My daughter loves playing with this 4-story dollhouse — it has lots of realistic features like a grandfather clock, chandelier, and working elevator

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KidKraft Majestic Mansion

My daughter loves playing with the majestic Mansion dollhouse.

Alicia Betz/Business Insider


  • Dollhouses are fun toys that encourage creativity, imagination, and foster pretend play.
  • After testing more than 10 dollhouses, the KidKraft Majestic Mansion stands out as one of the best — I love it, and so does my daughter.
  • The house features four stories, eight rooms, 34 accessories, and stands over 4.5 feet tall.
  • Some unique accessories include a working elevator, a chandelier, and a grandfather clock.

What kid doesn’t love a dollhouse? I distinctly remember my dollhouse being one of my favorite toys growing up.

Looking back now, it’s probably because it was the ultimate open-ended toy. With dollhouses, kids can do so much more than just play house. Maybe the dolls need to be rescued by the fire truck, or maybe the dollhouse has been taken over by dinosaurs. The opportunities for play are completely open to a child’s imagination.

I’ve tested upwards of 10 dollhouses, and the KidKraft Majestic Mansion is a favorite among me, my daughter, and everyone who visits our house. It’s been a few months since KidKraft sent us this dollhouse, which is impressive in both its size and abundance of detail.

The Majestic Mansion is well-constructed and bigger than I ever imagined a dollhouse could be.

Not only is the house impressive, but its accessories stand out too. The house comes furnished with 34 pieces, most of them regular household items that kids are familiar with. My daughter loves to play house with the miniature bed, refrigerator, high chair, and sink. Some of the more unique features include a working elevator, a chandelier, and a grandfather clock. 

KidKraft Majestic Mansion 2

The dollhouse has lots of fun furniture and accessories.

Alicia Betz/Business Insider


Dolls are not included, so we purchased the KidKraft Doll Family of 7. My daughter also incorporates Barbies, Disney Princess dolls, and smaller baby dolls in her play. While the house accommodates dolls up to 12 inches, those between 7 and 8 inches are closest to scale.

As a toddler, my daughter enjoys playing with things that are familiar to her, so this dollhouse offers plenty of opportunities for her to do so. The house has eight rooms plus a garage, allowing for plenty of room for multiple kids to play at once.

Another aspect I love about this dollhouse is the detail in each room. The walls feature illustrations of furniture, including chairs and bookshelves, a fireplace, hanging art, and sconces, giving each room a distinct look. Some of my favorite illustrations include a roll of toilet paper in the bathroom, a coffee pot in the kitchen, and even tire tracks on the floor of the garage. These realistic touches engage children through their familiarity.

When we assembled the Majestic Mansion, my husband and I were surprised by its sheer size. At 52 inches wide, 14 inches deep, and 53.62 inches tall, the house probably isn’t a good fit if you live in a smaller space. My toddler, who is currently 18 months, loves the house even though she’s only tall enough to play with the first two of four stories. I know that she’ll grow into it and continue to love it as she can reach the third and fourth floors.

The Majestic Mansion is very sturdy with a solid wood frame. We’ve had it for a few months now, and so far, the house and the accessories have held their own against my daughter.

KidKraft Majestic Mansion 3

The dollhouse is sturdy and well made.

Alicia Betz/Business Insider


When we first put the dollhouse together, it seemed odd that the front was completely plain. We quickly realized though that the front is not meant to be played with, and for good reason. Because it’s so big, it’s also heavy, so it comes with the hardware necessary to bolt it to the wall. I never have to worry about my daughter getting injured by the dollhouse falling over.

Set aside a few hours to put it together

Assembly of this house is definitely required, and it’s not for the faint of heart. It took my husband about three hours to put it together. The directions were pretty easy to understand and each piece was clearly labeled. The only snafu we ran into was that it was sometimes difficult to figure out which direction a piece should face.

The bottom line

The KidKraft Majestic Mansion is the ultimate dollhouse, and if you want a toy your children will never forget, this is the one. Because of its size and accessibility, it would also be an excellent house for multiple kids or even home daycares.

If you don’t have enough space for the mansion and you’re looking to save a little room, my daughter also loves the Hape All Season House. It’s smaller and simpler but has some of the best dollhouse accessories I’ve seen. Plus, its simple design encourages even more creative play.

While the Majestic Mansion is a big investment, it’s a toy your kids will play with for many, many years. If I could only buy my daughter one toy, it absolutely would be a dollhouse, and the KidKraft Majestic Mansion is an excellent pick.

