Decorating for Christmas in Miniature!

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Dollhouse collectors have everything or nearly everything that real houses could have – comfy stuffed sofas and dignified wing chairs, framed paintings, oriental rugs, electricity, and patterned wallpaper. With Christmas coming, decorating for the holidays is also something that dollhouse owners do for their dollhouses – but it’s all in miniature, of course!

According to Susie Vallon of Whimsies Dollhouse Shop in Greenwich, CT, “Miniaturists do indeed love to decorate their dollhouses for the various holidays throughout the year. I’m sure you know that there are different “scales” of miniatures. A “full” scale, or “one-inch” scale means that for every foot (12 inches) in our world, a miniature “of scale” measures one inch. Likewise, a “half” scale means that for every 12 inches in our world a miniature of scale would measure 1/2 inch! This means that any respectful Christmas tree in a full scale doll’s living room should measure 7 to 9 inches. “

“Our little shop is filled to the brim with all sorts of special holiday items. We have decorated cookies on a platter, gingerbread houses, wreaths, presents, reindeer for the dollhouse rooftops, menorahs, latkes, porcelain elves and Santas and Mrs. Clauses!”

Actual Christmas tree – not miniature

She added that, “Most of our dollhouses are electrified, which makes it even more fun to put a fireplace in where the logs actually light up and shimmer as though they are burning, Christmas trees that light up, and the coach lamps out front lit up to welcome carolers!”

“You asked about wallpaper, and in fact, with an electrified house it is the best decision to wallpaper in order to hide the electrical tape wrapped around the walls of each room. In our shop, when we electrify a house for someone, we go once around the room (right above where the baseboard will end up) with our electrical tape to allow for outlets, once around the room at about 5 and a half to 6 inches to allow for sconces once the paper is put up and once across the ceiling for a hanging light fixture. Many of our chandeliers are made with beautiful Austrian Swarovski crystals and really enhance the finished look of a house.”

Recently, specialty dollhouses have been in the news. With the upcoming holidays in mind, five unfinished three-story wooden dollhouses were decorated by artisans, designers, and crafters and put up for a silent auction at the Johns Hopkins University’s Evergreen Museum and Library, reported the JHU Gazette this past November. One of the dollhouses was a decorated with English neoclassical elements. The auction was to benefit the restoration of Evergreen’s historic kitchen. The university’s Evergreen Museum is housed in a former Gilded Age mansion surrounded by Italianate gardens in Baltimore, MD.

An exhibit of indoor toys, such as, “beautiful dolls and exquisite dollhouses,” was shown this past summer at the Lyman Allyn Art Museum located just south of the Connecticut College campus in New London, CT, according to Connecticut College online news. There was an educational point to the exhibit. It was to think about the “cultural role toys have played in perpetuating modern notions of a good and happy childhood that emerged in the late 19th century,” according to the article titled, “Toys and Dollhouses not just playthings.”

Other sites that may be of interest, include an eHow blog about How to Decorate a Dollhouse
Helpful tips include:
1.“Ask your local wallpaper shop for sample books that are out of date. Many times, there will be wallpaper with small-scale prints or solids that are suitable for your dollhouse.”

2. “Cut a small photograph out of a catalog or reduce and photocopy a family photo and frame it with trimmed and painted matchsticks.”

3. “Knit or crotchet a rug. This looks like a braided rug and can be made in colors to match your dollhouse decor.”

Christmas | Christmas Miniatures For Your Dollhouse
This site suggests decorating ideas for Christmas, including the “people” in the dollhouse. “Bringing Out the miniature people in the house to celebrate. is a good idea. Dress them playing in tiny clothes and put them in snow. Consider what would a family do on a Christmas Eve and replicate the same on a smaller scale.”

Mirabella Miniatures in Fairfield, CT, offers many miniatures – including decorations for the holidays
Store tour

With the holidays, it must be especially gratifying to look at the decorated dollhouses.

“It is a wonderful hobby for ALL ages,” said Ms. Vallon of Whimsies Dollhouse Shop.

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