Dollhouse Painting Ideas

Updated February 21, 2017

While it's common for doll house enthusiasts to spend most of their time focused on what goes inside the doll house, it's important to also give some care to how the finished product looks on the outside. With the right paint job, your completed doll house is more likely to look realistic, as well as make for an attractive decorative fixture in a room of your home. Transform your doll house with a basic painting job or even a few elements of illusion.


Use a two-tone colour scheme to emphasise trim on your doll house. This is a good choice if your doll house has wooden frame pieces around doors and windows or features like shutters and hinged doors. Most commonly, the frame and trim pieces should be white with a pastel or autumn colour on the rest of the home, but you may prefer to do up the trim in a darker colour than the rest of the house. Whatever colours you choose, do a quick set of sample patches on paper to make sure they look as good together as you think they will. When you paint, start with the large area colour first, then finish by painting the trim; this will ensure the neatest possible paint job.


Do some special effects painting to create the illusion of a brick doll house. There are two keys to creating a convincing fake brick front with paint: positioning the bricks right and giving them a realistic texture. Create the texture before the brick shape; paint with a solid layer of brick red, then sponge paint a partial brown layer over the top. Turn this texture into individual brick shapes by painting the "mortar" in place with off-white paint lines. To get the shape of the bricks just right, mark off long horizontal outlines and staggered short, vertical lines in pencil with a ruler, then use this as your guide for the mortar paint.


Create the illusion of ivy growing on the sides of your doll's house by painting it in place; do this after you've finished whatever other paint designs you want and those have fully dried. For best results, use a green acrylic paint that hasn't been watered down; you want it as thick as possible to give the ivy a little dimension. For even more dimension, soak some hemp string in glue and press it in winding shapes against the house's outer wall; paint when dry.


Use basic plaster-of-Paris to create an outer wall of your doll house with stucco texture, or use a plaster designed specifically for this purpose (available in craft stores with dollhouse sections). Smear the plaster on the outside of the doll house, then texture it with many small pokes from a paintbrush, or by using a coarse sponge. Once dry, you can leave the plaster as it is or paint it with acrylic in any colour you like.

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About the Author

Lauren Vork has been a writer for 20 years, writing both fiction and nonfiction. Her work has appeared in "The Lovelorn" online magazine and Vork holds a bachelor's degree in music performance from St. Olaf College.