$105.95 vs. $20 + a few supplies * insert hands acting as an imaginary scale weighing the difference *
I considered… for about 1 minute… whether to buy the American Girl doll bed for Elle’s “My American Girl” ($105.95 not including the bedding) for Christmas or re-doing the Ikea doll bed ($20) that the doll fits in. Me and my pocket book are very happy with the outcome!
Here’s what you’ll need:
The Ikea doll bed
piece of MDF
12”x19” piece of 1” thick foam
Half yard soft cuddly fabric
Stuffing/batting/pollyfill (i.e. whatever you want to stuff the pillow with)
Vinyl decal of the dolls name
Scrap fabric for the sheet and quilt
- First things first… my 2 year old stepped through the flimsy piece of wood bottom that comes with the bed the first 2 minutes she played with it. So not in the “optional stuff” category for us, was a more substantial piece of wood to replace the bottom of the bed. I brought the broken piece into Home Depot and the helpful staff cut a piece of MDF the exact same size for me.
- Next, I sanded all sides of the bed frame. You don’t have to get too crazy on this step, but it does need to be sanded to rough it up a bit so the primer and paint will stick
- Paint a thin even coat of primer (I used an oil based primer in a spray can) on all sides of the frame and let dry
- Lightly sand any rough or “globby” spots
- Spray another thin even coat of primer if you got a little carried away with the step above. Let dry.
- Spray paint the entire frame with a thin even coat of the color of your choice and let dry
- Repeat the step above if you’re not in love with the results yet
You could call it a day there if you’d like, but I was pretty sure Elle would think Kathryn (the doll) required much more comfortable bed linens than come standard issue with the Ikea bed. So I made a mattress, pillow, sheet, and the beginnings of a quilt Elle and I will sew as her first official sewing project. So here’s where all that “optional stuff” comes in:
- I picked up the piece of foam at Jo-Anns and just cut it to 12” x 19” with a pair of scissors.
- From your cuddly fabric, sew a simple case for the foam mattress (I just left one short end open… like a pillowcase… and tucked it under the mattress)
- Sew a matching pillow and stuff with your choice of filling
- I hemmed a rectangle scrap of fabric and called it a sheet
- I cut a bunch of 4” squares to make a matching quilt. Elle is very much looking forward to working on this project with me! I had hoped we would get to it over her Christmas break but didn’t… so that’ll be a post for another day!
- For the finishing touch, I applied a vinyl decal Gifted Express made of the doll’s name to the headboard.
We had one happy 6 year old on Christmas morning!