Mouse Doll's House | December 2017 – January 2018

Each year around Christmas, my mother and I clean out a room or a cupboard at her home. My parental home. This time we would take on part of the attic. The slanted part – behind the little table with the sewing machine on it – which could only be reached on all fours. We hadn’t been in there for a long time. There was all kinds of stuff, most of it packed away in boxes or plastic bags. Plenty of still-usable skeins of wool and cotton, but also various items my mum had once made on a creative handicrafts course. Wooden objects, lovely glazed pottery, but also a doll’s house made of paper, in an open box measuring some 10 by 15 inches.

Chairs, tables, houseplants, kitchens cabinets: all handmade. But no dolls had lived there in recent years. The house had been taken over by the mice, who had wreaked incredible havoc in there.

Some things were strangely unaffected: the little blue chairs were still neatly in place. Elsewhere the furniture had been reduced to a combination of shreds and mouse-droppings. I have to say, I thought it looked impressive. It’s not often you see it like this.

I put the doll’s house on a table for a few weeks in order to have another good look at it, by my mum agreed that it really was best to throw it out.