Wednesday, April 22, 2015

Unusual Custom Gnome Doll by Robin Thompson, Robin's Mini Furniture

Remember the gnomes?  Besides the garden statues that are popular today, there was a book called "Gnomes" that was very popular.  Nearly 40 years ago, there were gnome dolls, Christmas ornaments, cards, you name it. Dr. Tom Clark made them famous with his figurines.  Here is a custom, artist made gnome woman that is a treasured doll of our web designer, Lisa Ambrose.

Gnome Woman, Courtesy, Lisa Ambrose

Here, in Lisa's own words, is the story behind the gnome doll:

When I was a kid one of my favorite books was "Gnomes". I loved the beautiful watercolor illustrations as well as the way it was written.

A few months ago I happened to come across the book while cleaning house, and when I saw the picture of the nude lady gnome, I had a great idea! Why not ask Robin Thompson if she could carve me a lady gnome!

Well my dream has come true and I could not be happier!

Every time I look at her I smile.

Wednesday, April 15, 2015

Sneak Peek!

In Our May 2015 Issue

Laurie Christman has researched Denmark’s  Royal Copenhagen porcelain factory, providing valuable information for collectors. The company began producing porcelain dolls around 1840 and in 1977, they reissued some of the dolls using antique molds. Her article, with accompaning closeup photos, will establish how to determine the antique doll from the reissue.
Laurie Baker succumbed to the lure of a 28-inch F.G. At the time, she had no idea that her lovely doll would soon have an amazing wardrobe made by the high fashion designer Carrie Hall (1886-1955). Laurie provides closeup photos of these marvelous gowns, each more extravagant than the last!
Our international cloth doll expert, Dominique Pennegues has written an article on the first French Lenci-type doll maker, Denis Giotti. Rare, never before published, catalogue photos, once the property of a seller for the company, make this an invaluable resource.
Women’s fashions changed dramatically following the French Revolution, adopting a more natural and slimmer silhouette. Alicia Carver writes about the fashions and hairstyles from the Empire and Regency periods (1790-1820) in this delightful article.
Tynietoy collectors search for the most readily available furnishings, but sometimes move on in a quest for elusive examples of furniture inspired by Mt. Vernon, Spanish and Chinese-style furnishings, even custom pieces that were made by the company. Susan Grimshaw shares some the rarest in her information article. 
These are our main feature articles, but you’ll find much more including Theriault’s latest auction results into our May issue.
Happy Collecting!
P.S. Please visit to take a brief survey which will help us to serve you better.
Antique Doll Collector, P.O. Box 239, Northport, NY 11768
Call us Toll Free at 888-800-2588

Thursday, April 9, 2015

An Interview with Sharon Hope Weintraub; All photos from the Weintraub Collection

When did you start collecting?  As a little girl, I really did not care for dolls.  I much preferred my Steiff animals and plastic horses.  When I was around 11 or 12, an aunt gave me an antique china doll head.  Something about the head intrigued me and I remember even trying to make it a body out of an old kid glove.  That summer we went to Maine for vacation.  My parents always liked to go antiquing (as did I), and I started noticing all different kinds of antique dolls in the shops we visited.  When we got home, I checked out several books on antique dolls from the library and went to my first doll show.  After that, I was hooked.

(All bisque molded combination)

Early all bisque lady with molded underwear, only 4-3/4 inches tall.

Have your tastes changed over the years?  Like all beginning collectors, I began by buying a bit of everything, but even early on, I concentrated on the little all-bisque dolls.   They were of a size, and back then, a price, to fit my limited room and budget, and I have always like miniatures.  At the time, it seemed everyone wanted big dolls.  All-bisque dolls are still among my favorites, but now it seems everyone wants the "mignonnettes" and the prices, at least for the high quality French and German all-bisque dolls, have risen accordingly.

Perfume bottle by Carl Schneider of Germany

What are your favorite types of dolls? As noted, all-bisque dolls are among my favorite dolls.  I also like the Edwardian and flapper ladies, not just for their beauty, but also because they represent important eras in women's history.  Then, of course, there are the bathing beauty figurines and all their naughty cousins.   The majority of my collection now is dedicated to bathing beauties.  There are so many different varieties and variations.  Just when you think you have seen everything, an entirely new example pops up.  Plus, like all-bisque dolls, you can squeeze a lot of ladies into very little room.

The Floradora Girls by Hutschenreuther Porzellanfabrik

What are the characteristics that attract you to a certain doll?  Quality is the first thing I notice.  The detailing of the sculpting, the delicacy of decoration, the fineness of the bisque and china are all very important factors to me.  I also like dolls that are different, unusual, or even just weird.  Beauty is important, but it is the little oddities that can really spice up a collection.   

Hertwig and Company, 5-3-4”. 

Do you sew for your dolls?  I do not know how to sew.  I always joke I am waiting for someone to invent iron-on buttons (but then that would mean I would have to iron!).  That is one reason I like the bathing beauties.  They look lovely "au naturel," while a naked doll can look a little sad and neglected.

