If you ask any girl with a dollhouse what their favourite toy is, it's probably going to be their dollhouse. Doll houses are more than a simple toy, they're actually quite empowering. Children don't have much say when it comes time to furnish and decorate their own homes, but a kid with a dollhouse is a homeowner, with all the rights and privileges of an adult with their own house.
There are several varieties of dollhouses available, but what really counts is the accessories. Just as a new home isn't quite yours until you've got it just how you like it, a doll house isn't quite right until it's got all the right furniture and decor. Looking online for accessories is a great way to select from a wider variety, rather than just trying to see if the local department store has just the right stuff.
Of course, selecting the dollhouse itself is an important process, too. What is your child's dream house? A nice, rustic place out in the country, or a three story mansion in the hills? Shopping at online toy stores, it won't be too hard to find just the right home for six inch mom and dad.
Something else to keep in mind is, of course, your child's age. There are plenty of dollhouses available for older children, full of delicate, realistic windows and functioning doors, as well as perfectly scaled accessories, like dressers with real working drawers. For younger children, though, these more complex dollhouses can be a little too fragile. You may even find some neat doll houses in the baby toys / baby products section when you buy toys online or at toy shops.
Plenty of simple wooden dollhouses are available for the child who's not quite ready for something made out of delicate plywood and tiny brass door knobs. These include plastic dollhouses, such as those made by Fisher Price, as well as wooden dollhouses, by companies like Pintoys.
Once your child has a fully furnished dollhouse of their own, they'll need a family to live in that home, of course. Pintoy makes adorable little rag doll style families to occupy your child's miniature dream home, while Fisher Price offers fully posable plastic dolls, similar to Barbie dolls.
Other accessories offered include dogs, complete with miniature doghouses, dog beds, and food and water bowls, as well as miniature vehicles, such as the Fisher Price Loving Family Minivan and SUV, to facilitate miniature vacations and road trips (or just some daily errands, it's all part of the dollhouse experience).
One of the great things about good dollhouses is that they become more than childhood pretend play toys. Many adults still have their childhood dollhouses, while others will purchase new ones. In fact, the miniature and doll market for adults is very popular right now.
By providing loads of customization options for the dedicated doll houses hobbyist, it's sort of the flipside of Railroad Modelling, providing hours of in-depth enjoyment for hobbyists of any age. It can become a passion that grows right alongside the child, into adulthood, as they outfit their dollhouse with more sophisticated features. On the higher end, there is even miniature wallpaper and carpeting you can add to make the home truly your own.
Of course, forgetting for a moment all of the high end accessories you can add onto a dollhouse, the primary appeal of a dollhouse is simple. You get to have your own tiny dream house. With some of the better dollhouses, you can even do some remodelling (once you've learned how to operate dollhouse tools and building materials, of course) and other serious customization, all without having to expend the immense time and effort involved in changing your actual home. For both children and adults, this is a wonderful form of expression and a great way to empower oneself.
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