"Miniatures is a disease. Once you're infected, there's no cure."
That's the view of Bendigo miniature enthusiast Caroline Johns. And though he used to mock her, Mrs Johns has infected her husband Dale as well.
The pair produce room after room after room, all in miniature. It's a chance to indulge in architectural fantasy.
"[You] can make all the rooms you really want in your house, but can't have," Mrs Johns said.
Mr and Mrs Johns were among about 40 stallholders at the Bendigo Doll and Teddy Show this weekend.
Stallholder David Short has been repairing dolls for 30 years.
He began as an instrument technician, but a chance offer to help a friend turned into decades-long work.
Bendigo's Heather Adamson had brought a broken old doll which belonged to her mother to Mr Short for advice.
"It was mum's pride and joy. When she died, because I like dolls, my brothers gave her to me on the understanding that I'd get her fixed," Ms Adamson said.
"It's just time to do it."
The reaction of people when he has restored their doll is part of what Mr Short enjoys about the work.
"I get enjoyment when a lady bursts into tears, I enjoy it," he said.
He believes sentiment drives most people to repair old dolls.
"It's something that Mum had, and they had, and they pass it on," Mr Short said.
Proceeds from the Doll and Teddy Show go to the Bendigo Palliative Care Auxiliary.
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