Oct 292012
 
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Vintage composition Mary Hoyer doll

Composition Mary Hoyer doll in crocheted outfit.
Photo copyright Withington Auction, Inc.

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Mary's Dollies knit and crochet patterns for Mary Hoyer dolls Before she started in the doll business, Mary Hoyer was a designer of knit and crochet patterns for children’s clothing. In the 1930’s, she opened her own yarn and craft shop in Reading, PA. Soon she added doll clothing and patterns to her inventory. To create a market for her doll designs, she purchased composition dolls from Ideal to sell along with the patterns. These dolls were 13″ tall with a double jointed torso known as a “body twist.” These early painted-eye dolls have Ideal markings. Photo courtesy of Nancy McKee.

Composition Mary Hoyer doll Composition Mary Hoyer doll When Ideal discontinued the style of doll she had been using, Mrs. Hoyer hired renowned doll designer Bernard Lipfert to sculpt a doll for her. Lipfert’s design, manufactured by the Fiberoid Doll Co., was slightly bigger at 14″ tall and also had painted eyes, but did not have the jointed torso. The earliest dolls are unmarked, but soon the Mary Hoyer logo in a circle was added to the back of the doll. Dolls with sleep eyes were also added to the lineup. The same model was used for both girl and boy dolls. Photos copyright Withington Auction, Inc.

Hard plastic Mary Hoyer doll Hard plastic Mary Hoyer doll In 1946 Mary Hoyer switched from composition to hard plastic dolls, using the same design. She continued to market her knit and crochet patterns, and sold finished outfits and sewing kits in her shop as well as by mail order. Photos courtesy of Nancy McKee.

Gigi by Mary Hoyer Doll Co. In the mid-fifties, Mary Hoyer decided to branch out by adding other dolls to her line. The first was Gigi, an 18″ hard plastic girl. She has the same markings as the 14″ doll, and several outfits available for her. Photo courtesy of Nancy McKee.

Vicky and Margie dolls by Mary Hoyer The company then decided to try vinyl dolls; they marketed high-heeled glamour dolls that were reportedly made for them by Ideal. The larger sizes were quickly discontinued, but they sold 10.5″ Vicky (similar to Ideal’s Little Miss Revlon) for a couple of years. The glamour dolls are unmarked and very difficult to identify. Margie, a 10″ vinyl toddler, and babies Cathy (10″) and Jamie (8″) were also offered.

The company had continued to sell its 14″ hard plastic doll throughout the fifties, but in the early sixties, they switched to a new vinyl doll called Becky. Mary Hoyer retired in 1972, but her company was resurrected in 1990 by her granddaughter, Mary Lynne Saunders. They continue today making high-quality play dolls for children and collectors. Mrs. Hoyer passed away in 2003 at the age of 101.

Copyright 2006-2012 by Zendelle Bouchard

Oct 272012
 
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Hasbro was started in Rhode Island in the 1920s by two brothers, Henry and Helal Hassenfeld, under the name Hassenfeld Brothers. They began making toys in the 1940s, and had their first big hit in 1952 with Mr. Potato Head. They branched out into dolls beginning in 1964 with G.I. Joe, although he was always called an “action figure” since the company figured boys wouldn’t play with a “doll.” The company officially changed its name to Hasbro in 1968.

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Cutie Clothes by Hasbro As early as 1958, Hasbro stuck its toe into the doll market waters with Cutie Clothes, a series of clothing kits to dress 8″ to 10.5″ glamour dolls. Go to the Cutie Clothes page for more information.

GI Joe Adventure Team figure by Hasbro The G.I. Joe series of action figures has been continuously produced in one form or another since 1964. Originally representing fighting men of the various branches of the U.S. Armed Services, it has been expanded over the years to included some celebrities and fantasy figures. Pictured at left is a 12″ figure from the 1970’s Adventure Team series. Photo courtesy of Lisa Hanson. Check out Lisa’s eBay listings.

Little Miss No Name from 1965 is a 15″ pathetic girl doll dressed in rags, complete with plastic tear on her cheek. She was part of the mid-sixties fad for big-eyed waifs.

Peteena Poodle doll by Hasbro Peteena is an 11″ poodle fashion doll with additional outfits. Visit the Peteena page for all the details.

