This whimsical cottage proved so popular, that, over time, Comstock was hired to build approximately 15 more of them. In the small town of Carmel, California – sometimes called Carmel-By-The-Sea – sits a perfectly nutty tiny house that embraces all the spirit and wonder of a fairy tale, exactly as it was designed to do.
The so-called Hansel House was built in 1923 by newlywed Hugh Comstock to serve as a store for his wife's otsy-tosty doll business. Originally called the Doll's House, it was designed to replicate – to bring to life, really – the swayback Tudor cottage drawn by English illustrator Arthur Rackham, who drew the building as the witch's woodsy home for the fairy tale Hansel And Gretel.
Take a look at this wonder of whimsy:
A view from the other side. It almost looks like a very tiny Hansel Cottage replica hanging from the tree.
This Arthur Rackham illustration was the inspiration for the Hansel House, which Tales From Carmel says was built for an estimated $1,400 -- way back when.
The interior, which has a unique (and adorable) layout, was converted from store to living space in 1993 by Congleton Architect AIA. Tasked with making the house a viable domicile, the firm added an addition that measured 10 inches by 20 feet, updated the bathroom, and came up with a 290 square feet layout that provides sleeping quarters for five.
Originally, a pair of cottages, designated Hansel and Gretel, were built, says Congleton. But the quirky cottages proved so popular, that, over time, Comstock was hired to build approximately 15 more of them. This created a "Tudor Storybook substyle of architecture that would help define the residential character of Carmel," says the Web site Tales From Carmel.
Here's one of the original residents -- an otsy totsy doll created by the Hansel Cottage builder's wife, Mayotta Browne Comstock.