Maud Humphrey

Maud Humphrey

Tuesday, December 13, 2016

My First Old Dollhouse--a KEYSTONE!

I LOVE dollhouses.  My father made one for me when I was child, and then another one when I was teenager and had more specific tastes.  The second one was quite large--four floors with a total of 11 rooms (I think).  It was Victorian, with a mansard style roof that opened to reveal the attic.  I worked for hours on that dollhouse, decorating and making furniture.  Unfortunately, I lost it in a house fire we had several years ago.  I know there are pictures of it somewhere...I will try to find one and post it later.  All this to say, I have loved dollhouses and miniatures ever since I was a little girl.  I have a huge, Rubbermaid box full of furnishings I've collected for my "someday" dollhouse.   I have notebooks full of sketches for a house I'd like to build one day.  But a few days ago, as I was perusing an antique mall for the perfect Christmas gift for my secret pal from my doll club, this caught my eye:
It's a Keystone of Boston dollhouse from the 1940's!  My heart did a little pitter-pat as I got close enough to inspect it.  As you can see in the photo, a good chunk of the lithograph is missing from the front, right corner.  No problem, because I can easily replicate that with paints.  The chimney is missing.  Again, not really an issue since I'll just make another one.
One of the sides.  Both sides are identical, so I'm only showing you one.  This is Keystone's "Colonial" style house.
The graphics inside are nearly perfect!  It is missing a couple of stairs from the spiral staircase, and one metal shutter from the upper left room. 
Can you believe that I walked out of that antique mall without buying it?  And then I spent a very fretful night at home, tossing and turning and wondering if it might still be there the next day?  Why I didn't buy it right on the spot when I first found it is beyond me.  I guess I may have been worried about where to put it.  And since it's a slightly smaller scale than the standard 1:12 furniture I already own, what would I furnish it with?  It needs 1:16 scale furniture, or 3/4 scale to be exact.  But by the next morning, I knew I had to have it.  I drove back to the antique mall, worried that it would already be gone.  In fact, it had been moved and I couldn't find it right away!  I was so disappointed.  But then, with great relief, I finally spotted it.  It was MINE!
So now it's home, sitting on my bedroom floor, waiting for me to find it a better display area.  And guess what?  I already have some antique dollhouse dolls that are the perfect size for it, and some furniture for each room, courtesy of a good doll friend in my club who had extra and was willing to sell it to me!  The wooden furniture is by Strombecker, the perfect era to fit into this house.
I will be back soon with more pictures, I promise.  I can hardly wait to start furnishing this darling, 40's era style house!

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