Dollhouse Bookcase

Submitted by Ana White on Thu, 12/13/2018 - 22:30
Difficulty
Intermediate
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Build your own dollhouse bookshelf with our free woodworking plans.  Uses off the shelf 1x12s and basic joinery.

If you’ve got a good miter saw, you can make this bookcase in no time. I have always loved this simple design. Our free plans include step by step diagrams, shopping list and cut list.

dollhouse bookshelf diy plans
Dimensions
dollhouse bookshelf dimensions
51 1/2 " tall by 45" width by 12 1/4" deep

Preparation

Shopping List
  • 4 - 1x12 @ 8 feet
  • 1 - 1x4 @ 4 feet
  • 1 - 1x2 @ 8 feet
  • 1/4″ plywood cut 45″ wide x 51 1/2″ high, cut in a house shape with the vertical ends at 38 1/2″ (measure for exact fit)
Common Materials
2 inch screws
2 inch finish nails
120 grit sandpaper
primer
paint
paint brush
Cut List

Main Carcass

A) 2 – 1×12 @ 38 1/2″ (top edge cut off at 30 degree angle)

B) 2 – 1×12 @ 12″ (Bottom Vertical Dividers)

C) 3 – 1×12 @ 42″ (Shelves)

D) 1 – 1×12 @ 17 1/2″ (Top Vertical Divider, top edge mitered down at 30 degree angle)

E) 2 – 1×4 @ 1 1/2″ (Side Footer)

F) 1 – 1×4 @ 45″ (Front Footer)

G) 2 – 1×12 @ 27 1/2″ (Top Edge Mitered down at 30 degrees)

 

Trim for Windows and Doors

H) 6 – 1×2 @ 4″

I) 4 – 1×2 @ 4 3/4″

J) 4 – 1×2 @ 10 1/4″ Plywood 1/4″ plywood cut 45″ wide x 51 1/2″ high, cut in a house shape with the vertical ends at 38 1/2″ (measure for exact fit)

Cutting Instructions

Start by cutting all the boards as directed above. Review the diagrams to see how the angles are cut. Unless otherwise directed, use 2″ nails and glue on all joints.

Tools
Tape Measure
Speed Square
Safety Glasses
Hearing Protection
Drill
Circular Saw
Miter Saw
Brad Nailer
Power Sander

Instructions

Step 1

Use the above diagram to help guide you. Please note that the measurements are close approximations and the miter saw will cut the exact angle for you.

Step 2

Windows and Doorways. From Boards A, cut the window holes out as shown above.

Step 3

Windows and Doors. First build the window and door frames as shown above, using 1 1/2″ nails. Then center the frames on the openings cut in step 2 and nail the frames into the openings. If you are painting the frames different colors, you may wish to paint and finish the bookshelf and the frames seperately, and then fasten the frames to the bookshelf.

Step 4

Once the sides, A, are complete, begin working on the center. First nail boards B and C together, as shown above. Then fasten D to the top shelf. Once B, C, and D are completed, nail the sides A on.

Step 5

Step 6

Footer. Now fasten the front footer, F, to the front of the bookshelf as shown above.

Step 7

Top. Fasten the top as shown above. Make sure you nail from each of the top pieces into the opposite top piece at the top of the gable end.

Step 8

Cut and add the plywood to the back, using glue and 1 1/2″ nails.

Step 9

Finishing. Fill nail holes with wood filler and sand and finish as desired.

Comments

Jeff B (not verified)

Sat, 12/11/2010 - 09:16

I just picked up the wood for mine, made a few changes.

I'm using premium hardwood (poplar) which is priced by the foot, quite a bit more expensive than MDF or select pine. The trade off for cost is dead straight boards, and a stronger grain. I am making the sides, floors and supports out of 1x10, and the roof panels out of 1x12. This will allow the roof to extend out past the front of the dollhouse, which I think gives it a slightly more realistic look. Also I can save about $1 per foot on the premium 1x10s vs. 1x12s. I got select pine for the bottom trim and window/door trim, no need for premium hardwood for that.

However, the trade off is that the 1x10s will be narrower front to back, and therefore more "tipsy". We plan to keep the dollhouse in a specific spot in our daughter's room, so we will anchor it to the wall anyway. But just an idea for others out there.

The other trade off with the hardwood is you need to be very careful to pilot drill the holes (through the face and a bit into the joining end) before nailing as the hardwood can split a bit easier. And yes, always use glue.

I purchased one 11 foot 1x10. This = 132". I will cut the three 42" floors leaving me just less than 6" scrap. I also purchased one 10 foot 1x10 (102") From this I will cut the 38 1/2" sides, the two 12" supports and the 17 1/2" top support. This only leaves about 1" scrap, so you will have to be very precise with your cuts, and use a sharp/thin finish saw blade. If you use a nice blade and hardwood, you can cut the angle on the 38 1/2", and then flip over and square cut the other end with no waste there. Getting two 11 foot 1x10s may be advisable for those who want a little more room for error. I then only need one 5 foot 1x12 to cut the two 27 1/2" roof panels, with about 5" of scrap. I plan to use the 1x4 clamped in place as a saw guide to cut out the main house for accuracy.

I bought all the wood, the finish saw blade (7 1/4") for my circular saw, nails, wood glue, and a framing square for about $160. Wood only would be closer to $135. Prices will definitely vary by state. I already have primer & paint for the main house, but will probably grab a quart of some green or pink color for the trim. This is still about half the cost of the PB version, and it will probably be strong enough to give to my grandkids.

Hope this helps!

Bill s (not verified)

Wed, 01/05/2011 - 04:30

Jeff, thanks for your post, very good. My wife wants this for our daughter. In your opinion, would pine be acceptable? And my biggest concern is the joinery method. Nails and glue seem weak. I think I may go with pocket hole screws.

Tania (not verified)

Fri, 02/04/2011 - 01:20

wow just searched through EVERY SINGLE flickr photo in the fan album! hahah I added about 15 things I MUST make!!

anyway I was looking to see if this was ever made in a boys design? I couldnt find one (I found one painted green which was cute!) and I found a tall rocket ship but that was a bit different... anyway gave me an idea to make THIS as either a rocket ship or pirate ship but not sure they are lasting themes... I reckon this style would suit a girl till early teens if not longer!

Any suggestions people? much appreciated! x

Tania (not verified)

Fri, 02/04/2011 - 01:21

wow just searched through EVERY SINGLE flickr photo in the fan album! hahah I added about 15 things I MUST make!!

anyway I was looking to see if this was ever made in a boys design? I couldnt find one (I found one painted green which was cute!) and I found a tall rocket ship but that was a bit different… anyway gave me an idea to make THIS as either a rocket ship or pirate ship but not sure they are lasting themes… I reckon this style would suit a girl till early teens if not longer!

Any suggestions people? much appreciated! x

Trishdish

Wed, 03/16/2011 - 14:11

Someone built this as a barn instead of a doll house, does anyone know how to find the picture of that one? It used to be under photos on the old site, but now I can't find it on either. I want to build it for my son's room and want to look at the picture for help altering it.

Stephanie Cain (not verified)

Mon, 09/17/2012 - 16:52

Wondering the same thing...did you ever find out? Thanks!

Guest (not verified)

Tue, 10/18/2011 - 16:08

Love the plans for a doll house - next question - what about the furniture - store bought just breaks so easily - any info?
thanks,
deb