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Photographic portrait of Princess Louise, looking to the right of camera

The captivating life and art of Queen Victoria and Prince Albert’s daughter

Model kitchen nineteenth century

Wood, iron, tin, enamel | RCIN 41989

Pantry, Swiss Cottage

Princess Louise’s father, Prince Albert, was insistent that the princes and princesses not only had an academic education but were also adept in practical matters. The children were allocated allotment plots, spent time learning how to prepare their own meals, and had a miniature house named ‘Swiss Cottage’ constructed for them in the grounds of Osborne House on the Isle of Wight. Louise and her siblings would spend time cooking, gardening and tending to their little house, and would on occasion invite their parents to enjoy dinners cooked by themselves. This small, child size, but well-equipped model kitchen would have been used by the children to learn basic kitchen skills. Louise would later use her skills in her adult life, leaving many of her guests impressed by her culinary abilities; cooking meals for guests in Canada and Kensington Palace, where she later lived.