Last Update: May 2006

On this page I list books, links and other sources that might be of use to a miniaturist who wants to do some research for his or her project.

I also included reviews of the few books/magazines on miniatures that I've read, as well as the adresses of miniature shops and artists in my region.

Why not email me if you got another good book, link, or anything that should be included into this list?


General historcal sources
Everyday and social life
Interior design and fittings

Books and Magazines for Miniaturists
Miniatures in Berlin and the wider region

Historical Sources

A few remarks in advance:

It used to be a hotly debated question among historians whether or not it is possible to know the past as it really was, in short: if there is a historical truth. The dominating answer since the 1960s is "No". The 1960s historians came to the conclusion that there are as many historical truths as there have been people living on this earth. Every (hi)story telling inevitably involves generalization
Building a historical miniature is nothing else than this. Sit back and relax.

Even if you build strictly according to history books you will never be able to build an historically fully exact miniature.

The way we perceive historical facts shapes our picture of the past. Some histories have been written with the intension to come to a certain interpretation of the past, turning a blind eye to the facts that did not suit their version of the truth. However, even the most sober historian has to select between what he considers to be necessary and unnecessary in order to tell his-story.
So if historians are allowed to let their perception of the past influence their scholarly work, why shouldn't we?

Use your imagination. Be inspired by history.

General historical sources

Title Details Remarks
TheHistoryNet at About.com http://history.about.com

Everyday and social life

Title Details Remarks
"Victorian London's middle-class housewife: What she did all day", by Yaffa Claire Draznin Greenwood Press, 2001
ISBN 0-313-31399-7
"Daily life in the industrial United States: 1870-1900", by Julie Husband and Jim O'Loughlin Greenwood Press, 2004
ISBN 0-313-32302-X
Part of the Greenwood Press "Daily life through history" series
"Illustrierte Alltags- und Sozialgeschichte Deutschlands: 1900-1945" (GERMAN), by Sigrid and Wolfgang Jacobeit Westfälisches Dampfboot, 1995
ISBN 3-929586-38-X
This is part of a series, dealing with other periods as well (they start at the year 550)
Geschichte des Alltagslebens (GERMAN) - Wilhelm Kaulen Frankfurt am Main: Verlag Peter Lang, 1989 This is a new edition of a 100-year old book (readers should be able to read the old german font). This isn't really a historical record of everyday life, but a description of the domestic tradition in Germany - exactly what we need. It covers a wide timespan - Middle Ages and early New Age. In five chapters the author describes the tasks and utilities of the domestic sphere, from household to nutrition, literature, music, and the holiday / celebration ceremonies. No pictures, except a few drawings.
Familienleben in Deutschland: Neue Bilder aus der deutschen Vergangenheit (GERMAN) - Barbara Beuys Reinbek: Rowohlt, 1985 Descriptions of everyday life of various people (men, women, rich, poor) from the old Germans to the Republik. Chapters are on "Life in the Village (Leben im Dorf)", "In the Medieval Town (In der mittelterlichen Stadt)", "Life in the Fortress (Leben in the Burg)"....
No Pictures.
Geschichte und Geschichten im Museum (GERMAN) No 2: Spielzeug (toys) um 1900; No 3: Wohnen in Berlin (Living in Berlin) um 1900; No 4: Essen, Trinken, Feiertage (Meals and Holidays) um 1900 Berlin: Museumspädagogischer Dienst Berlin, 1983 (These brochures cannot be bought at a normal bookstore, but are available at the Staatsbibliothek Berlin) Each is a small journal made for children, with an addition for teachers, containing many antique photographes, detailed drawings and information on the mentioned topics around 1900.


Title Details Remarks
"Gründerzeit: Möbel und Wohnkultur" (GERMAN), by Rainer Haaff Rhein-Verl. Haaff, 1992
ISBN 3-9802812-1-3
Focus on Historism, less Art Nouveau


