Thursday, May 5, 2011

the dollhouse - I

I never had one. 
Until I moved to the US and I started to take care of this one. 
It's not actually mine-mine, my husband got it from his mom.
dollhouse - Dec 1943

A funny note: when my husband had his first daughter, he called his mom and said: "it's a girl, can I have the dollhouse?"
...But in an era where 'toontown' and other computer games were more appealing to young girls than an antique dollhouse, after the first few days of excitement, she was left as is, collecting some dust for a while... until I came and rescued her (yes, she is a girl). 

A bit of history about this dollhouse: she was built as a present for my mother in law from her father, in 1940, and it's a scale 1:12.
The dollhouse has all the four walls and the two sides unlock for access and play, because they wanted the "little people" to have a real whole house, three walls were NOT an option!
The whole house (e-ve-ry-th-i-ng) is hand made, it's wired, the lights work and I-love-it!!! 

I know that nowadays you can go to the craft store and buy lots of pieces and assemble them at home, and this would qualify as DIY.
But here is the REAL DIY: during WW2 such scale things weren't available, in fact not much was available at all, so every piece was actually hand made.

See the shingles? 
The corner candy/stationery store would sell cigars one-at-a-time and so would be left with empty boxes.  You could just ask for them and the owner was happy to give them to you, rather than throw them away. He cut the boxes in pieces and nailed down with pins (also cut to fit).
The stones for the patio are made of a piece of a blackboard broken in pieces. 
Ah, and because there weren't many tools, a surgeon family friend's gave him the not-so-sharp-anymore scalpels that were used as wood knives.
dollhouse - the master bedroom
bedding, armchair and ottoman completely handmade by my MIL's mom
...And I could go on and on.
The refrigerator was made by a family friend, it is (of course!) wired, and the light goes on when open. And has ice trays!

When my MIL was a little girl, some days before every Christmas, for many years, the dollhouse would be covered with a sheet and being unveiled on Christmas day, to show the new additions and the improvements.

Over these years, the dollhouse got plenty of furniture, and additions, I made quite few new things.
Stay tunes, I will share pictures and how-tos!

xox, d.

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  1. I am so jealous of that dollhouse! :D

  2. When I was in early elementary school I had a friend who had a Daddy-made dollhouse. It had stairs!!! I was so jealous.

  3. I love the house! And the history behind it makes it so much more precious! What a great thing to pass on to your daughter in the future. Visiting from Fingerprints on the Fridge!

  4. This is amazing!! You are so happy to have it, and hopefully some day your daughter will find it and see how great it can be.

  5. What an amazing heirloom! I have a dollhouse that my dad made me when I was little, and I can't wait until my daughter is old enough to play with it, looking forward to seeing more of this one! Thanks for sharing!

  6. What a phenomenal dollhouse! It's great that you're chronicling all of the work your husband's (and now your) family has put into it.

  7. Are you freaking kidding me right now? I am SOOOOO in love with this doll house. You are one lucky girl!

  8. Wow! And I thought I had a doll house made with love by my grandparents! This is amazing! :)

  9. That is so cool! I love it! I can't wait to see the rest of the story and additions you did. What a loving daddy to do that for his little girl. I think we as adults love doll houses more than the little kids do. Your newest follower.

  10. So wonderful!!! I dream to make a dollhouse one day...)

  11. Beautiful, I just finished a Dolls house renovation for my 2yr old. As soon as my daughter was born I had the project in the making, so much fun. Thank you for your super cute tutorials, just reading through all of your Dollshouse posts now.

    1. thank you , Ruby! I made some other things but haven't got around to do the tutorials! post photos of your dollhouse on the facebook page!!


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