May 16, 2010

Moving Blog - Free Giveaway for Followers

I moved this blog. Good Bye, Hello »

The pictures on the right, are of posts that are waiting for you on the new blog. Here are a few of the reasons for the move:
1. By sheer coincidence, I have published 33 posts each year since I started this blog. So #33 seemed like the right time sign off on Dream Dollhouses and move to something more representative of what I do.
2. "Mini Houses" sounds way more modern than "dollhouses". "Modern" pretty much encompasses Contemporary Modern, Retro Modern and Vintage Modern, whereas "Dream" could be just about anything.
3. If you tell people you collect "dream dollhouses" they usually say "hmm, that's nice" and end the conversation thinking you live alone with 30 cats. If you tell people you collect "Modern Mini Houses" they seem more interested and I've been surprised by how many people actually want to talk about Le Corbusier.
4. Eventually, I plan to sell modern miniature houses, so after mulling over domain names for the last year, was the best fit that wasn't already taken in some form (sorry there's nothing there now, I just bought the domain, no hosting yet). I like the benefits of blogger so I'm moving this blog to have the matching name. When I'm not blogging, raising two kids and oh yeah working, I've been designing some plans inspired by the Case Study houses and some vintage German houses. Just plans, no prototypes yet. As soon as I have prototypes, they willl be on the new blog.
5. I know the name Modern Mini Houses is similar to MiniModern (who I idolize) but I feel it better captures what I want my blog to focus on (modern miniature houses). When I started this blog, there were so few blogs on modern minis, I intentionally left modern out of the name as I didn't want to copy her. But when I tell people about my blog,, it just doesn't quite describe it right.
6. Modern Mini Houses - MMH - are also my initials in real life.

Things to come on the new blog... I'm working on a post all about scales with a cheat sheet buying guide to help you buy the right scale, plus many posts on where to buy modern minis, more houses old and new, and whatever else modern I can drum up.

Free Giveaway for Followers of New blog!

Dear 113 Followers,
A. Wright, AF4564, Alafosca, Alison, Altera, amaya, Amber, Amy's Miniatures And Smalls, Ana Anselmo, Anama, *annina*, Anneke, aru, Ascension, BabbsBoutique, BarkingHill Studio, Beatriz, Brujita, callsmall, Carey, Carol, CasitaMini, Cathy, Chelle, Christina, Christine Ward, Cinnamon Sticks 46, Criscrisostomo, Cristiane Derizans, dales_dreams, Daphne Bassi, Dave Root, Debbie, diepuppenstubensammlerin, donald harvey, dora, Emily, Eva Krog, fayjk, fliss cockcroft, George the Miniguy, Glenda, Greenlupa, HannahFKW, insizlane, Jaie, Janice, jettatwix, Jolie, Josje, Kal Wallace, Karin, Kayjay, KLC, ✂♥ laura♥ ✂, LA CUBO, laprincesasarita, Lara, Lena, Lene Dee, LifeAdorned, Lisa Gerinder, Lize, lmdm65, Luli Alves, MAGF, Mags Cassidy, MAIJA, marivigano, Mary Williams, mberras, Meli Abellan, Mels Miniatures, MINILISA, Minilover, Minna, Missy, missyscott99, moetjatja, MONTSE, My Realitty, Myrealitty, Natalia, Natalie, neomig, NĂºria, Oese, Patricia Cabrera, PetitPlat Food Art, Pubdoll, Rebecca, Rosa (MiniC.), sandstock, Sans DD, Shelly S, Shriara Navarro, sinem yildirim, smidge girl, sonyait68, Studio SWS, studioseven, Susan, Susan Ghearing, sylvia, tarkus, The Lone Dollier, TINK, tinystuffs, ulla voijola, Victoria, Victoria Kleist, Violet, Zadie Xa,

I really appreciate all of you following this blog and I hope you will come with me to my new address. As a way to say thank you to everyone who follows me, I will have a surprise giveaway to one follower. Just sign up to Follow the new blog by Wednesday, May 26 8pm PST (my birthday) and your name will be automatically entered in the drawing. »

Hope to see you there,

May 14, 2010

Plattenbau - Hochhaus

"Plattenbau - Hochhaus" 1966, Moritz Gottschalk, VERO

Okay, deja vu. I'm guessing many of you have already seen this VERO house over on Puppenhaus Museum and other places, but I was cleaning up my old computer and found some photos that I hadn't posted (more to come). Unfortunately, I didn't keep track of where I found these photos. Does anyone recall what website these two photos are from (Modern MC)? The appear to be the same house that is in the newspaper article at the end of the page at Puppenhaus Museum.

