American Girl Dollhouse – Suitable for 18" Dolls

Small Version of this Dollhouse

Want to build an American Girl Dollhouse, but in a smaller version? We created a new plan very similar, but only two stories. I find my daughter can’t make it to the third story, so the shorter version works better for us.

Does your child like American Girl or 18″ dolls?

American Girl dollhouses are extremely expensive. Have you considered a DIY dollhouse?

American Girl Dollhouse Features

  • Easy to build with about $150 in materials
  • All plywood construction – so will last longer than an MDF or particle board dollhouse
  • It’s fun to customize and decorate
  • Adds castors that move easily
  • The plans are easy to change – so you can make it a two-story dollhouse or change the size
  • Many readers have submitted photos and success stories

How to Build a Dollhouse

Here’s how we built our DIY dollhouse –

Rip Plywood for sides and shelves

We cut the plywood into strips 23-3/4″ wide and 8 feet long. You get four strips from two sheets of plywood. Have your home improvement store do it if you don’t have a table saw or a truck, just make sure the strips are the same width.

Then cut the ends into the shape of the house for both sides.

Cut Doors and Windows

Then to cut the doors and windows,

I drew the windows and doors on each of the panels, and then painted each side, inside the lines,

Then it’s just a matter of connecting the dots,

With a jigsaw.

Cutting the windows and doors was probably the longest part of this whole project.

Assemble the Dollhouse

I used a Kreg Jig to assemble the pieces. There aren’t many joints, but since the pieces are so big, it’s a bit fiddly – but nothing I can’t handle myself. You don’t have to use a Kreg Jig – you can also use 2″ self tapping wood screws.

Window and Door Trim

The window and door trim makes a big difference in the dollhouse. Here’s how I built it –

I first nailed the 1×2 “box” with 1-1/4″ brad nails and glue.

Then I just put the trim on the doors and nailed it to the sides of the plywood.

Our happy client made a few requests outside of this plan – we didn’t add the lower trim and used caster wheels. And instead of two rooms upstairs, we made a whole room upstairs (but had to add a 1×2 upstairs to support the 1/4″ plywood on the back.

How We Finished the Dollhouse

I also added veneer edge banding to all the exposed plywood edges to finish it off.

For the floors inside the dollhouse, we wanted to preserve the wood, so we used Rustoleum Wood Stain in Dark Walnut.

It’s one step – just apply and rub. It’s easy enough for my seven year old to help!

We also applied RustOleum polyurethane to the stain to protect the floors (just like real wood floors!!!).

Then we taped the floors with painter’s tape (until we ran out and had to use duct tape) and newspaper,

A quick sanding, and he’s ready for primer!

Jacob sprays the dollhouse with primer,

And then I carefully painted the outside with blue paint.

We LOVE how it turned out!!!!

But we want the roof to stand up a little,

So I took some RustOleum textured spray paint and sprayed the roof. It looks like a roof!!!

Related: American Girl Dollhouse for Small Spaces

This dollhouse plan is huge. If you need a smaller dollhouse, we have another plan that will fit almost any space.

The rooms are not full depth, but I find my daughter prefers to play on the floor with her dolls, and just use the dollhouse to store and display her American Girls and their accessories. .

You can see the free plans for a smaller American Girl Dollhouse here.

American Girl Dollhouse Plans

The plans for this dollhouse follow. You can easily adjust to different sizes and of course, paint or stain in any way you can imagine.

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American Girl Dollhouse - Suitable for 18

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