Last chance to vote for the The Osborn Dollhouse to be made into an actual dollhouse we can all buy! Go to Quirky.com now and vote! Please re-post and share this with everyone you know.
Kathy Osborn emailed me several weeks ago with more gorgeous photos of the house and kindly answered a zillion of my rambling questions. Kathy's best friend since they worked together in the design dept. of NYPIRG in 1985, Alex, told Kathy about Quirky.com hoping it my might be the second chance to make bring this dollhouse to life. The house was first seen at the Licensing Fair in NYC a few years back but it wasn't quite the right venue. As many builders know she ran into roadblocks with manufacturers and packagers, so it would be amazing if Quirky.com decided to take this house into production.
I asked Kathy what inspired her to build the house and as most of us found years ago, she didn't like what was out there. "I loved vintage dollhouses on ebay but everything on the toy store shelves about 5 years ago looked chicken-hearted to me. I saw a dollhouse in my mind's eye that I thought would make me happy and the more I thought about it - the more I thought it could happen."
The Osborn dollhosue has a layer of steel under the floorboards. The reason was that I was going to put tiny magnets in the dolls shoes so they could stand up. Kathy went through about 6 or 7 designs, before finalizing this one that she named for her dad. It took about 8 months while she was also working on other things to finish the designs. She found a model building company that was interested in building it but they were too busy and suggested J & G Architects. Which worked out great as they were able to build the house in about a month and a half.
Whether Quirky takes on the dollhouse or doesn't - Kathy will next be trying to get these dolls made. Modern quality poseable dollhouse families are not really available. "Maybe it could work like Barbie - first a fashion figure shows up for the house - then her best friend Midge, Then the boyfriend Ken, then marriage and tiny dolls (optional). It was the clothes that fascinated me in their plastic packages way back in 1960-61 - I simply had to have them. Making tiny clothes is next to impossible but they'd sell - absolutely."
The doll was made by Kathy's friend Mary Kenny. Kathy did the paint job on the faces and the hair. The doll clothes were made by Kathy's friend Susan Hunt Yule. Kathy did some art directing but Susan felt her way through a lot ot these pieces.
I have more photos and details from Kathy, but my plane is boarding, so until next time.
GET OUT THE VOTE!
Please vote on Quirky.com now, and please leave a comment, let's get this dollhouse built!