Discover the world of 1:12th scale miniatures! What it is, its uses and popular manufacturers.
Before getting into what 1:12 is, let’s review what scale means in the context of miniatures.
Scale refers to the proportion of a model or miniature to the real object or structure it represents.
And, in the case of 1:12th scale, also known as 1:12, 1/12, or 1 inch scale, it means that every 1 inch of the model represents 12 inches of the real object.
A 6-foot high man would be 6-inches in a 1:12 scale model.
Uses of 1:12 scale
One of the most popular uses for 1:12th scale is in dollhouse miniatures.
Dollhouses are often made in this scale, as it allows for a lot of detail to be included in the miniature rooms and furniture.
Some of the biggest manufacturers of dollhouse miniatures in this scale include the German manufacturer, Reutter Porcelain, American Greenleaf Dollhouses who have been making dollhouses, furniture, and accessories since 1947, the top-of-the-line American maker Bespaq and The Dolls House Emporium in the UK.
And there are an increasing number of amazingly talented modellers create collectable 1:12 scale furniture, such as Anastasia Kopalina who made the stunning chair seen below.
Another popular use for 1:12th scale is in figurines and other collectables. Many manufacturers create miniature figures and accessories in this scale, such as McFarlane Toys and Funko. These figures are often used in dioramas and other display pieces, and they can make great collectables for fans of different pop culture franchises. (My eldest son is a big collector of Funko figures!).
Tamiya also make a range of model cars and motorbikes in 1:12 scale.
Another increasing use of 1:12 scale is dioramas, particularly rooms. With a number of modellers creating beautiful rooms to 1:12th scale.
And finally, and of course, there are 1:12 Scale model trains. These are naturally large, compared to the usual model trains I tinker with and aren’t seen much in the UK but they’re quite common in the America where 1:12 scale is popular for backyard (garden) layouts, running on 45mm (G gauge) track.
If you’re interested in starting a collection of 1/12th scale miniatures, there are many options available to you. You can find dollhouse miniatures and figurines at many craft and hobby stores, as well as online retailers such as Amazon and Etsy. There are also many online communities and forums where you can connect with other enthusiasts and learn more about the different options available.
Overall, 1/12th scale is a versatile and popular scale for miniatures, and it has a wide range of uses. Whether you’re interested in dollhouses, figurines, morel trains or other collectibles, there are many options available in this scale. So, go ahead, and start your miniature collection today!
Andy is a lifelong modeler, writer, and founder of modelrailwayengineer.com. He has been building model railways, dioramas, and miniatures for over 20 years. His passion for model making and railways began when he was a child, building his first layout at the age of seven.
Andy’s particular passion is making scenery and structures in 4mm scale, which he sells commercially. He is particularly interested in modelling the railways of South West England during the late Victorian/early Edwardian era, although he also enjoys making sci-fi and fantasy figures and dioramas. His website has won several awards, and he is a member of MERG (Model Railway Electronics Group) and the 009 Society.
When not making models, Andy lives in Surrey with his wife and teenage son. Other interests include history, science fiction, photography, and programming. Read more about Andy.