Antique Dolls Houses
Antique Dolls Houses are miniature houses designed for toy dolls and used by children.
Brief history and description
Dolls' houses first became popular during the 17th century among wealthy German families, and were typically decorated with porcelain dishes, silver, chandeliers, chairs, beds, bedspreads, bright-coloured wallpaper, rugs and hardwood floors.
By the 19th century German companies were shipping a variety of different doll house furniture items to America, and some of the many notable companies include Elastolin, Moritz Reichel and Christian Hacker, while companies from England include Lines Brothers, Evans & Cartwright, and Siber & Fleming.
Guide for collectors
Victorian and Georgian dolls' houses tend to be the most popular among collectors.
Smaller dolls' houses are usually stored in themed display boxes, and should remain within their original containers as much as possible.
Some of the many associations and clubs dedicated to preserving and collecting antique dolls' houses include the Dollhouse Miniatures Merchants Association (D.M.M.A.), the National Association of Miniature Enthusiasts and the Finnish Dollhouse Association.
Noel Barrett in Carversville, Pennsylvania sold:
- A detailed two-story Palladian mansion doll's house (titled "The Van Haeften House;" circa 1740 to 1750; 52.5" x 49.25" x 19.25") featuring Georgian-style architecture and a fireplace with faux marble for $115,000 in November of 2010.
- An 18th century English cabinet doll's house featuring two glass-paned doors, period wallpaper, a Georgian mantel, and German-style furniture for $32,500 in September of 2006.
- A Tuscan-revival doll's townhouse from North Carolina (circa 1870 to 1880; 26" x 17.75") featuring Victorian fretwork, a cutout balcony, a widow's walk, a rich stained wood with a burgundy stained glass door and a renaissance revival arched window for $6,500 in June of 2004.
Wickliff & Associates Auctioneers in Carmel, Indiana sold an antique two-story Victorian-style tin doll's house (25" x 25" x 31") featuring stained glass windows for $500 in July of 2007.
DuMouchelles in Detroit, Michigan sold an antique green and white doll's house (26" x 24" x 23") for $125 in March of 2006.
Hamilton's Antique Auction Gallery in Tacoma, Washington sold a folk art, handmade doll's house for $60 in January of 2012.