Described as a vintage dolls house in the auction catalogue, I just could not resist and went along to see what was on offer, could it be a long lost Triang Dolls house. In amongst old dusty furniture, books and decorative china on a rickety old bookcase sat a little dolls house. Not the rare Triang Dolls house I was hoping for, but quite sweet anyway. I’d take a chance and bid, it needed a good home and a little care and attention, I was sure I could make room for it. “£20 for the vintage dollshouse”, my hand shot up “Any more bids?”, and the hammer goes down. I was now the proud owner of ……….
When I got the house home, and took a closer look, it was to reveal a little secret of its own, the clue could be in the title!
This house was very much like a Triang No.61, the size of the house and the base, the front panel and fret work on roof. I knew that the door, windows and chimney were Romside, and that the two extra panels on each side were not original.There are two opening panels on the sides of the house, one opening panel is missing so I will have to make a new one. The top floor is divided into two rooms, with an extra wall. The back wall panel is not original, as it is normaly plywood.If this was a No.61 the bottom room on this side would be the sun porch, and there would only be one large room upstairs.
The other side opening panel. There has been a hole cut in the floor for a staircase, which the No.61 did not have. The bottom room on this side would be the garage, and would not have had an internal door into it. From this angle if the windows were original, it could easily be mistaken for a No.61. A little door has been added to get into the side room, which would have been the garage.
I removed the front panel from the dollshouse and started to gently scrape the paint away, I was to be rewarded with some very faded Triang flowers, along the sides of the panel and across the window box.
I removed the roof to show the top floor, the picture on the left shows the extra wall, the picture on the right without the wall. On the top floor I also discovered Triang floor paper.
I removed the shell of the house from the base, it shows three distinct paper areas brick – which would have been the sun porch, then parquet flooring – a downstairs room and then brick – the garage.I removed the windows and the wallpaper which covered the two extra front panels. This picture shows the outline of walls and floors, so these panels must have been made from the back panel of the old house.
This is the back of the house showing the hole for a battery and a contact switch to turn lights on and off. The wires connecting the lights and the switch are sandwiched between the new back panel and hardboard.
Showing the electrical circuit for the lighting in the house, the two square blocks contain a bulb, which goes through holes in the ceiling.
This house has Romside metal windows, doors and chimney. They are fixed into position with tiny pins/nails.Other metal items which were available from Hobbies, to go with dollshouse plans, which could be made at home. Items such as stairs, fireplaces and shutters were also available.
This chimney fits onto the roof by making a hole in the roof, and then dropping the metal rod into it.
The staircase was also made from a wall of the original dollshouse, as the wall paper can be seen.The roof has been remade with thick card, and covered with tiled roof paper.Below see how the chimney sits on the roof.
I have had to paint the doors and windows in one piece, as I did not know how to take them apart without doing damage to them. It was a bit fidley, but I am pleased with the result.I could not remove the acitate from the windows so I just gave them a good clean, only a couple were split a little so it does not realy notice.
I have painted the front and added some Triang style flowers.The house with its windows in and the front put together, I have not fixed it together properly yet as I think it will be easier to decorate the inside first. Also I need to fix the side opening walls.
I covered the roof with slate paper and sealed it with a mat antique pine varnish. The chimney has been refitted. I noticed the cream suround is a bit rusty, so I will need to repaint this.