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 20 November, 2016


Anonymous Artisans work in a folk art museum in Hillsborough, NC

Folk Art: Just For The Fun Of It

I sometimes get hung-up on museum quality miniatures, as if those exalted works are the only things to strive for. My apologies to all of the talented artisans in the dollhouse miniature universe who are creating incredible works. Not all fascinating work has to be to be in 1:12 scale, either. Folk art is an example. A private collection in Hillsborough, North Carolina has many beautiful works, made by craftsmen who wanted to memorialize a building that had meaning in their lives.

This post links to four sites: that folk art museum in NC, and three of my favorite artisans that who wonderful work … just for the fun of it.


Storybook Buildings, Authors Unknown

There is a small museum in Hillsborough, North Carolina with 1, 200 or so small buildings on display: little churches with soaring steeples, quaint storefronts, a homespun bowling alley, Art Deco theaters, Ferris wheels, and farmhouses. All are handmade; many dating to the late 19th century. Some are meticulous replicas of national monuments. Others are creative renderings of familiar building types, like the drugstore whose sign reads, “Prescriptions Carefully Confounded.”

This is a private collection of two very private people. Please be considerate if you contact them.


Interior of Shiuzou Makita’s secondhand bookstore

The Work of Shiuzou Makita

I saw Shuzou Makita’s “used bookstore” posted on the Facebook Miniaturas / Miniatures group page and was bowled over. His work is just wonderful. So detailed; everything just right! Following is a machine translation of his Facebook profile:

“Graphic design and book cover design (book design) to work. Dollhouse & Miniature making is a hobby. Dollhouse Association Northeast Chapter member conducts production activities mainly in Fukushima Prefecture. Go mainly on Dollhouse & Miniature posts on Facebook”.



Mary Paine Miniaturist – Room Boxes

Mary Payne, Miniaturist

I contacted Mary about one of the room boxes you see in the group photo above – The Barber Shop – and got this reply:

“I don’t have much of a backstory for [the barber shop. I never saw it. The outside was reproduced from a couple of old family pictures. We have no family members left that remember the inside so I used elements from several pictures of old barbershops I found online.”

I identify with Mary in that memories, and the emotions that flow from them, are the important part of my being a miniature enthusiast. Follow the link to Mary’s section of the family website, and check out her basement.


Hallway of Kathleen Holmes’ Mid Century Beauty

Kathleen Holmes

Kathleen posted a picture of the foyer of her Mid-Century dollhouse on her Facebook profile. The pictures is so eye-catching, which is the purpose of any photograph. I commented on her post, “Beautiful work made even better by good photography. The pictures of many good miniatures suffer from flat, frontal lighting. This photo draws the viewer in by lighting the background, creating depth and mystery. I love it.”

There are so many wonderful artisans in our miniature universe, doing great work for the pleasure it brings themselves and others.


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

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