Saturday, January 4, 2014

Tiny Treasures

Working at a library, sometimes I run across sources for 18th century details I would not have expected to find; my co-worker found this one for me when she weeded it out of the collection due to dis-use: "Classic Dolls' Houses" by Faith Eaton.

 The sweet little Delft tiles in this 18th century kitchen! Adorable!

It details several doll houses; "Mon Plaisir" - an 18th-century German court, the 18th century Dutch doll house of Sara Ploos van Amstel, the 20th century fairy castle of Colleen Moore, West Wood House - a 20th century English dollhouse, and the Thorne and Carlisle Miniature rooms.

The 18th century houses were of course of the most interest to me, but all the houses were beautifully crafted...I remember seeing Colleen Moore's fairy castle in Chicago once, came home with a beloved coloring book of it and built my own equally grand house (so my eight-year-old-self thought) out of shoeboxes.

I would definitely recommend that you try to get this through interlibrary's probably not worth shelling out a whole lot of money unless you really love historical dollhouses, and in fact I couldn't even be sure I found the correct title on Amazon. However, the textiles and color combinations and accessories on the 18th century dolls are extremely valuable in my opinion because they haven't been disturbed or re-dressed based on some well-intentioned museum director's best guesses...they are perfect representations of what was worn at the time by various classes. My pictures here don't even begin to capture the detail - it's quite crisp in person.

 ^Can you believe this is a miniature? It looks like a real room in a colonial house!

Also the tiny dishes and furniture, bed-hangings and curtains, miniature artwork and other housewares are wonderful sources of detail for any re-enactor, arranged just how they would have been used in a domestic setting. Worth a look!


  1. Hello,

    A LONG time ago I used to own a copy of this book and it was sadly destroyed in a hurricane several years back now. I decided to replace it recently and my replacement copy arrived today and…much to my annoyance I discovered over half the pictures were in black and white, which is not how I'd remembered the book at all. Which brings me to my questions: is your copy full of color pictures or half color pictures and half-black and white pictures? I don't know anymore whether I've remembered the book wrong or if there were different editions with more color pictures. If yours is color pictures (not a two page spread of color pictures, followed by a 2 page spread of black and white pictures alternating through the whole book) and you still have it, would you consider sharing bibliographic information (the ISBN as well) so that I may try and obtain the correct edition (if there is even such a thing. I might just have built it up in my mind as way better than it was over the years of not having it)?

    Thank you for your time,


  2. Ooh no, I'm QUITE sure that mine is full color, all the way through. I'm at work right now and the book is at home in my sewing room but I'll try to remember to look at it tonight and report back tomorrow (and with the right ISBN). Thanks for commenting!