How To Build A DIY Barbie Doll House Out Of Wood And From Scratch?

So today, we are writing a blog post on how to build a DIY Barbie dollhouse out of wood and from scratch. Now, I won’t send you wandering through a long-winded intro. Instead, I’m here to jump straight into the meat of it.

But where do you start? Well, with the right materials and a solid plan. And just so you know, today, it’s all about wood, and not about other types of materials like cardboard.

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Laying the Foundation: Selecting Your Materials and toolsfor your DIY Barbie House made from wood.

You might want to favor plywood sheets for their adaptability and MDF for smooth finishes. This latter is usually about 3/8 inch thick.

Choose plywood of appropriate thickness for the walls, floors, and roof of your dollhouse. You may want to have the plywood cut to the desired dimensions at the hardware store if you don’t have the tools to do it yourself.
But remember, woodworking requires more than just wood. You’re going to need a reliable set of power tools.

  • 2. Does the thought of power tools make you a bit uneasy? Don’t worry too much about it, but precision and safety are key, though, so ensure you’re comfortable with these tools before you get started.

A circular saw, drill, and sander will be your best buddies throughout this project.

  • 3. When it comes to sticking things together, the right type of glue is essential.

Wood glue will be your go-to for most of the assembly of a Barbie house, but for decorative touches or furniture, you might find other types of glue to be better suited, just as I explained here.

  • 4. Now, of course, you will need smaller tools as well.

Just think of :

  1. Clamps: Clamps are useful for holding the plywood pieces together while the wood glue sets. They ensure a strong bond between the pieces.

  2. Screws: If you prefer not to use glue, screws can be used to secure the plywood pieces together. You’ll need a screwdriver or a power drill with a suitable screwdriver bit.

  3. Saw: A saw will be needed to cut the plywood sheets to the desired dimensions. A handheld circular saw or a table saw works well for cutting plywood.

  4. Pencil and Metal Ruler or Tape Ruler: These tools are essential for marking and measuring the plywood accurately before cutting.

  5. Sanding Paper or Sanding Block: Sanding is important to smooth out any rough edges and surfaces of the plywood, ensuring a neat finish.

  6. Paint and Paintbrushes: If you want to add color to your dollhouse straight up front, (instead of wallpapering or decorating it ), you’ll need paint and brushes. Acrylic paints work well for plywood surfaces but start with a coat of primer.

  7. Optional: Hinges and Latches: If you want your dollhouse to have functioning doors or windows that open and close, you’ll need hinges and latches.

  8. Optional: Decorative Trim: You can add decorative trim to the exterior of your dollhouse using thin strips of wood or molding. These methods are used often for all types of vintage dollhouses. But you probably won’t do that for your Barbies dollhouse 😉

  9. Safety Gear: When working with tools like a jigsaw or table saw, it’s essential to prioritize safety. Consider including safety goggles to protect your eyes from dust and debris, as well as gloves to protect your hands from sharp edges and splinters.


A stable surface to work on will make your project much more manageable and safer. Choose a table or workbench that is large enough to accommodate your plywood sheets and provides ample space for cutting and assembling your dollhouse components.

Now, with materials in hand, it’s time to talk plans. This is where your dream starts taking shape.

Blueprints for Fun: Finding the Perfect Dollhouse Plans For Barbie


A Barbie dollhouse is usually quite easy to build, but you’re going to need a good set of blueprints to guide your Barbie dollhouse project. Without it, you’re basically flying blind, and we don’t want that, do we?

There are plenty of free resources, as well as paid plans that offer more intricate details and unique features and you’ll want to choose a dollhouse blueprint that matches the complexity level you’re comfortable with.

Some of those building plans for dollhouses are already in a PDF file, but if you need to transform them into a PDF file, you can do that by using this free JPG convertor to a PDF file.

You can find DIY Barbie dollhouse plans online through websites like Pinterest, Instructables, and crafting blogs, as well as YouTube tutorials and books/magazines specializing in DIY crafts. You can also purchase plans from online retailers like Etsy.

1:6 scale Barbie dollhouse plans by Build It Make It on Etsy

In my earlier content, I’ve unpacked some of my favorite DIY Barbie dollhouse plans that might be perfect for you.

Once you’ve settled on a plan, take some time to study it. Understand each step of the process and visualize how the pieces will come together. This prep work will make the actual build a lot smoother.

Folding dollhouse DIY plans for 11.5″ dolls by MattBuildsIt on Etsy.

Construction Zone: Building Your Barbie Dream Home


Building a DIY wooden Barbie dollhouse from scratch can be a deeply rewarding process, and it’s easier than you think if you tackle it step by step. After you gather all your materials and tools, the actual building process should take about 1 to 2 hours, depending on how complicated the project is.

  • Start by laying out all your parts according to your plan. Make sure every piece is cut to the precise dimensions necessary. Accuracy is key because even a tiny miscalculation can lead to big problems down the road.

  • With everything cut to size, begin with the frame of the dollhouse. It’s the skeleton that’ll hold up the rest, so ensure those joints are tight and secure.

  • As you piece the house together, pay close attention to the instructions. Don’t rush this part; if the walls aren’t perfectly vertical or the floors aren’t quite level, it’ll throw the whole project off.

  • Use clamps to help keep everything in place while the glue dries, and if you need to, use a square to check your angles. Remember, you’re creating a home that should stand the test of playtime.

  • Once the main structure is up, it’s time to install the roof. This might seem daunting, but with a little patience and perhaps a helping hand or two, you’ll nail it (figuratively, and maybe literally).

  • Following this, wall partitions and floors for multiple levels can be added.

