Friday, 23 September 2016

Childhood Crafting: Sylvanian Families Furniture

As well as making felt fashions and lots of mini fake food for our Sylvanian Families when we were kids, we also decorated our homemade Sylvanian houses with handmade furniture. Here are some of the things I made for mine (recently rediscovered in a box in our attic).

Kitchen cabinets and an oven!


Shelves made from matchboxes, old tissue boxes and the trays from chocolate boxes; beds made from card with faux-woodgrain sticky back plastic headboards; mini cupcake cases for lampshades; off-cuts of carpet and fluffy fabric for doormats; a sofa made from tights packaging; and pillows made from scrap fabric sewn round cotton wool balls.

I think you would call this look "recycling box chic". I had a big box in the bottom of my wardrobe full of little cardboard boxes and other stuff I thought might come in handy for making stuff... and this is the sort of stuff it became.

The kitchen units are particularly adorable. The happy hours that must have gone into making them!

The counter-tops are made with off-cuts of vinyl flooring from my parents' DIY projects, and the cupboards are all decorated with faux woodgrain sticky back plastic.

The oven has an extractor hood (another bit of vinyl flooring) and cardboard hot plates on the hob (there were originally four, one seems to have fallen sometime in the past 25 years). The doorknobs are brass fasteners from the stationery department and the doors open and close.

The cabinet is made from an old toothpaste box, the drawers in the cabinet are made from two matchboxes stuck together...

... and there's a matching chopping board, too (made from a rectangle of vinyl covered in yet more sticky back plastic).

The kitchen sink is a little cardboard box lined with foil and sunk into the top of the cabinet. The foil looks quite thin (not like kitchen/baking foil), so I guess I must have saved it from something like a KitKat.

Who needs a store-bought dollshouse when you have a fancy kitchen like that?

Missed my earlier posts about this box of treasures? Click here to see my Sylvanian Families collection, and here to see the food and fashions we made for our Sylvanians when we were kids. 


Laura said...

It's been fun reading your Sylvanian family posts. My sister and I had them too, we called them forest families. I also enjoyed making clothes etc for my families and am quite impressed with the sophisticated touch of the woodgrain sticky back plastic for your furniture!

Ariadne said...

You are so lucky to have kept those things. First of all they show how much imagination and craftmanship you had. Secondly they could make a good exhibition article at a toy museum or children's museum of the time you were a kid. I used to make my own handmade doll's furniture and room out of paper. We had so few things back then and loved making such things.I wish today's children made such things instead of feeding virtual animals in vistual farms.AriadnefromGreece!

Bugs and Fishes said...

Laura - thanks! I was slightly obsessed with that sticky back plastic, I stuck it on everything ;)

Ariadne - I think we were definitely lucky to grow up in a time before everyone had computers and smartphones! My weekends and summers would definitely have been a lot less creative if I'd had access to the internet as a kid.