Build Your First Kit

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Are you ready to build your first kit? Will you be introducing someone to the hobby? When you are just starting out, what House of Miniatures furniture kit should you build first? I hear these questions often, so here are a few good options.

There are some easy kits with only a few parts. Like a candle stand or a fire screen. Those are super easy, but are they interesting enough to give a sense of accomplishment? But as an experienced kit-maker let me offer a few better suggestions.

40003 – Chippendale Hutch Cabinet

HoM kit # 40003 Building Your First Kit

When you build this kit, you will use most of the skills that will be necessary for any kit. You will build a drawer and learn to build it square so that it will work well. You’ll hang doors and install hardware of two common types. And you will need to build a solid and square frame. All of that is great practice for bigger kits. And finally, you can learn how to apply a great stained finish. And it is cheap enough not to be a big loss to a small disaster.

40012 – Chippendale Night Stand

HoM kit # 40012 Building Your First Kit?

Build this kit with a child and you will give them a win that they will remember. It has most of the parts mentioned above for 40003, but without the fussy doors. It has only one piece of hardware to line up. And only one drawer to build. It may not be big enough to satisfy the curiosity of an adult. But younger children will be proud of it.

40011 – Chippendale 3 Drawer Chest

HoM kit # 40011

I have built a lot of these. They are not daunting, but they are not too easy. If you have built kits or made miniature furniture from scratch before, start here. It has three drawers and lots of hardware. The frame must be perfectly square or the drawers will hang up. It is also a challenge to get the finish (and the hardware) even across the three drawers. But it teaches the skills you will need before you tackle the chest-on-chest, the slant front desk, or a highboy.

When building any of these, you may also want to refer to my articles on glues, my post on stain finishes, or working bale hardware. And I even have a full article on kit 40011.

Also, your opinion could be just as helpful as mine. So, please leave a comment if you have suggestions for beginners. What would you suggest if you want to build your first kit. And if you are looking to pick up any of these or other kits, you can always find reasonable prices and great service onĀ my Etsy store.

One Reply to “Build Your First Kit”

  1. My first comment has too many mistakes-please use the following: When the X-Acto kits became available, I began to dream about having a dolls house again. Each time a tiny kit arrived, it was carefully added to the other things I had collected. Over forty years, I slowly found everything I needed to create an elegant doll’s house; I even found a miniature version of my beloved dog. When my granddaughter was 10, I located an amazing doll’s house in Beverly Hills, CA, which was built in 1963. The almost 40-year-old house traveled by bus to my home in central PA, where my granddaughter and I began to restore it and finish the interior, adding moldings, doors, and fireplaces. We used both the historic wallpaper I purchased whenever I was lucky enough to find it and a lot of imagination. The entire house was a work of love and pure serendipity. The petit point rug I made in 1970 was just right and so were the pieces I had made using the X-Acto kits. Unfortunately, everything was lost five years ago; only the miniature of my little dog was still in the house when it came back to me last November. But,with a little bit of luck and tenacity, the house is coming back to life. Dealers like you have rescued both my dream and my beloved doll’s house because you have made it possible for me to replace the original House of Miniatures pieces. I have a few photos of the original house if you ever want to see them.

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