Friday, October 30, 2009

Renwal super BIG!!

Finding a set of Renwal kitchen furniture on eBay 5 years ago is what started my miniature obsession. My son insisted I sign up to buy on eBay; but 5 months later, when I had yet to purchase any items, he walked me through searching for items....and what did I find but a set of Renwal kitchen furniture just like I had in my childhood dollhouse! I think I paid a premium price for that set and made the seller very happy AND brought much joy to my daily life.

Renwal Manufacturing Company started producing plastic dollhouse furniture in 1945. Charles F. Donovan, Jr. has published a wonderful reference book, Renwal, World's Finest Toys, for collectors of this vintage furniture. This particular kitchen set was produced in 1948-50; and was probably sized for 6-8" dolls as the sink and stove are 4" by 6", while the fridge is 7" by 4" ....much too large for most dollhouses.
All the drawers and doors open; there is a lid to cover the burners on the stove; the handles on the stove and the freezer compartment move; the ice tray and shelves in the fridge are removable; and, best of all, a built in tank behind the sink allows the faucets to have running water...well, at least drop by drop! The refrigerator came equipped with ice tray with cube grid, a white painted bottle of milk and packages of butter, eggs and cheese. I'm lucky to have 3 of the items even though the butter has lost its wrapper.

The stove came with 3 ivory pans; I have the small sauce pan and the frying pan. The burner lid slides down behind the burners with much difficulty; my stove has a piece broken out at that point.

The sink came equipped with scaled packages of soap, soap powder and a sink stopper. Turn the faucets and water comes out! Not exactly, Donovan explained that water flow operated by gravity whether the faucets were "on" or "off". And since my sink didn't come with a stopper and I couldn't find a replacement item, I had lots of fun taking the next picture!
And here is a picture of that original kitchen set that got me started .... next to this super BIG set that must have delighted a lot of small girls back in 1948!


  1. I just love this also graced my first tin litho dollhouse when I was just 2 1/2 years old! My Dad took a photo of me then, and gave it to my husband to show him what "started" all of these dollhouses that crowd our life today. haha...
    I have never seen the larger scale but have heard about it. Thanks for posting such great photos that for bringing back so many nice memories of childhood hours pretending and believing.

  2. Dads are always so funny! Louise, you should share the picture of you and your dollhouse with us! I have saved pics from the net of little girls with their dollhouses...always a joy to look at. My childhood dollhouse was a big Keystone Tudor with Renwal and Ideal furniture, but it looks like Mom missed taking pictures of it. You are very lucky to have one!

  3. Hi! I had the fortune to find in a portuguese flee market a complete sink and a stove. The sink comes whith a large bawl and 3 dishes too, besides the stoper. Inside there is a aluminium bawl to catch the water. (you can see that in my flickr: Rocks 68) or if you search on google for Renwal sink you find my flickr. I would like very much to have tha fridge too. But as i can see, is difficult to find it. In the other day i found another sink. It was incredible. Maybe some day I´ll change the spare sink for a fridge... Congretullations for your collection!! Kisses from Portugal.

  4. I did a google search and found you! I recently purchased the larger scale Renwal sink and refrigerator at an antique mall in Houston. I'm using it with my Vogue Ginny Dolls! I was trying to learn more about the set and if it came with a stove. Now I know! I did raise the two pieces with a black baseboard about 3/4 of an inch. I would love to find the stove someday. I'll be back to browse your blog when I have more time.