Children of Japan

Children of Japan
Courtesy, R. John Wright

Hinges and Hearts

Hinges and Hearts
An Exhibit of our Metal Dolls

Tuxedo and Bangles

Tuxedo and Bangles

A History of Metal Dolls

A History of Metal Dolls
Now on Alibris.com and In Print! The First Book of its Kind

Alice, Commemorative Edition

Alice, Commemorative Edition
Courtesy, R. John Wright

Translate

Emma, aka, La Contessa Bathory

Emma, aka, La Contessa Bathory
Her Grace wishes us all a Merry Christmas!

Annabelle

Annabelle

Emma Emmeline

Emma Emmeline
Our New Addition/fond of stuffed toys

Cloth Clown

Cloth Clown

Native American Art

Native American Art

the triplets

the triplets

c. 1969 Greek Plastic Mini Baby

c. 1969 Greek Plastic Mini Baby
Bought Athens on the street

Iron Maiden; Middle Ages

Iron Maiden; Middle Ages

Sand Baby Swirls!

Sand Baby Swirls!
By Glenda Rolle, courtesy, the Artist

Glenda's Logo

Glenda's Logo
Also, a link to her site

Sand Baby Castaway

Sand Baby Castaway
By Glenda Rolle, Courtesy the Artist

A French Friend

A French Friend

Mickey

Mickey
From our friends at The Fennimore Museum

2000+ year old Roman Rag Doll

2000+ year old Roman Rag Doll
British Museum, Child's Tomb

Ancient Egypt Paddle Doll

Ancient Egypt Paddle Doll
Among first "Toys?"

ushabti

ushabti
Egyptian Tomb Doll 18th Dynasty

Ann Parker Doll of Anne Boleyn

Ann Parker Doll of Anne Boleyn

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Tin Head Brother and Sister, a Recent Purchase

Tin Head Brother and Sister, a Recent Purchase
Courtesy, Antique Daughter

Judge Peep

Judge Peep

Hakata Doll Artist at Work

Hakata Doll Artist at Work
From the Museum Collection

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Japanese Costume Barbies

Japanese Costume Barbies
Samurai Ken

Etienne

Etienne
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Jenny Wren
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Dr. E's on Display with sign

Dr. E's on Display with sign

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Dolls Restored ad New to the Museum
L to R: K*R /celluloid head, all bisque Artist Googly, 14 in. vinyl inuit sixties, early celluloid Skookum type.

Two More Rescued Dolls

Two More Rescued Dolls
Late Sixties Vinyl: L to R: Probably Horseman, all vinyl, jointed. New wig. R: Effanbee, probably Muffy, mid sixties. New wig and new clothing on both. About 12 inches high.

Restored Italian Baby Doll

Restored Italian Baby Doll
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Dolls on Display

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L to R: Nutcrackers, Danish Troll, HItty and her book, Patent Washable, Mechanical Minstrel, Creche figure, M. Alexander Swiss. Center is a German mechanical bear on the piano. Background is a bisque German costume doll.

A Few Friends

A Few Friends
These dolls are Old German and Nutcrackers from Dr. E's Museum. They are on loan to another local museum for the holidays.

Vintage Collage

Vintage Collage
Public Domain Art

The Merry Wanderer

The Merry Wanderer
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The Fennimore Doll Museum

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Really old Dolls!

Sunday, February 3, 2019

Doll Dressing and More


As I was dusting, rearranging, repairing, and dressing dolls in my collection, I started to wonder about how other collectors managed their dolls.  I’ve always thought managing a doll collection was a lot like a management job in general.  There are lots of hats to wear and juggle, albeit tiny ones, and lots of multitasking!




 
So, do you dress dolls all at once?  Do you sew for your dolls?  I tend to gather the undressed dolls first.  We have a thing in my family about leaving naked dolls around, unless they are Venus statues in miniature or Frozen Charlottes.  My grandmother, a seamstress, used to gather the naked dolls I left out at night, and then make clothes for them.  Often, by morning, the poor nude dolly had a whole new ensemble.
 
I tend to find an outfit for the doll first.  I like to go through my doll clothes, and match outfit to doll.  Sometimes, I will buy a thrift shop doll just because I have clotjes for it.  I love the 18inch American Girl lookalikes, especially the Madame Alexander variety.  They are fun to dress, and I once picked up the Heidi Ott version with a whole wardrobe of handmade clothes, complete with labels.  The wardrobe opened as a bedroom, complete with a little Murphy bed.  Other times, there is a terrific piece of old lace or material I just have to make into something.
 
After I find the clothes, I work on a series of dolls at once.  Some get wigs, others clothes.  I look for underthings, accessories, then think about the hair.  The dolls get cleaned up first, but sometimes I save hairstyling for last.  Barbie shoes go on the very last; they get lost too easily.  If the doll is displayed, I find her shoes.  If she gets packed a way for awhile, I wait on putting on her shoes.
 
Sometimes, I find a more appropriate or older outfit.  Then, I will switch clothes.  I like to take spring and summer afternoons to launder doll clothes; I add Febreze or Ivory Liquid to the water and soak them, and usually wash them by hand.  I’ve taken some costumes for dolls to the cleaners; they charge as if they were baby clothes, usually.
 
My mother was terrific at dressing dolls.  Every Christmas, one of my dolls got a makeover.  She knitted and crocheted, and I found a half finished outfit in her things after she died.  I have lots of treat knitted doll pieces displayed on my dolls; tiny purses were  her specialty.  She was a wiz at Barbie clothes, even to making tiny beaded boots and leather look coats.
 
Just curious; I’d like to know how you put outfits together when you need to dress your dolls.  Happy Collecting!

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