Dolls' Houses Past & Present

A website and ezine about dolls' houses: antique, vintage and modern. Plus furniture and accessories.

Dolls House Papers sold by Hobbies

1970s

We know from the publications in which Hobbytrends, Dereham Handicraft Company and Hobbies and Handicrafts (Dereham) dolls house kits appeared, that dolls house wallpapers were supplied - in the kits, or through the catalogues of these companies. However, in the absence of any of these catalogues, the only clues I have to the wallpaper designs of this period are the photographs of decorated dolls houses.

 

In this Chalet dolls house from 1970, we see five interior wallpapers, as well as red brick, fort stone, another stone, and parquet and black and white tile floor papers. (The roof has green pantile paper.) There are three white and brown wallpaper patterns, which can be seen more clearly in the photo below: a toile, a design of flowers and leaves, and an abstract design. There is also a red and white striped paper, and what appears to be a brown on blue pattern in the upper left room.

 

The design on the left has recently appeared in an Anglian dolls house on ebay, where we can see that the foliage is not all beige or brown:

 

 

Early 1970s design in an Anglian dolls house © ebay seller paulch24

 

In 1971, in photos of the Anglian dolls house in Do It Yourself magazine, the toile and the abstract pattern are used again:

 

 

There is a different design of flowers or foliage:

 

and a very groovy stone paper:

 

The 1975 dolls houses, the Bungalow and Block of Flats, are shown in colour in Do It Yourself magazine, so we have a better appreciation of the 1970s wallpapers.

The photograph of the Block of Flats (above) is not large enough to see all of the wallpapers very clearly. There appears to be a leafy green pattern at the top of the lift well, a green hessian, an abstract beige design we see more clearly in the Bungalow, and a large geometric pattern in brown and blue.

The Bungalow has three wallpapers. In the largest room, in the centre of the house, is the beige abstract design which also appears in the Block of Flats:

The two smaller rooms on either side of this have hessian wallpaper, in green and orange:

 

 

The roof section of the Bungalow is interesting too, as it appears to show a different black and white tile paper on the floor of the attic. From what I can make out, the black tiles are hexagonal; they are certainly not the usual diamond-shaped tiles.

 

 

1982 on

As I mentioned, the earliest of the post-1968 Hobbies Handbooks I have is that for 1982/83. In that catalogue, there are 18 numbered dolls house papers shown, plus flock papers in several colours. The papers are divided into an A range (papers for exterior walls, roofs and floors), and a B range (interior wall papers, ceiling paper, and crazy paving). 

The A range have all appeared in the photographs above, so were clearly available from the beginning of this period (in fact, they are the same papers that were available from Hobbies up to 1968). Most of the B range were subject to changes in fashion, so had shorter life spans, and were more expensive. As designs were retired and new ones added, old numbers were re-used for a new design, and then new numbers were added as the range expanded. The numbers run from 1 to 49, with only 35-39 missing. 34 was the number given to the last new design introduced in 1995, and I have no Hobbies Handbooks for 1996-2005. I suspect that there were papers numbered 35 to 39 which were both introduced and retired during this period.

From 2006, the Hobbies Handbook offered other ranges of wallpaper in addition to those shown below, including an external paper collection exclusive to Hobbies. These can be seen on the Hobbies website, and I will not show them here. The Hobbies ranges B and C were gradually discontinued (and offered as 'end of range' assorted sheets) from 2009, so that from a total of 37-39 patterns (including the A range) available in 2006-2008, there were only 23 by 2011. While the whole A range is still available, the only B range papers still offered are white roughcast / embossed ceiling paper, crazy paving and woodgrain paper. No C range papers are still available.

 

A range:

 

No 1, Red Brick, available 1970 - 2014. (1E Embossed Red Brick also available from 1991.) 2. Natural Brick, available 1970s - 2014.

 

3 Green Pantile, available 1970-2014. 3R Red Pantile, available 1991-2014. 4 Grey Slate, available 1970s - 2014.

  

 5 Grey Fort, as pictured 1970-1992; Fort Stone, as pictured 1993-2014.

 

9 Parquet floor, available 1970-2014

12 Crazy Paving, available 1970-2014. (In the B range 1982/3-1984/5, then in the A range from 1987.)

 

19 Black / White diamond tile paper, available 1970, 1987-2014

 

20 Flint Wall, available 1987-2014

 

B Range:

  

6 White Embossed Ceiling or Rough Cast, as pictured 1984/5 (l) and 2008 (r). Available at least 1970-2014.

  

7 Wood grain, available at least 1982-2014. Not to scale, and different details were pictured over the years. Above left, 1982-1987; above right, 1988-1989. Below left, 1990-1992; below right, 1995.

  

 

8 Mosaic Stone, available 1982-1989

 

10 Blue Floor, available 1982/83 (and probably earlier).

 10 Gold / White, available 1984-2010.

 

 11 Green Floor, available 1982/83 (and probably earlier).

11 Black / White, available 1984-1989

 

 13 Gold Stripe, available 1982 (at least) - 2011 (See also 26-28, blue, red and green stripe.)

 

Left: 14. Grey stripe, available 1982/3 (and probably earlier).

