The Doll Detective

If you search on eBay for Kestner in Dolls, you may be surprised by the number of dolls that come up. Some of them were not really made by the Kestner firm; this is especially true of the all bisques and small dolls. In 1998, Jan Foulke’s Kestner King of Dollmakers was revised and republished. What followed was a spate of “Kestner” dolls flooding the market. If Kestner was King, then … Continue reading

Why so White?

My doll collection contains caucasian dolls almost exclusively. Why? I have owned and sold many black dolls, but so far, none have made the cut for my permanent collection. Since bisque dolls during the late 1800’s and early 1900’s were made predominately in France and Germany, they reflected the population. When ethnic dolls were made, they were often made as novelties and were of poor quality. Several firms made limited numbers … Continue reading

Orphan Rescue

My dear husband (DH) has more experience with doll shows than he’d like to admit. He helped my with my booth at countless shows back when I was selling my reproduction dolls. And he’s attended a few more since then. He has a theory that there are particular dolls that always travel back and forth to doll shows and never find their way to a collector’s home. They are just … Continue reading

I Miss Shopping!!

The UFDC convention starts today and I’m not there. One of the most wonderful aspects of convention is the fantastic shopping opportunities. The UFDC showroom is legendary and Rowbear’s National Doll Festival, which runs concurrently, always inspires. I go back again and again during convention and find something new each time. I need a shopping fix and I have no where to go!  Shopping online just isn’t the same. There … Continue reading

A Beautiful Mignonette

I’ve shown pictures of this doll several times, but she has not been formally introduced to you. She is a 6″ (15.5 cm) all-bisque mignonette made by the German firm of Simon & Halbig (S&H). They produced many premium quality dolls and this surely is one of them. She is unmarked, but unmistakably S&H. With her sweet face and shy smile, she charmed me. Her brows are delicately feathered and her face painting … Continue reading

Pondering Provenance

Merriam Webster defines provenance as: “the history of ownership of a valued object or work of art or literature.”  As doll collectors, we rarely get to know anything about the provenance of a doll we purchase. We have all been told questionable stories of a doll’s history. How often has a dealer told you that a doll is from his or her “private collection”? But who owns the provenance of … Continue reading

The Bloggin’ Blues

If you’ve been following my blog, you’ve probably figured out that I have a lot to talk about. I do. The only problem is, writing my blog leaves me very little time to do other things, like sewing, reading, and playing with Supergirl. And I do have a regular, paying job, too. Even though I work at home, on my own schedule, it’s kind of important to spend some time … Continue reading

Another Tiny Tale

This tiny, all-bisque doll stands just over 2 1/2″ (6.5 cm.) tall and I love her. She is not considered to be a Lilliputian, even though she’s the same size. She was made in Germany and her body, legs and head are all one piece. Only her peg-jointed arms move. This type of doll is often called “early” all bisque, but they probably weren’t made before 1880. Her cobalt blue … Continue reading

Judy Brown Saw My Future

I loved my dolls when I was small. There was nothing better than a new doll on Christmas morning. I played hard with my dolls, so few of them survived. As with most girls at the time, I started with baby dolls, moved on to girl dolls, then graduated to Barbie. The first doll I really remember was Marybel Gets Well. I loved making her sick or injured, then curing … Continue reading

A New Old Doll

I am sometimes intimidated by owning antique dolls over 100 years old. It is a big responsibility being the caretaker for a part of history. Antique cloth dolls intimidate me the most. They need to be protected from sunlight, humidity, temperature changes, dust, moths and other bugs, and handling by humans.   That’s why several years ago for my birthday I got two reproduction Izannah Walker dolls made by Gail … Continue reading