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Truth: I actually wanted to call this list "5 Books to help you furnish that dream dollhouse you've always wanted but you couldn't afford", but the title, though accurate, proved itself a bit unwieldy. I love dollhouses and miniatures, and below I've listed some of my favorite books that contain instructions on house to build inexpensive dolls, furniture, and miniature accessories for one-inch-scale dollhouses. These make great parent and child team projects!
THE DOLLHOUSE DECORATOR
by Vivienne Boulton
A guide to do-it-yourself dollhouse decoration presents full-color, step-by-step photographs that depict each stage in the creation of dolls, furniture, furnishings, accessories, and more, as well as pattern templates and photos of the finished product.
DOLLS HOUSE DO-IT-YOURSELF: FOOD DISPLAYS
by Sue Heaser
A selection of 40+ projects guides readers in creating realistic-looking food from polymer clay for their dolls' house the easy way! Renowned polymer clay expert and author Sue Heaser teaches how to make over 100 items of food which cover a number of popular periods, including Georgian, Victorian as well as modern day. A comprehensive techniques section covers everything crafters need to know to work with polymer clay miniatures such as shaping, mixing colors, creating texture and baking. Illustrated step-by-step projects and color photos throughout show how simple the finished items are to complete. Presentation ideas for displaying the food, from bread baskets to complete table settings, are also included.
DOLLS HOUSE DO-IT-YOURSELF: FINISHING TOUCHES
by Jane Harrop
Create a range of beautifully detailed accessories for dolls' houses of every period and style. From tables, chairs and shelves, to letter racks, mirrors and coat racks, everything you need to make your dolls' house a home is here. Over 30 detailed, step-by-step, illustrated projects show how to make a variety of decorative accessories. Further illustrated variation ideas allow you to adapt the style or period of the project, and mix-and-match your favorite projects to suit your dolls' house. An illustrated section on the basic materials and equipment used offers practical guidance, while the basic techniques, such as working with wood, using glues, and varnishing, are illustrated with step-by-step photographs. Easy-to-use templates and diagrams are provided where necessary, including color photocopying pages with a selection of pictures and patterns, and inspirational color photographs show the accessories displayed in situ.
DOLLS HOUSE DO-IT-YOURSELF: TOYS AND GAMES
by Jane Harrop
An essential step-by-step guide to making over 35 toys and games for the 1/12th scale dolls' house. Projects include: building blocks and mini houses, kites, abacus, xylophone, Jack-in-the-box and more! Templates and diagrams for each piece are also included.
DOLLS HOUSE DO-IT-YOURSELF: CURTAINS
by Sue Heaser
Create life-like curtains and window dressings for dolls'houses of every period and style. From curtains, blinds and drapes, to pelmets, tiebacks and valances, everything you need to create inspirational window dressings for your dolls' house is included here.
On the morning of January 4, 1892, Karl G. Maeser and the students of the Brigham Young Academy met for one last time in the ZCMI warehouse. Their school building had burned down eight years before, and they’d been meeting in the warehouse while they slowly gathered the funding to build a schoolhouse that would meet the needs of a rapidly growing community. After a benediction, the students marched in a procession a few blocks down the street to their new home. When they reached the outside of the building, Dr. Maeser looked up at it and said, “The old man taught school in a log cabin, but they have built a palace for his boys.” (1)
One of my favorite parts of working as a librarian at the Provo City Library is giving tours of the historic wing, better known as the Brigham Young Academy building. I grew up in Provo, but despite Maeser’s pronouncement that this building was a palace, my memories of the old Brigham Young Academy are of a sad, neglected block of buildings that was a bit of an eyesore right in the center of town.
Fifteen years ago, the debris was cleared out and the building was restored thanks to the efforts of local citizens who care for our history. Re-named the Provo City Library at Academy Square, it’s been a thriving part of our community ever since. We keep a record of the reconstruction process on our website, but some of my favorite pictures can be seen below.
With the recent rebuilding of the Provo Tabernacle and its conversion into the Provo City Center Temple, I’m not the only one who has noted the similarities between two buildings with such deep roots into our city’s past. Both of these buildings were originally built around the same time with funds raised by the community, meant to be used and appreciated by everyone in the community. Both buildings have had many different uses over the years. And when both buildings finally gave way to time and weather and age, both were raised up and given new life and purpose.
And so, while celebrating the rebirth of the Provo Tabernacle and the revitalization it will give to downtown Provo, I’m taking a minute to celebrate the rebirth of the Brigham Young Academy as well. It is a palace once more. Thank you to everyone in the community for supporting the library. We look forward to many more years of service.
1. Butterworth, E. (1975). Brigham Young University: 1000 Views of 100 Years. Brigham Young University Press, p. 31