Title Details Remarks
My own architecture page www.mini-mansion.de/upload0306/architec.html I live in an urban area with listed buildings, dating from 1890 to 1910. As this is the timespan our big house is intended to resemble, I took pictures of some architectural details.
About.com architecture.about.com/library/bl-color.htm Colors, as they were originally used on historic buildings
Frankenberger Viertel, Aachen www.frankenberger-viertel.de Pictures of that famous complex of buildings. In- and outside. These Houses were built after 1870 in the rich "Gründerzeit" style.
Fotocommunity - The architecture pages http://www.fotocommunity.de/pc/pc/cat/3 Thousands of pictures on a site dedicated to the art of photography. For rural architekture, click "Ländliche Architektur"; for urban buildings "Profanbauten" and "Stadtlandschaften"
The Natural Building Network http://www.naturalbuildingnetwork.org Devoted to ecological masonry, this site contains inspiring pictures of houses, basic information on things like earthbag building, thatch, living roofs, light clay, cobworks.
Connie of TheChinaDoll
Architecture Pictures
http://community.webshots.com/user/thechinadoll222 Interesting real size buildings (mostly Tudor).
Bruno Paul: Deutsche Raumkunst und Architektur zwischen Jugendstil und Moderne. by Alfred Ziffer
München: Klinkhardt und Biermann, 1992
Paul was one of the leading German architects and interiorr designer of the 20th century, and must be named with Riemerschied, Pankok and van de Velde. His works resemble the floral "Jugendstil" era as well as the more linear Renee-MavIntosh like style that dominated his works in the pre-World-War-I era. This huge book provides lots of detailed pictures and texts on his illustrations, design, furnitures, "room art", and architecture.
Hermann Billig: Architekt zwischen Historismus, Jugendstil und Neuem Bauen Karlsruhe: Architekturmuseum der Technischen Universität München, 1997 Interior Design, Furniture, Architecture (monumental buildings) and Illsutrations from before and after 1914.
Jugendstil in Czernowitz by Svitlana Bilenkova (GERMAN) Wien: Traditionsverband "Katholische Czernowitzer Pennäler", 2002 Small book with pictures (rather of details than of whole housses) and lots of Information on the many architectural highlights in this famous Hungarain city.
Art Nouveau in Riga by Silvija Grosa Jumava 2003 This (English) is like a "walk through Riga in the Art Nouveau era". The city is famous for its architecture - and here you can see why. The pictures provide ample examples for ornaments, door and window shapes, and the way the fassades were structured. And, after all, its just beautiful!
Modell und Wirklichkeit: Jugendstilbauten im Vergleich (GERMAN) - Berthold Schwanzer Wien: Modulverlag, 1987 The Author compares architectural models and original buildings in Vienna dating from around 1900. There are only few pictures in poor quality, but the information on the architectural details and the way the models were made is very useful.
Vienna 1900: Art Architecture & Design - Kirk Varnedoe New York: The Museum of Modern Art 1986 The Viennese architecture is world famous and readings its cultural history are always ver inspirational. This book was published on the occasion of the exhibition with the same name. The photo catalogue is large and covers exteriors, interiors, household items, paintings, and other pieces of art and design.
Architektur - Joseph Maria Olbrich (GERMAN) Tübingen: Ernst Wasmuth Verlag, 1988 Olbrich is the "Jugendstil" architekt. This is an new complete edition (huge and heavy!) of three original books on interiors and exteriors, as well as small items (like an umbrella's handle!) from 1901-1914. The book contains lots of photographs, architectural drawings and text. You feel like you just have to start building.
Jugensstil in Rußland (GERMAN) - Elena A. Borisowa / Grigori J. Sternin Stuttgart: Deutsche Verlags-Anstalt, 1988 This is a BOOK. You need muscle power to open it - its so big and heavy. However, it's worth the effort: Inside are huge glossy pictures of breathtaking beauty. Stained glass windows, abundant floral ornaments, wood and stone work that can immediately be identified as "Jugenstil", yet has that special russian something... This book is one of my favorites!

Interior Design and Fittings

Title Details Remarks
Mountain Wood www.mwlogfurniturecolorado.com Real size log furniture - just copy this into "twig scale".
Frankenberger Viertel, Aachen www.frankenberger-viertel.de Pictures of that famous complex of buildings, in- and outside. These Houses were built after 1870 in the rich "Gründerzeit" style.
"Gründerzeit: Möbel und Wohnkultur" (GERMAN), by Rainer Haaff Rhein-Verl. Haaff, 1992
ISBN 3-9802812-1-3
Focus on Historism, less Art Nouveau
See "Architecture" for Vienna 1900, Architektur - Olbrich, Bruno Paul, Hermann Billig s.a. Books with plenty of material about the era around 1900
Jugendstil in Freiburg Augustinermuseum Freiburg, 2001 Besides some details on art and architecture, this huge and heavy book provides lots of photographs and drawings of interiors and furniture from the "Jugenstil" period in Germany.
Möbel in Thüringen: Produktion, Gebrauch, Interpretation Museum für Thüringer Volkskunde Erfurth, 20, 2003 Big catalogue with photographes of beautiful rural furniture, dating from the 18th to th 20th century: cases, cupboards, (four poster) beds, cradles... with masterly floral / ornamental painting
1900 Galeries Nationales du Grand Palais, Paris, 2000 Hugh book with impressive high gloss pictures of items from the Art Nouveau era: architecture, furniture, design objects, paintings, sculptures, photographs, bookm illustrations. Breathtaking.


