Top 10 Tudor Classics in Miniature

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23 December 2011
imports_HAC_pairoftudorstylepanel_91153.jpg Pair of Tudor style Panel-Backed Chairs
Recreate one of the post popular miniature themes with Jane Kubiesa's guide to the doll house designer touches from Tudor times. ...
Top 10 Tudor Classics in Miniature Images

As the rich got richer, Tudor nobles and well-to-do merchants wanted more luxury in their homes and favoured what they called 'antiques of the latest fashion'. These hand-crafted pieces of oak furniture were so expensive and important that they were even left in wills to relatives. They were often accompanied by the soft furnishings of the time to add greater comfort. This combination of carved oak, tapestry and fabrics gave a characteristic look to the Tudor household.

1 Panel-Backed Chair

Chairs were a luxury in the Tudor home and only the wealthy and high ranking could afford to own them. In a merchant's home there might be two chairs for the husband an wife, stools for everyone else, whilst in a noble family, chairs may line a refectory table as a symbol of status. These chairs are from Tanya's Little Curtains. Website:




2 Cartwheel Chandelier

Light was seen as an important factor in the Tudor home, especially in larger rooms which needed as much illumination as possible. A certain amount of light came from the fireplace, but this was not enough, so the answer came in the form of basic ceiling chandeliers. The cartwheel chandelier offered a source of light high up in a room and enabled a number of lights to be used at the same time. It also acted as a a dimmer switch, as more candles could be used depending upon how much light was needed. More lights would be added if there were guests. The candles were made by the housewife or by servants. This light comes from Romney Miniatures. Website:

3 Wall Hangings

Wall hangings were important to keep out draughts and acted as an additional layer of insulation when placed on top of wall panelling. In the most important rooms of the house, these hangings would have been hand-crafted tapestries, whereas less important areas would have painted hangings. As red and black were the most expensive dyes for the fabric or yarn, these colours became fashionable with nobles. This tapestry is by Small Wonders. Website:

4 Tester Bed

Designed to create a room within a room the tester or four poster bed was made with draughty mansions and castles in mind. It had richly finished curtains which could be drawn to block out the majority of drafts in the bed chamber, and a canopy to stop cold air and bugs from the rafters dropping onto the sleepers below. This fabulous example is from Simply Silk. Website:


5 Framed Chest

The chest was the only storage available in some homes, so chests contained everything from clothing and kitchen goods, to food and personal items. A framed chest could also double up as extra seating for guests. Some chests were intricately carved with popular patterns, such as the linen fold design, whilst others were more plain. This chest comes from Jan and Karen's Tudor Style Miniature Furniture. Website:

6 Silver Tableware

Less well off homes made do with pewter, the poor used wood, and royalty may have sometimes used gold. Any grand house had a large selection of silver tableware to show status and to impress guests. Platters and trenchers were commen at the table along with knives and spoons. Forks were not used at this time. These silver items are made by Mike Sparrow. Website:

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7 Settle

The settle was a halfway house between a chair and a bench. It had the prestige of having a back like a chair, and the ability to seat several people. The high back was specifically designed to keep out drafts. Plain models were often found in front of the fire in a farmhouse kitchen, whilst more elaborate versions stood in front of the fire in the great halls of manor houses. This delightful settle with hand embroidered panels comes from Tanya's Little Curtains. Website:



8 Livery Cupboard

A livery cupboard was an early kitchen cupboard. It was used for storing food and drink and was also called an almoner's cupboard. The cupboard had pierced or decorated doors, and was set on a stand. The stand sometimes called a livery board, could be used as a bench, and also doubled as a deterrent to vermin. This miniature classic is from JBM Miniatures. Website:

9 Refectory Table

Tudors loved food and feasting, so a large table was needed to seat many guests. Henry VIII's feasts were legendary so his refectory tables had to withstand the weight of many extravagant dishes. The tables were sturdy and hardwearing. They had a thick boarded top and stretchers for extra stability. Barley twists or bulbous designs were popular for leg decoration. This table comes from Jan and Karen's Tudor Style Miniature Furniture. Website:



10 Table Carpet

Carpets were so expensive in Tudor times that relegating them to the floor was unheard of. Instead, rushes or reed mats were saved for walking on, whilst carpets were elevated to table tops as a form of decoration and to make the hard wooden surfaces more comfortable. These were often accompanied by cushions embroidered with silk thread to give chairs and benches some form of padding. The table carpet could be part of an entire room scheme, with matching curtains, wall hangings, cushions and bed curtains. This stylishly dressed table complete with accessories comes from Simply Silk. Website:

The other features in this series are as follows:


This feature was originally published in Dolls House and Miniature Scene magazine. If you like reading about miniatures, why not buy yourself a copy of the magazine, better still take out a subscription so you never miss an issue. For fans of Facebook and Twitter, please use the buttons at the top of the page to share this with your miniature loving friends.

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