After finishing my first Japanese dollhouse kit, I couldn't help myself. I purchased two more (just neither one in pink). While the continuing poorly-translated dollhouse names amuse and slightly baffle me, but this next one has a lot of navy blue. and has more of a 1990's/early 2000's feel to the design.
The other difference in this kit is the assembly method. While very similar, the this kit is from a different manufacturer. This kit's instructions have you assemble everything you possibly can before making the "shell" and assembling it all. On the one hand, starting with all the tiny pieces takes a bit of patience, but the payoff towards the end is bigger.
Like most dollhouse kits, downstairs is the kitchen/dining and the living room. This kit's "wallpaper" and "flooring" made a great guide for where walls, "carpet" and furniture needed to be placed.
I really liked the mod style of the couch, and the European-style bathroom sink. But the biggest draw for me in this design was the piano. Something about having a grand piano in a tiny apartment spelled class and culture to me.
And, in sharp contrast, this apartment has a more masculine feel. Well, as much of one as you're going to get from a kit designed for, and marketed to girls and young women.
At long last, here it is, all finished! It looks so clean and cool, but also warm and welcoming. I like to imagine smooth jazz or slow blues being played on the piano, or a late night/early early morning breakfast being enjoyed on the glass dining table. And for some reason, I could totally imagine an apartment like this appealing to the character Mame Dennis from the movie Auntie Mame - if it was updated to be set in the 1990's, instead of the 1950's.
Stay tuned for at least one more dollhouse kit from me. No promises on when I'll get started on it, as we're heading into the holiday season and I'm sure life will get busy. But as a teaser - this next room has a lot of green and grey tones...
La (Dollhouse) En Rouge
On suggestion of Rachel, I have fallen into the whirlpool that is the Japanese DIY Dollhouse kit. After making sure I wasn't buying one she already had, I decided to go with this pink-themed set:
I find that the perfect motivation to work on one of these kits is when you are avoiding other, more stressful responsibilities - such as when you are changing jobs after nine years. I had about a month between the end of my previous job and the start of the new job, and this kit was a wonderful escape from all that (we'll just ignore the fact that I had to sell one house, find housing in a new city 3 hours away, and sandwich in a family reunion in the Colorado Rockies also).
I put the kit together rather quickly - so quickly that the pictures I took of the process got a little jumbled and out-of-order. But I think you'll still get an idea of how it went:
Anyone who knows me knows that pink is not my favorite color. But this little dollhouse was growing on me. The pink was becoming soothing without being juvenile. However, what had really drawn me to this particular dollhouse kit was the houseplant growing all up the 2-story picture window.
By now, I was sailing along. You might be wondering what I am going to do with this when finished - after all, moving house is traditionally a time when you pare down your possessions, not add to them. Fear not! Rachel has already agreed to take it to add to her growing collection of these dollhouse "apartments", and eventually display them at the library.
I think the thing I was most nervous about was electrifying the dollhouse. Rachel has had some experience with small electronics, even prior to electrifying her own dollhouses. I have not, so seeing it light up was hugely rewarding!
And here she (definitely a she!) is, in all her glory! So cute! So cozy! So...pink!
Above all, I think I found this project so addictive and enjoyable because it gave me somewhere happy and welcoming to imagine myself into while my actual, physical home that I'd worked for nine years to make into a relaxing and safe space is being dismantled. I have no doubt that I will find my feet again once in a new space, and I'm looking forward to new adventures. In the meantime, this has been the best of mental way-stations.
The box art may not show it completely, but this dollhouse really had an '80s vibe to it. Right before this time my sister and I discovered City Pop music. I was hooked. I listened to it constantly while putting this dollhouse together, and my brain half formed a sitcom that took place in this condo. City Pop playlists exist all over YouTube, so while viewing the finished pictures, here's a suggestion for listening.
Twins each with half a brain in reality; the other half displayed here!