What we Wanted:
My wife and I were looking for a large dollhouse for our almost-2-year-old daughter. It had to be safe for our children and environmentally friendly. We also preferred a modern look, not a traditional looking gothic or gingerbread style house. We like both the modern aesthetic, and that it makes the house less girly, so our son would be more likely to join in playing with it. Also our public library has a similar design and our son enjoys playing with it there.
What We Chose:
After much online research and review reading, we chose the Plan%20Toy%20Chalet%20Doll%20House%20with%20Furniture<img%20src="http://ir-na.amazon-adsystem.com/e/ir?t=infob0f4-20&l=as2&o=1&a=B000FZP2XA"%20width="1"%20height="1"%20border="0"%20alt=""%20style="border:none%20!important;%20margin:0px%20!important;" target="_blank">Toy Chalet Dollhouse with Furniture, made by Plan. It cost about $170 on Amazon. We already had a much smaller toy house made by Plan, and we appreciated the solid construction, and both our son and daughter enjoyed playing with it.
How bad was it?
It was not that bad. The few negative reviews on Amazon mostly complained of floors warped so badly that the house couldn’t be assembled, so that was the first thing we checked when we opened the box. We didn’t have any problems with warped floors. The pieces were not as flat as a piece of glass; a large piece of thin wood is going to have some curvature. But the curvature was not enough to prevent assembly and not enough to make the house wobble after assembly. By the time I screwed everything together the floors were fine. There were 4 holes on the roof pieces that did not quite line up with the mating walls. I made the holes larger with a drill, and everything went together fine. Also, one hole for the swinging door was too tight. Again, I opened the hole with a drill and the door worked fine. After assembly, the house feels solid, looks great and sits flat. Overall, I spread the assembly into 2 sessions of 2 hours each while watching TV. I would guess I could’ve done the whole thing in 2 hours if I was hurrying. As noted in Amazon reviews, the instructions are pretty good, but the parts are not labelled and some of them are extremely similar looking, so you need to pay close attention.
The Kid's Verdict:
Both the kids love it. The house is large enough for both kids to play with at the same time. Also, the house consists of 2 separate sections that you can place together in different ways, or keep separated. The furniture is sturdy and modern looking. By far the biggest hit with both our kids is the toilet. There is always a doll going to the potty. The house does not come with dolls, and we bought some of the Plan ones to go with it, but it is also sized well for Playmobil figures, and all of ours have made themselves at home.
The Parent's Verdict:
Overall, we are extremely happy with it, and I would rate it 4.5 out of 5 stars.
If you have any specific questions, please leave a comment.