Antique dollhouse wallpaper

Posted on | February 24, 2010 | No Comments

In a search on antique lithographed wallpapers I stumbled on a beautiful example of such for the Victorian dollhouse market. This marvelously preserved and richly patterned German “room box” well illustrates the passion for ornament that decorators in the 19th century shared, even when applied on such a diminutive scale. The quality in coloring here and meticulous detail was in part due to the sophistication of the lithographers’ art during the period.

RB opposite corner

The interior is in a formal Neo-Classical style. It is crowned with a double frieze combining trompe l’oeil Greek key and anthemion motifs. The wall is panelized with a French Blue painted margin, (with coordinated draperies), simulated gold leafed trim molding and a two toned red diaper pattern as the primary fill paper. the wainscot is a light grained wood. Parquet flooring? Likely, but hard to tell from the photo. All of this accessorized with potted palms and pastoral scenes in elaborate gilt frames. All in all, a very upscale treatment, especially for the juvenile market.

RB corner angle

The room includes with it’s several windows and entrance door, an inset mirror, two portraits and a pendulum clock. Almost all available wall space is occupied, cramming as much imagination and value into the print as possible.

RB straight on

Still retaining its value, the set recently sold on the site I saw it on, Ruby Lane Antiques, for $800. Not bad for a child’s room box after all the years of enjoyment and use. The seller on the Ruby Lane site was Curley Creek Antiques in South Colby, Washington, (they apparently sell other antique doll house items as well, if you’re looking for that).

Thanks to both of them for sharing these historic wallpapers with us!

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