Dolly Darlings by Hasbro Dolly Darlings made from 1965-67 are 4″ dolls with molded hair. They came packaged in round plastic hatbox-type cases with accessories. A couple of years later, Dolly Darlings had rooted hair and were packaged in cardboard boxes with cello fronts or on bubble cards. Many different dolls were issued. Four different play rooms were also sold. Photo courtesy of Lisa Hanson. Check out Lisa’s eBay listings.

The Flying Nun is a Dolly Darling dressed to represent Sally Field’s character Sister Bertrille from the popular 1960’s TV show.

That Kid! from 1967 is an unusual 21.5″ mechanical boy doll with a slingshot.

Flower Darlings (1968) are 3.5″ tall, came inside plastic flower pins. These dolls have the same head molds as Dolly Darlings but with smaller bodies.

Storykins (1969). These dolls were knockoffs of Mattel’s Liddle Kiddles, and represented characters from fairy tales including Snow white, Rumplestilskin and Cinderella. They came packaged with furniture and accessories. 2″ to 3.5″ tall.

World of Love dolls by Hasbro World of Love dolls by Hasbro World of Love dolls were made in 1971-72. With names like Love, Flower and Peace, these dolls embodied the best qualities of the youth culture of the late sixties and early seventies. They are 9″ tall and had many extra outfits, a carrying case and a few playsets. There are five girl dolls plus Adam, a boy with molded hair.

Miss Breck is an advertising doll for Breck Shampoo made from the same mold as World of Love.

Candy Babies dolls by Hasbro Candy Babies have vinyl heads and hands, and cloth bodies filled with foam and plastic pellets. They were advertising tie-ins to popular candies including Good ‘n Plenty and Baby Ruth.

Leggy Kate doll by Hasbro Leggy doll outfit by Hasbro Leggy (1973) These 10″ dolls are easy to identify. Most of their length is legs! Four different dolls were made. Photos courtesy of Lisa Hanson. Check out Lisa’s eBay listings.
Aimee doll by Hasbro Aimée is an 18″ doll with extra available hairpieces and fashions. Visit the Aimée page to learn more.

Sweet Cookie doll by Hasbro Sweet Cookie doll by Hasbro Sweet Cookie (1972) is an 18″ girl doll. She came in black or white versions with cooking accessories.

Romper Room Softies – 10″ cloth dolls tied in with the children’s TV show.

Flutter-byes – 1973 – Tiny 1.5″ dolls with wild colored hair and wings. They look like little flying trolls.

Farrah Fawcett doll from the Charlie's Angels series by Hasbro Charlie's Angels doll clothing by Hasbro Charlie’s Angels first produced in 1977 are 8.5″ dolls representing the three main characters from the TV show. Extra fashions were sold. Photo courtesy of Lisa Hanson. Check out Lisa’s eBay listings.

Video doll from the Jem Series by Hasbro Rio doll from the Jem Series by Hasbro Hasbro’s Jem line of 12″ dolls, produced from 1985 to 1987, were created to tie in with an animated children’s television series. The show, which ran from ’85 to ’88, had an interesting rock and roll/science fiction storyline with many characters. Pictured at left are Video, a minor character in the series, and Rio, the boyfriend of main character Jerrica Benton and her rock star alter ego Jem. Video photo courtesy of Lisa Hanson. Check out Lisa’s eBay listings. Rio photo courtesy of King Auctions. Check out their eBay listings.

Maxie doll by Hasbro Maxie is a 11.5″ Barbie type fashion doll representing a high school girl with friends, a boyfriend and high school-themed playsets. She was sold from 1988 to 1990. Like Jem, Maxie was also made into a cartoon show, called “Maxie’s World.” Photo courtesy of King Auctions. Check out their eBay listings.

C.O.P.S. 'n Crooks action figure by Hasbro C.O.P.S. 'n Crooks action figure by Hasbro C.O.P.S. ‘n Crooks is a series of futuristic cops-and-robbers themed action figures. They were made in late ’80s, and, like Jem and Maxie, also tied in to a cartoon series. (Am I sensing a theme here?)

Hasbro has always focused more on their toys and games than their dolls (with the exception of G.I. Joe), and their acquisitions of Playskool, Parker Brothers, Milton Bradley, Kenner and Tonka in the 1980s and ’90s continued that trend. Today they are the largest toy company in the world. Hasbro is currently selling a new version of Kenner’s Blythe doll from the 1970s. Integrity Toys began making a new line of Jem dolls for adult collectors in 2012.

