Ever since I was a wee one, I’ve needed a canvas to express myself. I wasn’t a child prodigy, delicately hurling oils upon the nearest blank surface; no, I was an infant interior decorator. Any toy, regardless of format, could become the border of an invisible, life-size playhouse, where I’d torture myself over the placement of a card table or attempt to hang “art” (books) on the wall. Short on resources, I once constructed a primitive fort at the end of our street composed entirely from crudely dismembered branches, milk crates and foraged milkweed. If I could arrange a coffee table, any space was fair game.
I’ve since lived out my decorating dreams in my own apartment; however, the urge to mold a space never really goes away — which might explain my affinity for dollhouses. As such, I was quite excited to learn about Emily Henderson’s “I’m a Giant!” dollhouse challenge. In the name of dollhouse love, Emily and some of her favorite design bloggers are decorating miniature spaces and chronicling their progress on their blogs. Better yet, they have invited the public to join them as they discuss glue options, erect walls and comb tiny doll hair. As Emily states:
“The challenge is to decorate a dollhouse. You can buy one or make something that resembles a miniature space. It doesn’t have to be a ‘house,’ per se; it could be a loft or an industrial space. I’m trying to convince my boxing trainer to do a mini boxing gym. It can be conceptual or literal. Whatever you want.
“You can spend as much or little time and money as you want. It doesn’t have to last for generations, and certainly nobody is actually going to live in it. It’s a chance to create a mini fantasy world of your own. It’s more of a piece of art or a diorama in a way than an actual ‘dollhouse.’”
Now the fun starts. Contemporary, A-frame cottage, boxing studio, Victorian: the style and details are up to you! (Personally, I’m digging on the A-frame idea.) And if you need some help sourcing all of the tiny details, rest assured that there are oodles of resources right here. Miniature baguettes? Yeah, we got that. 1950s furniture? You know it! There are even teeny, tiny dogs to complete the domestic scene.
For all of the details of the challenge and how you can get involved, check out Emily Henderson’s blog.
Have you ever built or decorated a dollhouse? Will you take part in this challenge?
Alison is Editor in Chief of the Etsy Blog. When she's not trawling Etsy for pottery, folk art, and vintage oddities, she enjoys exploring New York, historical nonfiction and thrifting. She loves a good cat video.