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Tuesday, March 22, 2011

The Denver Museum of Miniatures, Dolls and Toys.







The Denver Museum of Miniatures, Dolls, and Toys is much more than what the title implies. It’s a museum that really allows you to reminisce on what is a treasure to most, and that’s childhood. A time when responsibilities were slim and the goal of everyday was to have fun. No deadlines, no pressure, no filled inboxes...and a walk through this museum will resurface those feelings.

There are exhibits that will bring a spark to everyone, whether you grew up playing with an actual wooden dollhouse, cabbage patch kids or train sets. The craftsmanship and detail on the dollhouses is seriously astounding. I took a trip through one dollhouse starting first at the welcome rug, to the mouse on the floor, to an open book, and saw the clock was set. Maybe it was bedtime.

It makes you wonder what the parents dreamed about in their perfectly knit beds and embroidered pillows, and what children giggled about in their bedrooms with toys scattered about.

Most people think of dollhouses in the Victorian Era, and as gorgeous as they are, the southwest style dollhouses are just as incredible. You will notice handmade clay pots, turquoise and silver artifacts and woven rugs. You soon learn about the lifestyle, fashion, art history and culture.

The museum is housed in what seems like an old dollhouse itself in the Pearce-McAllister Cottage. The house was built in 1889 and is an example of Dutch-Colonial architecture. Inside are 10,000 items dating from 1680 to today. And beyond dollhouses you will find Japanese dolls, giant teddy bears, antique dolls and an array of miniatures.

For now, the most recent, yet historical objects are the teddy ruxpins, tickle me elmos and Barbie and Kens. Sooner than we can imagine these will be more historic than recent and a new generation of toys that are still on the inventing wheel will be brought in.

It’s museums like this that do more than teach you about history, they show you what parts of our history “made” history. And of course will inspire memories.

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