Welcome to the Dollhouse

When I was little, my dad made my stepsister and I a dollhouse one year for Christmas. It was modeled on a turn of the century Victorian home, three (doll) stories high with a large wrap-around porch. Each room was decorated with wallpaper and carpeting, complete with tiny silverware and dishes and pictures on the walls. We played with that dollhouse for hours and hours– though I have to admit that most of our play really just consisted of rearranging the rooms in the strangest ways we could think of (the dining room in attic? Sure, why not!).


While visiting my dad over the holidays this year, he asked about our house-hunting adventures from the past year and commented that Chicago must have some amazing homes to buy– lots of old wood, stained glass and rowhouses from the turn of the century. I said that that was all true, but what I’ve really had my heart set on lately is something as simple and mainstream as a mid-century ranch. “You know,” I said, “Three bedrooms and a basement?”

He was stunned. My entire growing up, I’d always imagined myself living in something like that intricate Victorian dollhouse he’d built, and it seemed everybody else expected me to end up in the same. Nowadays, though, all I’m really looking for is something simple.


I saw the dollhouse above in Smile and Wave’s flickr stream a while back and was charmed by the simple design (the green and pink color combo doesn’t hurt either). I would live in a house like that in an instant.

I guess it’s true when they say that you become more pragmatic as you get older. Though I have to admit that the in all of our househunting adventures, the first place we fell in love with (the one that we discovered on inspection had some serious, and heartbreaking, problems) was a tiny and sweet little turn-of-the-century Victorian worker’s cottage.

I guess that’s what they call compromise.

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