Sunday March 9, 2014
Thanks again for all your emails and comments; while I can't read and respond to them all, I certainly try and take your suggestions to heart! Please note that I am not an appraiser, and do not buy and sell doll collections; I am a doll scholar, collector, and author, who plans to open a museum and library when she retires. I have been including links to the previous guide's articles on buying/selling and repair
. For those selling local auction houses, antique malls, online information for Theriault's, Frashers, Noel Barrett, Morphy auctions, Skinner, and other auction houses can help you with your questions. If you can get to Google, just "Google" their names and you will find them. Good luck and thanks to all who have sent best wishes and kind words of admiration. I hope we will be doing this together for a very long time!!
has engendered controversy since 1959 when her "mother" Ruth Handler introduced her to the Toy World. The latest controversy involves the doll's new Girl Scout Badge and her cover for The Sports Illustrated Swim Suit issue.
More About China Dolls talks about the history of these wonderful figures and their role in doll collecting. China Heads II continues the discussion and also addresses unusual examples in my own collection.
Uneek Doll Designs is the brainchild of Debbie Ritter, and Etsy entrepreneur who produces remarkable portraits in miniature of historical, literary, and fictional persons.
Finally, here is an updated piece on action figures, male and female, and G. I. Joe's 50th birthday.
Wednesday March 5, 2014
Greetings once again, and a big thanks for all your emails and comments. Unfortunately, I cannot reply to everyone, but I do my best. Here and answer to my first FAQ re selling doll collections and doll repair. I am not a dealer and only buy dolls for my personal collection or for gifts. I have been involved in some estates, but only as a guest consultant. I do not buy and sell dolls professionally, but Denise has written several wonderful articles which you can find, and which I will try to link to in the newsletter. Also, I only repair minimally my own dolls, and make them for pleasure or gifts. We don't have any doll hospitals in my area, but again, Denise has written wonderful pieces on doll repair and doll hospitals. I f you have Internet, and you do if you can read this :), Google doll hospitals, or the Chili Victorian Doll Hospitals and Museum, Chili, NY, or Google "Doll Castle News Magazine," and ask Mr. Mueller, the editor. Also, some errata, I do apologize a duplicate newsletter automatically went out with my new ones; I will contact tech support. Take care, and Happy Doll Hunting!
Kindles and other hand held devices are great ways to collect doll books, fictional and non fiction. In Dolls on Kindle Part I
[PS; there is an ad for Doll Repair on this page] and Dolls on Kindle Part II
, you may review the large library of books on dolls and toys that I've amassed, and some are Free!!
Speaking of books about dolls, here is a humorous look on doll collecting called Review: Creepy A** Dolls
[Edited because we are family friendly!], read on for the review.
For many of us, getting pelted by large snowflakes, yet again, it is hard to believe spring is around the corner, but it is. Spring is a time to reflect as well a collect. You might be wondering which direction to go with your dolls, or how to organize them. Here is a brief "doll autobiography" of my own doll collection, with some ideas of how you might want to group your dolls: My Three Collections.
I didn't mean for this to be a gothic literary theme, but since the weather is a little spooky, here is a piece on how dolls are featured in the novels and films of Anne Rice and Stephen King, King and Rice; Tommyknockers and Interview with the Vampire.
Rice was a noted doll collector with her own museum for a time; Denise and I have written about her before. She said some very positive things about how loving dolls was like loving the people of the world who made them. Read "Taltos."
Stiches in Time: More on Cloth Dolls
celebrates rag dolls, cloth dolls, fiber dolls, and similar types, lovingly stitched and sewn into the personalities we have come to cuddle and love.
Finally, as a companion piece to the others, here is a reminder of Dolls in Horror Movies
, for cinema buffs and doll buffs alike.
Look for dolls and Louisa May Alcott, more Long Gone Dolls, Doll Store Profiles, Book Reviews, Spring Dolls, Doll Reviews!
Sunday March 2, 2014
One of the things I enjoy about giving programs on dolls is that many subconscious collectors step out of the curio cabinet and confess their love for dolls. They don't have to have glass cases full of them at home, or museums. They only have to have fond memories of a doll or viewing a doll collection. I have found that men and women, old and young, have memories of toys and dolls to share if given a chance. The last program we did on metal and mechanical dolls involved poets [including me] from local writers; groups reading pieces about dolls, toys, childhood, and play, and audience participation. Each person present contributed a line to the poem linked to here. No one knew what others would write, so it is a spontaneous declaration of the importance dolls play in our lives and the joy that they bring. Read more about "Hinges and Hearts: A Group Poem . . ."
