The Fantasy Villa kit by Woodcraft is a low cost, easy to assemble dolls house. It is part of Woodcraft’s large range of model kits but being 1/24th scale (also known as half-scale) it can be used as a “proper” dolls house.
This kit is much cheaper than most dolls houses, which makes it ideal for a new miniaturist. This low price does show itself in the wood quality though, plus the house is held together by a slot and peg system that does look a bit clumsy and “kid’s model kit” style. I have assembled one of these kits before (about 15 years ago) and remember that there were a lot of gaps and irregularities in the finished construction.
The kit consists of 11 plywood panels, each about 17″ by 11″ in size These panels have multiple kit parts ready to be pushed out and assembled. There are a LOT of parts. The only instructions included are illustrations of the panels, showing the allocated part numbers, and a simple 7 point list of what to do. You are supposed to assemble it in numerical order, using the illustrations to know which part is which. The instructions are included in English, German and French.
The tools I am using for the assembly are:
Craft knife – the parts are die cut and just need pushing out of the panels, but the knife will be handy if any are not cleanly cut, or if I want to make changes
Sand paper – a medium and a finer grade for cleaning the edges of parts (the kit says it comes with some sandpaper, but it is a tiny, tiny piece, you will need more)
Needle files – for cleaning parts, especially in small areas
Wood glue – for gluing parts together (well doh)
Arcylic paint – I will paint some parts as I go along, for ease. Acrylic craft paints are economical, cover well and ideal for this sort of project
Household emulsions – those little tester pots of household emulsion are great for dolls houses. They come in a massive range of great colours, are low priced and easy to use
Because there are so many parts, and they are spread around the sheets, I started by lightly writing the part numbers on to the wooden parts, using the instruction sheet as a reference. Some parts do not have a number – these are the trim and it will not be a problem to work out where they go at the end. I used a pencil and kept the number very light, so I won’t have to waste a lot of time trying to remove it or paint over it later on.
The big question now is what sort of style do I want this to be. Victorian gothic? Gingerbread cute? Vintage or modern?
This dolls house is available from Amazon. If you purchase from the link here I will get a small commission for sending a customer to Amazon.