Before I begin any kind of dollhouse miniatures project, something I love to do is create a mood board to organize different ideas I want to incorporate in the dollhouse.
In this post I’ll share how you can easily make your own mood boards plus some tips to help you get the most out of them!
What is a Mood Board?
A mood board is a way to visually organize different items to express a certain style or feeling.
Here’s the official definition of a mood board:
mood board, noun: an arrangement of images, materials, pieces of text, etc., intended to evoke or project a particular style or concept.
One of the nice things about a mood board is you aren’t limited to just using images – you can also include pieces of fabric or even pieces of wood to get an idea of the kind of textures you’ll include in your dollhouse.
There are many ways you can make a mood board. You can make it on paper using clippings from magazines or you could make a digital mood board – which doesn’t even require special tech skills these days!
Why Make a Mood Board?
You might be wondering if you even need a mood board or what the advantages of having one might be. Let’s go over some of the benefits of why I start almost every dollhouse project with a moodboard!
1. Focus on a Theme for Your Dollhouse
While not every dollhouse needs a theme, having one can help make the designing and decorating process a lot easier!
We have a giant list of dollhouse theme ideas on our website you can use as inspiration on what kind of theme you want for your project.
For example, maybe you want an antique Victorian theme, or a beach house theme, or even an Alice in Wonderland theme!
A mood board helps you easily organize all the things that would help you achieve that theme in your dollhouse.
2. Making Decisions Gets A Lot Easier
Another great advantage to having a mood board is it makes it so much easier to make decisions about what to do with your dollhouse!
If you’ve ever found yourself in a frozen creative state of panic where you can’t decide whether to paint the walls white or blue or can’t decide whether the couch should go somewhere different – a mood board can help eliminate that all together!
I love collecting home and garden magazines for this very reason – it helps make it so much easier when I can see a living room layout and can easily recreate different elements from the look in my dollhouse.
3. Organize and Plan
Perhaps the biggest reason I like making mood boards is it helps me organize and plan a million different thoughts of what I want to do.
When I think about starting a dollhouse project, I usually get really excited and I want EVERYTHING…well a mood board lets you explore all those ideas without actually having to do the work that goes along with it yet.
This can also save you a lot of money, because it helps you know exactly what you want in terms of furniture and accessories. This can help you plan on whether you’ll DIY certain items and make them yourself or whether you can splurge to buy a piece you really want.
Now that we’ve covered what a mood board is and the benefits of making one, let’s dive into how you can easily create your own!
How to Make a Mood Board
Making a mood board is fun and easy. When it comes to creating your mood board you have two options: to create it on a piece of paper or to create it digitally.
Whether you choose to use a piece of paper or to create it digitally is 100% up to you!
How to Make a Physical Mood Board
If you are making your mood board on paper, I recommend using a file folder as your base. This has a nice amount of surface area if you open it up – but it also folds up so you can easily transport it and store it!
The thick cardstock style paper they use to make file folders also makes it nice and sturdy, especially after you glue images to it.
While a file folder is my top choice, you could also use a cork board like this one and hang it up in your craft space. The advantage to a cork board is you can easily customize it for the project you are working on and change it up as you go along or when you start the next dollhouse!
Ways to Make a Digital Moodboard
While making my mood boards on file folders in probably my favorite method of them all, digital mood boards have a lot of advantages also.
I personally LOVE to use Photoshop for making my mood boards, but of course that requires a bit of skill and knowledge in using the software, not to mention the software can sometimes be out of budget for some.
Fortunately, there are TONS of great collage-maker apps out there that work on laptops as well as tablets and even phones.
Canva.com is one example – you could also use GetStencil.com. On an iPad or Android tablet, simply type in “collage maker” in their app store and you’ll see tons of different options.
Here is an example of a mood board I made in a few minutes – they even provide the photos for you to choose from!
You can also always opt to use Pinterest to make your mood boards. Simply create a board and start pinning to it! You can make the board public or private, depending on your own personal preferences.
One of the miniature artists I admire is Cinderella Moments. Her Pinterest boards are a fantastic example of the kind of mood boards you could create when gathering inspiration and organizing ideas for your dollhouses.
Now that we’ve covered the basics of making one, let’s go over some of the things you can include on your mood board.
Images Of Your Favorite Styles + Designs
Mood boards are very much visual, so it makes sense that images are often the focal point of any mood board you make.
When creating mood boards on paper, I like to use home and garden style magazines and cut them up. You can often get magazines inexpensively used from libraries or even ask family and friends if they have some they wouldn’t mind giving to you.
I like to cut out any images of room layouts, accessories, furniture, etc. that match the theme or mood I’m going for in my dollhouse.
Paint Swatches and Color Palettes
Most hardware stores have lovely options for different colors of paint. Latex paint is usually a great choice for dollhouses as its more economical than acrylic paints and is well suited to hold up to use over time.
Getting a few color swatch samples is a great way to decide what colors you are going to incorporate in your dollhouse.
Fabrics and Textures
Fabric swatches are another great option to include on your dollhouse mood board. You could add the materials you plan on using for rugs, curtains, pillows and bedding.
If making your mood board digitally, I recommend going to different sites that sell fabric and seeing what prints they have available. You can often download these images for personal use to help you make a decision on what you are buying.
Other textures you might want to include: Artificial plants, thin pieces of wood, stucco wall texture, patterned wallpaper, etc.
While these are the three main things that you can put on a mood board you can of course add anything you like! Imagine the “people” who are going to be living in the dollhouse you are creating. Thinking about what that character does and likes can give you a good idea of what to include.
I hope this post on how to create a mood board for your dollhouses inspires you and of course if you have any questions on making one just ask!
Have you ever made a mood board for your dollhouse? Have you found it makes your life easier? Tell us your thoughts in the comments section below!