Anyway, I've hung on to these photos, as one day I'd like to build something similar, but for now that "to build" list just keeps growing and growing and ... I swear one day I will finish building a new house. Seriously. :)

Kaleidoscopes on Craigslist & eBay

If you live driving distance from San Francisco, CA or Grand Rapids, MI there are are two Kaleidoscopes Houses up on Craigslist.

San Francisco posting: $225. "Has been used, has some scratches and the white has yellowed a bit, but perfect for actual kid use (rather than the collector). Furniture not included." I would have bought this one in this condition, if I didn't already have one. Just a note, white plastic yellows with age so every Kaleidoscope house will have that discoloration. Gives it that antiquey look.

Grand Rapids posting: $300. "Was his daughter's, but she didn't play with it very much. Excellent condition. Has some furniture." I would jump on this if I lived close.

There is one on eBay in Gillett, NJ going for $425 + $199 shipping to continental US only. But it looks well used based on the condition of the furniture and cracks in the acrylic. In this condition and price plus shipping, I would pass on this one. If you are local, you could offer less if it doesn't sell. The small cracks are in the wall structure of the house which would be hard to replace, but the two large cracks in the removable yellow panel could be replaced with a new piece of acrylic from a plastics store. Depends on how bad you want one a K House.

(images from SF Bay Area craigslist post)

May 12, 2010

brinca dada - Bennett House

Altera posted this yesterday, but here are some photos; I'm still drooling.


Got an email from Modern MC who of course is super excited about the Bennett House, but with her collection is going to have to get creative to find a place for it. She has been getting emails asking about the "single set of stairs for the structure," and she wanted to pass along the information that "the Bennett will also have a working elevator. How cool is that?" Very cool indeed! Thanks so much for the update MC. We miss you!


Check out brinca dada's Facebook photos to see the latest designs of the Bennett House. Wow! Just heard back from Doug Rollins from brinca dada. Looking at the photos, I originally thought they were working on two different versions, but lo and behold, their beyond talented designer and architect, Tim Boyle, came up with an ingenious way to open the house. So the photos are the same house just opened and closed! I had to stare at the house for a bit to figure out how it opens; kudos dadas, the Bennett House is truly amazing. They plan to have the house ready for the holidays. Yes these holidays, 2010. I know what I'm getting for Christmas!

The Bennett House will be ¾" scale, same as the Emerson House. They have designs finished to furnish the entire house and are working on prototypes now. I love the living room designs on their website and can't wait to see what they come up with for the dining room, kitchen, kid's bedroom, master bedroom, bathroom and home office. I will be counting down the days until I can start buying.

(all images from brinca dada's facebook page)

Double Take

Wow. Its taking me long enough just to build one kit, let alone two?!? I can only imagine how many hours it took to build this 3 1/2 story house from two Lake View kits from Dolls House Emporium. Well if you live driving distance from Menstrie, Clackmannanshire, United Kingdom, this one of a kind house could be yours for £350.00 (auction starts at £300.00) on eBay UK.

The built house is cheaper than if you bought both kits, the £140 Bespaq fitted kitchen from Maple Street, the "wrought iron" staircases and wall cupboards in the garage.

(all images from eBay UK listing Item number: 220601854207. Seller dollshouseclassics0125)

May 2, 2010

MoMA Modern Play House Review

Petite Nouveau posted a ton of detailed pictures of the contents of the new MoMA Modern Play House, that you can check out here.

There are so many things I love about this house, first it's only $19.99! At that price I was really impressed by the quality. The sturdy cardboard of the reversible nesting boxes and thick glossy furniture/flooring look like they will hold up well with continued use.

