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Tudor Style Doll Houses

Updated on August 22, 2014

Dollhouse With Old World Style

Tudor houses have an old world charm. When I was little, I traveled to the house where my father grew up. I was fascinated by how every home in his Long Island community was cream-colored with exotic dark brown trim.

When I moved to Seattle, I saw many similarly styled houses, looking whimsical and (to my eyes) dollhouse-like, set against a backdrop of plain wood or brick buildings. Later that year, I made quite a find at the Capitol Hill Value Village: a huge dollhouse -- completed, but mostly unfinished. Although it had been painted cadet blue, I could see what it was! I set to work to add cream-colored stucco and make that 'Tudor in disguise' look more like those grand old houses I knew and remembered. Mine is a budget affair, with shingles cut from sheets of cork and stained brown.

This page is about Tudor-style dollhouses. I use the term because most of what we see around us are not the real thing, but rather part of a revival in the early to middle part of last century. In the United States, so-called Tudor houses are not really half-timbered, but rather are constructed in the usual way with slabs of dark wood added later as decoration. The 20th century editions are unlikely to have thatched roofs. Instead of heavy wood doors, they may have leaded glass doors with 20th century details like crystal doorknobs. It's easier and cheaper to make replicas of these houses -- furnished as they are in a mishmash of furnishings.

I do have some links also, though, for those who want the 16th century 'real thing'. Whichever you prefer, you'll find a bit of both on this page. Materials common to both styles include plaster or stucco and optional stone or brick.

Recreating Tudor Architectural Details

Leaded Glass Windows

I don't invest a lot in architectural detail -- a fairly easy task since I am actually going for an early twentieth century look. I do have some details appropriate to that era, like leaded glass windows and doors.

Whether you use 'Houseworks' components or the pre-printed window 'glass' that comes with your budget dollhouse kit, you can dress it up and make it look more authentic. Apply very thin matte-finish black tape -- the kind that is sold for graphics projects -- over the preprinted lines. Then go over it with a silver gel marker. Your leaded glass will have a 3-D look and a more authentic silver-black finish. You do have to use the right kind of tape: a soft, crepe texture that will soak up the texture slowly, creating variations in tone. (The shiny stuff would probably be had to color.)

Graphic Tape For Miniature Leaded Glass Windows and Doors

I used this to make the leaded glass windows and doors you see in the opening module. Color the graphic with the gel marker while it's still on the roll, then lay it over the preprinted lines on your pre-fab windows. They'll look more realistic. (Ultra-narrow 1/32 tape is also available.)

Graphic Chart Tape, 1/16"" x 648"" Roll, Matte, Black (CHABG6201M)
Graphic Chart Tape, 1/16"" x 648"" Roll, Matte, Black (CHABG6201M)

I used this to make the leaded glass windows and doors you see in the opening module. Color the graphic with the gel marker while it's still on the roll, then lay it over the preprinted lines on your pre-fab windows. They'll look more realistic. (Ultra-narrow 1/32 tape is also available.)

 

Video: Building a Reproduction

Look to Sandie's mini-world for inspiration on creating an authentic miniature. From the wood beams on the inside to the benches and the tapestry on the walls, there's a lot of old world detail here. Look closely at the cameos -- you may get some ideas for details you can reproduce very inexpensively. Staining and discoloring can add realism -- you probably want to avoid large blocks of bright, solid colors

Tudor or Tudor Revival?

Do you prefer an old-world Tudor or a modern Tudor-style dollhouse?

Economy Option: Cottage From Punch Out Plywood

Economy Option: Cottage From Punch Out Plywood
Economy Option: Cottage From Punch Out Plywood

Make That Stylish Little Cottage

This is the kit I worked from in the photo above -- it looks very different with the cream and brown colors and textured swirls, huh? An economic beginner's kit, it has an attic and a downstairs great room. It also features tabs to hold it together.

Dollhouse Miniature The Sugarplum Cottage Dollhouse by Greenleaf
Dollhouse Miniature The Sugarplum Cottage Dollhouse by Greenleaf

This inexpensive punch out plywood kit can be customized to make a charming little Tudor-style cottage. Use textured paint or stucco and paint the trim dark brown. I used more than one tone on the roof tiles to give a more realistic appearance.

 

Budget Tip: Like crystal door knobs? How about using a crystal bud earring?

Video: Making a 1/24 Scale Cafe

See this cafe from all angles. 1/24 scale is smaller than the standard dollhouse scale (and harder to create) but you can still find plenty of furnishings for it. Imagine, too, what you can do with small sticks and other found items.

Have a favorite style?

Like Dollhouses?

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    • profile image

      gemjane 5 years ago

      Not a favorite style--I love to see all the variety!

    • WriterJanis2 profile image

      WriterJanis2 5 years ago

      These are so pretty.

    • profile image

      joannspears 5 years ago

      very cool!

    • tvyps profile image

      Teri Villars 5 years ago from Phoenix, Arizona

      Interesting lens! Do the Tudor dolls, especially the wives of Henry VIII, have removable heads?

    • yayas profile image

      yayas 6 years ago

      I loooooove Tudor Style Dollhouses. If I had my way, I would have a whole BIG room full of 'em, maybe the size of a gymnasium.

    • cdevries profile image

      cdevries 6 years ago

      I have a terrible weakness for this style - great Lens!

    • Stacy Birch profile image

      Stacy Birch 6 years ago

      Nice page!

    • MiniMaker profile image

      MiniMaker 6 years ago

      Great lens!

    • profile image

      anonymous 6 years ago

      Dollhouses are the most fabulous creations for a child's imagination, growth and development. A wide variety of Dollhouses is a must see at www.toysandstuff.net

    • profile image

      Sojourn 6 years ago

      These are so adorable. I do love dollhouses and I think the Tudor style doll house is probably the most intriguing. I used to have a more plain style one as a child and once a month I got to pick out a new piece of furniture or some little accessory for my doll house and I loved them all. So much fun! Then I grew up and had all boys. I have to sneak into my brother's house and play with my nieces' doll houses to get in a fix. :)

    • profile image

      anonymous 7 years ago

      I love dolls' houses and these are lovely. I remember when I was little spending my pocket money each week on an extra piece of furniture. Really great lens.

    • poptastic profile image

      Cynthia Arre 7 years ago from Quezon City

      I love Tudor style architecture and I'm glad there's a way to recreate those houses in miniature form. Beautifully presented concept. *blessed*

    • indigoj profile image

      Indigo Janson 7 years ago from UK

      These are lovely! I like the way you stress that you don't have to spend a fortune of specialist doll house supplies and can improvise.

    • Sylvestermouse profile image

      Cynthia Sylvestermouse 7 years ago from United States

      These dollhouses are gorgeous and fascinating! I have never built a real dollhouse like this before (only barbie's dollhouses) So very beautiful. You certainly make me want to take up this hobby and new tradition :) Angel Blessed and added to my Squid Angel Mouse Tracks lens.

      (I hope you saw my 2nd note that I left for you on the gsc ning about facebook,)