Tuesday, April 23, 2013

Guess What I Did Last Night?

The nonfiction sections of my (real life) bookshelves were completely out of order, and a quick straightening job turned into a full scale project! My books are in several bookcases spread all over the house, so it took a few trips with a laundry basket full of books to get everything in the right room, let alone on the right shelf.
Victorian books above, miniature books below

The reason I'm posting about it here is that I finally got all my dollhouse books together. They've been spread out for so long, I was a little shocked to see how many I had accumulated. The bottom shelf is miniature books- histories on the left, guides to specific houses/collections (e.g. Queen Mary's dollhouse, and the Thorne rooms) in the center, and how-to books on the right. As I was going through, I noticed I had duplicate copies of a couple books, and many similar books on certain topics. I'm planning to go through them at some point more carefully, narrow them down, and offer the duplicates to anyone who is interested.

I decided to separate out all my Victorian reference books as well, since I mostly pull them out to figure out what my dollhouse should look like. They ended up on the shelf above the miniature books. You can see two of my favorites on this shelf. Antiques from the Victorian Home, by Bea Howe, is an older book that gives a great overview of Victorian crafts and tchotchkes. There are a few crafts discussed in this book that I've never/rarely seen mentioned anywhere else! Inside the Victorian Home, by Judith Flanders, is another favorite. It's the thick cream book on the shelf above.  While it's not the most relevant book if you are looking for information about decorating a Victorian period dollhouse,  it has tons of interesting information on everything from the release of the drug aspirin to the invention of the S-bend!

More books on a variety of topics
My favorite resource for books are the local library book fairs. I go to several every summer and come away with boxes of used books on the most random topics. In fact, the more quirky the topic the better, since these books often have more specific information about minutiae than brief web articles! Some of my favorite finds: an entire book about Cotswold privies, another about the history of valentines, and a guide to framing paintings which has a great section on antique frames.

Sorry for the tangential post. I'll be back to miniatures next time!


  1. I also love books but I very seldom buy them anymore. I have had to downsize and I have given away so much. Now, I only buy dollhouse books and sometimes interior decor books. I cannot resist dollhouse books and I am amazed at the amount I have purchased over the last three years. I am still not finished. There are also the Blurb books that miniaturists publish. I cannot resist them and I am trying to collect them all.

  2. ohhhhh how I love books. I love even the sight of them all stacked together there on the bookshelves. It feels good to organize them, doesn't it? I love when you can walk to a shelf and find what you are looking for :)

  3. I miss my books, I had a large collection but they were lost when we had a car accident (instead of shipping them my DH thought it would save money to drive with them to our new home...we had an accident and I lost them all)


  4. I am a Huge book fan myself and they are everywhere and so spread out that it is a major undertaking to try and get them organized. I have the most cherished of the miniature books in my Studio but the main branch of my entire collection is in the living room where I had a bookshelf built in where I could house them and look at them whenever I wanted instead of diving through boxes trying to find the one(s) I was looking for. To me they are like OLD and DEAR friends and although I periodically edit them, they are cherished and mine for LIFE.


  5. That's quite an impressive miniatures library! My own bookshelves are such a mess - I want to straighten them up, but due to shelf size constraints, I can't sort everything by subject.

  6. What a great range of books. I suspect many of us have a tendency to like books on dolls houses and reference books. I know I certainly have accumulated quite a few and you have inspired me to try and organise mine a bit better. I also love the Miniature Collector magazine - full of inspiration and great photos.