Monday, January 15, 2018

A lovely little Amersham dolls house....

This lovely little dolls house is a double gable Amersham hailing from the UK. It was produced in 1937 according to Alison Duggan's article in the E-magazine Dolls Houses Past and Present from information she found in Marion Osborne's A-Z 1914-1941 Dollshouses.  

This Amersham house is decorated with foliage on three sides and also on the base. I do not know if this dolls house was decorated at the factory or if the foliage was added by a previous owner. It came to me with a stand  evidently made just for it; so, with the addition of the lovely art work, I am sure it was also a treasure to someone before it became a treasure to me. 

This is the right side....with flowers and a tall tree.

....and the left side, with a flowering tree and small shrubs.

Berle and Len Davies live in my little dolls house 
with their baby daughter Maureen. 
Berle and Len are Dol Toi dolls. 

It's four p.m. and Len is home early from work. The first thing he does is turn on the telly and say hello to Fred, their pet goldfish. He is planning to read the latest issue of Punch.  
Down the stairs comes Berle with little Maureen. 

"Here," says Berle "you can play with Maureen while I prepare tea."

  Do we spy a slight smile on Berle's lips as she leaves the lounge?

Out the front door and into the garage where Berle admires her fine new kitchen.

Berle discovers that the dollhouse lady forgot to put food
 in the fridge before she took the picture.

But finding food in the larder, she prepares the tea.

   Berle is proud of her Dol Toi dishes the dollhouse lady kindly painted red 
to match her red and white kitchen. 

 On this night, tea time is pleasant at the Davies' home.

 After changing Maureen's nappy, 
Berle sings her a lullaby while gently rocking her cot.

Then she joins Len to chat....while he is still attempting to read Punch. 

Berle cold creams her face while preparing for bed... 

 turns down the bedcover, 

and draws her bath water, 

while Len finally has a chance to read Punch. 

Len straightens Maureen's covers and tries not to wake her....

 ...and brushes his teeth before going to bed. 

Oh no he didn't....oh yes he did...leave the seat down!

Quietly, we say good night to the Davies family.

All of the windows in this Amersham pivot from the center, plus
the art deco fireplace in the lounge is attached to the wall.

The wallpapers in the lounge and the bedroom are original.
The bathroom and kitchen wallpapers are reproduced and 
reduced in size from vintage Triang wallpapers.

Most of the furniture is Dol Toi....

exceptions are:
The lounge suite and the towel rack are Barton, while
 the lamps on the vanity and in the lounge are American made.

I am not as knowledgeable on British made dolls house furniture as I would like to be, 
if I have identified any pieces incorrectly, please tell me.

A very good site to help identify many of the different brands of British dolls house furniture is Jesamine Kelly's (short paws) photobucket site.   

My little Amersham dolls house sits proudly 
on the stand that accompanied it.

Here's a copy of Len Davies Punch to make for your own dolls house.
Copy and paste it and print  2" wide and  1½ “ tall. 

Monday, November 6, 2017

THE RICH TOYS BOOK ARRIVED ....and several others are available!

The much anticipated Rich Toys dollhouse book is now available in two parts: Rich Toys Dollhouses, 1935-1962 and Rich Toys Buildings, 1935-1962, authored by Patty Cooper, JoAnn Belanger, and Rita Goranson who collaborated on the books from three different states. 

Over 80 dollhouse collectors around the United States contributed photographs or other information resulting in a chronological catalog of Rich dollhouses through the inclusion of interior and exterior photographs, original ads of the time period in catalogs and magazines, vintage photographs showing children with their houses, pictures of appropriate era dollhouse furniture for the dollhouses, and lots of helpful information.

The reviews have been very positive with people commenting most often on the fine quality of the color  photographs, the interview with a Rich factory worker, and the still shots of dollhouses from 1930’s-1950’s movies.   Two quotes:

“So happy to have this excellent book!  It’s perfect for anyone interested in Rich dollhouses.  Beautifully illustrated and clearly written, the authors have done a first rate job with their research.  The book arrived yesterday and I have been devouring it since.  An invaluable and much needed resource for dollhouse collectors and those interested in the American toy industry.”

“What an outstanding achievement for Patty, JoAnn and Rita!  I looked at the Colleen Moore section first.  What a delightful picture of the little girl with Fred MacMurray and her C.M. dollhouse. I also found the ad for the 5 room castle interesting in that a lighted version was available.  I also enjoyed the many pictures throughout of children with their Rich dollhouses.  Rita’s interview with Maxine Hensch was fascinating.  This is a wonderful, well-done contribution to ‘saving’ these charming houses." 

You may order the Rich Dollhouse book ($65.00) or the Rich Toy Buildings book ($25.00) from JoAnn Belanger’s ETSY site, DollhouseWonders.  


Also available on DollhouseWonders is a book called Restoring Vintage Masonite Dollhouses   ($14.00), by JoAnn Belanger, which gives tips on cleaning and doing minor and major repairs to the floors, roofs, and walls of the dollhouses. 

A beautifully illustrated book by Carol Stevenson called Colleen Moore’s Doll Castle Made by Rich Toys, ($15.00) featuring the most sought after dollhouse made by the Rich Toys Company, is also available. 

And a comment from me:  The Rich Toys book is beyond what I anticipated. Anyone with a love for these grand old ladies made during  the generations from 1935 to 1962 will enjoy seeing toys that were made with children's  imagination in mind. Wouldn't either of the Rich Toys books be a great gift for the older lady or gentleman in your family to bring back memories of what they had as toys or what they wished for Santa to bring?