This week begins with a celebration of the Japanese Doll Festival, Hinamatsuri Day, aka as The Girls' Day in Japan. There is also a corresponding Boys' Day on May 5th. So, we are celebrating redux with an article on, The Japanese Doll Festival
and other celebrations and traditions in Japan that honor dolls.
Next, as a tribute to our former guide, is a review of her excellent book "The Official Price Guide to Dolls", which is one of the best and most informative price guides I have ever read. There are good sections on doll marks, lots of photos, a color section, great introductory text and an inspiring bibliography, all there to make us doll scholars of the best sort. Read more . . .
Today The Oscars are broadcast, and millions will be glued to their TVs. It seems appropriate to begin on an informal series of posts on dolls in horror movies. There will be other films and books discussed which touch on how dolls are portrayed in the cinema, so here is something for doll lovers, film buffs, and book worms alike. Read more . . .
Once again man of us have been inundated with snow. We have to wonder, "Will this endless winter ever end?" At least it's March, and time to think of spring, and cherry blossoms, in the case of the doll festival, and time to think about Doll Shows, Easter baskets, yard sales and more. I saw a couple of signs for yard sales yesterday, and feel hopeful that the weather will soon improve. Ever optimistic, I give you an update of Denise's excellent article on finding dolls, with a challenge to "think outside the doll house" once again and to remember "Dolls are where You Find them,"
to quote Mary Hillier, of "Dolls and Doll Makers."
My Three Collections
details one way to organize a large collection; it also tells the evolution of my own doll collection, which began when I was three. Read on for the history of how three dolls led to much more than a hobby.
Look for future articles on contemporary dolls, the documentary "Living Dolls," Celtic and Irish Dolls, Ancient Dolls, Finds from a Doll Search, Antiques, and more!! Happy Dolling!
Wednesday February 26, 2014
It is a pleasure to write for you, and I thank all of you for your emails. I also have another job as a teacher, so please bear with me and give me a couple of days to answer your emails, but will do my best to answer as many as I can. I love hearing from you and am privileged to be your guide. For this blog, I would like to review Denise Van Patten's wonderful book, "Official Price Guide to Dolls." I was eager to buy this book when I learned Denise was the author, and I have used it and recommended it ever since. I hope she is able to write a second edition one day soon. Read more . . .
Next, we all know March 3d is the The Japanese Doll or Hina Matsuri
Festival in Japan. This article is a short informative piece with links about this and other Japanese festivals involving dolls. There is also information about other wonderful Japanese dolls, ancient to contemporary.
In the spirit of furthering multicultural crafts, here is a review of SIS: Fair Trade Shop
which includes wonderful, handmade ethnic dolls. Here is a way to collect dolls and to help the artist who make them. There are many links to folk dolls
, ethnic dolls
, and other international crafts in this post, and I hope you enjoy it every much. I began my collection at age 3 with two Greek dolls that belonged to my grandmother. Since then, I have kept up my international collection, and have dolls from every continent but Antarctica, but have toy Penguins representing them.
has also inspired international admiration, and his birthday was February 2nd. In his honor, I wrote a piece about dolls by Emma Clear
, Debbie Ritter of Uneek Doll Designs, and Effanbee, among others, who have created dolls of George Washington and his family. Washington was also a doting step-father
, who bought dolls and toys for his step-children, Patsy and Jack.
The Wizard of Oz turns 75 this year; here is a review of a Wizard of Oz Doll Party
I attended for American Girl and other 18 inch dolls, held in a gorgeous mansion turned civic center, once the home of Susan Denkmann Hauberg, a noted philanthropist who allegedly still haunts Hauberg Center!
Finally, here is a profile about Long Gone Dolls
, the inspiration of Etsy artist Teri Long. She brings new definition to the terms "upcycle" and "doll restoration." She transforms unwanted, and to some, uncollectible 80's dolls, into slightly spooky, but completely endearing, works of poupee art!