It has to be said that when it comes to children’s toys, there are most definitely fads and trends. Each year throws up the new, must have toy, the one that every parent begs, steals and borrows to make sure it is in their child’s Christmas stocking. In the past this has included Telly Tubbies, Tracy Island, Furbies, Cabbage Patch Kids and Tamagotchi’s. These toys often come and go, a flash in the pan that disappears when the next new thing comes along. But there is a toy that continues to delight and fascinate children in equal measure, one that has been around for many years, and will continue to be around for many years to come. That toy is the Dolls House.
Dolls Houses are as popular now as they have ever been. They regularly appear in the top ten toy lists, and are both enduring and durable, being well made toys that last. They are also popular with adults, used for display purposes, decorated beautifully and often a real labour of love, with collectors scouring vintage and antique fairs for furniture and accessories for their treasured possession.
In the guide to a 2014 dollhouse exhibition the V&A Museum of Childhood, it was said
“The attraction of the toy house as a child’s plaything is obvious but…it also remains a compelling hobby for adults, who spend large sums of money and much time in pursuit of perfection in their miniature world.”
These days doll houses are big business. You can get just about everything you need for them, from the smallest of accessories, to specially created dolls house wallpaper that allows you to create beautiful rooms and settings for your house, including panels that look like a library, or a fire place. Doll Houses range in price too, you can buy ‘starter homes’ from the likes of high street stores Argos and Asda and are perfect for small hands, or Antique Georgian style houses more suitable to adult collectors for what can only be described as eye watering amounts.
If you have a dolls house, make sure you love and treasure it, and look after it. Remember, Astolat Castle, the most valuable dollhouse in the world, has an estimated value of $8.5 million. It’s certainly not just kids play!