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** Update : I don’t stock Lottie dolls and accessories any more, but I’m still very happy to recommend them**
My daughters received the Lottie, Finn and Friends Treehouse this weekend and the timing couldn’t have been better. With ex-hurricane Ophelia hitting our shores on Monday and the girls being off school Monday and Tuesday, it was fantastic having a new toy for them to play with and that’s exactly what they did.
The play treehouse is gorgeous – made from real wood, it’s really sturdy. It’s not too big to take over a room and yet it’s big enough for both my girls to play with it at the same time without any pushing or shoving. We haven’t tested to see how many Lottie dolls fit into the house at the same time, but at one stage, I spotted 5 dolls standing or sitting on the balcony of the treehouse. No dolls come with this set but you can purchase them separately from my Lottie range on my website.
I love the design, partly because it looks very similar to the treehouse in our own garden but also because there are lots of ways for Lottie to enjoy it and for the girls to view them ‘enjoying’ it. There are two large windows – one at the front and one at the side and a door that opens and closes (but can’t be slammed). Underneath the treehouse there’s a rope ladder leading to a trap door, which is spring loaded, so it stays closed but can be opened with a gentle push. One whole side of the treehouse can open downwards, allowing children full access for their dolls to have tea parties, discos, planning meetings or whatever they like! This is held closed by magnets. The dolls can also enjoy a swing underneath the balcony of the treehouse. It does take a bit of patience to get Lottie balanced on the swing but it can be done. The green slide is also a decent length and angle for Lottie to enjoy sliding down. The slide isn’t screwed onto the balcony, so it can be lifted off so the dolls house doesn’t take up as much storage space when not in use.
It really is a beautiful, unique wooden dolls house which I would consider amazing value at only €69.99.
The treehouse comes flat-packed, so if you do buy one of these, I’d recommend giving yourself at least 2 hours to assemble. I love building Ikea furniture so I came at this project with positivity. However, there is no written step by step instructions and only visual ones, which I found difficult to interpret as the pictures were quite small. I had to unscrew screws several times after realising that I’d jumped the gun in assembling one piece to another or that I’d put the piece facing the wrong direction. My advice is to do this when your kids aren’t around you!! Towards the end of assembling it, I couldn’t get a screw to fit into the spot it was supposed to meet (maybe I put a screw in too tight or just off somewhere else, which meant this one wouldn’t meet) so I called my husband who finished off the project. He did need me to squeeze the parts together, while he screwed, to get the screw to go where it should, so it was a two person job at one point.
When we put on the roof, we found that the side that should open up was catching on the roof and wouldn’t open. Again, this could have been my fault although I did feel like I was being careful in making sure everything fit where it should. Thankfully my husband was able to find two ‘spacers’ (for clueless people like me, these are like flat metal hula hoops). He put one on each side, between the roof and the walls and screwed the screw through it. It raised the roof by less than a millimeter but this was enough to let the side of the house open and close and they can’t be seen from the outside or inside.
If you are giving this as a gift at Christmas time, don’t try and make it with a glass of wine on Christmas Eve but instead, take your time another night and enjoy putting together this beautiful, extremely well made and designed treehouse without the time pressures Christmas Eve brings.
I hope your family will enjoy your one as much as mine is enjoying ours,