By Amy Reast

A woman creates stylish dollhouses for adults complete with modern tiny furniture, with each room taking up to two months to make.

Beth Krum, 52, first fell in love with the idea of miniature things from childhood after seeing her neighbor’s dollhouse.

She became “obsessed” and would make tiny accessories for her Barbie dolls, and her love for all things miniature stayed with her into adulthood.

But Beth didn’t get her first dollhouse until she was in her late 30s and a mom of three, when she finally asked for a flat-pack Victorian cottage for her birthday.

She set to work designing and decorating the interior, first ordering tiny furniture before beginning to make her own.

Before long, she had learned to make all her own furniture, from tiny cushions to tiny toilets and even a tiny fridge with a working light.

She began selling her handmade furniture and taking commissions for whole rooms from other miniature enthusiasts, which can cost up to $3,700 and take up to two months to make.

Now it’s her full-time job, but Beth said it doesn’t feel like she’s working at all because she considers it her “passion.”

She has two dollhouses of her own, which she regularly works on, and is currently renovating one to add a “modern oak floor” downstairs.

Beth, from Bitterne Park, Southampton, said: “I saw my neighbor’s dollhouse when I was young and I was blown away. It was amazing.

“After that, I was obsessed with miniatures in every form—I even loved buying mini shampoos for my holidays.

“After I got my first dollhouse as an adult, I was getting frustrated because I wanted modern things inside and couldn’t find them for sale anywhere.

“I decided I would learn to make the things I loved myself, using inspiration from shops like Next, The White Company, and Ikea.

“I loved the challenge to reproduce a full-sized item but in tiny.”

Beth, who is mom to three children aged 31, 29, and 26, and three step-children, runs an online shop as well as attending miniatures festivals where she sets up a table.

She now has two dollhouses of her own, one of them being the original Victorian cottage she was gifted for her birthday years ago.

She originally did it entirely as a hobby, creating small furniture for her own dollhouses alongside getting a PhD in French Sociolinguistics and then working as an associate lecturer at Southampton University and Solent University.

She said: “I decided I would make things I loved, and hone my skills, and if I felt good enough I would start an Etsy shop.”

She bought tiny tools and paintbrushes and taught herself how to make tiny items for her own dollhouses, and loved every second.

She said: “My husband laughs at me; he can see when I’m thinking about miniatures.

“We might be out at dinner and I’ll be staring at a light trying to work out how to make it in miniature form.

“I spend a lot of time in Hobbycraft and B&Q, I get my wood from model shops and Perspex from an online supplier.

“I have to buy tiny lights from a specialist miniature lighting supplier that can source the smallest possible LEDs.”

In 2018, she set up an Etsy shop selling bits and bobs before eventually taking over a miniatures company that was shutting down in 2021.

Since then, it has been her full-time work, and she’s still as passionate as ever.

She sells tiny lamps, cushions, kitchenware, and rugs but also makes bespoke pieces on commission, such as more intricate appliances.

One aluminum fridge with a freezer drawer, Perspex shelves, and lighting would take around 24 hours to make and would cost around $200 when sold.

Or sometimes people commission her to make a whole room to fit straight into their dollhouses, which can take several weeks of full-time work and cost up to $3,700.

While it can be a big challenge, Beth adores her work and has no plans to stop.

Even after spending a full day making mini things to sell to other people, she relaxes by going to her studio and spending some time on her own dollhouses.

She said: “I live, eat, and sleep miniatures—and I feel blessed that I get to do so much of what I love.”

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