Dollhouse Decorating

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


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 07 June, 2016


Emerson Dollhouse, with designer Tim Boyle

Emerson Dollhouse

The first time I saw this picture of the Emerson House, with Tim Boyle in the background, I was so excited. Modern lines, plenty of glass for light, stone, and wood for warmth. Now that’s a modern dollhouse; it’s got everything! Seems a bit large in comparison to the designer, though. Maybe it’s the lighting or the camera angle. Or he’s a really small person. Then I read the caption and found … No, no! Barbie world! Oh … darn!


Emerson Dollhouse, rear view found on DesignMilk

As Is – 1:6 Scale


Emerson dollhouse interior showing stairs, found on Tangren Alexander’s Flickr photostream

Emerson Doll House has seven rooms including a living room, kitchen, dining room, library/office, master bedroom, bathroom and child’s bedroom. It features many distinguishing architectural features like glass corners, minimalist cut stone fireplace, scored hardwood floors. It measures 18”H 22”W 36”L.  All stain and paints are non-toxic and lead-free. The recessed lights are LED and powered by solar panels. Now, that’s cool!

 Tim Boyle, The Designer


Doug Rollins at Brinca Dada adjusting an Emerson Dollhouse

“I’m an architect by trade, and I prefer modern design to traditional styles,” says Boyle, 34, who designed Brinca Dada’s Emerson house with a nod to the large glass intersections and steel horizontal planes of Richard Neutra’s Palm Springs masterpiece, the Kaufmann Desert House. “I would like to see contemporary design really take off in miniatures so that the rising generation will hire me to design their full-size modern homes.”

Tim Boyle co-founded Brinca Dada Toys with Douglas Rollins as an investment in America’s future modernists – a form of long-term job security. Unfortunately, Brinca Dada is now closed.


Emerson Dollhouse Exterior in closed position

As An Inspiration

If your background in miniatures is traditional, and you want to give modern design a try, there are many kits on the market and blogs to guide you. But if you are at all handy with tools, and can’t quite find a design that appeals to you, the Emerson House can be a source of inspiration. I don’t mean make an exact reduction in scale of Tim Boyle’s design. Think about creating a single or


Emerson Dollhouse at night found on Tangren Alexander’s Flickr photostream

multi-level hinged design, to provide access and just the amount of visibility you want.

Sources can be architectural and interior designs websites. I Googled “architectural models modern” and got dozens of images of prospective 1:12 scale projects.

Also, there are many blogs devoted to modern dollhouses. Here are two of my favorites: Modern Mini Houses and Elaine Shaw’s Mini Mod Pod.



Susan Downing, with Patrick Owens


I invite you to visit my Etsy Shop where I offer many accessories and pieces of furniture in 1:12 scale. Subscribers to this blog receive a discount on all Featured Products. Click here for details.

Posted by Susan Downing

Categories: modern dollhouses

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