Right: 14. Turquoise / Gold geometric pattern, available 1984-1989

  

Left: 14. Turquoise / Gold diamond lattice. Available 1990-1995 (or later). Right: 14. Turquoise / Gold Radnor. Available 2006 - 2010

  

Left: 15. Autumn leaf, available 1982-1989.

Right: 15. Orange / White Leaf, available 1990-1995 (or later).

 

Left: 16. Green Hessian, available 1975-1987.

Right: 16. Natural Hessian, available 1988-89. 

Left: 16. Mustard Hessian, available 1990-1992. Right: 16. Natural Hessian, available 1993-1995 (and again/still) 2006-2008

  

Left: 17. Blue Floral, available 1982/83. (See also 18, red floral.)

Right: 17. Lilac interior, available 1984/5. (See also 18 in yellow, 24 in blue, and 45 in gold.)

 

17. Blue interior, available 1987-1989. (See also 46, gold and white, and 47, red and silver.)

 

18. Red Floral, available 1982/83. (See also 17, blue floral.)

  

 18. Yellow interior. Left, available 1984/85. (See also 17 in lilac, 24 in blue and 45 in gold.) Right, available 1987-1989.

 

 Left: 21. Pink gingham interior, available 1987-1989.

Right: 21. Pink interior, later called Pink Zodiac, available 1990-2011 (See also 43 in white/silver and 44 in blue.)

 

Left: 22. Gold / White feathered pattern, available 1990-1992.

Right: 22. Yellow Embossed, available 1993-2009. 

 

23. Gold on Red Fleur de Lys, available 1990-2010. (See also 29 gold on white, 40 black on white, 41 gold on green, 42 gold on blue fleur de lys.)

  

Left: 24. Tan / White stylised foliage on stripes, available 1990-1995. Right: 24. Blue / White Romsey, available 2006-2009  (See also 17 in lilac, 18 in yellow, and 45 in gold.)

 

 25. Brown / Gold double lattice on stripes, available 1990-1995.

 

Numbers 26-34 are in the C Range. I do not have Hobbies Handbooks for 1996-2005, so all designs showing 2006 as the first year they were available were probably introduced sometime between 1996-2005. Also, as noted above, numbers 35-39 (if they existed) were probably introduced and retired during that time - I have no evidence of what they were.

 

40. Black on White Fleur de Lys, available 2006-2011.

 

41. Gold on Green Fleur de Lys, available 2006-2007.

42. Gold on Blue Fleur de Lys, available 2006-2011.

  

43. White / Silver Zodiac, available 2006-2008.

44. Blue Zodiac, available 2006-2011. (See also 21, Pink Zodiac.)

 

45. Gold on White Romsey, available 2006-2011. 

(See also 17 in lilac, 18 in yellow, and 24 in blue.)

 

46. White / Gold Galway, available 2006-2011.

47. Red / Silver Galway, available 2006-2011. (See also 17 in Blue.)

 

 48. White Silver Alpine, available 2006-2010.

49. White Silver Stripe, available 2006-2009.

 

 G. Gold / Cream, available 2008-2011.

X. Textured Red, available 2008-2011.

 

C Range:

When these wallpapers were introduced in 1995, they were shown on page 25, at the beginning of the dolls house section, while the other papers in the A and B ranges were at the end of the dolls houses, on page 40. The new range was described as 'B' Range, but at some point between 1995 and 1996, their code was changed from WPB to WPC, so I will show them in a separate group from the B papers.

 

26. Blue Stripe, available 1995-2008

27. Red Stripe, available 1995-2011

28. Green Stripe, available 1995-2010

(See also 13, Gold Stripe.)

 

29. Gold on White Fleur de Lys, available 1995-2010. (See also  23 Gold on Red, 40 black on white, 41 gold on green, 42 gold on blue fleur de lys.)

  

30. Mottled Red, available 1995-2009.

31. Mottled Yellow, available 1995-2006.

 

 32. Mottled Green, available 1995-2008.

33. Mottled Orange, available 1995-2011.

34. Mottled Blue, available 1995-2008.

 

Flock Papers:

These non-adhesive flock papers were introduced in 1984/85, with a range of five colours. In 2006, there was a range of eleven colours, which  decreased to 10 in 2009, and in 2010 and 2011 to 8. (Note that, although some colours kept the same numbers, the shade of most colours was different in 2006.) They are no longer available through Hobbies; whether they were available after 2011, I don't know.

 

Flock Papers F1 Green, F2 Red, F3 Gold, F4 Maroon, F5 Blue.

Available 1984-1995.

 

 Flock Papers F2 Red (available 2006-2008), F1 Green and F9 Ruby (available 2006-2009), F3 Beige, F4 Blue, F5 Gold, F6 Maroon, F7 Silver Grey, F8 Bottle Green, F10 Old Rose, and F11 Dark Brown (all available 2006-2011).

 

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