Searching for Dolls
Over 400 different pieces of doll clothing in period styles are offered through Dollmasters, a mail order firm specializing in new nostalgic dolls and doll-related accessories. Clothing is designed to fit a range of doll body types from plump-bodied German and French dolls of late 19th century to American dolls made ca. 1930s-1940s.
This new miniature vanity and stool were made of steel wire to resemble Victorian wicker. The vanity is 5 high; the stool, 1 high. A nickel is shown for size comparison.
When the auctioneer said, "Sold.", Karen Delfinos parents thought they had bought their daughter a once in a lifetime birthday gift...a Victorian mechanical doll or automaton.
Molds used to make pre-1940 celluloid dolls are now back in production. The doll shown here is one of at least two styles being reproduced. The other known new doll has the same hairstyle and general body shape but with hands clasped behind the back. Each of the known reproductions is 6 tall.
Bisque figures made from old molds were found in the market. New figures are marked "Germany" with impressed lettering and four digit numbers just like original figures made from ca. 1880 through the 1920s.
Bebe is French for a baby doll. Some French 19th century dolls were originally sold with a Bebe pin. New Bebe pins copied from old originals are now available for $15 each. The new pins arrive with a bright gold-tone finish.
Many buyers well aware of full-sized reproductions of antique furniture may not know of many new doll and toy-sized versions of period styles.
A new windup mechanism with a music box is being used to create old appearing mechanical dolls (also called automatas). Old doll parts including bisque heads, wigs and clothing are used to conceal the new body and mechanism within. Several of these doll; have been sold in the $600-800 price range; one was seen at one of the nation's largest Toy & Doll shows in June, 1994 priced at $ 1400. All the faked dolls so Jumeau - the wood head moves back and forth while the arms move up and down.
Two Buddy Lee dolls related to auto and gasoline themes have been reproduced. Both dolls wear uniforms styled like 1950s gas station attendants. One wears a khaki colored Texaco brand uniform; the other a uniform with the Route 66 route shield. The new dolls retail for 199.00 each.