Brambly Hedge Mouse House

When her twin boys are tucked up in bed, Maddie Brindley (Mads) creates magical, miniature worlds that have to be seen to be believed.

She’s made a Hobbit Hole, based on the book and film – The Hobbit – where every finely crafted detail is true to the story and will leave you marvelling at this mum’s talent.

Mads has also made an incredible miniature Gingerbread House, reminiscent of the Hansel and Gretel fairy tale, which is currently for sale on Etsy.

But it’s her adorable, miniature Mouse House that captured my imagination – perhaps because it is inspired by Jill Barklem’s beautiful Brambly Hedge picture books.

As a child, Mads loved the Brambly Hedge stories and painted her own illustrations, based on those in the books. She still has the original copies and now reads them to her children.

Mads’ Mouse House is based on Crabapple Cottage from Spring Story by Jill Barklem (pictured). 

Jill Barklem Brambly Hedge

brambly hedge illustrations

Brambly Hedge Illustration

via Hey Bud

For those not familiar with the stories, they follow the adventures, in word and picture, of a community of mice who live in Brambly Hedge. Brambly Hedge is an idyllic spot, on the other side of the stream, across a field where a close-knit community of mice make the most of what each season has to offer.

It took Mads’ 11 months to complete the Mouse House, but I’m sure you’ll agree it was worth the investment of time and talent. Enjoy…

Mads said she had no firm plans when she began the project – just a scribbled drawing with rough dimensions and lots of MDF! The next step? “I then stuck all the wood together and decorated,” Mads said. Yep – as simple as that!

Brambly Hedge - mouse dollhouse

Mads crafted most of the items inside the Mouse House herself- the fireplace is made out of scraps of wood, metal paint, and an egg whisk.

Brambly Hedge - mouse dollhouse - kitchen

She custom made the furniture and borrowed her Grandma’s sewing machine to make the curtains. The curtain tie backs are the small ribbons that come in clothes when they are new to hang on hangers with – so clever and resourceful.

Brambly Hedge - mouse dollhouse - kitchen

Brambly Hedge - mouse dollhouse - kitchen

The well-stocked miniature pantry.

Brambly Hedge - mouse dollhouse - pantry

The laundry room – the towels are made from old baby bibs from when Mads’ twins were young and the cloths are strips of ribbon. 

Brambly Hedge - mouse dollhouse - laundry

The cosy living room.

Brambly Hedge - mouse dollhouse - lounge

Brambly Hedge - mouse dollhouse - lounge


Brambly Hedge - mouse dollhouse - outside

Brambly Hedge - mouse dollhouse - outside

Have you ever created a miniature world? Or built your own dolls house? We’d love to see your designs.    If you’re looking for more inspiration, check out the Boot Doll House featured earlier on the blog. 

by Cath Johnsen

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Cath Johnsen

If you drop in on Cath at home, you’re likely to find her household in a state of happy chaos. She loves reading, being outdoors and travelling with her husband and three children. When she’s not spending time with family, Cath is indulging her love of writing at Be a Fun Mum… She knew that journalism degree would come in handy one day!


  1. says

    Oh my goodness. I LOVE this. My love of illustrated mice come from Brambly Hedge books and my mum’s own stories about mice. Seeing this just reignited my love of all things whimsical and anthropomorphic.

    Thanks for sharing this, I absolutely love that you have introduced me to a new creative person and that you’ve made me nostalgic in one fell swoop.

    H x

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