Monday, September 29, 2014

Doll Museum: The 19th Century Continued- Some Photos, Courtesy ...

Doll Museum: The 19th Century Continued- Some Photos, Courtesy ...: Above: Doll Museum Photo Showing China heads, Bonnet head,s Parian and more Antique Doll Collector Magazine   From our Friends and A...

Doll Collecting for Everyone

by Donna Kaonis
It seems we often are reading about the latest record setting price paid for a doll – the latest $397,700 being paid for Kammer and Reinhardt’s 108, the only example known.  These high prices are not only newsworthy, they elevate our hobby. It is important however to remember that these astronomical prices are not the norm, only a very select few are able compete for these extremely rare dolls and short of putting a second mortgage on our homes, the rest can never even fathom such a purchase.
As a long time doll collector who doesn’t have unlimited funds, I am happy to report that I have been able to put together a fine collection of antique dolls. Ironically my collection consists of early dolls: chinas, parians, papier mache and cloth. Along with American composition dolls and the majority of German bisque dolls, these dolls can be quite affordable.
I’ve always equated a new limited edition doll to buying a car…as soon as you drive it out of the lot it is a used car.  A limited edition doll or the latest fad will rarely if ever be worth what you paid for it. Indeed, in most cases I counsel individuals to donate these dolls and take a write off as they more than likely they will only receive pennies on the dollar if they try and sell them. An antique doll however will hold its value, oftentimes increase in value, and in meantime you can enjoy owning a piece of history.
New collectors often think learning about antique dolls is very confusing…bisque dolls have all those mold numbers! Rest assured, there is nothing complicated; armed with a bit of knowledge, you can become an expert in your field. Knowledge is what we provide in Antique DOLL Collector… our articles written by doll collectors (not professional writers), explained in easy to understand language.
As editor of the 2014 United Federation of Doll Clubs souvenir journal, I wrote about collecting and passion, the theme of this year’s convention. If you collect dolls you will agree that it has enriched and enlivened your life; in fact as one longtime collector stated, it is the secret to happiness!

Sunday, September 28, 2014

Some Results of Bonham's Auction of Rare Character Dolls

Bonham's Auctions conducted a sale of rare German and other Character dolls on September 24, 2014 and set record prices for some of the dolls, including those below:

1. An extremely rare and unique Kämmer & Reinhardt 108 bisque head character doll

Sold for £242,500 (US$ 395,479) inc. premium.
Kamner and Reinhardt Rare 108 Won the top bid, $395,479.00
An extremely rare Kämmer & Reinhardt 106 'Heinz' bisque head character doll

Sold for £115,300 (US$ 188,036) inc. premium.
All the dolls auctioned may be viewed at
The #108 Doll had previously sold at auction for $275,000.00.  This amount was reported in Patsy Moyer's Doll Values, 2000.   According to Moyer, Kamner and Reinhardt began to make dolls in 1886 and continued till sometime past 1930. They were located in Waltershausen, Germany. Bisque heads for the firm were made by Simon & Halbig and Schuetzenmiester & Quendt.  Some of the heads were marked K  R with a Star of David in the Center, and others, including a small doll in my collection, had heads bearing this mark and Simon & Halbig underneath.  Rheinishche Gummi und Celluloid Fabrik Co. made celluloid doll heads for them.   The rarest of their dolls were the Charaterpuppen, like these sold.  Moyer writes that Kamner and Reinhardt made a variety of heads, both shoulder and socket as well as heads of composition, pinchushion heads, and rubber heads.

Thursday, September 25, 2014

This Just In!! Hot off the Pressses, but Photos to Follow

More details soon, but this isn't even a French Doll!! From our Editor:
Doll Record Shattered!!!

The only known example of Kammer and Reinhardt's mold 108, brought the equivalent of $397,584

at Bonham's Knightsbridge auction rooms in London on September 24. 

The company's mold 105 realized $279,538, mold 106 "Heinz" $189,037 and the 104 $86,075.