Title Details Remarks
The Online Costume Gallery www.costumegallery.com Pictures and Information about historic dresscodes
Fashion - University of Vermont www.uvm.edu/~hag/godey/fashion/di.html Clothes of the 19th century
"Kleidung um 1900" (GERMAN) Children's book
Published 1983 as part of the series: "Geschichte und Geschichten im Museum"
Im Gewand der Zeit: Mode der Jahrhundertwenden 1800-1900-2000 (GERMAN) - Jörn Christiansen / Uta Bernsmeier (Ed.) Bremen: Bremer Landesmuseum für Kunst und Kulturgeschichte Focke Museum, 2000 This is a beautiful book! In it there are descritions and detailed pictures of women's fashion from the century turns 1800, 1900 and 2000. They give information on fabrics and fabrication, as well as on cultural aspects of fashion.
Kleidung um 1900, Geschichte und Geschichten im Museum, Nr. 5 (GERMAN) Berlin: Museumspädagogischer Dienst Berlin, 1983 This is a small journal made for children, with an addition for teachers, containing many antique photographes, detailed drawings and information on clothes and laundry around 1900.

Books and Magazines for Miniaturists

I did not include homepages here, as they are given seperately on my link page.

Title Details Remarks
"Puppenhäuser Selber Bauen", by A German Book refering, as I know now, to some projects by Beryl Armstrong (UK), who wrote several books on miniatures. Good for beginners, as she explains many basic techniques.
"How to Make Your Dolls' House Special", by Beryl Armstrong Guild of Master Craftsman Publications, 2000, ISBN 1-86108-182-0 Beryl Armstrong's second book. Her houses are always a joy to be looked at. The book's subtitle promises "Fresh Ideas for Decorating". To be honest, however, I did not find much that I hadn't already learned via Internet. And inspite of the title, I found that the projects and techniques included here are still quite basic. However, it is good to have a hard copy of all this. Good reference for builders and decoraters.
"Making Character Figures in 1/12th scale", by James Carrington Fantastic, inspiring book that begins with opening and focusing your mind and thoughts on the task ahead and continues with very detailed explanations of techniques. The author shares a wealth of experience. Strongly recommended.
"The Dolls' House Shopkeeper", by
Dollhouse Miniatures A monthly U.S. Magazine
Projects, mini-cutouts, reports on special houses, artists amd fairs.

Miniatures in Berlin and the wider region

Shops with online cataloque are listed on my link page.

Name Details Remarks
Miniature Museum Arikalex Hotel Morgenland
Finckensteinallee 23 - 27
D-12209 Berlin (Lichterfelde-West)

Hours of delight and blissfullness.
The exhibition contains: Merlin's cellar, gothic houses and towers, the Palazzo Vendramin Calergi from Venice, with equipment from the renaissance, Rococo castle Sans Souci, houses resembling Biedermeier, Jugendstil, Gründerzeit, Turn of the Century, the style of Gaudi (Spain), modern ones, and various other excellent miniatures.
Modulor Gneisenaustrasse 43-45, Berlin-Kreuzberg

The most amazing shop first. This is a supplier of materials for architects and other professional model makers. Their range is stunning. They have the thinnest stripwood and veneer, all sorts of paper, scale wire sheets, landscaping material, precision tools and so much more...
Hobby Rüther Goltzstrasse, Berlin-Schöneberg This isn't really a miniatures shop, but rather a craft shop. However, their range of hobby materials is so vast, that they now split up into three shops, all situated along the Goltzstrasse. Perhaps the most amazing is their jewellry department, where they sell pearls of all shapes and colors, as well as lots of jewellry bits that can make the miniaturist's brain explode with ideas.
Werken Spielen Schenken Schloßstrasse, Berlin-Steglitz

Situated at an underground station (Schloßstraße) of line 9.
A toy and crafts store with a medium miniature department. They have all the usual brands: Mini Mundus, Bodo Hennig, Rheutter... Not suited for people who are for the very unique, as, to my knowledge, they do not sell pieces made by individual artists.
The Mini Shop Berlin Buchbinder Weg 29b, 12355 Berlin

I don't know why I haven't been there yet...
Peter Kunz,
Modellbau Handwerksbetrieb
Dipl. Ing. K. Peter Kunz
Hünenweg 11
18209 Bad Doberan
Fax: 038203 - 12272
He made the woodworker's bench in our workshop, and he told me he would make some more, if people ask nicely...
If anyone contacts him, please mention me and this homepage. Thx.
Leiziger Puppenkiste Karin Helmers, Leipzig Herself a dedicated miniaturist, Karin Helmers sells brands like the Mini Mundus kits as well as selected miniatures made by artists she knows personally. Nice little shop, good service.
Raabe GmbH Main Station, Leipzig Situated in the mall at the main station in Leipzig, this shop is good for a quick drop by. Their focus is on other crafts, but they have a few shelves with miniatures, furnitures, fittings and wallpapers.