May 172016
 
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Madame Alexander issued six series of 14″ First Lady dolls beginning in 1976 and ending in 1990. The first series, available from 1976 through 1978, included Martha Washington, Abigail Adams, Martha Randolph, Dolley Madison, Elizabeth Monroe and Louisa Adams. The dolls are not portraits of the actual women, and Madame Alexander used creative license in selecting the hair and eye colors of the dolls. They are made of rigid vinyl, with rooted hair and sleep eyes with brush lashes. They are jointed at the neck, shoulders and hips, and wear beautifully made outfits. In addition to the outfit pieces described, each doll wears white stockings.

Martha Dandridge Custis Washington was the wife of George Washington, our nation’s first President. She was a young widow with two toddlers when she married Washington in 1759. Although the doll has light blonde hair, the real Martha was a brunette. She is remembered today as a warm and gracious hostess who treasured her privacy.

Martha Washington wears a silver and taupe brocade gown trimmed with champagne lace and ivory braid, with an attached lace stole and a lace mob cap. Her white cotton and net petticoat and pantalettes are trimmed with pink satin ribbon and white lace. She carries a brown velveteen bag adorned with an ivory lace motif. Pink satin shoes and a graduated “pearl” necklace complete her ensemble.

Abigail Smith Adams, wife of John Adams, got her feet wet by being the Vice President’s wife (now sometimes called Second Lady) before becoming First Lady when her husband was elected President. In 1825 she also became the mother of a President when her son John Quincy Adams was elected. Her admonition to her husband to “remember the ladies” as he worked with the Continental Congress to build a new nation is still quoted today.

Abigail Adams wears a long sleeved royal blue satin gown with a delicate leaf print, with white lace at the cuffs. Her white lace shawl is attached at the neckline and held in place with a rhinestone pin at her bodice. Her white cotton and net petticoat and pantalettes are trimmed in white lace and pale blue satin ribbon. She wears a blue velvet ribbon in her hair and black velveteen shoes. A graduated “pearl” necklace provides a finishing touch.

Martha Jefferson Randolph was the daughter of the third American President, Thomas Jefferson. She acted as his occasional hostess due to the death of her mother several years before. She and her husband had twelve children – her son, James, was the first child born in the White House, in 1806. Known as Patsy to her family, Martha took devoted care of her father in his declining years.

Martha Randolph wears a short sleeved pale pink taffeta gown with an ivory lace panel down the front. Her pink taffeta petticoat and pantalettes are trimmed with pink satin ribbon and white lace. She wears a pink organdy wrap around her head and a long black cape trimmed in fancy brocade ribbon. A graduated “pearl” necklace and pink satin shoes complete her outfit.

Dolley Payne Todd Madison was the wife of America’s fourth President, James Madison. She was the first First Lady to embrace a public role, and helped to found a home for young orphaned girls. When the British burned Washington during the War of 1812, she refused to evacuate the White House until Gilbert Stuart’s portrait of George Washington was removed from the wall and secured.

Dolley Madison wears a sleeveless champagne satin dressed flocked with silver glitter in a floral pattern, and decorated with champagne and silver metallic braid. She wears a matching long coat and an ivory organdy head wrap. Her white cotton petticoat and pantalettes are trimmed with white lace and pink satin ribbon. Champagne satin shoes provide the finishing touch.

Elizabeth Kortright Monroe was only seventeen years old when she married the future fifth President of the United States, James Monroe. Due to her frail health, her oldest daughter often assumed the duties of hostess at the White House.

Elizabeth Monroe wears a long sleeved gold and pink satin brocade gown, trimmed in satin ribbon and lace. Her white cotton and net petticoat and pantalettes are trimmed with white satin ribbon and lace. A lace shawl attached to a long brocade panel at her back is held in place with a goldtone bow pin at her waist. She wears a rhinestone tiara and a rhinestone pendant necklace on a goldtone chain. Champagne colored satin shoes complete her ensemble.

Louisa Catherine Johnson Adams, wife of John Quincy Adams, was born in England, to a British mother and American father. She wrote music and poetry, and played the harp. She followed her husband in his diplomatic travels around the world, once crossing Europe by coach in the winter to join him.

