Thursday, May 26, 2011

adding another vintage touch to the quilt shop

A couple weeks ago I was talking to a friend about growing up in a family with all brothers, whereas she had sisters.  The conversation turned to play time and dolls, or in my case, lack of dolls.

The only doll I embraced as a kid was the Bionic Woman.  She had skills.

My mom had a sister & I am sure much of their time was spent with dolls.  I have come to possess these dolls and never really knew what to do with them, having no real experience in the area.

So, one early morning I was out running errands and saw a wooden crib at a yard sale.  I turned around and bought it.

Hubby gave the woodwork and hardware some love and I made a mattress cover & little quilt.

However, when I put the quilt in with the dolls, it just didn’t work.  They all have a nice patina and just require something vintage looking.  So I pulled a bed quilt out & folded it to fit.  You’ll see a little of my quilt, rolled up & under the heads of the Wee Dolls.


So, mom’s dolls.  Mom was born in the late 30’s, so these dolls would date early-mid 40’s.   The composite is cracked, part of one foot is gone.  They could use a good cleaning.  But they are as I have found them.

So, first, these are Nancy Ann Wee Dolls for Wee Collectors.  they are at most 6” tall.  they do not articulate, but the faces are very 40’s (think Betty Boop).

They came in a variety of outfits.  You’ll see the Queen, Carmen Miranda, a pirate, etc.  I have 2 pamphlets showing all the dolls available.






I should have brushed the hair out of her eyes.  Jaime Sommers wouldn’t have had this problem.








Yes, roller skates, they are leather uppers, but very stiff


The baby on the left is a Magic Skin baby, post-composite era doll.  They felt the new material would last longer.  It did; but it didn’t hold it’s original color exposed to light over time. 

The baby on the right is a sad case.  Part of his foot is gone & he is badly cracked.  It looks like a boy to me.  He was naked, so I dressed him from the clothes on hand.  One of his arms doesn’t fully articulate, so the velour sleeping gown and crocheted hat were what worked.  I had hoped for the flannel sleeping gown draped in his lap.


behind them is a satin, tacked baby wrap.  It’s in very bad shape, but this adventure is not about condition.

I put this (hopefully evolving) display in the store to showcase not just the dolls, but also the textiles.  These are about 60 years old, give or take.  There is an embroidered US map hanging in the corner of the crib.


I feel pretty certain that either my mom,aunt or grandmother made this.  They lived in the Upper Peninsula of Michigan.  Not only are all state names embroidered with a french knot  over the capital, but the Great Lakes are also labeled and so is the UP.  Only a UP’er would do that, right?

Think about your quilting and other crafts and where they may be in 60 years.

Share the love!


quiltsbylee said...

Awesome display! Too cute and very appropriate for your store.

Anonymous said...

Wonderful! I grew up with three OLDER brothers! And, when my mom cleaned out the house we grew up in and moved, she gave my Janie West doll and all her friends and 'stuff' to one of my brothers! YIKES! He got all the GI Joe stuff, too. BLAH. NOT FAIR! LOL.

sewmeow said...

Oh..those are wonderful, and I bet they are getting a lot of attention from your customers. I have 3 of my original dolls; composite Suzy w/glued wig, an original Kewpie doll, composition stiff legs,arms, and an original Charlie McCarthy doll who's mouth moves...but he's missing his monocle.

I love your display and the cradle is perfect! The clothes, skates, blankies..terrific.

harleywife57 said...

I love it !! can't wait to see the new dolly quilt by it ! what fun !