Kristin Rutten

How to Make a Doll-Sized "Mock" Box Spring


Love to make your doll furniture as realistic as possible? Make a quick and easy “mock spring” (box spring) from PVC pipe for your Suite Dreams Collection bed! Use it as the first layer on your doll bed to add height and realism to your doll’s bedroom centerpiece.

This tutorial utilizes pattern pieces from our AptOne8 Build-A-Bed pattern, available at Pixie Faire.


How to Make a Mock Spring

Materials Needed

• Approximately seven (7) feet (TWIN) to ten (10) feet (FULL) of 1/2-inch PVC pipe
• 1/2-inch PVC pipe fittings (slip): 6 TEES, four 90° ELBOWS and 2 CROSSES (Click here for a list of our favorite PVC suppliers.)
• Fabric – 2/3 (TWIN) to 3/4 (FULL) yards of cotton fabric. TIP: For added realism, use a double layer of sturdy sew-in interfacing instead of fabric for the MATTRESS TOP piece.
• Thread
• Glue sticks


Tools & Supplies Needed

Small PVC pipe cutting tool
• Needle nose pliers (in case you need to separate tight fittings)
• Pencil or pen
• Measuring tape
• Fabric scissors
• Hot glue gun
• Sewing pins
• Sewing machine
• Iron & ironing board
• Rubber mallet






Instructions

Part One – Construct Your Mock Spring Frame

1. Clean your pipe and fittings. Remove marks and/or sand, if desired. (See PVC Pipe Preparation Tips & Tricks) Measure, mark and cut the PVC pipe into the following lengths and quantities:

  • 3 1/4 (TWIN) or 6 1/4 (FULL) inches – Cut 8
  • 3 1/2 inches – Cut 6
  • 8 3/4 inches – Cut 3

How to Make a Doll-Sized "Mock" Box Spring

2. Connect the following pipes and fittings in the order listed to create a FRAME END: ELBOW (90°) + 3 1/4-INCH PIPE (TWIN) or 6 1/4-INCH PIPE (FULL) + TEE (end) + 3 1/4-INCH PIPE (TWIN) or 6 1/4-INCH PIPE (FULL) + ELBOW (90°).

How to Make a Doll-Sized "Mock" Box Spring

How to Make a Doll-Sized "Mock" Box Spring

3. Repeat to create a total of two FRAME ENDS.

How to Make a Doll-Sized "Mock" Box Spring

4. Connect the following pipes and fittings in the order listed to create a FRAME CENTER SUPPORT: TEE (center) + 3 1/4-INCH PIPE (TWIN) or 6 1/4-INCH PIPE (FULL) + CROSS + 3 1/4-INCH PIPE (TWIN) or 6 1/4-INCH PIPE (FULL) + TEE (center).

How to Make a Doll-Sized "Mock" Box Spring

How to Make a Doll-Sized "Mock" Box Spring

5. Repeat to create a total of two FRAME CENTER SUPPORTS.

How to Make a Doll-Sized "Mock" Box Spring

6. Connect the following pipes and parts in the order listed for all three openings to assemble your FRAME: FRAME END + 3 1/2-INCH PIPE + FRAME CENTER SUPPORT + 8 3/4-INCH PIPE + FRAME CENTER SUPPORT + 3 1/2-INCH PIPE + FRAME END.

How to Make a Doll-Sized "Mock" Box Spring

How to Make a Doll-Sized "Mock" Box Spring

7. Lay your completed FRAME on your bed frame to make sure it fits. If it’s too long to fit easily on the bed, use a rubber mallet to gently tap the joints more securely together.

8. At this stage, you could take your FRAME apart and reassemble it, permanently gluing each piece back together as you go using contact cement or PVC cement. HOWEVER… because it is crucial that your FRAME is completely flat and square in order for it to fit correctly on the bed and the fabric cover will help hold your pieces together, gluing is not needed nor recommended. This will allow you to make slight adjustments later on when you place the frame on your doll bed.