For more results visit

Wednesday, September 24, 2014

Have you Seen These Stolen Dolls?

Sold on the Internet. Please email owner at  This is a photo of the first 8 dolls with descriptions. Please help, if you can!

1. 14” SFBJ 226 Paris 4,
“jeweled eyes,” sold $462
2. BRU TETEUR Nursing
Doll, all original, Mama
squeak, sold $5955
3. 9” BRU JNE 2/0, all
original, sold $18,800
4. 20-1/2” FRENCH
trunk was left behind) sold
5. 12” EJ JUMEAU – all
original, sold $6400
CHARACTER, sold $3250
R – walks and cries, sold
signed head, sold $2900


Tuesday, September 23, 2014

More to Come for Doll Lovers and Lovers of Antique Doll Collector!

German Bisque, Hertel and Schwab.  Very good Condition and
Embroidered Antique Silk Gown
Remember you can subscribe for a free email update from this blog, just scroll down the right Margin.  We are  also on Twitter, Facebook, You Tube, Google+, Tumblr, and Flickr, and we are frequently menioned on Doll Collecting at  We love comments, and would love to hear fom your readers re what types of dolls you would like to hear about.  You can also catch us on the blogs Doll Museum and Dr. E's Doll Museum Blog.  As Doll Collecting Month draws to a close, I would just like to say too all of our friends,  Happy Doll Collecting!!

Sunday, September 21, 2014

Vintage Dolls Featured at Theriault's Recent Rendezvous Auction

Sandra Sue, Theriault'

There were several Sandra Sue dolls; this one did very well.  There were four others that sold roughly from $50.00-$150.00.  All were in great condition with very nice costumes. As always, our thanks to Theriault's for allowing us to use their photos and information from their catalogs.

8" (20 cm.) Sandra Sue in Festive Red Dress with Matching Sweater by Richwood Toys 75/150
Lot #47 (Sale Order: 47 of 64) 
Sold for: $160.00 to onsite
Item Description:
translate descriptionHard plastic, sleep eyes, slim body, flat feet, orange eyebrows . . . lashes, red lips, she is wearing a red dress with gold and black print, button-up red knit sweater, white net socks, and black slipper shoes. Richwood Toys, Sandra Sue, circa 1950.

Vintage Barbies did well, too. Here are the description and auction results:


11" (28 cm.) Pair of Costumed Mattel Barbies from 1967 200/400
  Lot #50  (Sale Order: 50 of 64)  
Sold for:   $375.00
Item Description:
Each with new style face, one with twist 'n turn waist, blonde hair, and yellow organdy ruffle suit; the other with ash-blonde hair and sateen geometric outfit. Mattel, Barbie, circa. 1967.

Two wonderful Ginnies in Cowgirl and Cowby outfits did not sell:

8" (20 cm.) Pair of Blonde Cowboy and Girl Ginny Dolls by Vogue 200/400
   Lot #49  (Sale Order: 49 of 64)      
Item Description:
Hard plastic, sleep eyes, painted lashes, wearing matching green and red outfits complete with large lime-green felt cowboy hats and toy gold pistols hanging from gold belts. Generally excellent condition with cowboy showing some scuffing on face and reddened eyes. Vogue, Ginny, circa 1954.

