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1/2-inch Scale Dollhouses
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1-inch Scale Dollhouses

Collector Dollhouse Glossary


Whether you're new to dollhouse collecting or dollhouses you just want to know what's what as you shop for a dollhouse for your child, this glossary will provide you with some basic dollhouse and architectural terms to help you to understand what's being referenced. You may enjoy how relevant these dollhouse terms are to the full-sized world as well.


1-Inch Scale:
In a 1-inch Scale, one inch equals one foot (12 inches). This is written as: 1/12 scale.


Playscale:
In playscale, one inch equals six inches. This may appear in writing as: 1/6 scale. This is typically the scale for dollhouses for children. It is also known as the "Barbie Scale" because these Barbie doll houses will accommodate the classic 11.5" tall fashion dolls.


Types of Wood for Dollhouses:
Typically, dollhouses use plywood or MDF (medium density fiberboard) because these types of constructed wood offer a smooth surface and an easy medium to create intricate architectural details.


Stucco:
Used as covering on exterior walls, Stucco is mixture of cement, sand, lime, and water. This mixture is spread over a wire-screen base and creates a distinctive, roughly textured surface. Some collector dollhouses will come with Stucco kits for applying to the exterior walls.


Gable:
A becoming feature on many Victorian dollhouses, gables are triangular areas outside walls formed by sloping roofs.


Bay window:
Designed to allow more light to the interior, bay windows are a set of windows that protrude out from the wall.


Louvered panels:
Seen on doors and shudders, louvered panels features a series of slanted slats, usually stacked horizontally. These are designed to allow light in, but keep rain out. dormer.


Victorian:
Characterized by ornate architectural details such as bay windows, gables, covered porches and promenades, and- particularly in dollhouses- bright colors.


Colonial:
A broad architectural style generally referring to buildings built between 1600 and 1850. Sub-categories include Dutch Colonial, German Colonial, Spanish Colonial, Georgian Colonial, and French Colonial, among others. Most dollhouses are of the Georgian, French, and Dutch varieties.


Barbie doll house:
A common term used to describe dollhouses scaled to accommodate 11.5" tall fashion dolls; not necessarily indicative of the Barbie brand.


Shell:
The part of a collector dollhouse that includes the frame, the floor, and the walls. You will want to decorate the shell with paint, furniture, textiles, and more.


Front-Opening:
This type of dollhouse has a smooth back wall and a front facade that opens for easy viewing and access to dolls and furniture.


Rear-Opening:
This type of dollhouse has a decorative front wall and either a completely open back wall or panels and doors that open from the back.


Components:
Pieces that you need to complete your miniature dollhouse, for example: trim, windows, doors, gingerbread, etc.


Gingerbread:
Durable, fancy wood lace trim. Gingerbread dollhouses refer to dollhouses of Victorian design, often brightly colored or multi-colored, and exhibiting telltale gingerbread trim.

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