A Galluba and Hofmann all bisque, 12-1/2” long

Close up of Galluba and Hofmann

Are you looking for anything in particular, etc.  A MAN!!!  Well, a Galluba and Hofmann bathing beauty man (I guess you could call him a beach boy).  Galluba made several models, but I have yet to add one of these elusive gentlemen to my collection.  Actually, I am interested in any bisque or china beach boy.  William Goebel and Hertwig and Company also made male bathing boys, but like the Galluba guys, they are hard to find. I have a lot of lonely ladies who would welcome a little male companionship!  

Miss Ondine swimming the breaststroke, patented in 1878

Sunday, April 5, 2015

Hot off the Press, with love from Shirley and The Doll Masters


Courtesy, Theriault's.

Annapolis, MD March 30, 2015/Theriaults/…While Shirley Temple, the famously dimpled child star danced, sang and smiled her way into hearts throughout the Great Depression years of the 1930s, her mother, Gertrude Temple, was busy preserving the memorabilia that attended her daughter’s more than 40 films of the decade.  Film costumes, props, celebrity gifts, dolls, toys, playthings, all were cherished and carefully saved by Shirley and her family for some 80 years…until today.

Theriault’s, the worlds’ auction leader for important childhood objects, will sponsor an extraordinary series of events highlighting items form Shirley Temple’s famed childhood years, 1928-40.  Gertrude Temple’s painstaking work in preserving her daughter’s historic collection will provide fans worldwide with an intimate look into the life and work of “America’s Little Darling.”  Entitled “Love, Shirley Temple” the travelling museum exhibition will visit select cites form New York to California beginning April 30. 2015, and culminate with  spectacular auction event being held at the historic Little Theatre in Kansas City, Mo on July 14th.

The collection includes a child-sized racing car given to Shirley by her close friend and co-star Bill “Bojangles” Robinson, a Steinway baby-grand piano inscribed to her b y Theodor Steinway on behalf of his family, her extraordinary autograph books, and a myriad of Shirley’s own cherished dolls, playthings and signed letters and photos from such luminaries as Franklin Delano Roosevelt, Eleanor Roosevelt, Irving Berlin, Noel Coward, Marlene Dietrich and Orson Welles.  In addition, Shirley Temple’s most recognizable movie costumes will be viewed for the first time including: the iconic red polka dot dress from her breakout film, “Stand up and Cheer” and the complete Scottish-kilt outfit from director John Ford’s classic “Wee Willie Winkie.”  The exhibition will also include many paintings and illustrations done for her by famed artists, animators, and cartoonists of the period.

The family of Shirley Temple states “The legacy of our mother’s unique and legendary contribution to screen entertainment is embodied in these lovingly preserved artifacts of a childhood like few others in history. We believe that, just as the celluloid magic of their youth continues to captivate and enrich successive generations, these artifacts should now be shared across the world with collectors, fans and museums as tangible reminders of this child-star’s irrepressibly joyful and optimistic persona.”

Says Stuart Holbrook, President of Theriault’s, “As the leader in the preservation and auction of historic childhood objects, we are pleased to be offering such a personal collection from easily the most iconic youth of the 20th century.  As well, to be able to sponsor and share may of the pieces at prominent museums nationwide prior to the auction event is truly a privilege and an honor.”
During the 1930s and early 1940s, Shirley Temple’s childhood rise to enduring stardom was unprecedented in Hollywood.  From 1935 through 1938, in fact, Shirley  Temple was indisputably the box office champion – a feat that has never been matched. Her smile, charm, and fifty-six curls are considered by many to have played an important role in lifting America from the Great Depression.  As Franklin Delano Roosevelt was often quoted saying, “As long as our country has Shirley Temple, we will be all right.”

The exhibits will begin with the first form April 30th to May 3d at  The Strong Museum in Rochester, NY, and continue from May 7th-10th at The Wenham Museum  north of Boston, May 21st-24th at the Morris Museum in Morristown, NH, near Manhattan; and June 4th-10th at the Santa Monica History Museum  in California.  Additional exhibitions are anticipated for early summer in the Midwest, Texas, and other locations, finishing just before the July 14th auction that will encourage and welcome worldwide participation.

A commemorative hard bound book will feature over 50 items and will serve both as an historical keepsake of the collection and as a presentation for the auction.  The diversity of items will appeal to every level of collector.  The book can be pre-ordered now at www.theriault’

About Theriault’s
Founded in 1970, Theriault’s is the largest auction house in the world dealing exclusively in antique childhood objects.  Conducting over 40 live auctions annually across the U.S. they cater to an international clientele of collectors for what is considered to be one of the top 5 most popular collectibles categories.  Theriault’s has set numerous records in these filed including the recent American record of $310,000.00 paid for an early 20th century French Doll by Albert Marque.

Stuart Holbrook
Cell: #443-994-9002
Office: #410-224-3655