Be sure to check out these other books that Patty Cooper has published,  some  in collaboration with George Mundorf, and all available on click on the links I've provided.  I hear there are more in the works! 

    Schoenhut Dollhouse Furniture


                 of the 1930s

Dollhouses Furniture & Buildings

Sunday, September 17, 2017

FOR SALE!: Villa Hogarin dollhouse and contents...

This modern little house is a Villa Hogarin dollhouse produced in Spain in the late 60s to early 70s. It is the childhood dollhouse of Bettina, whose father purchased it for her when she was growing up in Germany. Now Bettina is ready for another child to be able to enjoy it as much as she did. 

This house is on a platform that measures 29½wide by 21" deep. The house stands 13" tall at the peak of the roof. It contains 4 rooms and a side patio with steps leading down to the "yard". 

The rooms on this back side of the house are not as large as the 2 rooms on the front of the house.  Potted plants decorate the low wall of the patio....Bettina must have a green thumb!

This side gives a better view of the patio and the very attractive patio furniture.

The fourth side of this little house is without windows.

Here is the sweet little family that has lived in Villa Hogarin since Bettina was a young girl.

All the original furniture is included with the house and family. 
I see...the 3 piece patio set, a lavender bathroom set, a red dining room table with 4 chairs and white buffet, a bed and wardrobe, a vanity and bedside table, a kitchen table and chair along with a stove and cabinets AND pots pans and utensils, a TV, and a transformer and ceiling lights! Bettina told me not all the furniture is perfect but it certainly looks to be enough to furnish this little house.

If anyone is interested in making this wonderful Spanish Villa Hogarin their own, please contact Bettina at .

Wednesday, August 30, 2017

The House of Two Sisters

This is the house of two sisters. This house was built by Keystone of Boston in the mid 1930s, and has been the home of Margarita and Daquiri Boozer since childhood.  Their parents purchased it in 1935 when the girls were 3 and 4 years of age. The Boozers brought all their Schoenhut furniture, even the bath fixtures and kitchen appliances, with them. 

Even though Margarita is a bit older than Daquiri, their mother always dressed them alike. They continue that trend even today....and giggle when people ask them if they are twins.

The house originally had four rooms, but with two girls needing their own space, the Boozer parents converted it to a 6 room house. To see the house with original interior walls, go to Myrtle Mayhem's blog Dollhouse Shenanigans

Here we see Margarita and Daquiri reaching for breakfast.

Daquiri's favorite past time is sitting in her comfy chair with a good book. She doesn't read it, she just sits there with it.

Margarita's favorite past time is gazing at herself in the mirror.

One night around midnight, Margarita and her BFF Johnnie Walker decided they were tired of lilac fixtures in the bathroom and painted them all a light mustard color. 

Not to be outdone, Daquiri's BFF Jim Beam, convinced her they should paint the green kitchen sink a lovely shade of white.

Margarita and Daquiri swear that a Grey Goose suggested they paint the maroon sofa and chairs a light cranberry.

Not sure if that is Margarita or Daiquiri going for a tall cool one. 

The girls have left the dining room virtually unscathed....only because Mama Boozer and her good friend Chivas Regal decided one night it should be a flat brown without a varnish finish. 

So we leave Margarita and Daquiri Boozer, enjoying each other's company and holding tight to their BFFs, listening to music on Papa Boozer's vintage radio.

This is how the little house looked when I found it in 2013...missing windows and door, interior walls, stained by dampness, and absolutely filthy. There was a similar but larger dollhouse in the 1938 Keystone catalog, I copied the diamond-paned windows from it. The door in the catalog picture couldn't be seen, so it has a design composite of Tudor doors from other houses. There was no indication that this house had a door surround. To help anchor the door and cover some of the stain that couldn't be removed, I made a door surround by copying the timbers on the upper floor. Mr. Clean scrubbies helped clean the grime left from 80 years of play. And a fresh coat of paint on the steps finished the exterior. 

I think the dolls are small Caco dolls made in the late 1940s. I haven't been able to verify that.

I had a collection of repainted Schoenhut furniture I wanted to use in this house, but I needed 6 rooms. I figured if I was using bastardized furniture I might as well bastardize the interior of the house and give it 6 rooms. And this is the result.

Almost all the furniture is Schoenhut, made from 1928-1934. Patty Cooper has published a wonderful book detailing the furniture Schoenhut made during this period. It can be found here at the Blurb Bookstore.

Exceptions to the Schoenhut furniture are the refrigerator, which is a metal bank with a GE emblem, and the radio of unknown origin. Kage products include the curved floor lamps by the girl's chairs and the pink wing chair in Daquiri's room (yes I painted it). Dolly Dear bedside table lamps are in each bedroom. Strombeker made the trash can in the kitchen, the scale in the bath, and the lamps on the vanity in Daquiri's room. Both beds were missing the original paper covers, I gave them similar covers of fabric. I painted the chair in Margarita's room a matching blue and gave it feet, and I constructed her vanity out of 2 drawers from a Schoenhut dresser and added the end pieces made from the shelves of a Strombecker tea cart. This is what one goes thru when one collects these wonderful old houses and dollhouse furniture, not caring if they are in pristine condition! For me, half the fun of collecting vintage dollhouses is in refurbishing them.