The Art of Paper Dollhouses

I just made paper dollhouses for the kiddos. And we had a blast creating our houses and families. Did any of you make paper doll houses? For the uneducated a paper dollhouse is normally created by taking/making a binder and then cutting out furniture, decor and sometimes even people from magazines. Or if one is very creative and patient drawing it all by hand.

My Mom used to purchase JcPenny’s yearly catalog, which if anyone remembers was absolutely ginormous! After she was done perusing it I was given an extra notebook, scissors and glue to create a world with. My Mom made paper dollhouses when she was a child and I loved making them. Every year I made a new one. My last paper dollhouse however was undoubtedly my favorite. I still remember it.

In honesty it was more like a paper village than a dollhouse. My Mom also used to get a Victorian magazine of some kind and inside was a page of Victorian style, little furniture and gorgeous glass dolls. I carefully cut out the tiny piece and drew a house in which they could fit. Next I drew other houses and other tiny people. Before long I had an entire village. Logically I made up my own Jane Austin type story revolving around four, poor sisters: Anastasia, Mary, Jane and Elizabeth.

They were much like the sisters from Little Women. Anastasia was the eldest and had fiery red hair. She was an aspiring artist and also the prettiest of the sisters. Her love interest was the neighboring Lord’s son, who every girl in the county was after but who only loved her. But Anastasia wasn’t perfect. When her widowed father was dying and only she and Mary were at home to care for him, Anastasia could not take her grief and fled from the home. Mary sent her to live with the afore mentioned Lord and son until their Father had passed. Now her sisters never blamed her for this, but Anastasia always saw it as a failing and never forgave herself for not being with her beloved father when he died.

Mary was also a red head and had a very fiery temper. She could be crass and had a good head on her shoulders. After the untimely death of her father, Mary really came into her own. Anastasia quickly married her wealthy husband, so Mary took over the running of her family’s small farm and with the help of her father’s shrewd lawyer turned a profit. Unfortunately her strong will and merciless tongue kept her from love, cause honestly she was a little too hot to handle. In my story her happy ending didn’t come to the very end. After watching all her sisters eventually settle down and have children, Mary longed for her someone to call her own. That’s when her long time friend and lawyer, who had stuck with her through thick and thin finally confessed his feelings for her. He hadn’t wanted to slow her down and he was a good deal older than her, plus they fought so much he thought their marriage would be disastrous. But he could no longer hide. How romantic is that?

Jane being the third sister was very quiet and dreamt of being an author. She was delicate with soft blonde hair. She was the first sister to marry, marrying her life long love and moving to the city. She tried her hand at writing, while her husband tried his hand at business. Neither endeavor was very successful. Not long after the birth of their son the family fell ill. Jane’s husband died and she would remain sickly for the rest of her life as would her son. After the death of her husband Jane moved back in with her sister Mary. Her depression and grief lasted long and was very bitter, but she ended up challenging all her pain into a book for her son, so he could know who his father was. The book ended up being very successful and made her somewhat wealthy in her own right. After this she was able to move on and eventually fell in love with the county doctor, who had been her husband’s best friend. And they lived happily ever after. (After many dramatic close calls of course)

Finally Elizabeth. She was dark headed and for most of her character arc very fool headed. She almost eloped with a solider but thankfully Mary and the family lawyer were level headed enough to stop her. She took a year long trip as a companion to her wealthy friend to London and Paris and New York. She tried her hand at acting and singing. This is where she met a wealthy American manufacture and finally settled down. Incidentally her future husband was one of Mary’s biggest investors. Small world isn’t it?

These are just the main characters. I had many side characters and subplots going as well. It was very intricate.

How to make your own paper dollhouse…

Anyway… so I don’t know if you guys wanted to know all that, but hay. When it comes to making your own paper dollhouse all you need is a notebook, scissors, glue, a magazine and a healthy dose of imagination.

Lots of love,


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