  • If you’re thinking about electrifying your creation with working lights, now’s the time to carefully plan out and weave in the wiring, before all the interior walls are in place.
  • Take a closer look at the whole process in the video down below by Anomaly Woodworks.

Now, here’s where you really start to see your dollhouse take shape. As the basic structure stands firm, it’s time to think about those final flourishes that make it a home. In the next section, I’m going to walk you through adding that razzle-dazzle that will capture hearts and imaginations.

Customizing and Decorating your Barbie House with some final tips.


Now, you’ve pieced together your dollhouse’s structure, and it’s truly shaping up to look like a tiny mansion fit for Barbie herself. But a structure is not a home until it bears your special touch, and that’s where the fun really begins, some tips and hints:

  • Start by choosing a color palette that will make your dollhouse pop (mostly, Barbie dollhouses have very bright colors with lots of pink or bright blue).

    Think about the kind of atmosphere you want to create: is it a beach house with light, airy colors, or maybe a mansion with modern hues? With the color scheme set, consider the interior.
How to generate a color palette

How to create a color palette for your dollhouse?

  • If you fancy fancy, why not craft and design plush velvet curtains? Maybe even hardwood floors out of veneer scraps for that upscale look—imagination is your only limit.

Find out here how to create all types of dollhouse floors.

  • Don’t forget the dollhouse exterior! Add a quaint little patio for summer barbecues or build a tiny garage for Barbie’s convertible.

How to decorate a doll’s house exterior if you want to do more than just a coat of paint?

How to build a garage for Barbie, can be found out in the video below by Lena Wiese!


From the same creator as in the video above, the video below shows you how to create a Barbie DIY dollhouse patio, suitable for Barbie scale dolls.

  • If you’re feeling ambitious, an elevator can add a touch of luxury and wow factor.


This is just amazing, take a look at how a Barbie elevator is made from cardboard in the video below by KPO Design!

Alternatives to build a Barbie dollhouse without using wood.


You don’t necessarily need to use plywood to create a Barbie Dollhouse, although it kind is the most sturdy option.

You could also create a dollhouse with these methods:

  • Use sturdy cardboard to create a dollhouse and cardboard dollhouse furniture. Although this can be a very solid way and playable for Barbie dolls, I would assume it to be less durable to play with and won’t survive several generations haha.

  • Upcycle/renovate an old plastic dollhouse! This for sure can be durable and you can always renovate it again, and another affordable way to have a playhouse for your kids Barbies 🙂

  • Create a bookcase dollhouse. If you have a large enough bookcase for Barbie dolls, you can transform it into a dollhouse to play with!

  • Last, you can also use foamboard and printables to create a dollhouse, again like in the video below:

How much would it cost to make your own Barbie dollhouse from scratch?


Now we come to the maybe most important question: how much would it cost to make your dollhouse from scratch (assuming you already have the power tools).

  1. Plywood: The cost of plywood can vary significantly depending on the grade and thickness. A standard 4’x8′ sheet of plywood typically ranges from $10 to $50, depending on the quality and type (such as hardwood or softwood plywood).
  2. Nails, Screws, and Glue: The cost for fasteners and adhesives remains similar, ranging from $20 to $50, depending on the quantity and type of fasteners you choose.
  3. Paint/Stain and Finishing Supplies: The cost for paint, brushes, sandpaper, and other finishing supplies remains similar, ranging from $20 to $100.
  4. Roofing Material: If you plan to add a roof, the cost for roofing materials would be similar, ranging from $20 to $50.
  5. Windows and Doors: The cost for windows and doors would also be similar, ranging from $10 to $50.
  6. Decorative Details: The cost for decorative elements such as trim, molding, etc, would be similar, ranging from $20 to $100.
  7. Labor: Labor costs would remain the same if you’re paying someone else to build the dollhouse for you.

Adding up these costs, the estimated cost of making your own wooden Barbie dollhouse using plywood would be roughly $100 to $500 or more, depending on your choices and preferences. But again, this is hard to say, it depends greatly on your design and choice of materials.


Related article: affordable doll clothes patterns to sew your doll’s clothes!

My Final Conclusion

That’s all folks! I hope you enjoyed this article on how to build a DIY Barbie doll house out of wood from scratch, but if you do have more questions, please feel free to leave them down below in the comment section!

You can also join me on one of my social media channels below, for more pictures and videos of pretty miniatures and dollhouses, especially to check out my Youtube Channel, if you please;-)

I wish you happy crafting!

Kind regards

Lizzy

6 thoughts on “How To Build A DIY Barbie Doll House Out Of Wood And From Scratch?”

  1. Building a Barbie dollhouse from wood is a very creative process and you have outlined the details to get it done. I love the photos and your instructions are so precise. This is a project that some of my family and friends may be interested in. The cost to get it done is totally reasonable. Thanks for sharing this.

    Reply
  2. Hi Lizzy,

    This is a great article for me as it is my friend’s daughter’s birthday very soon, and if I can make a dollhouse like this for her then I will be the top of their good books (not that I’m not already:))

    I will let you know how I get on with it and if I need any help or have any questions then I will get in touch with you, if that is OK with you?

    Thank you for sharing another brilliant article with videos.

    All the best,

    Tom

    Reply
  3. Hi Lizzy, I am quite impressed. Of course this is quite a lot of work but I really like how you have shared your ideas here. Which wood to use, which tools to use and what glue etc. I really like your ideas too for decorating once this is done. I know people like official branded barbie but I think if you can craft something of good quality people will like it. I’d be very Interested to see what something would sell for I think.

    Reply

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