Louisa Adams wears a short sleeved white satin gown decorated with white and silver metallic braid, and ruched bands of tulle. Her white taffeta and net petticoat and pantalettes are decorated with gathered white lace. She wears graduated “pearl” necklace and a cluster of rosebuds in her hair.



Copyright 2016 by Zendelle Bouchard

10″ Margot Doll by Alexander (1961)

 Alexander  Comments Off on 10″ Margot Doll by Alexander (1961)
Nov 222015
 
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10″ Margot by Alexander. Photo courtesy of Nancy McKee.

In the 1950’s Madame Alexander used the name Margot for a 14″ ballerina doll with the Margaret face mold. But 1961, the 10″ version of Margot was introduced. She is an all hard plastic glamour doll, the same doll as Cissette, but has an upswept hairdo with a spit curl over her left eye. 10″ Margot is most commonly found as a brunette but blondes were made as well. She has the same dramatic eye paint as Jacqueline. Margot dolls were later used for some of the Portrette series. See a closeup photo of the above doll here. See a back view here.

Margot had several different outfits available. This may not be a complete list.

#? – Silver stretch top (probably came with pants)
#? – Blue and white top with vertical stripes, Mandarin collar, three buttons; orange pants. Sold separately. See photo above.
#? – Pink nylon nightie; black lace peignoir with pink ribbon tie. Sold separately. #905 – Black pants; white eyelet top.
#910 – Black velvet panty; red or yellow satin brocade halter top with gold straps; black elastic-strap heels; pearl drop earrings. See photo at top. This photo shows a variation of the top.
#920 – Purple or lavender satin princess-cut gown with sequined straps; may have matching stole rhinestone or pearl drop earrings; bracelet.
#925 – White satin gown and matching long cape with high collar.
#0965 – Silver lame gown with rhinestone straps, small blue velvet bow at waist. See photo below.
#0970 – Pink pique coat with elbow-length sleeves, trimmed in green rickrack; matching hat. Sold separately. See photo at bottom.

Vintage Margot doll by Madame Alexander.

Photo courtesy of Withington Auction, Inc.



Learn More:

cover
Cissette: A Collectors Guide
to the Vintage Alexander Dolls
by Marjorie E. Merod, MD
Find it on eBay.
cover
Collector’s Encyclopedia of
Madame Alexander Dolls 1948-1965
by Linda Crowsey
Find it on eBay.
cover
Madame Alexander Dolls:
An American Legend
by Stephanie Finnegan
Find it on eBay.

Copyright Zendelle Bouchard 2007-2015

Little Women Dolls (Lissy) by Madame Alexander (1957-68)

 Alexander  Comments Off on Little Women Dolls (Lissy) by Madame Alexander (1957-68)
Dec 032014
 
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Madame Alexander produced the Lissy-faced Little Women dolls from 1957 through 1968, representing the characters of the four March girls – Jo, Meg, Beth, Amy – and their mother Marmee – from the book by Louisa May Alcott. (Alexander spelled Marme with only one “e”.) Laurie (the boy next door) joined the group starting in 1967. Beginning in 1968, Little Women were produced using the Nancy Drew face mold, but in the catalogs, Laurie is still shown with the Lissy mold until 1972, when they started picturing him with the Nancy Drew mold as well. In 1993 there was a reissue of the four girls without Marmee or Laurie using the Lissy face.

Body Construction
In 1957 and ’58 the dolls had jointed knees and elbows; later versions had straight arms and legs. All were jointed at the neck, shoulders and hips, and made entirely of hard plastic with glued-on synthetic wigs. They have sleep eyes with molded lashes and are 11.5″ to 12″ tall. The dolls differ from the regular Lissy line in that they have flat feet. Beth, Jo, Marmee and Laurie are brunettes, while Meg has dark blonde hair and Amy a lighter blonde.

