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New Member from Memphis, TN about to start the McKinley


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My name is Candice. I've had the McKinley since I was about 11, my parents gave it to me with the intention of my father and I building it together. He passed away shortly thereafter and my mom and I just couldn't seem to get into it.

Well, I'm pregnant with my second child and when when found out it was a girl, my mom surprised me by giving me the house, still in it's box. I still can't believe she kept it all these years (she doesn't save things). She said she saved it in case I ever had a daughter. So, now I'm really looking forward to building the McKinley (24 years later).

So, any suggestions or tips will be greatly appreciated.

I've checked out some of the pictures of doll houses members have done and they are just beautiful! I hope mine comes out ok!

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Welcome Candice! And what a wonderful story. I love the McKinley, that was my first build too! Yours will come out fine. :)

Feel free to ask any questions you may have, we're always happy to help!

A few quick things. Some things have changed since Greenleaf wrote the directiosn many years ago.

Please don't use hot glue. Use a good wood or tacky glue. Over time hot glue can become brittle and your house may fall apart.

It is not necessary to use that shellac mixture referenced in the directions. There are many ways to seal wood that are safer (especially since you are pregnant!). Plain house paint, Kilz primer, Gesso, sanding sealer, and mod podge are all things that members have used.

Plan where you might want to stain. You can paint over stain, but you can't stain over paint!

Do a dry-fit first, basically build it with masking tape. This will help you with planning and knowing where you may want to decorate first, and where you may need to trim some tabs or slots.

The directions have you put in windows and trims early. Many of us save this until last. It's easier to paint that way, and then you don't risk getting your windows messy!

Have fun!

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Welcome to the Greenleaf Mini-Family, Candice. So glad you found us! My two little granddaughters :wub: live in Memphis also. My son and his wife take good care of them for me. You'll find lots of support from this group :)

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Thank you all!

I'm getting more and more excited just by looking at all the wonderful examples here and on the building team's blog (thanks Holly!) I'm planning to dive in this weekend. And thanks to Tracy's wonderful suggestions, I'm feeling pretty confident that I can handle this!

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Hi and welcome! One other thing that I do before I take apart the box and label pieces is to study the directions. This helps me with a mental image before plunging!

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Hi Candace and welcome to greenleaf. Since Tracy gave such great beginning advice..I haven't much more to offer at the moment other than to tell you how glad I am that you found this site..many new friends to meet!! :wave:

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