The furniture is a snap to assemble. You just punch it out, insert the tabs into the slots, and you are ready to decorate. The table tops and seat cushions are reversible offering multiple options for the furniture. The vibrant walls and flooring along with the modern accessories lend to the "out of the box" approach to creating any design you can imagine.

The best part for me is that you can actually fit everything back in the boxes, making this a truly portable house that you can take anywhere. My 3 1/2-year-old son and I set up these rooms together and his favorite part was decorating with the vinyl clings. I can see this being hours of fun for kids of all ages, and young at heart adults as well.
MoMA Modern Play House $19.99
MoMA Modern Play Family $12.99

Vintage Mini-Modern House BACK on ebay

Apparently the price was not right. Looks like there were no takers at the $850 starting price so they dropped the opening bid to $499. Still only local pick up in NY. Any takers?

For more info on the house check out my previous post or "My Vintage Dollhouses and Other Treasures" blog post.

(image from ebay listing)

Apr 30, 2010

Katina Beales' Art Deco Dollhouse

Alice Bell wrote a great article on Katina Beales' Art Deco Dollhouse in (Custom Dolls, Houses, & Miniatures) February 2010 Newsletter. Katina Beales spotted a 1:24 scale Art Deco style house at the Kensington Doll's House Festival in 2006. She commissioned Chris Rouch of Toptoise Design, to build this 1:12 scale version that is 36" wide by 27" long, 21" high on two stories and 10" high one story.

If anyone has any information on the builder please share. All I could fine was a 1993 directory listing on "Chris & Joan Rouch, Toptoise Design, Selkirk, Scottish Borders". I would love to see more of their work. The listing says they make collector houses and furniture specializing in the designs of Charles Rennie Mackintosh, Art deco, Victorian and Scottish vernacular buildings. Chris & Joan Rouch are also endorsed by Glasgow School of Art to reproduce their furniture collection. Considering they have been around since at least 1993 and have work showing in US exhibitions and museums (not sure which ones) you would think there are photos of their work on this interweb thing.

The house is full of beautiful custom pieces, but I laughed when I read the one thing the builder said when he delivered the house was "Do not over-furnish the house!" Really good advice. The article didn't have credits for the pieces in the study, but the living area has several artists filling this room.

I love the custom fireplace screen by Barbara Sabia (based in Melbourne, Florida, she specializes in miniature stained glass. The fireplace screen is the 15th image on this slide show of her work followed by images of the sconces that are also used in the bathroom photo below). The Dragon Screen is a one of kind made by Terence Stringer (Norfolk, England). The white leather chairs are by Arlette's Miniatures (Sutton Coldfield, England). All the other furniture in the living area was been made by Kim Selwood Miniature Furniture (UK). I would love to know where she got that fabulous silver cylinder mesh lamp next to the fireplace. Anyone?

Katina really did her homework on this house. For many of the custom pieces, she gave photos to the builders who recreated authentic Art Deco pieces. The bath room set was made by Lenham Pottery Models (Norfolk, UK) from pictures she found in magazines. The tiles in the bathroom are hand painted real ceramic by Tiny Ceramics (Germany). The furniture in the bedroom is again made by Kim Selwood Miniature Furniture (UK). The kitchen cabinetry was also custom built from photos by, yep you guessed it, ELF Miniatures (London, UK) - I LOVE LOVE LOVE the work of Elizabeth LePla, and love seeing how much her selection has grown over the years. One day I will own a house completely furnished by ELF Miniatures.

The article is really a fabulous read, but the best part is that her husband bought her a large 16 room Georgian house that she plans to give a luxurious Georgian background with highly decorative features, but with MODERN FURNITURE. I CANNOT wait to see what she comes up with next. I really hope that Katina can find away to start a blog or share her photos. She truly has the start of an amazing collection.

(all information from Alice Bell's article, all images from Katina Beales on and

Apr 27, 2010

The winner is... Boogie Beans

Congratulations Boogie Beans, you won the MoMA Modern Play House! Please go to my profile and send me an email with your mailing address. Thanks for playing everyone!

Petite Nouveau got hers yesterday and posted a great review with awesome photos, check it out and sign up for her give away ending Friday.

Thanks to everyone who has recently found and enjoyed my blog, and thanks to everyone who have been there along the way. I hope to have more giveaways in the future.