Pros: Large enough for multiple kids to play, sturdy and durable, comes with 34 accessories, interactive features

Cons: Assembly will likely take hours

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Faulkner Architects sets down Big Barn home on Sonoma Valley hillside

Big Barn by Faulkner Architects

American studio Faulkner Architects has actually completed a holiday home in California’s wine nation with an asymmetrical roofing and facades covered in weathering steel and salvaged wood.

Called the Huge Barn house, the job is located in Glen Ellen, a town in Sonoma Valley that is called after a winery established there in the 1860 s. Located about an hour’s drive from San Francisco, the location has actually rolling hills dotted with oak trees and agricultural structures.

Big Barn by Faulkner Architects

The customers employed California’s Faulkner Architects to create a household trip that would enable them to unplug from their metropolitan way of life. The goal was to develop a weekend house that accepted the region’s undulating terrain and vernacular architecture while making certain to prevent gimmicks and inauthenticity.

Big Barn by Faulkner Architects

” The strong agricultural history has affected the built environment here, with numerous examples of barn-like homes that are confusingly morphed in between the two vocabularies,” the studio said.

Faulkner Architects has actually already completed one project on the customer’s residential or commercial property– the conversion of a tack barn into a minimal bunkhouse, which the owner’s stayed in while making plans for a larger home. The simple building totals 389 square feet (78 square metres) and is clad in weathering steel and recovered wood.

Big Barn by Faulkner Architects

The bunkhouse influenced the design for the main residence, whose outside walls are wrapped in restored redwood and corrugated Corten steel. The two-storey house is rectangular in strategy and measures 3,900 square feet (362 square metres).

An asymmetrical gabled roofing system offers the constructing a distinct look, and a lack of overhangs is planned to emphasise the house’s crisp form. A chimney volume is set off from the exterior and runs up one side of the home.

Big Barn by Faulkner Architects

Pushed into a mild slope, the house was developed with the goal to reduce disruption to the site.

” In order to leave the hillside undamaged and prevent grading, the kind is excavated into the website uphill and cantilevered over it downhill,” the group stated.

Big Barn by Faulkner Architects

The path of the sun affected particular style decisions. To help in reducing heat gain, the smaller side of the off-centre roof is on the west, where the sun is most extreme. This elevation likewise has limited windows.

” Fenestration is limited on this direct exposure, and is arranged like thin, full-height ventilation shutters that reference conventional barn structure,” the studio included.

Big Barn by Faulkner Architects
Picture by Ken Fulk

The east side of Big Barn house is more transparent. Sash windows and glazed, moving doors introduce daylight and offer a strong connection to the landscape.

The upper storey holds a master suite and two bed rooms. A steel-grated bridge on the north connects this sleeping level to the hillside.

Big Barn by Faulkner Architects
Picture by Ken Fulk

The lower floor encompasses a kitchen area, dining area, living room and visitor bed rooms. In the terrific room, a lofty, double-height ceiling “reminds one of the empty, shell-like areas of barns”, the group said.

Openings allow breezes to stream through the house, helping cool spaces naturally, while heat is supplied by radiant floors. Energy usage is additional reduced through improved glazing and insulation, in addition to efficient mechanical systems.

Big Barn by Faulkner Architects

Ken Fulk— a United States designer whose clients consist of rapper Pharrell Williams– managed the home’s interior design. Spaces are fitted with diverse decor, including lighting components by Device and Flos

The group likewise utilized naturals surfaces inside such as oak to draw upon the surrounding surface.

Formed by Greg Faulkner in 1998, Faulkner Architects has finished a number of homes in rural settings. Others include a remote getaway surrounded by stones and a house beyond San Francisco clad in Corten steel panels The studio has offices in Berkeley and Truckee, both in California.

Photography is by Joe Fletcher unless specified otherwise.


Task credits:

Designer: Faulkner Designers

Contractor: Redhorse Constructors

Civil engineer: Adobe Associates

Structural engineer: CFBR Structural Group

Mechanical engineer: Sugarpine Engineering

Electrical engineer: Sugarpine Engineering

Geotechnical engineer: NV5

Landscape: Michael Boucher Landscape Architecture

Interior design and lighting: Ken Fulk

Theatrical/AV: SoundVision

Pool engineer: Terracon

Swimming pool specialist: Blue Revolution

Building and construction job supervisor: Walker Building Management

Special inspections: PJC & Associates

CALGreen: Gilleran Energy Management

Irrigation style: Dickson & Associates

Arborist: Bartlett Trees

Product suppliers:

Lighting: Device, Flos, Kreon, Viabizzuno

Appliances: Gaggenau, Subzero, La Cornue

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