Aug 252015
 
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This version of Cherries a la Mode is not as common as some of the others. Gold shoes are not original.

Of the three major series of outfits worn by Ideal’s Revlon Doll, “Cherries a la Mode” was the medium priced offering. It is usually a nylon or taffeta dress; straw hat trimmed with flowers; drop pearl earrings and necklace. The 15″ dolls did not come with the hat, but had a gold elastic headband instead.

The classic Cherries a la Mode ensemble.
Photo courtesy of Wishbook Web.

  • Light blue, navy blue, pink or yellow nylon covered with flocked red cherries, with tulle yoke and puffed sleeves. See photo above.
  • Nylon allover floral print with short puffed sleeves, shirred front of bodice. See photo below.
  • Pale pink, blue or aqua taffeta dress with nylon eyelet overlay. See photo at top.
  • Short sleeved white with red dotted swiss, solid red yoke and waistband. A rarer version is all dotted swiss, without the solid red fabric. See photo at bottom.
  • Navy taffeta dress with low rounded neckline; white organdy modesty panel across bustline, pink rose and velvet ribbon at waist. There is also a rare green version.
  • Navy blue nylon with white printed floral bouquets. Rare.
  • Nylon dress with flocked butterflies, in navy and white or pink and pale blue.
  • Pale pink nylon dress with green and white flocked leaves. Rare.

Nylon floral print version of Cherries a la Mode.
Photo courtesy of American Beauty Dolls Shop.

One of the less common versions of Cherries a la Mode.
Photo courtesy of Melody Stackhouse.



Learn More:

cover
Collector’s Guide to
Ideal Dolls, 3rd ed.
by Judith Izen
Find it on eBay.

Revlon Dolls &
Their Lookalikes
by Kathy Barna
Find it on eBay
cover
Dolls & Accessories of the 1950s
by Dian Zillner
Find it on eBay.

Copyright 2015 by Zendelle Bouchard

Aug 232015
 
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Ideal’s Revlon Doll in Kissing Pink outfit. It was also available in pink and yellow versions.
Photo courtesy of American Beauty Dolls Shop.

Ideal’s Revlon Dolls (1956-60) were sold in many different outfits. The three major series of outfits were “Kissing Pink,” “Cherries a la Mode,” and “Queen of Diamonds.” Within these series there were also many variations, and there were other series and other outfits as well. Some outfits were only available for certain sizes. The 18″ and larger size dolls generally wore black elastic-strap shoes. The 15″ size usually had black plastic mules. All dolls (except dolls in teddies or pants outfits) wore a pink taffeta petticoat and panties, and nylon hose.

Photo courtesy of Wishbook Web.

Dolls dressed in “Kissing Pink” outfits were the lowest priced. For jewelry, they wore a pearl necklace. Later editions had drop pearl earrings as well.

  • Striped dress in blue, pink or yellow and white with self bow and rhinestone at neckline. See photo at top. The bow on the 15″ version is black rather than self fabric.
  • Puffed-sleeve taffeta and nylon dress with rounded neckline, in pink with flocked red hearts, or in navy blue or red with white flocked hearts. See photo above.
  • Plain taffeta dress with square neckline in various colors. This is the dress pictured on the cover of the Revlon box.
  • Red or blue cotton print dress; matching long sleeved solid color knit jacket ties at waist.

    Photo courtesy of Wishbook Web.

  • Short-sleeved dress in large scale square/flowered print with cowl neckline, rhinestone trim on bodice. See photo above.
  • Green or champagne taffeta dress with short puffed sleeves, lace trim in a V pattern on bodice.
  • Linen dress with pointed collar, cap sleeves, in coral, pink or mustard with scattered black horizontal and vertical lines.
  • Nylon organdy print dress in various colors with lace trim at neckline and sleeves, black velvet ribbon waistband. Rare.
  • 15″ size only: Floral dress with organdy cowl neckline; available in blue/green or gold/orange print. See photo below.
  • 15″ size only: Cotton floral print in various colors. Same style as the striped dress, with black flat bow at neckline.

One of the outfits only sold on the 15″ Revlon dolls. Shoes not original.



Learn More:

cover
Collector’s Guide to
Ideal Dolls, 3rd ed.
by Judith Izen
Find it on eBay.

Revlon Dolls &
Their Lookalikes
by Kathy Barna
Find it on eBay
cover
Dolls & Accessories of the 1950s
by Dian Zillner
Find it on eBay.

Copyright 2015 by Zendelle Bouchard

Walking Revlon Doll by Ideal (1957)

 Ideal  Comments Off on Walking Revlon Doll by Ideal (1957)
Aug 082015
 
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Scan from 1957 Sears Christmas Book. Courtesy of WishbookWeb..

Ideal’s Revlon Doll was the epitome of glamour in the late 1950s. In addition to the regular line, Ideal also made the 18″ and 20″ dolls in a Walking version that was advertised in the Sears catalog in 1957. The dolls “walk” by means of a mechanism inside the torso; when one leg is moved forward, the other moves back, and the doll’s head turns from side to side. The hardware inside the head tends to give the doll a flat-faced look.

The Walking Revlon Doll was available in two different outfits for both sizes.
Snow Pink is a sleeveless rayon taffeta dress with two tiered skirt, with tulle overlay on the top tier, square neckline, cluster of flowers at waist; pearl jewelry.
Evening Star is a taffeta dress woven with metallic threads, attached belt, sewn-in half slip; cotton velvet coat with rabbit fur trim; earrings, necklace and ring.
The banner tag on the front of the dresses read “Walking Revlon Doll”. These dolls and their outfits are very hard to find.

Another Walking Revlon doll was available through the Sears catalog in 1957 under their Happi-Time label. See the Happi-Time Revlon Doll page for more info.

