Thursday, June 28, 2018
I first started going to this shop when I lived in the Campbell, CA area. I worked in the historic Prune Yard Shopping Center, location of the landmark First Amend. case, Prune Yard Shopping Center . Robbins.
My friend Kimmee was a frequent visitor, and the owner at the time, Ruby S. was a friend of both of us. It was a treat to spend an hour or two with Ruby and Kimmee. The Doll Talk was at its best, and we had our share of adventures. My first Annette Himstedt doll, Ayoka, came from this shop. Ruby also wrote a lovely letter to Doll Reader in praise of one of my articles on metal dolls.
Feb. 2018, my son and I made a return visit. The shop is under new ownership, and the new owner, Bonnie, pictured above, has expanded the inventory. I found a Wednesday Addams cloth doll, very rare, and Mitch found some vintage Hallmark ornaments.
There is a fine inventory of Integrity dolls, and a good selection of antiques, Barbies, and artist dolls. I also saw lots of Liddle Kiddles, doll cases, and doll accessories. Nice Twice keeps generous hours and is friendly to tourists and travelers. It was great to visit an old stomping ground, but don't take world for it. Look at these great YouTube videos of the shop ad its owner.
They are still the mainstay of my doll collection. My family, now mostly gone, brought many of them from around the world. Here are some quick shots of some of our museum's international dolls. Enjoy, and Happy Summer!
|Ceylon, India, and other Countries|
|Very Old Japanese Baby, a Gift from a Wonderful Friend|
|Very old Doll from Chile found at Gigi's and Sherry's Booth in Naperville|
|India, Vietnam, Taiwan|
|Liberty Of London's Six Wives of Henry VIII|
|Black Composition Baby from the 30s|
A view of my Doll; she has the Wax over Head
Recently, we were able to cross off one of the doll on our museum wish list, the 1860s walking doll known as Autoperpatetikos. Here is a YouTube video of a doll with a china head actually walking.
The doll was patented in 1862 by Enoch Rice Morrison. She is so marked underneath, along with the date of the European patent. She is one of the first dolls to walk by a key-wound clock work mechanism. See Doll Reference.com for more information and the marks themselves.
There is picture of one of these dolls from The Essex Institute in my book, With Love from Tin Lizzie, a History of Metal Dolls . ..
Toys R Us Good bye
Today was the end of an era. This blogger saw a good chunk of her life just go away. I was about nine the first time I went into a Toys R Us store. It was in
, where I spent a good deal of my
childhood. Those days, toys were
displayed floor to ceiling. Above the
shelves were displays of toys and dolls in their original boxes. In those days, dolls by Mattel and others
were not blister packed; they were sold I cardboard boxes covered with graphics
of the dolls. California
My late mother and I loved the sales; we always came out with lots of things for my baby cousins, and for our own collection. One year, we found them all kinds of Disney Princesses. They were so happy when they got them that they declared they wanted to grow up “just like Ellen!”
Today was the last day. I went to our two local stores, located in two states. What was left of the stock was gathered at the front of the store. Behind were cordoned off areas that looked like a toy wasteland. I managed to find a lot of Star Wars toys, and several Dragons. Marvel Comics Fashion dolls by Madame Alexander were there, as were a couple Angry Birds blister packs. I tried very hard to buy toys that were Toys R Us exclusives, including one that was featured on the TV show The Toy Box.
Earlier, I bought several of the You and Me dolls, a Toys R Us brand. There were no signs of Geoffrey the Giraffe, once the proud mascot of the store. There were good deals on Pop Ups and Elena Aviator, so I filled in my collection of these. I also picked up play sets for
Coco and WWF female fashion dolls. I found clothes for
Ken and other dolls and several sticker sets and books of different licensed
characters. There were great Megazors
and large Star Wars characters and plush animal puppets. I didn’t see an FAO Schwarz toys. There are a few of these on sale at Younkers,
a Bon Ton store also going out of business.