Saturday, September 20, 2014

Charlotte, the Original "Frozen" Doll

A Variety of Charlottes.  Courtesy, Theriault's.
Long before Elsa of "Frozen" there was Frozen Charlotte, my first antique doll.  Since she first joined my doll collection from the local Women's Club antique show in 1968, many sisters and even brothers have joined her.  One young man is anatomcially correct, and is identical to a doll once in the Mary Merritt Doll Museum.  The other Charlottes and Charlies range in size from a mere inch, less if you count some of the miniscule "frozen" Kewpies [yes, I now they are not Charlottes, but some strike the same pose!], to over 12 inches for a large, bashful Charlie. Some have red garters and gilded shoes.  Some have arms molded close to their body, and some have extended arms, like Charlotte I.  Charlotte II is a 2 inch bisque girl with a light brown wig.  My mother created extensive wardrobes for Charlotte I, glazed and brunette, and Charlotte II, she of the light brown hair.  Wax sisters and even wooden sisters followed.  One mysterious little child was brown wood, and looks hand carved, but "Japan" is incised on her back.  "Eva" is painted in white across her chest.  I've never seen another like her; I think she has something to do with Uncle Tom's Cabin.  Other Charlottes have molded clothes or bonnets, blonde hair, fancy hairdoes, pink lustre or black glazed complexions, their own furniture, moving arms, moving arms and legs [alas, bisque, not all-china!] They live in doll houses, shadowboxes, a watch case, on Christmas trees, in jewelry drawers, anywhere they can infiltrate.  Their portrait hangs in one of our bathrooms, and one very rare little boy rides a cigar and doubles as a whistle.  Legend has it such a Charlotte cousin started the legendary collection of the even more legendary John Noble.  I love them all, but love Charlotte I best. She and I have travelled many roads together.   Many hundreds of dolls have joined us, including many large antiques of china, bisque, wax, metal, cloth and wood. The sad song that christened her was recorded several years ago by Natalie Merchant on her album "Ophelia," a Living Dead Doll has parodied her, and a dessert was named in her honor.  None of this fame has ever turned her stiff little china head, and she wouldn't let it even if she could turn her head around!

Friday, September 19, 2014

Q and A with Donna Kaonis, the Editor of Antique Doll Collector Magazine.

This smallest size KPM has a great hairdo.
As a regular feature of this blog, we will feature a different collector and/or writer each month. Our inaugural Q and A is the our Editor, Donna Kaonis. All photos are courtesy Kaonis collection.

Thanks, Donna, for being the first to take part in our Q and A for collectors.

When did you start collecting dolls?
I started collecting dolls nearly 35 years ago. At first it was Kewpies, then cloth dolls – both commercially made and one-of-a-kind. Gradually I became interested in early chinas, parians and papier-maches.
One of the more unusual molded hats is found on this lovely china.

Have your tastes changed over the years?

The largest size of the Maggie Bessie dolls, made by the Moravian sisters, Maggie and Bessie Pfhol
Definitely yes. While I still think Kewpies are adorable, I sold that collection long ago and gravitated to early dolls. I think I’ve become very fussy over the years with regard to condition, which has, (along with budgetary restraints, kept my collection to a manageable size.
What are your favorite types of dolls?
As I mentioned, early dolls, especially those with original clothing. Chinas are probably my favorite, and I love dolls with molded hats. I tend to gravitate to lady dolls. Peddler dolls with great wares are another favorite. My husband and I love folk art, and so many of the chinas and papier-maches look like they have stepped out of an Early American painting. Lately I have to admit that fashions are calling to me. I adore Hurets in enfantine clothing. I have one but maybe someday another will join her. What are the characteristics that attract you to a certain doll? Originality, rare hairdos, molded hats and condition. It goes without saying that chinas by KPM, Meissen and Royal Copenhagen will always find a warm reception at the Kaonis household.
A wooden shows off her sewing wares
Do you sew for your dolls?
I can’t sew to save my life, in fact I used to sneak things home from my home economics class so my mother could work on them. I think it is wonderful there are so many talented seamstresses out there. Finding an early doll in her original dress, one that is in good condition is a special treasure. Many times a doll has to be redressed and someone with an understanding of period styles who uses antique fabrics and trims is to envied. I think the amazingly talented Sylvia MacNeil and Susan Sirkis, both writers and pattern makers for ADC, are an inspiration to doll collectors.
A wood-bodied china with molded bonnet is only about four inches tall
What doll is on your want list?
I would love to find a porcelain Huret! I better start saving.

