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A dolls’ house through the generations

29 August 2013

There’s something special about dolls’ houses made in the honour of younger family members, and for one special house this is very much the case.

Bob McDuff began the project to construct a miniature based on the Georgian villa, Tweedmouth House, in 2008 for his great-grandaughter, Daisy.

A prolific craftsman, Bob was inspired to start after reading Brian Long’s book on the subject, then visiting Tweedmouth House itself in Berwick-Upon-Tweed.

“Seeing this beautiful house gave him the motivation he needed to start work”, Bob’s granddaughter Heidi told the Berwick Advertiser.

Bob’s handmade creation was soon well underway until the months leading up to his death in 2010, sadly leaving the house incomplete.

In a touching resurrection of Bob’s vision, however, Bob’s daughter Heidi persuaded his granddaughter and her husband to take over the project.

The three more months of careful work on the house made it a perfect replica of the real-life Tweedmouth House.

The happy ending to Bob’s house came when Daisy received it for her birthday in 2011, and Heidi continued to add the finishing touches until 2013.

A lovely tale of four generations of a family coming together around an impressive handmade dolls’ house!

Georgian Dolls' House Used For Kew Palace Restoration

27 March 2008

Kew Palace will reopen on 21st March 2008 and much of its restoration is owed to one dolls' house belonging to King George III’s daughters.

The dolls' house, or ‘baby house’ as they were known then, was made around 1780 and presented by the young princesses to Sir George Grey, the captain of the King’s Yacht for his children in 1804.

Now, over 200 years later, the dolls' house has helped the curators of Kew Palace with their restoration work. Many features of the dolls' house bear a striking resemblance to the accounts of Kew Palace from the 18th century.

The dolls' house has been on display at Kew Palace since Spring 2004 when a collector approached the Royal Palaces to tell them of the similarities. Records showed that the wooden dolls' house was made by a royal carpenter and Princess Mary had written about a dolls' house at the palace, so it is very possible this is the same one. This is a rare survivor with most of its original features and furnishings intact, and the colours and styles have given great help in restoring the original decoration and furnishings.
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