Walking Revlon Doll in Snow Pink outfit.



Copyright 2015 by Zendelle Bouchard.

Happi-Time Revlon Dolls sold by Sears (1957)

 Ideal  Comments Off on Happi-Time Revlon Dolls sold by Sears (1957)
Aug 052015
 
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Scan from the 1957 Sears Christmas Book. Courtesy of WishbookWeb.

In their mail order catalogs, Sears sold many brand name dolls under their own “Happi-Time” label, including Ideal’s Revlon dolls in 1957. These dolls have a small Ideal tag sewn inside the dress (instead of the usual banner tag on the dress front), but otherwise are identical to regular Revlons. The Happi-Time dolls could be sold at a lower price point because they didn’t have to pay the licensing fee for the Revlon name. I have not seen one in the original box but they were likely just sent in a plain cardboard shipper. Both regular Revlons and Revlon Walkers were sold under the Happi-Time name.



Copyright 2015 by Zendelle Bouchard.

Ideal’s Revlon Doll (1956-60)

 Ideal  Comments Off on Ideal’s Revlon Doll (1956-60)
Aug 032015
 
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This scan from the 1956 Sears Christmas Book shows Ideal’s Revlon dolls sold at various price points, depending on the detailing of the outfit. The most expensive dolls had a real fur stole. See the Revlon Outfits page for more info.
Catalog photo courtesy of WishBookWeb.

Ideal’s Revlon dolls were introduced in late 1955 or 1956. Although usually referred to as “Miss Revlon” by collectors, it is important to note that the company always promoted the doll as simply “Ideal’s Revlon Doll.” Perhaps the misnomer came about later after the introduction of Little Miss Revlon in 1958. In any case, the Revlon dolls were beautifully made and inspired many copycats.

Body Construction
The Revlon dolls were available in 15″, 18″, 20″, 22.5″ and an extremely rare 25″ size. All sizes of Revlon dolls are made of high quality rigid vinyl with softer vinyl heads. They are most commonly jointed at neck, shoulders, waist and hips (see variations below).

The dolls have good quality rooted hair in shades of platinum blonde, dark golden blonde, auburn and dark brunette. The golden blonde and auburn are by far the most common colors, and the dark brunette the rarest. The hair is styled into a mass of curls held back with pins and hairnet, or in a ponytail style, with bangs. The 15″ dolls, and a few of the larger dolls, have gold elastic headbands.

They have blue sleep eyes (or rarely green) with brush lashes, painted lashes beneath the eyes, and feathered brows. The least expensive dolls did not have pierced ears, but most did. All the dolls have red lips, finger and toenails.

Revlon dolls pictured in the 1958 Sears Christmas Book. This was the only year a Revlon doll with bendable knees was offered.
Catalog photo courtesy of WishBookWeb.

Revlon Variations
There were several variations on the standard Revlon doll produced.

  • In 1958, a doll with bendable legs was sold in a 20″ size. These were the only Revlon dolls sold in pants outfits. See photo above.
  • Toward the end of production, a 17″ doll (with the markings of an 18″) was made utilizing less expensive materials, in an effort to make the doll more competitive with Mattel’s Barbie. This doll came with various hairstyles, including a fluffy bubblecut hairstyle, sidepart without bangs, and an updo with spitcurl. She has a somewhat different face, often described as “pixieish,” with one-stroke eyebrows and unpainted toenails. She was sold in a variety of outfits that are completely different than the regular clothing line. She may have been sold by Ideal to other companies for resale, or made by other companies from Ideal molds. She was probably not sold under the “Revlon” name. A pink-haired version of this doll with bangs has been found with unusual brown eyes.
  • An 18″ pink-haired Revlon ballerina with softer vinyl arms and bendable elbows has also been found.
  • A Walking Revlon Doll in 18″ and 20″ sizes was advertised in 1957. This doll was sold in two different outfits under the Revlon name, and a third outfit under Sears’ Happi-Time label. See the Walking Revlon Doll and Happi-Time Revlon Doll pages for more info.
  • A few rare 20″ Revlons were made with leftover arms from Ideals’ Harriet Hubbard Ayer doll. These can be identified by their longer fingernails.
  • A prototype doll with bubble cut hairstyle is extremely rare.

Faces of two of the 17″ Revlon dolls.

Markings
Marking is according to size. The 15″ doll is marked “IDEAL DOLL” on the back of her neck and “IDEAL/15/n” on her back. The 18″, 20″, 22″ and 25″ dolls are all marked “IDEAL DOLL/VT-” followed by a number indicating the size, on the back of the neck. For example, the 18″ doll is marked “IDEAL DOLL/VT-18”. These sizes are also usually marked with the size under each arm and inside each thigh.

Clothing
Click here to go to the Revlon Outfits page.

Packaging
The earliest dolls were packaged in diamond-print boxes featuring the Ideal logo. Later, the dolls were packaged in the box pictured below. Toward the end of production, Revlon dolls were sold in black laced teddies, and were packaged in narrower boxes with plain gold covers.

18″ Revlon doll in flocked nylon “Cherries a la Mode” dress, showing the cover of her original box.
Photo courtesy of Withington Auction, Inc.

See also:
15″ – 22″ Revlon Doll Outfits
Happi-Time Revlon Dolls Sold by Sears
Walking Revlon Doll
10″ Little Miss Revlon Doll



Learn More:

cover
Collector’s Guide to
Ideal Dolls, 3rd ed.
by Judith Izen
Find it on eBay.

Revlon Dolls &
Their Lookalikes
by Kathy Barna
Find it on eBay
cover
Dolls & Accessories of the 1950s
by Dian Zillner
Find it on eBay.

Copyright 1997-2015 by Zendelle Bouchard