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Copyright 2006-2012 by Zendelle Bouchard

Oct 122012
 
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No history of vintage dolls could be written without Horsman. A native of New York City, E. I. Horsman began retailing toys and novelties imported from Germany in the mid-1800s. As the new century dawned, his company began producing its own cloth and composition dolls.
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Babyland Rag Topsy doll by Horsman Babyland Rag Topsy doll by Horsman The Babyland Rag series of dolls ranged from 11″ to 30″ tall. They have hand painted faces and mitten style hands. Most of them, like this black doll called Topsy, are 14″ tall. They first appeared in Horsman’s 1893 catalog and were produced for over 30 years.
Babyland Rag Topsy Turvy doll by Horsman Babyland Rag Topsy Turvy doll by Horsman Babyland Rag Topsy Turvy doll by Horsman The Babyland Rag Topsy-Turvy doll has two heads – a white doll called Betty, and the black doll, Topsy. The long skirt hides the head on the opposite end.
Babyland Rag lithographed girl doll by Horsman Babyland Rag lithographed boy doll by Horsman In 1907, Horsman began offering Babyland Rag dolls with lifelike lithographed faces. Another style with a three-dimensional molded face was outsourced to Albert Bruckner, a New Jersey dollmaker. Photos courtesy of Withington Auction, Inc.

Composition Campbell Kid doll by Horsman Composition Campbell Kid doll by Horsman The composition Campbell Kid dolls, adapted from illustrations by Grace Drayton, were a huge seller for Horsman. The black doll is the earlier version from the 1910’s and ’20s with cloth body and compo hands. The white doll is the 1940s all-compo version. Photos courtesy of Withington Auction, Inc.

Horsman Jackie Coogan composition doll Horsman Jackie Coogan composition doll Jackie Coogan was a child actor of the 1920s who starred in the film “The Kid” with Charlie Chaplin. Horsman made two different versions of him in composition. This version has Jackie’s well known pageboy hair style, the other one has just a standard head that was also used for other dolls.

Composition Baby Dimples by Horsman Baby Dimples was a big seller for Horsman starting in 1927. She is a bent-leg baby with a composition head and limbs, and cloth body. There was also a version with a celluloid head imported from Germany. A straight-leg all composition toddler version called simply Dimples.

Dolly Rosebudy by Horsman Dolly Rosebud by Horsman Dolly Rosebud, introduced in 1928, has a composition shoulder head and limbs, with a cloth torso and a human hair wig. She was made in multiple sizes from 14″ to 24″. This doll’s dress is tagged “HORSMAN DOLL MF’D in U.S.A.”

Flirty-eyed composition baby doll by Horsman Babies have always been a huge part of Horsman’s lineup. This flirty-eyed baby, advertised in the 1942 Montgomery Ward Christmas catalog, has eyes that move from side to side as well as open and close.

Horsman Baby dolls in 1950 Montgomery Ward catalog These babies, advertised in the 1950 Montgomery Ward catalog, have hard plastic heads and softer vinyl bodies.

1950s Horsman Gold Medal Boy doll 1950s Horsman Gold Medal Boy doll Horsman used the name Gold Medal multiple times over the years. This Gold Medal Boy, also called Fairy Skin Boy was sold in the 1950s. He has a one piece body jointed only at the neck. There was a corresponding girl doll as well.
1950s Horsman Cindy glamour doll 1950s Horsman Cindy glamour doll High-heeled Cindy was a major part of Horsman’s lineup in the late fifties. She was available as a 15″ or 18″ doll with a stuffed vinyl body, jointed only at the neck and shoulders, with ball-jointed elbows; and as a 21″ doll with a rigid vinyl body, jointed at the hips as well. She was sold in various costumes, including as a bride and as a ballerina. She was also sold under other names including Bright Star.
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Vintage 10" Cindy glamour doll by Horsman There was a 10″ version of Cindy as well, similar to Ideal’s Little Miss Revlon doll. She was available in a variety of outfits and trunk sets.
Family Trio set of dolls by Horsman Horsman’s Family Trio Set includes a glamorous mother doll with two children. Read more about them on the Family Trio page.
Horsman Jackie doll Horsman’s Jackie was sold in the early ’60s to capitalize on the popularity of first lady Jacqueline Kennedy. Go to the Horsman Jackie page to learn more about her. Photo courtesy of John Medeiros.

