I picked up a cute little hutch for a dollar at a craft store, and kept picturing it done up with milk paint and beadboard. But wooden dollhouse-scale beadboard or siding — adorable though it is — comes in big expensive sheets (plastic is cheaper), and is thick enough that it would really reduce the shelf space. (What good’s a mini hutch if your mini laptop and mini magazines don’t fit on it? Hmm? Yes I know I’m crazy.)
Then I had one of those aha! moments and realized that if I have polymer clay, I have beadboard. In much the same way that if you have polymer clay you have buttons… and game pieces… display stands for anything… custom stamps… but I digress.
So I pressed a straight piece of wire into a thin strip of Fimo to make a beadboard tool, which I baked… then rolled out more clay very thin, cut it to size and laid the pieces on ruled notebook paper to help me line up the tool right. Impress a series of lines on each piece, bake and you have a very thin but strong/flexible sheet that can be trimmed to fit with scissors, then painted any color you like.
It’s not perfectly regular, and my method only creates small pieces of board. But it’s just what I wanted for this application. And see, the laptop and magazines fit!
[Added 2/3/10: I see many people are reaching this post looking for dollhouse beadboard, so I thought I’d share where I buy it: Miniatures.com sells plastic sheets of 7″x12″ or 7″24″, although I actually prefer to use their wood sheets sold as siding. Let me know if you find it cheaper elsewhere!]