Dolls Bungalow C, rebuild (Triang)
Dolls Bungalow C, rebuild (Triang)
A large Tri-ang Doll's Bungalow C, from the 1960s.
The bungalow comes in three pieces that fit together, each with its own base-board, and was originally supplied in flat-pack form, with the walls slotting into grooves in the wooden corner-pieces, which were then screwed to the baseboards using screws that came up through the base.
This example is mounted on hardboard rather than in to the chunkier slabs shown in Triang literature and in photos of other examples: we're guessing that at some point the owner may have decided to use the screw-together aspect of the design to remove the original base and fix the bungalow onto something lighter.
Triang seem to have had three versions of the bungalow set: an advert somewhere in our library (which we forgot to make a note of!) lists the A and B versions, and makes a fleeting mention of a C ... which this is.
The A version had a unit with large clear wall panels and a "feature" brick-effect wooden chimney-breast, this C version has the A component with its two sidewalls removed, and two further units, to go on either side.
One of the confusing things about this bungalow is the finish. While other versions described online seem to have printed "card insert" walls, and a printed paper covering for the double-fireplace and chimneybreast, the walls of this example are plywood or hardboard, and the chimneybreast feature is varnished brick-effect wood, with (scored? routed?) mortarways between the "bricks. The chimneypiece is professional quality, and is, if anything, better finished than the known Tri-ang versions. Also, the hardboard inserts are attached by thickening the ends with a thin strip, and then using small screws through the butting walls, which is again arguably a more professional approach than use don the known Tri-angs.
While the walls do seem to have been produced to professional standards, they are mostly unpainted, making the bungalow look as if it has been built from a kit, and not fully finished. The few walls that are painted are not wonderfully done (unless this was a test exercise, or an undercoat).
- Is this an earlier, more sturdy, unfinished, "decorate it-yourself" version of the Triang Bungalow C?
- Or has someone who owned a Triang Bungalow C been unimpressed by the flimsiness of the internal walls (and the gaudiness of the printing), and decided to dissassemble it, trace out the component outlines onto hardboard and make their own better version (which they then never got around to finishing and decorating)?
- Or did someone else produce this design as a kit, before Triang, or buy the rights and start making these as kits after Triang ceased trading circa 1970?
We are currently assuming the second possibility: we think that someone owned a genuine Tri-ang Bungalow C, and decided to take out the chimneypiece windows and doors, and make their own (more sturdy) version out of hardboard, using the same key components ... and never finished it.
The window components (and, notably, the large clear panel components) were also sold separately by Triang, and seem to have been made in Germany by a company that now makes precision moulded parts for industry.
Although the full three-piece Bungalow set is probably too large to display in its entirety, we're currently (October 2020) wondering whether to try to display at least part of it on top of cabinet 20.
Cabinet 20 currently holds a collection of ambulances and related toys and artefacts, but we are currently in the process of assembling a nice display's worth of 1950s and 1960s-era dolls house material, to supplement the adjacent cabinet of C19th and early C20 dollhouse furniture. The modern bungalow design would go very well with the Tri-ang Spot-On dollhouse furniture that's planned for that display.