Wednesday, May 30, 2012

The Dollhouse Story

Well, as most of you have probably figured out, I got a "new" dollhouse for my birthday last week!  I now have a total of 6 dollhouses in my studio! (How is that even possible?? Hoarder much??)  That's exciting by itself, but it's got a pretty interesting story attached to it as well!

But first I'll give you the grand tour...

 This is the back of the house- as you can tell, it was really meant to be shown only from the front side.  However, I may do some redecorating and pretty this side up.  I could add a "fake" front door, since there isn't one!

 I think this is my favorite room- the bathroom.  How sweet is the furniture and tile in here?

 My other favorite is the nursery.  Just as a side note, the vast majority of the furniture and decor that you're seeing came with the house.  I only added a piece or two that I already had (like the little changing table).

 How fantastic are these wicker chairs and couch??

 A fully outfitted kitchen- there are tons of kitchen items that are not even shown here- enough food to feed six other dollhouse families at least!

 The dining room.  The chairs are a little large in scale for the house, but they appear to be pretty old and are a nice quality.

 The living room- needs a bit more...

 These two rooms didn't come with much, so I'll get to outfit them myself!  However, as you can see, the house came with quite the family of porcelain cats and dogs!

So now onto the story of how all this came about!  As my birthday was approaching, I was surfing around on Ebay, looking for fun things to put on my "birthday list".  I figured that since it was my 40th, I could be a little extravagant and ask for something big- ha ha!  I frequently look at dollhouses there, just for fun, and came across this particular one.  The listing title was "Dollhouse Circa 1906".  I opened it up and fell in love with the photo of that bathroom!  Knowing that dollhouses always say "local pickup only", I thought, "too bad".  But I looked at the location just in case.  It was a town about 20 miles away from where we live!  It was meant to be!  I emailed the link to my husband, figuring that he'd roll his eyes at it and never possibly get me another dollhouse!

Well, obviously he did (it was actually probably a relief for him because it meant he didn't have to come up with a gift for me- ha ha!).  But the whole story doesn't end there.  Apparently he was the only bidder and won the house.  But then the sellers wouldn't respond to his emails.  With only a few days left until my birthday, they finally responded and told him they were relisting it because they had hoped to get more money for it!  What the what???  He responded back, telling then that legally it was now his, and they'd better cooperate!  They relented, and set up a time for him to pick it up.

When he got there, they were very nice (thankfully!), and told him the story of the house.  The house had belonged to the seller's recently deceased wife, who had acquired it from her grandmother, who got it in 1906.  He said his late wife had spent hours working in the dollhouse, even having tea parties with her friends to help decorate it.  He had tears in his eyes as he told the story.  My husband assured him it was going to someone who would love it equally as much, which made the man happy.

On my birthday, my husband wrapped up a box that came with the house.  This is on the outside of the box:

 It's a little hard to understand, but it seems to detail the dollhouse family (the Sanborns) and the several different times they moved during their life. Unfortunately, no actual dolls came with the house, so I guess it will have new occupants!

Inside the box was this deed!  It shows the transfer of the dollhouse between the different members of the family (from grandmother to mother to daughter, if I'm understanding it correctly!).  I guess maybe I should have a new deed made up that shows the transfer to me!

So anyway, there you have the story.  It's so much fun that I know some of the history behind the house.  Although I do plan on making some updates to it, it makes me much more sensitive to keeping all the pieces together, etc.  Several of the items in the house seem to be older, while others are newer, and obviously added by the most recent owner.  I plan on only adding older pieces, so that it preserves the integrity of the house.

My first step is to find some new owners for the house!  I've already been on Ebay, seeing if I can find a family that will take good care of it!

In my next post, I'll show you some of the other fun things I got for my birthday.  This dollhouse would have been enough, but I was so spoiled this year, I got several other fun things as well!!  It's too bad we can't have our own tea party so that I could show everything to you all in person!


Erica of Golden Egg Vintage said...

O.M.Gosh! It's just beautiful! The! I love the story! I had no idea that there was so much involved with dollhouses!
Erica :)

vintage grey said...

Corey this is such a beautiful dollhouse!! I love the bathroom, and the dining room!! Such fun furniture, and what history!! How neat to have the deed,too!! So glad it has a new home with you, where you will treasure, and have fun decorating it!! xo Heather

My Vintage Mending said...

Amazing...that is quite the story. I can't believe your luck. And then they wanted to just keep it and relist it? This one is a keeper. Can't wait to see the new family. Smiles...Renee

Musings from Kim K. said...

I just love happy endings. I'm so glad that this special house ended up with YOU! It was meant to be, stress and all. It is absolutely beautiful.

OliversForest said...

wow, what an amazing story! a deed to a dollhouse... what a hoot!

Deb Berthiaume said...

What a wonderful story. It was so thoughtful of the former owners to share the history of the house with you, and provide you with the Deed! I'm so glad to hear you will be trying to maintain the historical integrity of this house. You surely were meant to be the next owner. Enjoy!

Jenny Holiday & Aaron said...

Corey!! Ohhh myyy goooodness! First Happy Happy Birthday a smidge late! I may have wished you a happy somewhere else in the big old interweb..but just incase I didn't or you didn't see it.. :) WOWWW! It is amaaazing!! I can't even take it!! Yes..the bathroom! But just all of it!!!! The story! The deed!

Incredible!! It certainly went to the greatest home ever!!!

Happy playing!!
xo Jenny

Jenn said...

I am confused. Are you selling the house? At the end of your post you said you were looking for new owners for it. Just wondering.

Corey said...

Hi Jenn, No, I meant that I was looking for new dollhouse dolls for it (they would be the "owners" of the house!). Sorry it it was confusing! ~Corey

Tina Mitchell said...

that is so neat, the whole house and story and deed and everything. That house is a keeper for sure! It really looks like a real house from that time period too!

Anonymous said...

I have been searching for the perfect style dollhouse for my little girl. I found yours and fell in love. I would love to make her something a bit different altered to her needs but love the proportions of this house. Would you mind telling me the overall dimensions. Depth and ceiling height? I would really appreciate it thanks sylwia

Corey said...

Hi Anonymous,
The bottom two floors are 12"tall by 12"wide by 15" deep. The top floor is a little shorter and a little shallower. Hope this helps!