How To Make Miniatures Chairs And Sofas

Knowing how to make miniature sofas and chairs will allow any model builder the perfect opportunity to fully furnish a model house. This is also a great skill for creating doll furniture for a young girl. With a few simple steps, you will be creating miniature furniture that will last a lifetime.

To build miniature sofas and chairs, you will need:

  • Architecture Scale
  • Ruler
  • Tape measure
  • Balsa wood
  • Superglue
  • Scissors
  • Fabric
  • Cotton filler
  • Exacto knife
  • Paper
  • Pencil
  • Straight edge
  • Cutting Board
  1. The first step to making miniature chairs and sofas is to find a few pieces of furniture around your home. You will want to model your miniatures after furniture that you can actually measure in order to prevent distortion in the final appearance.
  2. Measure the back, front and side heights of the furniture piece. Draw a sketch of the furniture and label each area with its measured size. Be sure to measure all of the different components that make up the furniture.
  3. Use the architecture scale to draw the furniture on the balsa. Architecture scales come in several different scaled sizes, which allow you to appropriately size the model for your needs. This should be done by using the straight edge as a guideline to achieve nice straight lines. Draw each component separately on the balsa; example: the back drawn separate from each side, the bottom separate, as well as the seating base and the front of the furniture. 
  4. Once each piece is drawn, it is now time to cut the pieces out. Use the straight edge and exacto knife to achieve nice, clean, straight cuts. This is a rather simple process that requires a little pressure and some patience.
  5. Lay out all your pieces on a flat surface.  It is now time to assemble the furniture. Begin by marking the placement heights on the cut out furniture. This will tell you where each component needs to be connected. Once all of the marks have been made, use superglue to assemble the furniture piece. If you are making a model of a solid wood piece, you can now paint or stain the miniature model, and complete the miniature by adding any small details you desire.
  6. If you are making stuffed furniture, you must cut the fabric to size. Measure the components of your furniture, and add about a half inch to each, when using them as a stencil for fabric sizes. Cut each piece of fabric, and lay them out in the order they will be connected. When you cut the fabric for the arms, measure all exposed areas to create one piece. Do the same with the back section of the furniture (both the front and back of the sofa or chair should be composed from one piece of fabric). This will create a seamless appearance on the furniture.
  7. You can now begin adding the cushions and fabric to the miniature. This is done by creating small fabric balls, simply done by rolling cotton filler between your hands. Glue the ball to the furniture piece and press down gently to flatten the filler. 
  8. Begin attaching the fabrics to the bottom of the furniture. Beginning with the bottom will eliminate the possibility of strayed fabrics disturbing the furniture’s appearance. Add small drops of glue to the corners of the fabric, and connect them to the furniture. Gently wrap each piece of fabric around the cotton filler, pulling it tight enough to additionally flatter the filler.

You may also use cardboard instead of balsa wood to make fabric covered furniture.

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