Or are you looking for Search the Archives?

Please complete the form to email this item.

Dolls' house - Mrs Bryant's Pleasure

Mrs Bryant's Pleasure

  • Object:

    Dolls' house

  • Place of origin:

    England (made)

  • Date:

    1860-1865 (made)

  • Artist/Maker:


  • Materials and Techniques:

    Jointed and painted wood

  • Credit Line:

    Given by Miss Helen Bryant

  • Museum number:


  • Gallery location:

    In Storage

This house is not a child's plaything. It was made for a lady called Mrs Bryant in the early 1860s, who lived in a house in Surbiton called Oakenshaw. Mrs Bryant wanted to make a miniature record of the interior of her home. The only child-related object is a child's folding chair in the drawing room. Mrs Bryant commissioned a professional cabinet-maker to make the furniture which was made with skill and accuracy. The rooms are furnished in exactly the same way as a middle class home of the time would have been. The wallpaper is the same as Mrs Bryant would have had on her walls at home. 1860 was still too early for bathrooms, which became more widespread in the 1890s, and so the bedrooms are equipped with wash-stands and basins. The kitchen is surprisingly small. A real kitchen in a middle class household would have been considerably larger to accommodate the large range of kitchen equipment needed to keep the house going.

Physical description

The house is three stories high. The two side walls are painted to resemble bricks as is the front wall which has rows of pedimented sash windows, four to a storey, hung with lace and outer curtains. The house is surmounted on three sides by a balustrade. It has five rooms; two bedrooms on the second floor; a sitting room on the first floor; and a kitchen and parlour on the ground floor. All the rooms are furnished to give an accurate picture of interior decoration during the mid-nineteenth century.

Place of Origin

England (made)


1860-1865 (made)



Materials and Techniques

Jointed and painted wood


Height: 187 cm, Width: 127 cm, Depth: 62 cm

Object history note

The house was loaned to the museum by Mrs Bryant's descendants from 1930, and was donated in 1955

Descriptive line

Mrs Bryant's Pleasure dolls' house made in England between 1860 and 1865


Wood; Paint




Interiors; Dolls & Toys

Production Type



Museum of Childhood

Large image request

Please confirm you are using these images within the following terms and conditions, by acknowledging each of the following key points:

Please let us know how you intend to use the images you will be downloading.