Sunday, February 15, 2009
Virginia Princess Anne Colonial Dollhouse
This dollhouse was built by a New York Art Students League scholar on the eve of WWII for his daughter. With details and proportions faithful to gambrel roofed houses called 'Princess Anne' colonials, this 18th century style miniature home is scaled inch to the foot. Most houses of this size were built 'one room deep' at that time, but this home features the modern addition of a bright and airy kitchen.
Features include: exterior dentil molding at the roof-line front and rear, removable chimneys for easy packing and transport, and individually laid mahogany board floors in the living room and upper landing. My favorite feature is the grand paneled fireplace mantle in the slate blue formal living room, beautifully accented by tiny hand painted Delft tiles.
The dining room walls feature a Zuber-esque mural of trees in a verdant landscape; the vestibule floor is decorated in a black and white parquet, reminiscent of the itinerantly painted floors of the period. The upstairs 'bonus room' or nursery sports hand-painted cabbage rose 'wallpaper'.
The house is made of dense hardboard which was painted with many layers of color to achieve the realistic exterior salmon-brick finish and roofed in hand-painted artists board 'shingles'. Six dormers top the house, and the rear wall and roof are hung on finish nails as pegs. This is a one of a kind treasure, which has been carefully cherished by three generations. This really is every period miniaturist's dream home.