A large china with soulful eyes. Her maker is unknown although new evidence indicates she may be a product of French porcelain maker Jacob Petit.

Tuesday, September 16, 2014

October Issue of Antique Doll Collector: A Preview

In the Magazine's own words, featured in italics below, take a look at the smashing issue for October, and don't forget the handy link for auctions at the bottom of the page. More blogs on antique folk dolls, especially apple dolls at this time of crisp weather and fall fesitvals, and a post on Halloween repurposed artists dolls inspired by antiques from our friend Teri Long at Long Gone Dolls!
Two spectacular collections will be featured at the upcoming Frasher Doll Auction November 1 in Kansas City, Missouri. The estate of the late Inez Gwin who began her collection in 1956, includes fine French and German dolls as well as rare chinas. Our cover doll is a rare Jumeau portrait model on an articulated manikin body, standing 30 inches tall. Ailene Ford’s collection offers buyers a chance to bid on large size French and German dolls along with a selection of fine piano babies. Several dolls from this important sale can be seen in our October issue. A Kestner purchased in 1980 for his wife’s birthday would lead to one of the great collections of the last thirty years. In his article on Fran and Chuck Ciraolo, Stuart Holbrook tells the story of the couple’s successful career path and their dedication which led to this overwhelming collection. You’ll learn about their favorite doll, the Jumeau Triste and why they could not stop at just one! This author shares two more dolls’ houses from the collection of long time dealer and collector Ann Meehan, the impressive Regency House, measuring over 6.5 feet tall and a circa 1880 house built by the son of a sea caption for the Russell family of Duxbury, MA. Possessing the passion of an interior decorator, Ann has furnished these two homes with exquisite dolls’ house miniatures and the rarest of dolls. This spring I was privileged to participate in the TLC Grand Tour. Day five found us in Basle, Switzerland at the largest doll and toy museum in Europe, the Toy Worlds Museum Basle, home to the finest teddy bears in the world. Cleverly displayed for maximum enjoyment, doll collectors will also find exceptional dolls and room boxes. I bring you some of my favorites in this issue. That same day we visited Basle’s museum of domestic life, featuring a small but exquisite collection of dolls’ houses and dolls. Also in our October issue we bring you the blue ribbon winners of the antique UFDC competitive exhibit, always one of the most exciting attractions of the annual convention. This year was no exception and we know you will enjoy viewing these rare dolls. The National Doll Festival, an annual event presented by Rowbear Lohman featuring a mix of antique, vintage, holiday items, doll clothing, new and artist dolls, our mystery column, news of an upcoming exhibit and a look at two new doll books all contribute to this special issue. Happy Collecting! Subscribe Now On Our Secure Shopsite Antique Doll Collector, P.O. Box 239, Northport, NY 11768 Call us Toll Free at 888-800-2588 Email: Check Out Our Calendar of Doll Shows and Auctions

Monday, September 15, 2014

View Catalog Item - Theriault's Antique Doll Auctions

Below is a link to a wonderful black cloth doll attributed to Julia Ward Beecher, who had ties to both Julia Ward Howe and Harriet Beecher Stowe.  I have an example in my own collection, bought many years ago for $23.00!  This wonderful doll featured in Theriault's online catalog of the Blackler collection is only one of thousands from this remarkable collection of folk art dolls and toys.  These dolls are the heart and soul of doll collecting, unique, endearing, handmade, well-loved.  They are the very definition of "doll" as a beloved object of childhood.

