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My Little Corner of the Net

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Smithsonian Miniature finds

I had the opportunity to travel to Washington DC.  The Smithsonian was on my list of things to do.  I was surprised to find quite a few dollhouses scattered around in the National Museum of American History.

This first dollhouse belonged to the children of President Grover Cleveland and was made by the White House Gardener in 1896.  It was part of a display of the toys of the White House Children.

This green roofed dollhouse belonged to Amy Carter, daughter of former President Jimmy Carter.  It dates from 1979.  The mailbox had the address "1600 Pennsylvania Avenue" painted on it.

This charming little bungalow was with a display of toys from the 1920's.  I have found this house in Diane Zillner's Book Antique Dollhouses and their Furnishings.  It states that the roof flips up and that that it was probably made in Germany.  The railing on the porch and the textured shingles are made from pressed cardboard.

 I was surprised to come across this display.  I had not heard of Faith Bradford or her dollhouse - but it was amazing.  It had everything from Tynietoy to homemade and antique pieces. The display also has a scrapbook that the she kept on the collection.

The collection was donated to the Smithsonian in 1951.

Here is a picture I found online of Faith Showing the house back in 1966.  It was curteousy of the Washington Star.

There is a good website here that has details about each of the rooms:

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Donna Lee Doll House Furniture

The Donna Lee line of furniture was produced during the 1940's and was less expensive than other brands that were popular during this time.  Woodburn Manufacturing of Chicago produced the 3/4" scale furniture.  The box sets that I have are pink and blue, which was produced in the late 1940's.   One of the things that I like best about this set is that "Donna Lee" was the name of Dave Rapaport's daughter, the president of the company.  The furniture is pretty primitive with not much detail.   

I was able to purchase three box sets in the boxes a while back.  The bathroom and the kitchen boxes and furniture are in excellent condition.  The living room box is in pretty shabby shape.
 The bathroom set includes a tub, a toilet, a sink, a scale, a mirrored medicine cabinet, and a dressing table with a bench.
The kitchen set includes an ironing board and an over-scale iron along with a sink, stove, refridgerator, table and chairs.
The dining room has a table, 4 chairs, a china cabinet and a buffet.  It may have been played with?  I like the whimsical legs on the chairs.