It All Starts Here

Sometimes our ideas flow from an existing kit to bash, a house style to scratch (aka custom) build, or from an interesting doll who needs a place to live. Our settings are always modern-day (ca. 2001 when we started this hobby). We try to create things that will make people smile and feel good.

We think that if we had to build the same house twice, we literally could not do it! Fortunately, we have very unique little people who have definite opinions and so far, no one has wanted a house “like so-and-so” has.

We work as a family unit: my wonderful husband, my beautiful sister, and I. We don't always agree as to the direction of the build, but I think that we end up with a better dollhouse because of all our grumblings -- and we do have a lot of fun!

The Purpose of this Blog

We needed a place for all we wanted to say about the background of the build and the nuts and bolts of the design and build process. Thus this blog.

All our dolls' homes have families living in them and a story is built around their personalities and lifestyles. This story is an integral part of our building process. We would like to share these stories -- actually, the little people insist upon it!

Many of our houses are located in Fredericksburg, Virginia because that is my sister's favorite place.

Also, we have started a Rouges' Gallery with photos of our little people and information about the dolls.

If you would like to start with the dollhouse that "started it all", it is the Original Rowbottom Manse; if you would like to see the scratch-built Georgian that our first build gave us the confidence (or fool-hardiness) to do, it is Sunnybrook Farm.

Let the stories begin!

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Saturday, September 21, 2013

Montclaire House - Party on dude!

The Game Room
I have been working on the attic rooms in the main house (when I have been working on minis). The attic has two rooms: a game room and a music room.
The main house attic rooms
The stairs to the attic are boxed in and the doors to the rooms are off the “attic hallway” (unseen and non-existent).

The Game Room
I wasn’t sure how this room was going to develop until I thought of the Bespaq Bar and two chairs. After I saw the price, I still wasn’t sure how this room was going to develop. Then fortune smiled. I found one on eBay with a starting price of $99.00! I bid $101 and I won it! For some reason, it wasn’t popular that day. I couldn’t believe my luck.
Bespaq bar
It was also a good thing that I had decided to bash the attic into a large area with 9 inch ceilings since the bar is 6 x 6 x 8 ½ inches tall! Actually, I always expand the attic on kits as they are always too small and unrealistic if you want to place any furniture.
The expanded attic.
I wasn’t sure what to do for the walls until I remembered a real house exotic wallpaper border remnant that I had. The remnant wasn’t very long thus it was a good thing that I didn’t need to put any behind the bar. The “solid” real house wallpaper at the front ends of the room is just a soft beige-white swirl texture. The rest of the room just fell into place with the other furnishings that came with the house.

The Game Room--just need to install the lights and stock the bar.
The HBS Palladian double door will have stained glass windows as will the upper “windows” on the bar.

The floor is Random Plank from HBS and the “baseboard” is basswood stripwood.

The floor and the wood trim are stained MinWax Puritan Pine and varnished.
I just have to install the lights and stock the bar and then the parties can begin!

The Music Room
Music Room, some day
I have lots of furnishings and musical instruments, but need inspiration for placement.

I am thinking of a soft, muted pinkish multi-color wallpaper (don’t know the brand or name). The muted pattern reminds me of music by Debussy—if that makes any sense!
Wallpaper "something" like this
I think I’ll use a soft rose or white carpet on the floor, or maybe just wood flooring … still thinking.



  1. Hi Iris
    I love the games room, you got a really great deal on the bar!! I love it when that happens.
    The panelled walls add interest and I can't wait to see the music room.
    Best wishes

    1. Thank you Simon.

      I have seen bids on that bar (with and without chairs) go into the high $200 and higher than that in a local dollhouse store.

      The game room was fun to do once I decided what to do!

  2. WOW, what a score on the bar, Iris. Congrats! It's truly GORGEOUS! I love how the RL wallpaper worked in the space. I like to play with dollhouse scale and I gather you do, too? It totally works here, so great job! Looking forward to seeing the future music room improvements.


    1. Yes, I do like to play with dollhouse scale--it adds another level of fun to the projects--of course. it doesn't always work out!

      Glad you like the room.

  3. I really like that Game room and what a steal for that bar I was shocked when I saw how much they wanted for them.

    it's coming along well


    1. The bar is definitely pricey, but I was amazed by the amount of detail that is in the bar on the inside. also--completely filled with shelves and drawers

  4. Those Bespaq bars are very expensive. They are very attractive but I wouldn't have bought it except for the great buy! It does make a room, though!

  5. It looks a great place for a party Iris! the bar looks stunning! just needs filling with booze!!!

    1. Yes, now to get to the "party" stuff--good drinks and good food and good company!

  6. Hello Iris,
    The attic room is wonderful! you used the space incredibly well and created a very warm and welcoming room. what fun people will have there. I cannot wait to see the music room!
    Big hug

    1. Thanks -- it turned out as well as I hoped, thank heavens!

      Now the music room ... hmmm.... for the moment a bit of a mind block here--I keep designing and then re-designing ... oh well!