View Catalog Item - Theriault's Antique Doll Auctions

Sunday, September 14, 2014

Carlson Dolls

Vintage dolls are defined as those made before 1960, and include antique dolls. Antique dolls are those that are between 75 and 100 years ago. Since dolls made in 1960 are now over fifty years old, the term Vintage is liberally and practically applied by most dealers to dolls made roughly thirty years ago or earlier. My childhood dolls fall into the vintage category. To some, they are Antiques. The first time I bought a 1960s 8 inch vinyl Girl Scout doll in a thrift store, the young clerk wanted to know if I collected “antique” dolls. I was flabbergasted! I hardly think of myself as an antique, and this was a doll from my early childhood.
The interest in Vintage dolls is increasing. Now that the Baby Boomers are becoming seniors, many have discovered an interest in the dolls and toys of their childhood. Books like “I had that Doll!” have become best sellers in the collectible world, and many books have popped up that are devoted to these dolls. Johanna Gast Anderson, Pat Smith, A. Glenn Mandeville, Judith Izen and Patricia Schoonmaker are just a few of the authors who have written books featuring Vintage dolls. One company whose dolls may be considered vintage is Carlson Dolls. Carlson Dolls were founded in Minnesota in 1946 by Ray and Ann Carlson. Apparently, they were the manufacturers of the “Skookums” dolls designed by Mary McAboy. They began to create the costumed dolls for which they are famous in the 1950s. I saw Carlson dolls in museum shops as late as the early 2000s, but have not seen any new dolls since. One source says the company went out of business in 1997 despite the efforts of sons Lowell and David. Once again, foreign imports, this time from China, affected production, this time forcing the company to close. Besides Skookums, Carlson produced Minnetonka Moccasins for the Arrowhead Company and novelty salt and pepper shakers. They made plush toys and ski boots at one time, too. By the 1960s, allegedly due to competition from Japanese manufacturers, Carlson devoted itself to dolls. In its heyday, Carlson made 500 different dolls, created by 100 employees in three factories. The dolls were sold in tourist parks and National Landmark sites. I bought Carlson dolls in Fort Cody, NE, Disneyland, The Buffalo Bill Museum, LeClaire, IA, Springfield, IL, and other tourist shops. Wisconsin Dells shops were good sources, and the largest selection was at the Wyoming report, Little America. There were three kinds of dolls sold; these were generic dolls made by other companies, but dressed by Carlson dolls. The dolls usually had a paper tag around their foot or a hangtag. 7.5 inch dolls were like the Duchess Dolls, or Dress-Me dolls popular during the fifties. My first Carlson doll was this size, and was the Apache Princess. Actually, there was a 4th type of doll, the 2 inch babies that the Native American female dolls often carried. The 7.5 inch dolls had moving heads and arms and sleeping eyes. Their wigs are soft mohair. They did not move their legs. Sometimes, the clothes are stapled on. The Native American dolls wear buckskin and authentic fabrics. The Navajo dolls where jewelry. Civil War Soldiers have appropriate facial hair, and Victorian and Colonial women wear the proper hats, mob caps and shawls. 7 inch child dolls were cubby with painted eyes. Some also had moveable legs. There was a hard plastic Ginny type doll that was dressed in red velvet as Santa. The example like this in my collection came from Lake Geneva. 6 inch “Pudgy” dolls moved their heads and arms and often represented Native American dolls. Earlier dolls wore buckskin, but I have a later example with a felt outfit. I often bought these at our local Sac/Fox Pow Wow. 4 inch toddler dolls resembled the Uneeda PeeWees. 11 inch dolls looked identical to the 7.5 inch dolls, but often had jointed legs. They usually wore similar costumes. Native American dolls were made with larger 10.5 inch vinyl dolls, too. These had sleep eyes and carried the same 2 inch babies as the 7.5 inch dolls. The 18 inch plus size dolls are my favorites. They cost as much as $60.00 when I was little, and made a wonderful display. These dolls had child-like faces, rooted hair and sleep eyes. Supposedly, Carlson made very large porcelain dolls, some attached to cradle boards, but I’ve not seen these. They made doll purses of leather with built in dolls, and used the 6 inch dolls for the most art. I’ve seen many variations in these dolls over the years, representing many Native American tribes and historical characters. Some of the historical characters included Martha Washington, Mary Todd Lincoln, Priscilla Alden, Betsy Ross, American Revolutionary War soldiers, Benjamin Franklin, British General, and more. Carlson dolls are well made and are popular at Native American art and artifact shows. They display well and are easy to store. Their clothes are accurate down to the last detail. They were affordable for the most part when new, but some are increasing in value. It is harder to find them with the paper label these days. Many other companies copied Carlson Dolls, but none seemed to compare with their quality.

