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Inexpensive Dollhouse Gazebo

Beach GazeboOh, my gosh, have you seen the price tags on some of the doll accessories available at stores? Who can afford it? Well, some people can afford to pay double-digit prices for small dollhouse items but average people likely walk away from these goods just shaking their heads. There are some furnishings and accessories that normal people just can't make themselves, and if they want those pieces, they have to purchase them. However, there are many dollhouse items that are easily made by just any one. You might think that you wouldn't fit into a category of ordinary people who can make spectacular dollhouse pieces but you'd be wrong. If you can cut and glue you can make at least one fabulously impressive accessory: a gazebo!

A gazebo can be made to suit any budget because you have choices on what materials to use. For example, you can make a high quality gazebo by using wooden pieces, but if you don't have the wood, you can make a nice gazebo out of thick cardboard. Although the wooden version will cost a little more to make either gazebo will thrill any little girl. Gather some things from around the house, or invest in a few inexpensive craft supplies, and soon you'll have made a beautiful outdoor seating area for the dolls. With the choices you make you can create a small gazebo for small dolls or a huge one for much larger dolls.

Browsing through a craft store you'll find that various shapes of wood are not too expensive. Purchase two circular pieces, both the same size, and you'll have the top and bottom of the easy-to-make gazebo. Really thick wood pieces are more expensive than the thinner types. You choose which is suitable for your budget. Select large wooden circles, of course, for a big gazebo or smaller ones for a smaller version. While you're there purchase some wooden dowels. You'll find them available in a variety of sizes and diameters. Since the gazebos can be made from various sizes of wooden circles there is not specific size of dowels to get. Just choose ones that are long enough to create the height of the gazebo you want. In addition, choose ones that have a diameter which is suitable for the size of wooden circles you're using. So, don't choose really skinny dowels for a gigantic gazebo nor large-in-diameter dowels for a small gazebo.

It's really easy to assemble the gazebo; use hot glue to put it together rapidly. Set the first circle on a flat surface then begin gluing the dowels to it. Set each dowel so that it's standing as a column, just next to the edge of the circle, nearly all the way around. Space them the way you want - use lots of dowels or only a few - so long as you use at least four for a small gazebo and six or more for a larger version. Don't go all the way around with the dowels; you'll need an open space to bring in furniture and give access to the dolls. The amount of space you allow is up to you as long as the roof of the gazebo can easily balance on the columns. After the dowels are set hot glue the second wooden circle on top of the columns. That was easy, wasn't it?

If you're using cardboard instead of wooden you'll follow the same basic guidelines. Paint the cardboard or use other techniques to decorate them. Cut a piece of vinyl floor covering, indoor-outdoor carpet, adhesive shelf liner or other material. Cord or similar items can be used to cover the sides of the cardboard or the sides can simply be painted. Each choice you make will offer a completely different look.

You can use wooden dowels to connect the two cardboard circles or you can use cardboard tubes from around your house. Paper towel rolls are perfect. Wrap them in wrapping paper, tissue paper, fabric or even shelf liner. Cut the material longer than the roll, wrap it around and tape or glue it, then tuck the ends of the material into the ends of the roll. This gives you a much more finished look than if you cut the material off even with the ends of the roll. Glue the finished pillars to the finished cardboard circle then glue on the top circle.

Whether you've made a wooden or a cardboard gazebo you can make it much more impressive by choosing a wispy fabric for the outside of it. Use a paper cone or a plastic funnel to create a top for the gazebo. Turn the funnel or cone upside-down onto the roof and glue in place. Cut a large circle of the fabric, lay it over the top of the cone, then secure it with a rubber band. Tie a ribbon around the rubber band to conceal it. Tie the ribbon in a bow or just let it hang long. Cut the circle in the front area of the gazebo. Cut it from the bottom edge up to the rubber band. Pull the fabric back to create a doorway for the gazebo. Secure it by using ribbon ties or permanently secure it by gluing the material to the first dowel on each side of the gazebo. Your little girl will love the finished piece especially after you put a couple of pieces of furniture inside. You don't have any furniture for it? Well, let's talk about making a wooden bench...

By Emma Salkill - Born in Columbus, Ohio, Emma Salk has traveled the U.S. and parts of the world. She has visited nearly every state in America and now resides in scenic North Carolina. Emma Salk has been published, online, o...  

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