Apr 24, 2010

KidKraft Designer Dollhouse

I have to send a HUGE Thank You to KidKraft for building a truly modern kids dollhouse. The KidKraft Designer Dollhouse is 33.54" x 13.58" x 45.66" and 39 lbs, 1:6 scale and perfect for Barbie. Darn it! If only it came in 1:12 then I'd really be jumping for joy, but at least I know what my daughter's first dollhouse will be.

I love the couch and Flos Arco Floor lamp, and the faux orange Arne Jacobsen "Egg" chairs. The kitchen furniture is clean lined but dull compared to the modern Hoppy style bar stools and Eero Saarinen Tulip Table & Chairs in the dining room. Besides the great modern bed and nightstand, the bedroom boasts a faux Eero Aarnio Bubble Chair. Too cool!

I love the spiral staircase and the ultra modern bathtub. The Designer Dollhouse scores 5 stars from reviews on Amazon. It takes about 1-2 hours to assemble, but people are surprised by the quality and think the pictures don't do it justice. I own a KidKraft garage, kitchen, train table and train set for my son, and I'd agree that KidKraft makes durable and quality products, and has great customer service. This will definitely be in my, er um, I mean my daughter's dollhouse collection. Price ranges from $102.54-$170 depending on where you shop.

(all images from

Apr 20, 2010

FREE Giveaway: MoMA Modern Play House

Chronicle Books contacted me after finding my blog through the New York Times article. I jumped at the opportunity to review their new MoMA Modern Play House that will be released tomorrow for $19.99. One is in the mail and I can't wait to see it. Please check back for my review.

Free Giveaway

Chronicle Books has also generously offered a house to one of my readers with an address in the US or Canada (sorry everyone else). To enter the free give away, add a comment to this post, OR click on my profile and send me an email.
Enter by Tues. Apr. 27th 8:00pm PST. I will add all names in a hat, randomly pull a winner, and post results next week. I will contact the winner for their address on the 27th. Good luck and THANKS Chronicle Books!!!

Here are details on the MoMA Modern Play House, there's also a video to check it out and a Modern Play Family for $12.99 as well:
Create a delightfully modern house with this innovative set of modular nesting boxes! Aspiring architects and designers of all ages can create modern spaces, arrange furniture and accessories, and pack it all up to go with this distinctive house!

• Kids and adults can create infinite designs and layouts
• Includes 6 nesting boxes that create walls and rooms, 8 pieces of furniture and 12 removable vinyl clings
• Chic, contemporary designs created with the New York Museum of Modern Art

(all images from Chronicle Books website listings for MoMA Modern Play House and MoMA Modern Play Family)

Vintage Mini-Modern Dollhouse on eBay

Sigh, another reason I wish I lived in NY and had more disposable income. This handcrafted 1:12 scale, 4 foot x 4 foot base, approximately 2 feet high is available for pick up only with a starting bid of $850 on ebay.

(Thanks for the info TSS!) The dollhouse plans were designed by architect Ira Grandberg in 1976. The eBay listing does not credit the builder or when it was built, but it looks like it was built using Ira's plans. I like the wallpaper, could loose some of the flooring, but this house is pretty incredible. I'm not sure I'd call it the "The Ultimate Vintage Mini-Modern Dollhouse" but they did, and here are the details from the ebay listing.

A dollhouse of this design (not this house, but the original) was built in 1976 and presented to the museum of the city of new york and is part of their famous dollhouse collection.

This house features:
Clean lines and varied spaces waiting to be furnished
All the roof pieces and second-story bedroom section lift off
Herringbone design real brick pathway to front door
Garage has small slate threshold
Pergola with potting bench
Entrance hall and stairs
Gallery / solarium with skylight
Living room
Dining room
Powder room
Pantry / bar
Kitchen with skylight
Master bedroom
Bathroom on second story with small hallway
Passageway from garage to kitchen has skylight
Textured grass base landscaped with 2 trees
Windows of various sizes some glazed some not
Wallpapered and finished flooring throughout

Again, it's local pickup only in Brooklyn, New York. Rats!

(all images from bigbus390's ebay listing)