When I first got into miniatures, I was excited by all the kits that were available for the person just starting out. I looked at hundreds (yes, that’s not an exaggeration) and picked ones that were inexpensive as I was in Graduate School and pretty broke, even though I was working full time (classes at grad school cost a minimum of $4000, per class. It is not easy to come up with that kind of cash every four months). Sometime, I will put up some pictures of my kit projects.
The Reed Dollhouse was designed by Jean Nordquist and I fell in love with it the second I saw it. It was out of my price range at the time, but when the quarantine started it seemed a good time to shell out for it.
In the kit you get the precut unpainted wooden pieces, full color directions (in English, thank heavens. Another time I’ll tell you about a kit that came with only Chinese directions). And all the lithographs you need to finish the house, exterior and interior.
The outside of my reed house came out pretty good. Though I think I might need some plants next to the portico and possibly a brick or stone path leading to the door.
The interior of Reed House has two rooms. Based on the provided wallpaper, they are a parlor on the top floor and a kitchen on the bottom floor. I decided that it would be fun to do all the furniture and details in paper to go with the lithography provided by Jean Nordquist designs.
As it turns out, in that time period, paper toys were very popular. They would publish dolls and furniture in the newspaper, even. The Boston Sunday Globe published some cute ones.
There were a lot more choices than I thought there would be. Ultimately, I chose these two sets from McLoughlin Bro’s Paper Furniture set From the 1890’s. Obviously, I didn’t use all of the furniture, which I scanned and printed on card stock.
I also used the cat from a sheet from the Universal Toy and MFG Company.
I got the food from yet another set, shown below:
Here is how the interior of the house looks:
The only thing in the house that is not made entirely of paper, is the floor lamp on the top floor. I used a tooth pick for the base of the lamp. Also, both the lamps do light up with tiny 3mm LEDs.
This was a really fun little project and I thank Jean Nordquist designs for the kit.