Monday, December 8, 2014

Christmas Open House - Marx Tin Litho Tour #1

If you know me at all, you will know that I am very attracted to "Little" things.  Maybe that's why I love dolls so much - to me they are like little people.  I believe they have expressions and personalities of their very own!

Don't send the paddy wagon for me yet - this post isn't about dolls!  But is is about dollhouses... or one particular doll house, to be exact.

Some time ago I purchased a 1950's Marx Tin litho doll house from a Antique store here in town.  I only paid 35.00 for it and I can remember at the time thinking that 35.00 might even be too much for an old piece of tin.  It was, however in really good shape.  No rust anywhere and just just missing a wall between the master bedroom and the bathroom, and an outside dormer... or so I thought.  It is a large colonial home, with a rooftop patio, but I have since discovered that something is missing from the opposite side of the house - perhaps a garage, or maybe even a fall-out shelter - seriously some early models of these large colonials did indeed have fall-out shelters, believe it or not!  I am now pretty sure that my house had awnings over the windows at one time, as well, as there are little holes above the windows as if something used to be attached there.

The house sat in the closet of my craft room for a long time without me even thinking about it, and then one day this past summer I was looking for something else in there and I re-discovered it.

I wasn't in a very stable place health-wise, and maybe even head-wise at the time, but seeing the empty house sparked an interest in something that I had long forgotten I once liked.

I brought it out, set it up in my craft room and decided it might be a nice past-time to work on it once in awhile.

The first thing I did was look for furniture.  The rooms in this old house were bare, and after spending hours online it became pretty clear that acquiring original-type furnishings for this home would be not only expensive, but difficult as well.   My mind started creating ideas, and the next thing I knew I was looking forward to a project again. I wanted to fix, furnish and decorate it in time for Christmas...

The nursery came first.  I had acquired a few pieces of furniture from a doll friend of mine.  One of the pieces was a little child-sized bed.  I started there - crocheted a cover for the bed and a rug for the floor.   I had a stash of miniatures from my egg-making and miniature making days and in that stash I found many things I could use in that room.  I have mixed the scale a bit in this room, but even so, I am pretty happy with the way it turned out.  See the little holes on top of the window?  On the outside that would be the perfect position for a awning over the window.  I still need to make curtains for this broken window as well.

Next came the bathroom.  There was a wall missing between the master bedroom and the bathroom, so I cut a wall from a piece of tin I found in the basement shoved behind the furnace, and instead of painting it, I covered it with a yellow material on the side of the bathroom, and pink on the side of the bedroom.  The tub and the sink were acquired from my friend, and everything else I made... except the goose sitting on the tub.  The bathroom is minus a potty - this family is going to have to use outdoors accommodations for while, until I can locate a toilet!

This family even has toothbrushes and soap....

Then it was on to the dining room.  My major problem here was that I had absolutely no dining room furniture.  So I decided to turn it into a music room instead.  Who needs a dining room anyway when you have a perfectly good kitchen to share a meal in?

I found a Chrysnbon Kit to make a pump organ on Ebay, and I was so excited because I had had one exactly like it in a house I had made in the 1970's... and so my music room was born.  I will eventually make a spinet or a harpsichord for that room, but in the meantime, I ripped a harp off my own Christmas tree (again not the correct scale) and put a HiFi  in the corner.  A saxophone sits on the bureau.  I made the lamp from some beads, and knit the rug on the floor.  This room is not exactly how I would want to keep it, but for now, it will do.  Did you notice the candles on the organ... made simply from pieces of toothpicks, some artificial flower stamens, and a simple jewelry finding.

The best is yet to come... Master bedroom, kitchen and living room all decorated for Christmas.  Check back tomorrow - you won't be disappointed!

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