Wednesday, October 14, 2015

Playing with dolls

For the last several weeks I have been engrossed in buying and re-making distressesd Nancy Ann dolls.  These are vintage dolls that were made from the late 1930's through the 1960's.  The earlier dolls were bisque; in 1948 production shifted to hard plastic dolls.  They are small and endearing, and a great way to play with dolls :-)

I also love, absolutely love, presentation boxes for dolls.  So I scrounged around in my work room for some cigar boxes I had purchased many moons ago, and they looked to be a nice size to present these dear dolls.  With scrap book papers I had on hand (for another project that never materialized), and cardboard that I save like it is going out of production, I made the little box above for one of my Nancy Ann's. 

The scrapbook paper was easy to work with...generally I am a mess when it comes to gluing anything!  I just sort of winged it with measurements, using the box mostly and creasing the paper to make the cutting lines. 

I cut two seperate pieces of cardboard to fit the top of the box, with the ribbon wrapped around it to hold various outfits for the doll, and for the bottom of the box, to thread the ribbon through to hold the doll in place.  These covered pieces of cardboard also make a nice finish to the box and hide the edges of the scrap book papers that line the outside and inside of the box.

Another great box to use for this purpose are the photo storage boxes that Michael's carries.  That will be my next project :-)


I am also still restoring Nancy Ann's.  This darling girl came to me from a dear friend, who rescued several disheveled dolls and sweetly thought to send them to me!  They have been so much fun to re-create.  This is Jane Ann, named not only for my cousin (of the same name) but for my friend and also myself.  Her outfit is crocheted in perle cotton 8 with a size 9 steel hook, from the Annie's Attic leaflet Victorian Darlings.  Except for the length of sleeve and skirt, the outfit was crocheted to the pattern, with the finer thread and smaller needle.


Three more dolls waiting to be!  A hard plastic, frozen leg bisque, and jointed bisque with legs borrowed from a headless doll.  We can't wait!

21 comments:

  1. Wooooow!! They are gorgeous <3!!
    And when you do the magic, they turn into magic little fairy dolls :)
    Hugs
    rux

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  2. Beth,
    I am always thrilled to see your posts. You do such a marvelous job with these little dolls.
    These presentation boxes are a dream for any little (or big) girl.

    Warmest greetings,
    Petra

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  3. I just love Jane Ann's dress, it is absolutely fantastic Beth and suits her perfectly. It really is quite stunning. What a wonderful idea making special boxes for them. So nice. Love what you are doing with these sweet dolls. Looking forward to seeing the next three 'made over'

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  4. Your dolls and the clothes you make for them are so amazing! Just beautiful. I will never forgive myself for giving away my Ginny Dolls and all the clothes I made for them when I was just learning to knit.

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  5. Thank you so much, Lois, Serenata, Petra, and Rux! This is so much fun for me, and I love sharing it with you :-)

    Lois, I had several Madam Alexander 8" dolls when I was a kid, which my parents, bless them, saved for me and now I have them here. A couple of them need to be restrung, but they were the favorite doll of my childhood .

    Warmly,

    Beth

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    1. Thank you so much, Dawn. You are a good inspiration :-)

      Warmly,

      Beth

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  7. Oh my goodness my heart is full with love for these little dolls and the care and devotion you give to them! You my dear are the best fairy godmother a doll could ever have!!! Happy Wishes,
    natalie jo

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    1. Such a sweet thing to say, Natalie Jo; you made my day :-)

      Warmly,

      Beth

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  8. OMG! Beth, how lucky are you. I love these dolls...wish I had one. I have tons of cigar boxes that I also covered with pretty scrapbook paper to keep my craft supplies, and am also going to use them creatively for some special dolls that I will be creating. I"m currently working on 1/12 scale miniature dolls in polymer clay.

    You absolutely have done a beautiful job in restoring the dolls and making their clothes. I too have some of Annie's Attic crochet book for the 6 1/4" Cindy Doll...they were hard to come by. I am looking forward to seeing the completed work.

    By the way, I also agree with Natalie Jo...I will add that, What God is to us you are to dolls.

    Sending Love,
    Carolyn

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    1. Dear Carolyn, thank you for such sweet, sweet words :-)

      These dolls I've been restoring are quite inexpensive. I've probably paid less than $10.00 a doll on Etsy, and on Ebay I believe they are even cheaper...so if you ever want to give this a try, I'm sure you would create a delightful doll.

      Take good care,

      Warmly,

      Beth

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  9. Udělala jste krásnou kazetu pro panenku a její oblečení. A moc hezky jste je oblékla.:) Náhodou jednu panenku mám, je poškozená, nemá ruku a vlásky také ne. Uháčkovala jsem jí šaty a klobouček. Jsem zvědavá, jak obléknete další panenky, už se těším.

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    1. Děkujeme vám za vaše milá slova

      Beth

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  10. I want to get a little doll like that but where do you find them?

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    1. Christi, look for Nancy Ann dolls either on Ebay or Etsy; that is were I have found them.

      Beth

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  11. Oh Beth you are such an inspiration. I truly love your patterns, I am completing the Bluette pattern and wardrobe. I am enjoying myself. Thank you for giving me permission to dive back down into my doll world, where I absolutely would rather be =) Your work is phenomenal. Thank you for your generosity and your kindness.

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    1. Linda, thank you for such lovely words; I hope we never outgrow the wonder of dollplay, and the joy of giving :-)

      Warmly,

      Beth

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  12. Beth,
    I also love the little Nancy Ann dolls! Restoring them, making them beautiful outfits and presentation boxes is such a great idea! It reminds me of some of the dolls I had when I was little. Having a special place to keep her and her clothing was very important! Keep up your beautiful work!

    - Momma Cat

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    1. Thank you so much for your sweet words, Momma Cat! It is a sweet and satisfying pasttime :-)

      Warmly,

      Beth

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  13. I love those little dolls! I used to have one, back in the day, oh so long ago! I didn't appreciate her nearly as much as I would now. How great that you're able to rescue them.

    And speaking of dolls, I have made several of the simple amis. I love them. Right now I have two sitting on my shelf unfinished, no wigs yet but still I love them. I love their floppy legs. They just feel so nice and their faces are sweet and simple. Thank you so much for sharing your patterns!

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    1. I love the Simply Amis too! Simple and sweet, and I am so glad you enjoy them :-)

      Thank you so much for your good words; have a lovely day!

      Warmly,

      Beth

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