Saturday, September 13, 2014

Vintage AKA Antique Dolls About to Happen!

Soon, antique dolls of all types will be closer than you think! Collectible and vintage dolls from the 1930s and 1940s are approaching the 70-80 year mark. The Shirley Temple dolls is approaching its 80th anniversary, all the more bittersweet because of the death of the child star last winter. Celebrity dolls made during the twenties that represent Charlie Chaplin, Jackie Coogan as "The Kid", Baby Peggy, Rudolph Valentino and others are now between 80-90 years old. Patsy is close to 80, and the bisque Nancy Ann Storybook dolls have hit age 75. Most definitions of "antique" describe objects that minimally are between 75-100 years old. The dolls just described above fit that category. The elusive, rare and expensive Albert Marque French bisque head was made circa 1914. The first Kewpies are now over 100 years old, Raggedy Ann is 99. The first Madame Alexander dolls are approximately 91 years old. Vintage dolls are rapidly transitioning to antique dolls. Like us, they aren't getting any younger!
I often hear from collectors who are daunted by old dolls. They feel antiques are out of their price range and not relevant. I would agree to disagree on this point. The variety of antique and old, vintage dolls is staggering. Peruse the pages of Antique Doll Collector and you will find dolls made of every material and design, even early dolls of hard plastic. Those little 7 inch hard plastic dolls known as Sweet Sue, Mary Ann, Duchess Dolls, Gas Station Dolls, Storybook Dolls, Carlson dolls and many other names are past sixty, with early plastic and compositon examples hitting age 70. They are all old dolls, and have a history, sometimes just as interesting as that of a pricey Bru or Montanari wax doll. Modern dolls have their provenance in old dolls. Modern ball-jointed dolls, Fashion dolls, Barbie, and other similar dolls so hot today owe their construction to early jointed Creche figures, Queen Anne dolls, ball jointed French and German dolls, Parisiennes, Pandoras, and others. Cloth dolls are still constructed in ways similar to Kathe Kruse, Izannah Walker, or Chase babies. A collector of costume dolls or artist dolls will learn that these modern collectibles were inspired by the creations of Bru, Jumeau, Huret, Simon & Halbig, Kestner, and more. In future blog posts, we will explore the antique and vintage dolls that appear in the pages of Antique Doll Collector, and will explore many types that are both affordable and accessible to doll collectors everywhere.

Friday, September 12, 2014

Welcome to our First Post- For the Love of Antique Dolls

Welcome to the new blog for Antique Doll Collector Magazine! Look for us on Twitter, Facebook, and soon on YouTube and other social media. You may also read about antique dolls and us on Doll Collecting at and on Dr. E's Doll Museum Blog and Doll Museum. We are a family friendly blog dedicated to Antique Doll Collecting and all related subjects. We love comments, but please remember to observe Netiquette. All photos published here are the property of Antique Doll Collector Magazine. In our own words, We Have it All: Fascinating articles written by doll experts, world-wide auction previews and results, show reviews, calendar listings, extensive coverage of the national UFDC convention, visits to museums, a look at the latest books... everything you need to make informed decisions and enhance your love of doll collecting. French Bébés • Chinas • Papier-Mache • German Bisque • Fashion Dolls • Cloth Dolls • Patterns • All Bisques • Hard Plastic • Wooden Dolls • Characters • American Composition • Wax • Parian • Dollhouses and Miniatures • Doll Clothing Antique DOLL Collector is the world’s leading publication for buying and selling antique dolls. In each timely, monthly issue you’ll enjoy ads from the world’s foremost dealers and auction houses.