Savvy mother-of-three creates unique Marvel dolls house for her Spiderman-loving son – spending just £17.50
- Lauren Hedges, 26 from Shropshire, wanted a unique toy for her children
- READ MORE: Savvy mother-of-two transforms neglected garden into dream play area and pergola using Lidl and Aldi bargains
A savvy mother-of-three has revealed how she used her creative skills to make a special dolls house for her Marvel-loving son.
Lauren Hedges, 26 from Shrewsbury, Shropshire, says it is easy to find a doll house if you want one with plenty of feminine touches.
But Lauren, whose children are seven, five, and three, wanted something unique for her youngest child Alfie.
She told money-saving community LatestDeals.co.uk: ‘My little boy has some difficulties, one of them being his limited play skills. However he loves playing with my daughters’ doll house (much to their dismay)!
‘I decided to look into boys’ doll houses. Alfie is obsessed with everything Marvel and has so many figures lying around, so I figured it would be perfect to have a boy’s big wooden doll house to put them in. In this day and age you would think they would exist by now!’
TALENTED: Lauren created this bespoke Marvel dolls house for her son Alfie, relying on her arty skills and spending just £17.50
According to Lauren Hedges (pictured) her three-year-old son Alfie (pictured) loves Marvel – so she decided to create a unique and amazing themed dolls house for him
She added that she enjoys upcycling and craft projects, and so started looking into houses that various people had made.
‘However,’ said Lauren, ‘even though they were nice they just didn’t suit us or the vibe I wanted to go for.’
And so, she decided to buy a second hand dolls house along with some furniture from Facebook Marketplace for just £10.
She then went searching in the family’s craft box for ‘any bits and pieces [she] could find that [she] thought would “tie-in” to a dolls house as well as a Marvel’ theme, in order to save money before buying anything new.
Lauren said: ‘In the end the rest of the materials and finishing pieces I needed only ended up costing me a total of £17.40!
‘This is a fraction of the price that doll houses go for in the shops these days, and even better – it’s been personalised to suit my son’s interests and it’s one of a kind, made with love by his mum.’
The first room of the Marvel house Lauren worked on was the jail, using thick grey elastic cord for the decor.
She bought 5m of the 4mm cord from eBay for £3.29, adding that she had a lot leftover, so could have spent less money buying a smaller amount.
BEFORE: Lauren says it is easy to find traditional ‘feminine’ style dolls houses, so she bought this one second hand for £10, before transforming it
Lauren explained: ‘To attach these to the dolls house I cut them into strips and used a staple gun to staple them down before adding superglue for extra support to prevent them pinging off if pulled with force.
‘The flooring was a roll of patterned black vinyl which I picked up from Temu for £1.48 (this was also used for the flooring on the middle section of the house). I made the jail stickers myself using vinyl I already had.
‘I then moved on to the first floor room. The silver flooring was a kitchen sticker vinyl roll which came from Shein for £1. The gold Avengers clock came with the dolls house – I painted it and made my own stickers for it (I did the same with the stickers on the walls).
‘The sofa was sprayed when I sprayed the house. For the blue cushioned part of the sofa I used blue acrylic paint and was generous when applying it so it would soak into the sponge. Finally I got the mini welcome door mat from Temu for 69p.’
Next, Lauren moved onto the middle floor, using the remainder of the black vinyl roll from the jail.
Lauren (pictured with her family) seriously impressed money savers online, with her crafty dolls house project that cost just £17.50 in total
The table and chairs came with the dolls house so she painted them with red and black paint from the children’s craft box.
Meanwhile, the mini working vending machine came from Temu for £1.29, and she sourced the mini realistic food from her children’s Mini Brands.
Lauren continued: ‘It was then time for the top floor. The rainbow flooring was coloured vinyl sheets I already had, I cut them into strips and placed them down in order.
‘The bedside table, lamp and bed also came with the house when purchased, again I sprayed them when spraying the house.’
When it came to the bedroom decor, for the duvet set, Lauren used one of my Alfie’s capes that they had a duplicate of.
‘For this I simply cut it, wrapped it round and glued it down. The cobweb with spiders came from Asda; it was reduced to 10p from their Halloween stock and I glue gunned it down,’ said Lauren.
BEFORE AND AFTER: The original dolls house (top) looks very different to the Lauren’s upcycled creation (bottom)
‘The string wooden star lights came from Poundland for £1. I screwed them to the roof and taped the battery pack to the side. The last piece on this floor was the miniature telephone which came from Temu for £3.48.’
Finally, she tackled the top floor, using different shades of green acrylic, painting thickly with small strokes to create almost a ‘grass’ effect.
‘I also used this to paint flower stems,’ said Lauren.
‘For the flowers I used felt flower embellishments from my children’s craft box and glue gunned them to the wall.
‘At this point I went all over bits of the house. The wallpaper was free samples from B&Q, I applied wallpaper paste directly on the house rather than the paper. I already had this in the house, but you can purchase it for as little as £1.49 from The Range.
‘I spray painted the outside of the house, the inside walls down the sides and the stairs with a £1.99 black car spray paint, along with a car spray clear lacquer for £1.99. These both came from the car section in Home Bargains. They work the same as all other spray paints for a fraction of the cost!
‘The silver trim on the roof along with the trims at the bottom of each room along the floor was done with silver metallic paint from my children’s craft box. They also sell these in Home Bargains, B&M and The Range for as little as £1.
Marvel loving Alfie (pictured) also loves his special dolls house, according to Lauren, who worked hard on her impressive creation
‘I used alphabet shaped wood letters on the roof to personalise it for my little boy Alfie – these came from Shein for 36p each. The Marvel sticker on the left of the roof, along with all stickers inside the house, I made with vinyl I already had.’
Reflecting on the project, Lauren said that if she did it again, while she wouldn’t change anything about the house itself, she would try to be less hard on herself.
She explained: ‘I was so desperate for it to be absolutely perfect, it didn’t even cross my mind that Alfie would love it regardless of any imperfections because it was made especially for him.’
Tom Church, co-founder of LatestDeals.co.uk, said: ‘Lauren has done a fantastic job creating this Marvel playhouse.
‘It’s a shame she struggled to find pre-made options in the shops but this is a bargain-friendly masterpiece! I’m sure my son would love this Marvel house too – can he come over and play?!’
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