Searching for the right house for our American Girl dolls
American Girl dolls have become increasingly popular over the years. While they are very expensive, I think many parents fork out the money because we appreciate the concepts. Strong, independent girls from a variety of cultures and backgrounds that allow our girls to relate and be inspired. They are sweet, innocent and pure in an age of skimpily clothed Barbies, Monster High dolls, etc. Now don't get me wrong, my daughter has plenty of Barbies and now has gotten interested in the Ever After High dolls (which have questionable fashion choices for young girls in my opinion). However, I prefer to encourage her love of the American Girl dolls most. Girl characters who are around her own age. Girl characters who are engaged in little girl adventures and not boy crushes. Girl characters who teach a little history from various time periods. So bravo, American Girl, for giving us age-appropriate options in the world of marketing to our young girls....even if you do make this option quite expensive sometimes!
Since her interest in American Girl dolls has increased, my daughter has been asking for an American Girl Doll House for her dolls. There is no official dollhouse offered by the official American Girl doll store (and let's face it, if there was it would probably be EXTREMELY pricey!). I can understand how fun it would be to have a house for her dolls. Also, as a parent it would be nice to have a space to organize and contain all the accessories and furniture. They are too valuable to risk losing! So, I have been doing internet research to see what options are available for a doll house for my daughter and her dolls. I will share my favorite ideas of what I have learned so far!
Do-It-Yourself Doll Houses
Here are some of the best blogs I found about creating your own doll house for American Girl Dolls.
If you are crafty or have a family member skilled at woodworking, you can build your own American Girl Doll House. Here is a link to a cute DIY dollhouse with free plans:
Another blog about creating your own dollhouse using shelves purchased at IKEA:
I was mainly looking for a blog with a bookshelf I could easily find, buy and use to create a doll house type space. I especially liked this blog because it has great pictures, information and links to the actual bookcase that can be easily purchased online. It met my needs of having everything spelled out for me.
One reason I like the idea of using a bookshelf is that it can be converted back to a bookshelf later in years.
Already Made Doll Houses
If you aren't crafty (like me) and can afford it (not so much like me) there are various options of beautiful pre-made dollhouses.
I am a frequently indecisive and my daughter and I are still trying to decide the best option for her own American Girl house. However, in the meantime, I found this great cardboard doll house that is easy to assemble and is ready for your child to paint and decorate herself. My daughter is very interested in arts and crafts so this was a great option for her. She is excited to color and decorate it! She has also enjoyed just sitting in the house herself. It is big enough for a 9 year old girl to cozy up inside. She has been calling it her club house and playing with not only her American Girl dolls but with other dolls in it as well. I know this will not be our permanent solution as I eventually would like something more sturdy with a different type of set up. And although the cardboard is decent quality, I know it won't last forever. For the short term though, this is a fun house that my daughter can enjoy in a variety of ways and was an inexpensive alternative. For anyone whose budget is tight this is a great purchase that I think most girls would love. And, if you are careful with it, maybe reinforce some parts with packing tape, it could even last you a long time!
There are also many pre-made dollhouses available at major retailers and online stores such as Amazon, Wal-mart etc. if you are willing to pay the prices.
You can also find a variety of American Girl items that are handmade on etsy.com from furniture, to pre-made houses, to just plans. I understand the value of the workmanship, but unfortunately most of the beautiful handmade houses are quite expensive! I even saw one large house for over $2000!
Good luck shopping!
I hope this links will help you in your own search for an American Girl doll residence! Happy hunting!
Christy Aldridge (author) from MS on January 19, 2015:
Thank you, MsDora! Thank you for your wise feedback, as always!:)
Dora Weithers from The Caribbean on January 19, 2015:
Christy, I appreciate your emphasis on dolls with the right look and a chance to teach something about their times. Our little girls can learn values while they're having fun. Cute doll h9ouse you recommend. Voted Up!