For this low-cost, kid-friendly dollhouse, I decided to paint shrubs, trees and other plantings onto side of house instead of using any easily damaged and potentially unsafe materials. To make painting easier on myself (and also give it a little dimension), I created an "onlay" for the shrubs out of some scrap Masonite.
Landscaping started out looking like this:
Using some basic tole painting techniques....we have created a nice row of trees and shrubs to apply to each side of the house. Basecoat with medium foliage green. Imagine some shrub shapes and, using a stippling motion, highlight one side of with a light foliage green and the other side with a deep green. I made no attempt at realistic shapes......just ellipses...puffy ball shapes!
This decorative onlay is not quite done. I plan on adding some flowers and birdhouses for added color. I promise I will show you the finished photos soon. I also plan on adding some shutters to the windows to dress things up a bit more! The black and white checks are there just because I like checks and it also adds a little whimsey. ;-)
Tip: Notice that the red color of the house is painted between the branches of the tree. That makes cutting out the onlay shape a whole bunch easier! No tiny branches to cut! Once it's applied to house, you'll never notice!