Clothing
The clothing can be identified by the tag at the back of the neck. The outfits changed several times during the years the dolls were sold, and can be dated by the outfit. Not every outfit changed every year. This table of the outfits by year may not be completely accurate. The outfits were not always the same as pictured in the catalog. They were not pictured in the 1966 or ’68 catalogs. Click on a photo to see a larger image.

Amy Beth Jo Meg Marme
1957Catalog photo
Blue polished cotton dress, white pinafore with v-straps of embroidered trim Dark dress, print pinafore Print dress w/puff sleeves, green pinafore w/triple rick rack trim Dress w/print bodice, dark skirt
1958Catalog photo
Red dress w/white yoke & long sleeves, black trim Royal blue dress w/puff sleeves, blue and white striped pinafore Black and white check dress, apron with white straps, red skirt
1959Catalog photo
Aqua dress w/white polka dots, white sleeves w/aqua rick rack
1960Catalog photo
Aqua dress, print pinafore w/self ruffle at hem, aqua rick rack Deep pink dress w/white braid trim on collar and skirt Green dress, yellow half apron
1961Catalog photo
Dress w/puff sleeves, sheer white pinafore Lavender and white striped dress, white pinafore w/lace trim Same as previous year
1962Catalog photo
Same as previous year
1963-4Catalog photo
Same as previous year
1965Catalog photo
1967Catalog photo
Like 1958, except the red dress is a print

Copyright 2005-2014 by Zendelle Bouchard
Some photos courtesy of eBay sellers your-favorite-doll and luving_dolls.



Learn More:

cover
Madame Alexander Dolls
On Review
by Marjorie V. Sturges Uhl
Find it on eBay.
cover
Collector’s Encyclopedia of
Madame Alexander Dolls 1948-1965
by Linda Crowsey
Find it on eBay.
cover
Madame Alexander Little People
by Marge Biggs
Find it on eBay.

10″ Jacqueline Doll by Madame Alexander (1962)

 Alexander  Comments Off on 10″ Jacqueline Doll by Madame Alexander (1962)
Nov 072014
 
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10″ Jacqueline doll by Madame Alexander (1962). Photo courtesy of eBay seller your-favorite-doll.

See also: 21″ Jacqueline Doll by Madame Alexander

In 1962, a 10″ version of Jacqueline was introduced using the Cissette head and body. She has side-parted brunette hair in a shoulder-length flip, with a single spit curl on the forehead, brown eyes with pale blue eyeshadow and exaggerated painted lashes on each side. 10″ Jacqueline is the same doll as Margot, but with a different hairstyle. Extra outfits were available for her.

Later that year, Madame Alexander discontinued the Jacqueline line at the request of the White House.

#? – Slim silver brocade one-shoulder gown, pink satin sash with flaring side panels; pearl decorated purse; earrings. The 21″ Jacqueline has a matching outfit.

#865 – Blue slacks; matching sweater and hat; lined white leather jacket; elastic-strap heels. Photo courtesy of eBay seller your-favorite-doll.

#885 – Pink satin ballgown with square neckline, bow at waist; pearl decorated evening bag; earrings and necklace. Photo courtesy of Nancy McKee.

#886 – Pale peach or lilac satin evening gown with sequined trim at neckline; long matching stole with fringed ends; pearl decorated purse; earrings; nylons and elastic-strap heels.

#887 – Gown with gold lame bodice and white jacquard full skirt; full-length evening cape of rose taffeta, lined with pink jacquard; pearl decorated evening bag.

#894 – Blue two piece suit has jacket with two large covered buttons, three-quarter sleeves, straight skirt; nylon blouse; purple flowered or matching blue pillbox hat; nylons and elastic-strap heels. Photo courtesy of eBay seller your-favorite-doll.

#895 – Yellow linen sheath dress; matching coat with three-quarter sleeves; yellow tulle pillbox hat; pearl drop earrings; elastic-strap heels. Photo courtesy of eBay seller your-favorite-doll. Click here for a photo of the dress.

Copyright 1999-2014 by Zendelle Bouchard.



Learn More:

cover
Collector’s Encyclopedia of
Madame Alexander Dolls 1948-1965
by Linda Crowsey
Find it on eBay.
cover
Madame Alexander’s
Ladies of Fashion
by Marjorie Sturges Uhl
Find it on eBay.
cover
Madame Alexander Dolls:
An American Legend
by Stephanie Finnegan
Find it on eBay.

