Dollhouse Miniature Toys by D.K. Pritchett More photos
Dollhouse Miniatures: Toy Chest & Toys
This miniature toy box and the tiny miniature toys that go in it are handmade one-of-a-kind miniatures by D.K. Pritchett. They were auctioned separately between 2006 and 2007. The toys are smaller than halfscale, as they are meant to be toys for a miniature dolls. The highlight of the set is a "vintage" toy chest or toybox. It's not really vintage, just made to look that way. It is inspired by the old antique toy chests that are crudely made of thick, hand-hewn chunks of wood. The wood has been carefully distressed by the artist to give it that aged dark brown, almost buttery look of old wood. It looks like the wonderful old toy chest that your grandfather made by hand, cherished and passed down through the family as an heirloom. The two pieces of miniature "lumber" on the bottom of the box have big chunks taken out of them, as if they were quickly and carelessly hewn by an old hand axe. The side pieces are wider, and have more subtle chunks and grooves. Front and center of the lid of the toy box (not shown), has been distressed to look as if children have sat on the box, and played with it for several generations. The lid is hinged onto the toy chest by two imitation leather straps, (really paper) and look as if they really have tiny nails in them.
Most of the miniature toys have been aged to resemble vintage miniature toys or antique miniature toys. Two of the miniature dolls are so tiny that you can barely see their faces. One is a tiny miniature baby doll in a blue baby blanket or bunting, about one-half inch long, hand sculptured of polymer clay and hand-painted. Another miniature doll, also of polymer clay, is made to look like a porcelain lady doll (poly-clay) in a long, deep rose dress, 19th-century style. She is slightly taller than the miniature baby doll. There are five toy soldiers. Each miniature toy soldier is less than one inch tall. The tiny, miniature red top toy is barely over a quarter of an inch tall and really has string wrapped around it! Though made of polymer clay, it is made to look like a vintage wooden top. Some of the miniature toys really are made of wood! The miniature "vintage" pull-toy bunny is hand-carved from wood and hand-painted. The wheels are of polymer clay, with metal axles. Theoretically, the wheels really turn, though the uneven axles make them stick when they turn. The miniature pull toy has a tiny string just right for a dollhouse doll's tiny hand. Another toy is the tiny yellow rubber duck toy, made of polymer clay. It is barely one-half-inch long.
The most intricate miniature doll is the miniature toy jester doll. He is over an inch tall, so would be "lifesize" or almost "lifesize" to a dollhouse doll. He is dressed in traditional jester attire: red cap with bells, blue puffy britches and curled up shoes. He is made of polymer clay. Another special piece is the miniature teddy bear toy. The little teddy bear has tiny posable arms and legs. He is long-legged, but even with the long legs he's less than 1 1/2 inches tall. Sitting, he's only 3/4 inches tall! He's made of polymer clay, with black eyes and nose. He's 100 percent hand-sculptured and hand-detailed ~ even down to little pin-pricks in the clay to give it a fur texture. The big miniature rag doll is about the same size as the jester, so she would be very large, for a dollhouse child ~ almost lifesize, in fact. (I will probably sell her separately!) Her head is made of cloth, with eyes, eyebrows and mouth sewn in. Her pretty pink cheeks are painted. Her hair is of fuzzy string, done in thick curls. Her dress is of cloth, with an extremely tiny dogtooth-check pattern. It is black and gray. Her tiny arms and legs are of paper-mache (paper-clay). They are sewn on so that they dangle like a real rag doll. The bow on the back of her dress is of paper, painted black.
One favorite piece of everyone who looks at the set is the miniature cat basket, hand-sculptured of polymer clay. The tiny Siamese cat lies curled up, sleeping, atop a cream-colored or antique-white blanket that forms the lid of the basket. The miniature antique-gold-colored basket is just one-half inches in diameter at it's widest point. This piece is not intended as a real cat, but as a "porcelain" basket, that could be used by the dollhouse doll child as a miniature sewing basket or miniature trinket box.
Another special piece is the feathered Indian headdress, or chieftain's headdress, and tomahawk toy. The Indian headdress is hand-made of paper. The overall shape is one piece. The tiny miniature feathers have been hand-painted on the whole piece, with the back edge cut to resemble feather ends. Each minaiture feather is black-tipped on the end. An imitation leather placket or ear piece (paper) has been added on both sides, with two additional feathers sewn loosely over each one, so that the feathers dangle. String has been painted brown and added to tie the headdress into shape. Tiny stitches have been painted on the band. The matching tomahawk is really made of wood, split at the top to hold the "stone" axe-head (actually polymer clay). This has been tied on like a real tomahawk (with a spot of glue added for stability).
What toy box would be complete without toy soldiers? These tiny, miniature toy soldiers wear tall black hats, like the fur hats worn by the soldiers that guard Buckingham Palace. Their red shirts are crossed with white bands, and they carry tiny swords. There is no detail in the face and the detail of the soldiers is rather crude, but they look wonderful standing side by side. Tiny stands have been added so that these miniature soldiers really do stand. There are five of them, and they look really cute standing side by side. There's a miniature toy drum , made of polymer clay, covered with paper and hand-painted red with brown shadows. The "X" shapes are real thread, with string studs all along the band, tipped in gold paint. It has tiny drumsticks to go with it (not pictured).
There's a little toy stick-horse. The miniature stick-horse toy has a red, poly-clay head, made to look like sewn cloth. It has big, black button eyes and a black mane of polymer clay. The stick is real wood, painted blue and carefully distressed to look aged, just like a real vintage stick-horse, but standing only as tall as a toothpick! It has two little button wheels (but they don't turn). Another "must" in every toy chest is a toy train. The miniature train set includes an engine, one green boxcar, and a little red caboose. It's made of polymer clay, wood and string. The pretty miniature toy ball is made of polymer clay and hand-painted with a vintage look in patriotic red, antique white, and blue. The design is little stars on a blue field. There are several silly little miniature paper-dolls, less than 1/2 inches tall. They are hand-painted, one-of-a-kind miniature dolls, so they definitely are not perfect. Far from it, their little faces and bodies are almost alien. They are remarkable only in that they are so tiny, and are handmade OOAK miniatures, not reproductions. There's a tiny miniature rubber-duck toy, just 3/8 inches tall, sculptured from yellow polymer clay. It is detailed with little sculptured wings, an orange bill, and blue eyes.
Finally, there are four miniature games: Chess, Mancala, Snakes-and-Ladders, and a made-up game, Sherlock. The box covers are of my own graphic design, reproduced in tiny miniature, so that there is no copyright violation here. These designs are copyrighted by me. Of course, my original box designs were only about 4 inches wide, and the graphics were hand-painted and hand-lettered, so they have an original look to them, even the reproductions ~ they don't quite reach machine-made perfection! The lettering is quaint and pretty. I do plan to produce more copies of these same games, but each one is hand-detailed to perfection: cut, folded, and glued over miniature craft-wood pieces, with any raw paper edges trimmed, sanded and hand-painted to fill in color as needed. Snakes and Ladders didn't seem to be colored brightly enough, so I repainted it to make a red background around the design by hand. There are also miniature childrens' drawings (one pictured), and a miniature hoop (found-object/hoop earring, painted).
One other toy that I should mention is the funny little miniature Humpty Dumpty, which will probably sell separately. He is hand-painted on an egg. (The unfinished wooden egg is machine made). I painted him to look kind of like an old fashioned Humpty Dumpty that you might see in Mother Goose. He's 3/4 inches tall, hand-painted in acrylics. He has a green vest and blue suit with an old-fashioned turned-up collar. I painted several Humpty Dumpty dolls, each with different colors and facial features.