Horsman Peggy Ann doll 1963 This doll in the 1963 Sears Toy book is unnamed, but she appears to be Horsman’s Peggy Ann, a vinyl sub-teen girl doll with a sweet smile. She was sold for several years, often in sets like this with extra outfits.
Miss Top Knot doll by Horsman This is Miss Top Knot from 1964. Read more about her here. Photo courtesy of Charlene Blank.

One of Horsman’s most popular vinyl dolls is Poor Pitiful Pearl, a homely doll who wears a floral dress with a bright red patch on the front, and a matching red head scarf. Originally produced by the Brookglad Corp. in the ’50s, Horsman began making Pearl in late 1963 in 18″ and later 11″ size, and brought her back again in the 1970s.

Action Bed by Horsman from the Disney film Bedknobs and Broomsticks Action Bed by Horsman from the Disney film Bedknobs and Broomsticks This Action Bed toy was a tie-in to the Disney film “Bedknobs and Broomsticks” released in 1972. It includes a 6.5″ doll representing the character played by Angela Lansbury in the movie. A hard to find item, it is also sought after by Disney collectors. Photos courtesy of Lisa Hanson. Check out Lisa’s eBay listings.

Horsman began making ventriloquist dolls in the 1970s, and continued with its successful lines of play dolls. In the 1980s, the company struggled, but eventually found renewed success by focusing on niche markets and adding collector dolls to its lineup. Several of Horsman’s early composition dolls were reissued in vinyl versions. The new millennium brough new challenges, and today, the company now known as Horsman Ltd., manufactures fashion dolls for collectors exclusively.

Copyright 2012 by Zendelle Bouchard

Sep 302012
 
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In 1972, Hasbro introduced Aimée, an 18″ doll with an unusual hair play feature. She has holes in her head, into which hairpieces and wigs with special plugs will fit. Besides the long cotton dress with gold braid trim that she was sold in, Aimée had six extra gowns that could be purchased, and six extra hairpieces.

Aimée was Hasbro’s response to the overwhelming popularity of Ideal’s Crissy family of dolls, who had a “growing hair” feature and a great mod wardrobe.

Hasbro’s 1972 doll catalog pictures prototypes of Aimée, her fashions and wigs. The actual dolls produced are a little bit different, her original outfit and box are completely different from the catalog photos.

To see lots more photos of dolls and outfits, visit the Aimée page on Beth Colvin’s wonderful Crissy website.

Aimee Doll in 1972 Hasbro dolls catalog

Scan from 1972 Hasbro dolls catalog

Aimee Doll in 1972 Hasbro dolls catalog

Scan from 1972 Hasbro dolls catalog

Aimee Doll in 1972 Hasbro dolls catalog

Scan from 1972 Hasbro dolls catalog

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Copyright 2012 by Zendelle Bouchard

Aug 302012
 
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The photos below show three dolls by Ideal – left to right they are Glamour Misty, Pos’n Misty and the later version of Pos’n Tammy, called Grown Up Pos’n Tammy by collectors.

Vintage Misty and Tammy dolls by Ideal

L to R: Glamour Misty, Pos’n Misty, “Grown Up” Pos’n Tammy

Glamour Misty is a regular Misty doll with platinum blonde hair, who was sold in a set with special markers to color her hair. She has straight (non-bendable) legs.

Pos’n Misty has soft vinyl legs wired for posability. All versions of Misty have the same torso and wired, posable arms.

“Grown Up” Pos’n Tammy has the same arms, too, but a different torso than the Mistys, with a smaller bust. She has the same flexible, wired legs as the Pos’n Misty. Her head mold is different also.

Vintage Ideal Misty and Tammy dolls

Note Misty and “Grown Up” Tammy have different torsos.

There was also a “Grown Up” Tammy (not shown) who had straight legs like the regular Misty and Glamour Misty dolls. Because the “Grown Up” dolls are much slimmer than the earlier versions of Tammy, most Tammy fashions don’t fit them well.



Copyright 2012 by Zendelle Bouchard