How to Build An American Girl Dolls House

Last month I volunteered my husband to help me take on the ContiBoard Blogger Challenge. We had to design and build something for the home. My daughter is a real girly girl and loves playing with dolls. I decided I wanted to build our very own American Girl Doll House.


The task was not easy. I did the designing and my husband built the house with my support. I could not physically take part but directed him in regards to measurements and building. It took a lot of effort and was a real challenge as we had never built anything before. It was a little overwhelming at times but we persevered and all the hard work paid off at the end of the week when my husband tightened the last screw. It was a labour of love and looks absolutely brilliant. My daughter is over the moon.

Today I’m going to share a step by step guide of how we built our American girls doll house using ContiBoard wood.

Step One.

I looked up images of dolls houses online and found a design I liked the look of. I then drew it on paper and work out the dimensions to figure out how much wood to order. We ordered 3 x packs of two ContiBoard, 590mm by 2200mm and one pack of Conti edging tape. The board was delivered directly to our home.

American girl dolls house

There were four different colours we could have chosen. All my daughters furniture is white so we wet with Vanilla Ice to make the house match the existing furniture in the bedroom.

Step Two

We took the first pack and sawed the two side pieces down to 1.6 meters. We then measured an triangle from 130 meter high using a set square. The lines were then sawed to create the triangle ends.

American girl dolls house

Step Three

Second we measured and cut out out the horizontal base and horizontal top piece. The base was 112cm long. The top piece was 108cm long.  We then cut out the middle vertical piece of board at exactly 1 meter and two horizontal pieces for the middle of the house both 53cm each.

American girl dolls house

Step Four

Once we had all the pieces cut we had to plane and sand the edges to make them smooth before using a hot clothes Iron to melt the ContiBoard edging tape onto the edges that had been sawn.

American girl dolls house

Step Five

Due to the size of our dolls house, we decided to build in my daughter’s bedroom. My husband carried the wood upstairs and laid the base on the ground. He then placed the first panel of wood on the base and joined the two pieces using screw blocks.

American girl dolls house

We had the option of screw blocks or drilling holes for dowels. We preferred to use the blocks as it would take a lot more effort to drill holes into the wood at exact points. We chose white blocks and they are barely noticeable.

joining Contiboard

Step Six

Once the two vertical side panels were attached to the base, we added the middle vertical piece of ContiBoard screwing it down securely to the middle of the ContiBoard base.

American girl dolls house

We then screwed the top horizontal piece to the the two side and middle panels.

American girl dolls house

Step Seven

My daughter told us part way through the build that she really wanted a door between the middle rooms. We got a jigsaw tool and cut out a large door so the dolls will be able to walk through each room. Had we planned to do this originally, we would have cut out the door before the middle panel was screwed into place. Once the door wall created, we attached the final two pieces of ContiBoard.

American girl dolls house

Step Eight

Once the house had been built we needed to add a back and a roof. We used a piece of MDF wood for the back of the dolls house. We found two pieces of MDF marked down at a local DIY store for 50p each. My husband screwed the MDF board into place. We then measured and cut out a piece of MDF to fit across the back section of the roof. We decided to create a marginal roof for the front. Had we placed a full roof at the front, it would have enclosed the top play area too much. That is an option for others but this was the choice we made.

American girl dolls house

Step Ten

Once the house was finally completed we cleaned up the saw dust, blindfolded our daughter and showed her the final masterpiece.

American girl dolls house

Sylvia was delighted. My husband built the dolls house over a whole week and on the night it was completed my daughter did not want to go to bed.

What Next

Now we have built our American Dolls House and completed the ContiBoard Challenge, we plan to decorate the interiors. We have collected sample wallpaper and will be on the hunt for some carpets and flooring. We also plan to build some little beds and furniture and sew some blankets and bedding.

This week we also have just received some brand new Lottie Dolls to use in Sylvia’s American Girl Dolls House

American girl dolls house

I hope you enjoyed reading my post and seeing how we built our dream dolls house. Once the interiors are complete I write a further post to show you our fabulous designs. It’s an exciting task and I am so glad we took part in the ContiBoard Blogger challenge!

Now to design the rooms! If this was your house how would you decorate it? I’d love to know. Please do leave your suggestions below.

Angela x

Disclaimer: We were gifted the ContiBoard for the purpose of building the Dolls House.

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