Category:Dinky Toys Dollhouse Furniture

From The Brighton Toy and Model Index
Toy Brands and Manufacturers

Dinky Toy Furniture, artwork, cropped.jpg
Dinky Toys Dolls House Furniture, lettering (MM 1936-07).jpg

Dinky Toys Dollhouse Furniture

1936 -     


Meccano Ltd launched their range of Art Deco Dinky Toys Dollhouse Furniture in 1936, and kept it going until 1940.

Meccano Ltd. were rather late to the "dollhouse furniture" game, with Lines Brothers having been selling their doll furniture since around 1930, and Bassett-Lowke producing a Nuways catalogue in 1931.

Reception

The Dinky furniture range was launched with a little bit of hyperbole, and was perhaps received with some puzzlement – its scale size didn't correspond to anything obviously used in existing dollhouses, Meccano Ltd. had a very male-oriented user-base, and anyone wanting to put the furniture in some sort of context was advised to buy the Dolly Varden slot-together dollhouse, which seemed to have a rather cheap board construction, and whose interiors were not shown in the advertising (which may have suggested to some potential buyers that perhaps there was a reason why the company didn't want to show them).

Scale

Officially scaled at seven-sixteenths of an inch to the foot (!), the Dinky dollhouse furniture range can be considered as being an "undersize 1:24 scale".

What Meccano Ltd. didn't seem to understand was the lesson taught by the massive success of standardisation in model railways: With fixed choice of model railways gauges, the customer might well end up buying all their equipment from the same manufacturer, but they weren't forced to. The buyer would know that they had a choice, and could pick-and-mix, with part of the fun being deciding what to get next. With a non-standard scale, a choice of just one dollhouse with four rooms, and just one fixed set of furniture available for each room, the Dolly Varden/Dinky system wasn't expandable or interchangeable, and the only real choice was which of the two colours available to select for each room. Once you had all four room-sets, you couldn't easily go shopping for an alternative cooker for the kitchen or for alternative chairs for the lounge, as it was going to be extremely difficult to find another maker producing furniture in an approximately matching size.

1936 promotional text:

The extension of the range of Dinky Toys to include true-to-scale modern Furniture will be welcomed by all who know the charm of these perfect miniatures. Much care and thought have been given to the design, finish and presentation of every article of this Furniture series. Each piece is based on a typical example of modern design, and all are actual scale models made to a scale of 7/16 of an inch to one foot. There is a tone and individuality of style about Dinky Toys Dolls House Furniture which cannot fail to appeal. Among the most attractive features are the opening doors and drawers. This furniture is far superior to anything of its kind that has ever before been produced for the delight and pleasure of young people.

The Dinky Toys Furniture is now ready. See it at your dealer's.

— Meccano Magazine advert, 1936

The Dinky Toys dollhouse furniture sets

The Dinky furniture sets were numbered 101-104 (Dining Room, Bedroom, Kitchen and Bathroom), with the individual items also available separately.

In the museum

The museum seems to have the full range of furniture, although not in all the available colours ... the boxed sets seem to be complete, the loose sets installed in the Dolly Varden dollhouse are missing the "armed" version of the kitchen chairs, and the fliptop lid of the bathroom linen bin.


Subcategories

This category has the following 4 subcategories, out of 4 total.

Media in category ‘Dinky Toys Dollhouse Furniture’

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