Chad Valley Dollshouse and Marx Vintage Furniture


Did I mention that I had another dolls house? Naomi gave it to me some years ago. She had just bought another one the same but in better condition and thought that I might like this one as I had no dollshouse at the time. Since then it has sat on top of a cupboard in the doll room as I had no furniture or dolls to put in it.

The House

This house is made of tin with lithographed decor. It’s a fairly common house and comes up on eBay and other sales sites reasonably often. Unless you have to get it freighted from overseas it is not a very expensive house to start a collection with either.
I turned to Naomi for an ID as I could not remember what she had told me it was when she gave it to me. The house is not marked but Naomi says that it is made by the British Company Chad Valley and is featured in their 1969 catalogue.
imgp5427_933x768

Here you can see the interior of some of the rooms. It is very brightly coloured and although the outside of the house is a little worn and damaged the inside looks pretty good. Below are the two houses side by side.

Dolly Mix in 1:16 scale and Chad Valley in 1:24
My two dollshouses : Dolly Mix in 1:16 scale and Chad Valley in 1:24

The Furniture

As I have been browsing for dollshouse furniture for the Dolly Mix house I have looked at a lot of vintage furniture particularly things that I can remember Naomi or I having. Recently I found a lot of plastic furniture on eBay with several pieces that I remember from our childhood so I bought it and as it is a smaller scale than the Barton furniture I bought for the Dolly Mix House I decided to put most of it into the Chad Valley House. I think that this furniture is mostly 1:24 scale rather than the 1:16 used in the larger house. Some of it is so tiny that it may even be 1:32 scale. The only markings on it seem to be the ubiquitous “Made in Hong Kong”.

  1. The red sofa and armchair – Naomi identified these as Marx. She had the same set as a child in her Marx Swansea Cottage.
  2. The yellow shell chair is probably Marx as well. Naomi had a red one just like this.
  3. The green bedroom furniture. – I had at least one bed just like this and have a hazy memory that there was a second one although I can’t recall which of us had that. I’ve done some browsing around on eBay, Etsy and Pinterest and most sellers identify this as Marx as well. It was made in several other colours including pink, yellow and blue. I also came across a version from Argentina labelled “Baltasar” which was probably made under licence.
  4. The pink furniture – The bed is a larger scale than the other things and looks like part of a set of bunks. Naomi had bunk beds in her doll’s house just like this one. They were part of a nursery playset and not really intended for a dollshouse although they would probably work in a larger scale one. The chair is from the Marx bedroom set.
  5. We are still working on an ID for the bathroom pieces. Naomi thinks that they may be older. They are a soft flimsy plastic. However, given that most of the furniture in this lot is Marx it may be that this is as well.
  6. The yellow furniture – The dining table, chairs, hutch cabinet and sideboard look  as if they may also be Marx from their Traditional line like most of the previous pieces. I have found these in a variety of colours as well. We were spoiled for choice in those days unlike today when cheap dolls furniture seems to be predominantly pink.
  7. The blue cradle – I haven’t worked this one out yet. It looks like Marx but although Marx did make larger furniture for their big “Marxie Mansion” dolls house the cradle in the nursery set is not like this one.  I’ll keep looking and Naomi will add anything she finds out in comments at the end.
    Marx yellow dining table in the kitchen
    Marx yellow dining table in the kitchen
    Marx Traditional Bedroom suite.
    Marx Traditional Bedroom suite.

    I put the larger beds into the Dolly Mix house where it looks better.
    I put the larger beds into the Dolly Mix house where it looks better.

Marx made so many products, dolls, some very nice dolls houses, furniture and playsets so I feel a post about Marx is going to be on the “To Do” list.

Further Reading

http://www.woolworthsmuseum.co.uk/Toys-EarlyCV.html – Chad Valley history
http://theshoppingsherpa.blogspot.com.au/2013/05/did-i-forget-to-mention.html

http://www.dollshousespastandpresent.com/issue19december2013p11.htm

Advertisements

16 comments

  1. Brilliant, I was curious about the small house. Do you know the scale for standard Barbie/Ken size stuff. Have a few plastic pieces, but I think they too are marked Hong Kong.I am looking for a dollhouse for 6″ to 8″ figures, I plan on looking for one at swap meets in spring/summer. I love the graphics on the Chad Valley house! I wish my sixties rancher looked like that!

    Liked by 1 person

      • I will have to see what I can find. I have a small wooden dollhouse the cats decided belongs to them. I want to get another one to put some plastic canvas stitched furniture in but have limited space.(as well as pets who are likely to inhabit it.) I did hear somewhere that you can do-over old suit cases or trunks into doll houses but have never seen it. I have a lovely black vintage steamer trunk that might suit if I could find plans or pics somewhere.

        Liked by 1 person

      • Lots of people who don’t have room for a dolls house do room boxes, just an open box decorated. I’ve seen them at doll shows inside cases I think, not sure about a steamer trunk but that’s not to say it’s never been done.

        Like

  2. I have refurbished six tin doll houses from the 40’s and 50’s and it is such fun, though expensive. Like seeing what you are starting on. They are such adorable moments out of an era of childhood.

    Like

      • I enjoy the doll’s houses and liked looking at what you are creating. The problem, where to put them. I have some in my garage for want of a better spot right now.

        Like

      • You have hit the nail on the head Linda. Where to put them indeed. I wanted a dolls house for years but felt I would not have the room. The Chad Valley house is small so that wasn’t a problem but the Dolly Mix house is larger and the Barbie sized house is huge, they take up a lot of space in the doll room where I also keep craft supplies. Naomi had hers in the front room of her house which was once an old bank but when we move on we hope to have a large space, garage or rumpus room where the houses can once again be displayed properly in a row.

        Like

  3. I think that will be very nice to do. I like the Dolly house a lot. There are so many cute things you can do to the houses to make them look different, even if you feature one house a season.
    I hope your move goes smoothly. That is a lot of work, but nice that you and your sister can share space.

    Liked by 1 person

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s