21″ Jacqueline Doll by Madame Alexander (1961-62)

 Alexander, Reposted  Comments Off on 21″ Jacqueline Doll by Madame Alexander (1961-62)
Nov 052014
 
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See also: 10″ Jacqueline Doll by Madame Alexander

Madame Alexander’s 21″ Jacqueline doll was introduced in 1961. Although the Kennedy name was never used in connection with the doll, there can be little doubt that she was meant to represent the popular First Lady. Mrs. Kennedy’s wardrobe, designed by Oleg Cassini, set new standards of fashion for women around the world, and the doll version was equally glamorous. In 1962, a 10″ version was introduced using the Cissette head and body. Alexander also introduced a toddler doll named Caroline, after the Kennedy’s young daughter.

Photo courtesy of Withington Auction, Inc.

The 21″ Jacqueline was made in 1961-62, using the later Cissy body with the one-piece graceful arms and a vinyl head made from a new mold. She has side-parted brunette hair in a shoulder-length flip, with a single spit curl on the forehead, brown sleep eyes with pale blue eyeshadow and exaggerated painted lashes on each side. Extra outfits were available for her.

At least two trunk sets were sold in 1962 with Jacqueline dolls, one in the FAO Schwarz catalog under the name Judy, and another in the Marshall Field catalog under the name Jackie.

Later that year, Madame Alexander discontinued the Jacqueline line at the request of the White House. Beginning in 1965, Alexander began using the 21″ doll again for their series of Portrait dolls. They reintroduced Jacqueline for collectors in the 1990s.

1961

#2133 – Orange jersey blouse; beige vinyl jacket; green corduroy slacks and matching hat; soiltaire ring; green elastic-strap heels. Sold separately.

#2218 – Suit of brocade has short jacket with three-quarter sleeves, matching straight skirt; jeweled tricot blouse; tulle pillbox hat; purse.

21″ Jacqueline doll by Madame Alexander wears #2210, satin ball gown and matching evening coat.

#2210 – Ivory satin strapless princess-cut ball gown, trimmed with silver braid; matching coat; purse made out of pearls; pearl necklace and pearl-encrusted earrings; solitaire ring; full-length taffeta petticoat; taffeta panties; nylons and silver elastic-strap sandals. Click here to see the dress.

1962

Jacqueline’s Riding Habit from 1962. Photo courtesy of eBay seller your-favorite-doll.

#2117 – Riding costume of tan jacket with three brass buttons and shawl collar; white blouse; brown breeches; boots. Caroline had a matching outfit.

#2125. Photo courtesy of eBay seller your-favorite-doll.

#2125 – Slim brocade one-shoulder gown with flaring side panels of red satin; pearl necklace; earrings, ring and bracelet.

#2130 – Silver and white brocade full-skirted gown; matching jacket with elbow-length sleeves fastens with a jeweled clasp at the waistline; pearl necklace; earrings, ring and bracelet; taffeta panties and full-length petticoat.

#2140 – Full-skirted brocade ball gown; full-length satin evening coat; pearl purse; jewelry.

#22-15 – Suit with elbow-length sleeves, straight skirt, pillbox hat. Sold separately.

1963

Embassy Tea (Never officially released)- Pink sleeveless satin gown has a lace overbodice sprinkled with flocked flowers and rhinestones. The neckline and arm holes are outlined in pearls.

Embassy Tea was 21″ Jacqueline’s last ensemble. Photo courtesy of Withington Auction, Inc.

Copyright 1999-2014 by Zendelle Bouchard.



Learn More:

cover
Collector’s Encyclopedia of
Madame Alexander Dolls 1948-1965
by Linda Crowsey
Find it on eBay.
cover
Madame Alexander’s
Ladies of Fashion
by Marjorie Sturges Uhl
Find it on eBay.
cover
Madame Alexander Dolls:
An American Legend
by Stephanie Finnegan
Find it on eBay.