut to size with some trails cut out by hand.  And lastly, ants cut out of black cardstock.  Viola.  Doll sized ant farm.    

I'm pretty sure I've never seen an AG sized ant farm in any of the school rooms I've seen on Pinterest, youtube, etc and we love to have a little something unique in each room and for this room, I think this is it.

Another new addition is the chalkboard from Hobby Lobby.  Much more substantial then the white board we had previously. Bunting is diy and the little poster I just came across on Pinterest.

Another one of the original large storage pieces is this wall cube box from Michaels.

Theres a few of the same things on there but we added lots more like the glitter bottles, wooden letter stamps & washi tape (Michaels), jars with dice, dominos and colored mini clothes pins (Hobby Lobby), neon clay & mini crayons (Amazon) and a bunch more mini books (AG.)  The plastic bins on the bottom have jute string, crayons, clips & extra mini tape dispensers.

Another classroom favorite is the 3D lunch tray stickers.  Perfect size for the desks and the pieces can all come off and be switched around.  I got mine at Michaels but I've seen them at all the other big chain craft stores as well.

Look how detailed they are.

The lunch tray stickers also came with this School Lunchtime sticker which was perfect for above the lunch menu I made.

Here's some of the subject the class is studying.  The calendar came from Michaels, butterfly chart from the AG school set.  All other images found through google.

More mini hardcover books.  This ocean life set is from Amazon.  Pink handle basket from Hobby Lobby.

I love a set of anything.  But a set of mini hardcover books?  Swoon.

With the soft spot I have for mini books, collecting all the AG school textbooks was a must.

One of the fun little school project my Ava & I put together were specimens for the "students" to explore.  Here's Mia checking them out.

Most of the little critters are from Michaels.  Some we had on hand.  The clear acrylic boxes came from Hobby Lobby.  It's one of our favorite setups.  So cute right?!  

And when the desk isn't filled with specimens, it looks similar to this.  Globe is a christmas ornament.

I think that covers EVERYTHING. Or almost everything.  The details of a doll room are def my favorite and this room has lots, which is probably why it's one of my most loved rooms.