Dollhouse Decorating

Miniature Decorating Ideas |Articles on decorating dollhouses and the history of this artform

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I have had a life-long love affair with dollhouse miniatures, and careers in art education and interior design. I hope to combine these life experiences to help other miniature enthusiasts get more out of this wonderful hobby we enjoy, a hobby that often reaches the level of an art form. Susan Downing

Posted on 04 December, 2017

Orange-Victorian

Orange Victorian, source unknown

Victorian Painted Ladies

I had always thought the Victorian Painted Lady originated in San Francisco, and that is partially true. That’s where the term was coined after the second world war. The gingerbread on a Victorian house has always inspired outrageous color schemes, and that goes back to nineteen century England. What wonderful dollhouses they make!

It’s All About The Gingerbread

If new technology drove innovation in Victorian architecture, nostalgia was the inspiration for plundering past designs. By the mid-nineteenth century, handcrafted decorations were not the only choice. Mass production allowed anyone that could afford to build a house to tack on any sort of corbel, bracket or gable they wanted. Painting these appendages a different color helped each to stand out in the crowd of decoration.

The desire to have a Victorian home spread throughout the British Empire and its former colonies. Clusters were built wherever cities were expanding or being rebuilt after disasters, natural and manmade. Think San Francisco after the earthquake or Atlanta after the Civil War.

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Posted by Patrick Owens

Categories: recycled


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Posted on 02 December, 2017

mulvany-rogers-satisfied-customer-hugging-dollhouse

An ecstatic Mulvaney & Rogers customer taking possession of her commissioned dollhouse.

Mulvany & Rogers

This is one of my favorite images, an ecstatic customer taking possession of her commissioned dollhouse. Mulvany & Rogers have lots of satisfied customers, but getting such photographic proof is a rare thing.

Susan Rogers and Kevin Mulvany are amazing artisans. They have been commissioned to create such 1:12 scale marvels as the Brighton Pavilion, Spencer House, and Buckingham Palace. One thing I treasure the most is a BBC interview featuring their Parisienne 17th-century “hotel particulere,”  now a very classy apartment above an haute couture shop. When the commercial side of my 1:12 scale life – making accessories and getting them shipped on time – begins to dull the magic of the miniature world, watching two minutes of lovely images and a calming soundtrack remind me what is truly possible with the dollhouse miniature craft I love. Click on the photos for links to other articles.

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Posted by Patrick Owens

Categories: recycled


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Posted on 01 December, 2017

wedding-planner-room-box

Wedding Planner’s Room Box. John Scott, the groom, applies museum wax.

On July 29, 2000, Jennifer Aniston and Brad Pitt stood beneath a flower-bedecked canopy at a Malibu mansion and exchanged marriage vows. Jennifer vowed to make Brad’s favorite banana split; Brad promised to find a balance on the thermostat; my teenage niece swooned, then proclaimed her life’s calling was to be a wedding planner. So I made this room box for Lisa.

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Posted by Patrick Owens

Categories: recycled


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Posted on 29 November, 2017

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The Killer Cabinet, Victoria & Albert Museum, London

Killer Cabinet – A True Story

This gorgeous cabinet dollhouse belonged John Egerton Killer, of Manchester. He wanted to amuse the many ladies in his family by providing them with a baby house. Cabinet dollhouses were popular in the 1830s, so he ordered a copy of a favorite cabinet in his office. Guess his profession. John Egerton Killer was a surgeon!

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Posted by Patrick Owens

Categories: recycled


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