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I got this lovely message from a customer today and I thought I’d share my answer here, as I’m sure many of you are asking questions like these at this time of year.
This is a really hard question to answer, as both dolls houses are gorgeous. Before answering, I think you need to answer the following questions…
I know this may be a crazy question but I feel I should have asked this question before I splashed out on a dolls house when my eldest was two years old. She was not a ‘doll lover’ but I longed for her to love them, as I loved dolls when I was a child. I felt that a dolls house would help develop her love for dolls. Unfortunately, it didn’t and the dolls house was hardly looked at. It was/is a beautiful dolls house and just about every child who comes into our house plays with it. Thankfully, shortly after, we had our second daughter and she is a doll lover. She has played with the house a lot, so we did get value for money. However, if I’d only had one child, the house would have been wasted on her and a less elaborate, cheaper house would have been enough. Mayberry Manor is the larger of these two houses. It measures 69cm x 61cm x 37cm while Sweetheart Cottage measures 63cm x 44cm x 35cm
2. How much space do you have for it?
Following on from the first question, you need to be aware that wooden dolls houses are heavy toys that generally are placed on a table or attached to a wall and they stay there! If you only have a small room, then the smaller house would probably work better. Please bear in mind that both these dolls houses have fronts that open out, making it easy for the child to access every room, but also this means they need space on both sides of where they are kept. Other toys that your grandchildren play with can be put away when they leave, but dolls houses are much harder to move and store.
3. What comes with the dolls houses?
Mayberry Manor has five rooms but it doesn’t come with any furniture and dolls, so if you choose this house, you’ll need to buy furniture for each room. Sweetheart Cottage has three rooms and it comes with 30 pieces of furniture but no dolls.
4. What quality of dolls house do you want?
Both these dolls houses are made by Le Toy Van and they are top of the range dolls houses made from sustainable wood. These dolls houses will last a long time. Mayberry Manor is not better quality because it is more expensive. It is more expensive because it is bigger, that’s all.
5. What type of dolls fits into these dolls houses?
These dolls houses are both designed for peg dolls. These dolls are perfect for little hands and great for imaginative play. However, you cannot dress and undress these dolls. Lottie and similar sized dolls would be too big for these houses. If you think your granddaughter will want a larger house in a few years for Lottie sized dolls, and you have no younger grandchildren to grow into using one of these dolls houses, then maybe choose the cheaper one so you don’t resent when she grows out of it. Saying this, my youngest is six and she still plays with her peg dolls house. Neither of these dolls houses come with dolls, so you’ll need to purchase them separately.
I hope this helps with your decision. She is a lucky girl getting one of these gorgeous dolls houses and I’m sure she will be thrilled with whichever one you choose to buy.