Part Two – Sew Your Mock Spring Cover

1. Using the pattern pieces from the AptOne8 Suite Dreams Collection: Build-A-Bed pattern, cut one MATTRESS TOP & BOTTOM and two each of the MATTRESS END and MATTRESS SIDE pieces for your chosen bed size from fabric. (RECOMMENDED: Use quilted cotton or two layers of sew-in interfacing for the MATTRESS TOP and plain cotton fabric for the END and SIDE pieces.)

How to Make a Doll-Sized "Mock" Box Spring

2. Right sides together, pin and stitch each MATTRESS END to a MATTRESS SIDE on the short side using a 1/4-inch seam allowance.

How to Make a Doll-Sized "Mock" Box Spring

3. Right sides together, pin and stitch remaining short sides of the MATTRESS END and MATTRESS SIDE pieces to form a LOOP.

How to Make a Doll-Sized "Mock" Box Spring

4. Press seams open.

How to Make a Doll-Sized "Mock" Box Spring

5. Zigzag or serge one edge around the entire LOOP to finish edges.

How to Make a Doll-Sized "Mock" Box Spring

6. Following the same procedure described in steps 17-19 of the original pattern, pin the LOOP to the MATTRESS TOP piece.

How to Make a Doll-Sized "Mock" Box Spring

How to Make a Doll-Sized "Mock" Box Spring

7. Stitch, using a 1/4-inch seam allowance.

How to Make a Doll-Sized "Mock" Box Spring


8. Press seam away from the LOOP.

How to Make a Doll-Sized "Mock" Box Spring



Part Three – Put It All Together

1. Lay the completed fabric cover wrong side up on a flat work surface. Lay your completed FRAME inside with the side of the pipes that you want to be visible facing up. Center the FRAME inside the cover.

How to Make a Doll-Sized "Mock" Box Spring

2. Starting near the TEE at each end of the FRAME, gently pull the fabric cover up over the TEE and glue the edge of the fabric to the TEE using a hot glue gun. Make sure your cover is snug, but not so tight that it is being pulled out of shape.

How to Make a Doll-Sized "Mock" Box Spring

How to Make a Doll-Sized "Mock" Box Spring

3. Continue by gluing the fabric to the TEES on the sides of the FRAME.

How to Make a Doll-Sized "Mock" Box Spring

4. Next glue the corners of the cover to the corner ELBOWS (90°) of the FRAME, keeping the cover smooth and taut (but not tight) underneath.

How to Make a Doll-Sized "Mock" Box Spring

5. Finally, go back and glue the fabric to the exposed PIPE between each fitting.

How to Make a Doll-Sized "Mock" Box Spring

How to Make a Doll-Sized "Mock" Box Spring

6. Place your new MOCK SPRING on your bed frame with the exposed pipe side facing down.

How to Make a Doll-Sized "Mock" Box Spring

7. Lay your mattress on top of the MOCK SPRING. You’re ready to dress your bed!

How to Make a Doll-Sized "Mock" Box Spring

Permission to get creative…

Consider using a double layer of sew-in interfacing in place of the fabric for the MATTRESS TOP for an even more realistic look!

How to Make a Doll-Sized "Mock" Box Spring

Keep in mind this is a bit more fragile than the fabric option, so consider your planned use if you decide to try this option.


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Need some other furniture to go with your doll bed? Check out our AptOne8 PVC doll furniture plans…


Matilda’s Closet and AptOne8 are not affiliated with American Girl® or Mattel®. No endorsement is implied.





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About Kristin Rutten

Kristin Rutten is the creator, owner and operator of Matilda Jo Originals. Born and raised in Montana, she first learned to sew on her grandmother’s antique Singer sewing machine by cutting out and stitching a simple nine-square pillow. Other projects soon followed and she has been crafting and sewing ever since. In addition to sewing and pattern design, she also enjoys crocheting, scrapbooking and designing WordPress websites. She makes her home in Central Montana with her husband and four children, ages 8 to 21.

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