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If You're Serious About Small Vintage Dolls, This book is a Must-Have:



 

photo: Ebay listing

1950's COSTUME, or FASHION DOLLS were prolifically manufactured and collected by both adults and children. They were inexpensive, so they were popular as gifts. These also go by names including Marci dolls, character dolls, etc.

They were for display only. Their legs didn't move, they couldn't sit, and their clothes were not designed for taking on and off. Their clothes were, in fact, often glued, stapled or sewn on permanently. Their torsos were slim and curvy, like a teen or young woman. They were as popular among adults (maybe more so) as with actual children.

They range in quality from the truly tacky to the quite wonderful.

LINGERIE LOU & DRESS-ME Dolls

In addition to the many dolls sold in elaborate outfits, costume dolls were also sold nude or in their undies, for people to create dress themselves  - crocheted dresses were especially popular.


photo: Ebay listing
These were made by a number of companies including PMA, Doll Bodies Products, and Duchess.  

Zendelle Bouchard's FASHIONABLE LADIES website focuses on the teen and young woman fashion dolls of all sizes (includes Mme Alexander, American Character, Beehler Arts, Belle, Citro, Cosmopolitan, Dee and Cee, Deluxe Reading, Eegee, Horsman, Ideal, Kaysam-Jolly, Uneeda, & Valentine)

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