As I've mentioned, two of my dolls houses (the Cupboard House and the Lines Country Villa (and the Lines Letchworth which is my sister's) were gifts from my grandmother. She began collecting dolls houses in about 1964. I'm not sure exactly how many dolls houses she had in her collection, but here are some of her others.
I'm sure many of you will recognise these - at the left, there is a Hobbies house, and next to it is a Triang Princess dolls house, which was available from about 1932 to 1957. On the far right is a Triang No 50. The one in the middle looks familiar, but I don't recognise it - can anyone help?
My grandmother kept her dolls houses and dolls in a bedroom at the end of a corridor in her house, Unicorn Cottage. We called it GranJean's gallery (one of my cousins christened it). I don't know if there are any photos of it, but I've just found a clipping of an article about it that was published in the Cobham News in 1972.
In the article, my grandmother said that she was still working on furnishing the Princess dolls house, and wanted to make it homespun with a Welsh flavour. Did she ever do this? I don't remember seeing the inside of this house, so I don't know.
Today, these four houses sit on a high shelf in the Brighton Toy & Model Museum:
UPDATE: Annina has visited the museum and taken much better photos of the Hobbies house and Triang Princess, as well as some other wonderful exhibits! Thank you, Annina :-)
This museum also houses her antique French school, which I remember clearly from GranJean's Gallery:
and also some of her dolls ( I don't think all of these were hers):
I wish I had photos of the dolls house room. The article says that "she has a modern doll's house complete with all electrical mod cons, its plastic glasses contrasting with those of fine Bristol glass in the oldest house." I remember a plastic house with a swimming pool - perhaps it was a Lundby house? Also, according to the Cobham News, there was "a special little doll's house where [children] can touch and play as well as look, and she has peopled it with mouse-characters." I do remember the mice - but I thought they lived in the room across the corridor ...
My grandmother sometimes showed her collections, and I have some photos of her dolls on display.
These photos were taken in 1960 and 1964, before she really started collecting dolls houses, so they show mainly her international and antique dolls.
Also, on a chair in the drawing room, her bears and her doll Bambina - Bambina is a Martha Chase doll, but had a wig added. (My grandmother is standing in the photo on the left; the two women in the photo on the right are my mother's governess and her sister.)
8 hours ago