Thursday, May 27, 2010

Kitchen Table Scales

It's been a while since my last post - partly I was busy working on my part of an article about Keystone for Dolls Houses Past and Present, and partly I have been a bit down - having some ideas for posts, but not the energy to put them together. This weekend I decided that I would start decorating the inside of my Lines DH/D, even though I haven't finished scraping the outside. So I'll take photos of that in the next day or so, and meanwhile, here's one of my ideas!

Several of you have posted photos of your dolls house furniture in different scales. When I was putting together my dolls house study and the Super City mini-building, it occurred to me that it would be fun to stand pieces in different scales on top of each other.

These kitchen tables can also nest:

and by placing them next to each other and looking from above, you can see that the long end of the smaller table equals the short end of the bigger table!

The largest table is 1/10th scale, and is vintage German (from Oese). The next one is 1/12th scale, and is also vintage German - it came in my VERO Rügen, and I think it's Crailsheimer. The pale green soft plastic table is 1/16th - 1/18th - it says 'Made in England', and I think it's Kleeware. The next table is marked Kleeware - it's 1/24th scale, and hard plastic. Then there's a tiny 1/48th scale cream coloured plastic table, which I think is by the Ohio Art Company (or a copy of their furniture) - and the tiniest is 1/144 scale, from the Sylvanian Toys dolls house for their dolls house.

UPDATE: Oese wondered on flickr if the scale of the pink table might be 1/10th, and the wooden table larger still. It's a very sensible question - it's clear that the tables are different sizes, but as I didn't measure them or include a ruler in the photos, the actual size, and hence the scales, was not obvious. So, I've now measured them, and here are their actual dimensions and the dimensions they would be in 1:1 scale. (Only in metric so far - I have measured them in inches too, but multiplying inches is a bit more complicated, so one thing at a time!)

The wooden table is 15.4 cm long x 10.2 cm wide x 8.5 cm high.
In 1:10 scale, this makes it 1.54 m x 1.02 m x 85cm.

The pink table is 11 cm long x 8.3 cm wide x 6.7 cm high.
In 1:10 scale, that would be 1.1 m x 83 cm x 67 cm,
and in 1:12 scale, it would be 1.32 m x 99.6 cm x 80.4 cm.

The pale green table is 8.85 cm long x 5.8 cm wide x 4.7 cm high.
In 1:16 scale, that would be 1.41m x 92.8cm x 75.2 cm,
and in 1:18 scale, it would be 1.59m x 1.04m x 84.6 cm.

The white table is 5 cm long x 3.1 cm wide x 2.8 cm high.
In 1:24 scale, that would be 1.2m x 74.4 cm x 67.2 cm,
and in 1:30 scale, it would be 1.5m x 93 cm x 84 cm.

(I don't actually know if 1:30 scale exists for dolls house furniture, but I wanted to see what it would be in a smaller scale than 1:24.)

I don't actually have a real-life rectangular kitchen table, just a small round dining table and the built-in kitchen work benches. So I can't measure a 1:1 scale table! What do you think? I think I'd be happy with the wooden table in 1/10th scale and the pink one in 1/12th - but the pink one certainly could be 1/10th. Perhaps the wooden one could be 1/8th (1.23 m long x 81.6 cm wide x 68 cm high), but again, I'm not sure if there are many 1/8th scale dolls.

I'm not very strict about scale in my own dolls houses, and especially with vintage furniture from many different makers and old dolls houses, I tend to do what I do with clothes - try it and see if it fits, within a scale up or down. But that means knowing roughly what will be a good fit - so knowing about scales does have some use!

Sunday, May 9, 2010

Some Art Deco dolls house furniture

As I have a few houses which date from the 20s and 30s, and are modern in style, I have acquired some pieces of vintage art deco furniture for them. I recently photographed some sets for a friend's article for DHPP, and I thought I'd show them here too.

The first two sets are American. The Wisconsin Toy Company showed this 'Moderne Bed Room Set' in their 1930s catalogue. It's 1/12th scale. (There is a chair with the set too, but I forgot to photograph it!)

This set is in the main bedroom of my Californian bungalow-style house (where you can see the chair from the set):

According to Zillner and Cooper's Antique and Collectible Dollhouses and Their Furnishings, the Wisconsin Toy Company was based in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, between 1921 and 1936. They made furniture in other styles as well - I also have their nursery set, which is in the nursery of the same house.

Another art deco style bedroom set I have is made by the Jaymar Specialty Company, started by Louis Marx's father Jacob and sister Rose in the 1920s. This set was sold in about 1933 as the Happy Hour Doll House furniture; it's 1/18th scale.

As you can see, here the shape of the furniture is fairly simple - it's the printed design which gives it an art deco touch. Zillner and Cooper's book also shows kitchen, bathroom, living room and dining room Happy Hour furniture. Each set is a different colour - I'd especially like to have the red living room pieces, which also have a black art deco design on them.
UPDATE: Louise at Grandmas Attic has posted a picture of her houseful of Jaymar Happy Hour furniture! Wonderful - thank you, Louise!

This set is going in the kids' bedroom of my Triang 52, dating to 1939. This room needs more work, but looks like this at the moment:

This room also has some of my Jacqueline furniture, which I'll photograph for another post.

Also in the Triang 52 are some pieces I don't know the origin of. This chair and sofa are all metal, but the upper red surface feels like flocking or felt - I don't know how it's been done.

I also have a delightful little mirror and hanging clothes brush, with a raised art deco design in the metal:

Here they are in the house:

One day I'll make some curtains for this house!