“Mary and I set up our house on the bottom bookshelf in the living room. We use matchboxes for tiny beds and make a desk out of toothpicks.”
—Only One Year
So begins Sharon and Mary’s slow building of a miniature house, which they add to, improve, and modify for months.
I was not quite as creative as Sharon and Mary: I didn’t make my miniature furniture. Mostly I used Playmobil dolls and furniture, and an old metal dollhouse of my mother’s that was at least twice too big to be proper scale for the dolls I was using. That made it perfect, as I was not one to be satisfied with a one-family house: I turned that old metal dollhouse into a castle or a Jedi academy, and expanded onto the nearby floor—castles need medieval villages and academies need workshops and classrooms. They never actually got to learn, (or search for the holy grail), though; it was all about the endless arranging and rearranging, and imagining what they could do—for me, actually putting the dolls through the motions would have limited the possibilities.
As always, I’m curious about other people’s experiences—did you build or arrange or play with dollhouses? How and why?