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Dolls' Houses
Past & Present

A website and ezine about dolls' houses: antique, vintage and modern.
Plus furniture and accessories.

Issue 6 (August 2010)

A piece of cake!

by Joan Joyce

What can you do on a rainy day in the school holidays with an 8 and 12 year old girl? I had my two granddaughters staying and we decided to make dolls house food using air-dry clay. We had such fun that I had a job getting them out when it was sunny!

What you will need :

  • Air drying clay
  • Acrylic craft paints in a variety of colours
  • Some decent quality paint brushes in various sizes
  • Cake cutters and moulds
  • A blade (not to be used by the very young or unsupervised)
  • Matt acrylic varnish
  • Red and black CD marker pens
  • Paper plates or buttons
  • bottle tops for pie dishes
  • Newspaper and a tray to work on

(I would advise that you collect everything together before you begin as children can get very impatient.)

We spent a few minutes looking at pictures of vintage food and some I had already made. A short demo and they were off! They soon got carried away and started doing their own thing. I was very impressed with the fruits of their labour and now they have very well stocked dolls houses.

1. Kneading the clay.

2. Rolling out.

3. Cutting the cake shapes. We used cake-making and petit-fours cutters.

4. Making a pie in a bottle top.

5. Push the clay into the top, flute the edges with the round end of a paintbrush and prick air holes using a cocktail stick.

6. Ready for painting.

7. Cutting a slice from the fruit cake. The blade is sharp – don’t let them use it unsupervised!

8. Extracting the slice.

9. Making a cottage loaf.

10. Press the smaller clay ball on top, moistening the join.

11. Ready for painting.

12. Making scones.

13. Leave to dry, this could take a day or so , the girls got impatient so I put it in a very low oven for a while to speed things up.

14. Starting the base coat, various shades of beige and cream.

15. Blending the golden brown top coat.

16. Flouring the top with a very small amount of off white and a small stencil brush.

17. Using a red CD marker pen for the jam line.

18. Some of Phoebe’s cakes.

19. What shall we paint next?

20. Finishing the food with a coat of matt acrylic varnish.

21. Another finishing touch. Phoebe made this meat by copying an old one and without a demo from me.

22. We used “no more nails” for icing and cream. It is a tricky, messy business, but they did well. I got them to practise on paper first.

23. CD marker dots to resemble fruit in the cake.

24. Phoebe’s finished food (age 8)

25. Megan’s finished food (age 12)