Little girls love playing with dolls. But dollhouses take up so much room, and they aren’t exactly portable. Well, here’s a “dollhouse” that will only take up an inch of room on the bookshelf!
- Binder with clear vinyl cover
- Magnetic sheets (3)
- Contact paper
- Printed dolls (see links at bottom)
- Zippered binder pouch
- Plastic sheet protectors
- Printed backgrounds -or-
- Magazines / Scrapbook paper
1) To start, you’ll need to print some paper dolls. My favorites are these cute Disney-inspired dolls, designed by Cory Jensen. Beauty and the Beast and Cinderella are available for free download (see links at bottom of post). I’ve also included a list of other cute paper doll links.
2) Begin by cutting out the dolls. It doesn’t have to be precise, just cut off the excess paper. You should laminate your dolls for durability, or cover them front and back in clear Contact paper. Then cut closely around the paper dolls.
3) You’ll also need a few magnetic sheets. I used three total. Adhere the paper dolls to the magnetic sheet and cut out. Trim two magnetic sheets and slide into the front and back cover of a binder. The binder will need to have the clear vinyl pocket cover.
4) Now we need to make the front cover look like a house for your dolls. I found a website that shows close-ups of animated movies. Printing these out is a fast way to make your dollhouse binder. You could also tear pictures of pretty rooms out of a home decorating magazine. Or, you can design your own from scratch, using scrapbook paper. These are easy to swap out.
5) Slide these pages into the front of the binder, over the magnetic sheets. You can store spare room pictures inside clear page protectors within the binder.
6) To make the clothes stick, add magnet strips to both the character and the clothing. You could also use self-adhesive Velcro tabs.
7) To use, fold the binder backwards. Your characters should stick to the background. Store the magnetic pieces within a zippered binder pouch.
8) With this project, you’re not just limited to princesses! How about a pet shop, or a construction site?
List of Free Printable Paper Dolls:
Funky Clementina comes with a panda suit! (Site is originally in Spanish, but you just click the pic to download)
Liddle Kiddles: adorable vintage kids with dozens of outfits
Arrested Development Dolls (okay, so these aren’t really for kids, but I want to play with them!)