Dollhouses were originally called “baby houses” and weren’t intended for children, instead they were elaborate display cases for carefully crafted miniatures made and collected by adults. However, in the 17th and 18th centuries workshops in Germany began to produce dollhouses for children, and dollhouses have enjoyed a popularity with both groups ever since. My favorite dollhouses are those created by Frances Glessner Lee. Lee’s doll houses called the “Nutshell Studies of Unexplained Death” are crime scenes in miniature, designed to train investigators to observe, evaluate, and ultimately discover the cause of death. They are extremely intricate and delightfully macabre.
Dollhouse, 5″x5″, ink and watercolor on illustration board