Mar 072012
 
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In January I bought a box full of vintage paper dolls at an auction, and really enjoyed going through and sorting them out so I could list them on eBay. Most of them were from the late 1930s and early 1940s. There were some movie stars, including two different sets of “Gone with the Wind” paper dolls. One of them, pictured below, featured dolls of every major character from the film with multiple outfits for each one. It was put out by Merrill Publishing Co. in 1940.

There was also a Deanna Durbin set, published by Merrill in 1941.

The ’30s and ’40s paper dolls had the most wonderful artwork. Look at this fabulous set of Polly Pepper Paper Dolls, published by Saalfield in 1936.

Military paper dolls were very popular during World War II. This is Navy Scouts, issued by Merrill in 1942.

Lots of newspapers had paper dolls, usually in the Sunday comics section. Many of them were fashionable ladies. This Halloween themed doll is so cool.

In trying to identify my dolls, I consulted several books by Mary Young. I also found Paper Goodies from Judy’s Place, a great website for the vintage paper doll lover. Most of the paper dolls published now are for collectors, not for children, and there are many reproductions of vintage sets available.

I grew up in the 60s and 70s, and although paper dolls were still being produced then (lots of Barbie sets) the golden age was over. I never played with them as a kid, although I appreciate them now. What about you?

Copyright 2012 by Zendelle Bouchard

Oct 162011
 
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Here’s something interesting I found last week. I don’t know much about him, but his guitar-shaped cardboard tag indicates he was made by Remco in 1964. He is missing the little booklet which came with him which featured photos of the Beatles. I think the term “mascot” means that he was sold as a decorative item for older kids, not a plaything for the little ones. He represents a generic Beatle rather than one of the individual members of the group. He looks most like Paul McCartney or George Harrison.

He is about 30″ tall and made of fabric and felt, with faux fur hair. Besides the guitar and booklet that he came with, he has no tags or other markings on him. His hands are like paws, with four felt fingers that look more like claws! Elastic straps on his hands enable him to hold the guitar. He seems to be a fairly rare item. The small Beatles dolls with vinyl heads made by Remco are a lot easier to find.

Beatles Official Mascot Doll by Remco
Mar 212011
 
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Oh, this is the stuff of my youth. Believe it or not, although I was born in 1962, I did not own a Barbie doll growing up. But I had this doll, Talking Julia. I also had Mattel’s Rock Flowers and Timey Tell and Hasbro’s World of Love. That was back when girls still played with dolls until they were 11 or 12. Now they play video games. Sigh.

Talking Julia doll by Mattel

Photo courtesy of eBay seller your-favorite-doll.

Talking Julia was made with the Twist ‘n Turn Barbie body and the Christie head mold. There was also a regular (non-talking) version of Julia who has straight hair and wears a nurses’s uniform.

View Talking Julia dolls on eBay!

Copyright 2013 by Zendelle Bouchard

Aug 162010
 
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I am still recuperating from the UFDC convention in Chicago. That was one exhausting week! Chicago is a beautiful city, much nicer than I expected.
I took over 600 photos while I was there. Most of them are of the Competitive Exhibits. Unfortunately, per UFDC rules, I cannot use them on the website, except in an article devoted to the convention. I am working on putting together an article now.

But here are a few photos from the Theriault’s auction that was held at a nearby hotel. If you have not been to one of their auctions, the antique dolls are just unbelievable. They are displayed in lovely vignettes with flowers and accessories. The highlight of the auction was “The Great Man’s Doll,” a French doll made by Huret about 1860, which author Victor Hugo purchased and gave to his granddaughter. The doll and her trousseau sold for $160,000. In keeping with the literary theme, there were several artist dolls in the auction from writer Anne Rice’s collection. There were some stunning examples of vintage dolls, too, including Barbie and Ken, Ginny, Nancy Ann Storybook dolls, and several wonderful Lencis.

The first picture shows part of the set of Dionne Quintuplets by Madame Alexander. These babies are lucky to have their original furniture, nurse and Doctor Dafoe.

And here are a few of the antiques:
There was an amazing collection of Schoenhut circus figures in the auction. In addition to the set, several figures were sold individually.