A Beautiful Mystery

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When I bought this doll 8 years ago, I didn’t ask many questions. I just knew I had to have her. The dealer wouldn’t budge on the price, maybe because she saw that I was hooked.

I have no regrets, except that I didn’t learn more about her when I had the chance. The lovely woman who sold her to me is no longer around for me to ask.

But I have questions!

First, who made her?

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She is on a German kid body. Her body is in really good shape.

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Her lambskin wig is glued down over her cork pate.

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Her only mark is on the front of her shoulder plate: C1B or G1B.

My receipt says “CB painted eye” and the dealer did tell me a name that I don’t remember and didn’t write down. The only CB mark I could find in my books was for Carl Bergner, but it seems he only made multi-faced dolls. My doll only has one face.

To me it looks more like GB, but I was unable to find any reference to a GB mark that looked like this.

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Mystery two is her costume. Scottish lass costumes were popular in the late 19th and early 20th centuries. But I can’t figure out just how old her dress is. The dress and cap are made from plaid velvet with fringe trim. It was obviously made for her, because it fits perfectly.

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Here’s the dress, turned inside out, to show the red, heavy cotton lining. Antique dresses were usually not finished this way, the dress and lining were usually sewn as one. But the dress appears to have been professionally made. It is machine sewn with hand finishing.

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The back is closed with early, two-prong hooks and eyes, but I often use the same type of antique hooks on the doll clothes I make.

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Her undergarments are a simple chemise and panties.

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The panties close with a safety pin.

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Her boots are definitely antique and really cute.

So, just how old is her costume??

Is it an antique/original costume that has been perfectly preserved?

Or is is a more recent costume created by an extremely skilled couturier?

And, who made her??

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It really doesn’t matter, but I am curious.


Comments

A Beautiful Mystery — 4 Comments

  1. Looks like a “G” to me too. I did find out that Carl Bergner made single-faced dolls too and the company began making dolls in 1860. The only examples I could find of dolls with a single face were from the 1930’s, Shirley Temple wannabes. Can’t believe he started making multi-faced dolls in the 1860’s though. I did find one mark, F1B, for Fritz Bierschenk on dollreference.com, but no way is the C/G an F. The mystery continues =)

  2. Your doll is French, an it is on its original body. I think the dollvery possible is made by Barrois. The dress is from the 1860s, as far as I can judge from your picture. It is in all a very lovely doll.

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