With the death of Pawn Stars’ Old Man this past week, the collecting and doll world has lost two cultural icons.
is allegedly picking
up toys as part of its line, and there are the rumors of Kaybee’s return, but
it won’t be the same. I asked one of the employees what happened to MGMs offer
to buy Toys R Us, and I was told that the offer involved a Go Fund Me account
that did not meet its reserve. More’s
the pity. Everything changes, but this
year has been filled with death and loss, and there is little light at the end
of the tunnel on some days. Party
I don’t know about everyone else, but as for me, I don’t want to grow up; I’m still a Toys R Us kid.
Tuesday, June 12, 2018
The Old Wooden Sisters: Queen Anne doll available for sale: New Queen Anne Doll available for sale 13" tall , great cabinet size , carved from wood , She has turned head , antique glass eyes ,...
|Very old Doll from Peru, Gigi's and Sherry's|
Thank you, Karla Moreland! The Naperville Doll & Bear Show was wonderful! Great tables by Gigi's Dolls&Sherry's Teddy Bears, Diane Roche, Mostly French, Nancy McCray, Ellen Dodge and many more! There were great Chase babies available, French bisque, lots of Googlies, antique and vintage international dolls and more. There was a wonderful Queen Anne that had been appraised on Antiques Road Show. It was a great day, very seasonable in Chicago Land. There were dolls in all price ranges, and lots of younger people, too. I had a great weekend with my stint at appraising dolls for The Henry County Historical Museum, and a terrific Doll Show Sunday! Gotta love road trips!
I took these photos, and will be posting more of my finds
|Vintage doll from Syria with face tattoos. From Gigi and Sherry|
|Chinese Opera Doll|
|More soon on this very unusual antique comp head from Gigi's and Sherr's|
|Mini dolls; doll on far right from Belgium|
I recently finished one of the most wonderful books by Annie Proulx, The Shipping News, which also mentions dolls and toys here and there. Along with her story Broke Back Mountain, Proulx works her magic and makes setting and the natural landscape characters in her work. Reading her is like reading a prose poem, and this story of the sea and Newfoundland with its boats, fishing, and shipwrecks is as much a miracle as the side stories of a man and a bird coming back to life after they were given up dead. Even the crooked house on the rock that slides into the sea, so like the wonderful house in A Series of Unfortunate Events, is a triumph. You feel the sea wind and smell the salt air; it's just terrific.
The boat wrecks Proulx describes are epic, Yet, even a minor water mishap can have its issues. We are no stranger to these things where I live on the banks of a great river. Lincoln tried a case here when The Effie Afton hit the first railroad bridge across our river, and I once had to research the Seaman's Act and Grotius' The Law of the Sea after a sailor was hurt on a barge that sailed the middle river. We are often caught on our mechanical bridge when the stately American Queen sails by, and we even have our share of vampire stories, as retold in the novel, Fevre Dream.
The little riverboat captain above originally came from one of our riverboat casinos. He sat on a shelf in my nautical themed bathroom, along with mermaids, shells, and other sea-related dolls. I even have a big ceramic mermaid sitting in the tub. I thought it would be a good idea to rinse out the tub, so I started to fill it. About the same time I did this, my little captain plunged in head first! "O Captain, O Captain!" cried I. Thoughts of The Rime of the Ancient Mariner went through my head, "I fear thee Ancient Mariner!! I did a mental check of where my toy albatrosses were.
Luckily, I fished him out I time. He now has a new home, albeit not water themed, but he won't be drenched. The little captain very nearly went down with the ship. I've had him about 25 years, and am glad all's well that ends well. Home is the Sailor.
Saturday, June 9, 2018
You Might Be A Doll Collector If... - Ruby Lane Blog: Being a doll collector isn’t just a hobby – it’s a lifestyle! There are many signs that one can see when they are a doll collector. From having ‘dolldar’ on all of the time to rooms full of dolls, being a doll collector is quite simply THE BEST! Here are a couple more signs to... Read more »