Kestner Dolls, None Can Compare to the Quality and Distinction...
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Near the bottom of this page - there is a form you can fill out to share your doll interests with others, along with pictures.
Kestner Dolls...Fine Composition and Bisque!
Although the name of J.D. (Johannes Daniel) Kestner has been associated with dolls since 1805, this particular reference is made to the beautiful babies circa 1910-1925. Exquisite bisque heads with composition bent leg bodies, none can compare to the quality and distinction given the fine features of each character baby.
What better book is there to research Kestner Dolls than:
click here for the Kestner, King of Dollmakers by Jan Foulke book Considering they were manufactured for children, it is indeed sad to compare the mass produced vinyls for children today to the artistry of Kestner.
There were several mold numbers associated with these fine dolls and even though collectors seem to favor "Hilda" (#'s 237, 245, and 1070), my personal favorite is the #211. The features and expression forever fashioned in fine bisque are that of one happy baby! For some reason, I always felt they had "cut" one eye on Hilda incorrectly, the #211 mold to me is perfection. Solid dome or with wig, each individual #211 has a distinct personality.
Detail is one of Kestners characteristics. Even the detail given to the outline of fingers and nails is mostly attributed to Kestner.
eBay has a rather large set of listings of vintage Composition and Bisque dolls for sale, if you are interested in a purchase, or to find values, click here-- -- (if looking for values, it is necessary to register with eBay).
My favorite Kestner Doll babies...ranging in size from 14" to a healthy 24"... but I love all of them.
Words and phrases do not describe what only the eye can behold...
One of the most common and more frequently found Kestner mold numbers is 154. A shoulderhead with sleep eyes and open mouth...........the number 154 mold has the distinct thick Kestner brows. The bisque hands on the kid leather bodies are well formed and well detailed. Many bodies still bear the Kestner shield label on the chest.
This Kestner 154 resided in a Montana garage for many years.......and only recently was discovered. She is still wearing her original white chemise. Over the chemise is an old advertising shirt for a local hardware store which has long since ceased to exist. Her eyes are a brilliant blue accented by the old silk ribbons which were probably added by a young mother many years ago.
For further information and pictures of Vintage Kestner Dolls with some mold numbers, please click here
Other readily accessible books with reference to Kestner Dolls...Kestner is a favorite! You will find information and photos in many current publications.
Probably the best place to look for present "doll and accessories" value is on the Internet, primarily the auction sites--my favorite is eBay... in the completed Kestner Dolls section of eBay you can browse the past 30 days of completed auctions of Kestner dolls and accessories. On the left side, in the box named "Display", you can selsect "Active Items" to see the "Kestner dolls and accessories" presently up for auction.
Also, if you have a doll or doll accessories you would like to find out about...eBay is the place to start... in the Dolls and Bears Category, just type in what you have in the search window just under "Dolls & Bears" on the left, and "Shazam", there appears a list of present, up for auction items--in the "Display" box on the left select "Completed Items", a new list will appear, displaying completed items going back for 30 days.
Click here to return to the Top of the Kestner Dolls Page
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eBay is a great wedsite for "value" information about dolls, or most anything else for that matter--however, in order to see what something has sold for, registration is required, so if you are looking for past sales of any particular doll, please register
Welcome to "Show and Tell" for early Kestner Dolls!
We all love to share. If you have photos and information pertaining to these lovely old Composition and Bisque dolls, please fill in the form below to "Show and Tell" your favorite Kestner doll. We all have interest in how they were located, the use of materials in their clothing and any thing else you would like to share with other avid collectors.
What Other Visitors Have Said
Click below to see contributions from other visitors to this page...
Small Kestner w/Over the knee shirred Stockings
Please help me with J.D.K. 247 doll
Your help will …
doll with X mark...is it kestner??
I hear that Kestner dolls can have an x or xi on their heads …
A lovely Dome Head Hilda
Kestner used …
I have just inherited a Kestner Doll from my uncle. She is 3 feet tall and has number "111" on her head. He tagged it which read "1898". …
Kestner 13 171 Made in Germany
Kestner baby doll
We would like to sell …
J.D.K. 157 - Original or Repro? Not rated yet
There is also a bisque shoulder plate and two bent …
Mystery German Doll Not rated yet
Early Kestner Character Baby Doll? Not rated yet
I inherited a beautiful doll from my mother, who said it is a J.D. Kestner Character Baby doll.
The doll is about 27-28" long. It has a composite …
Andrew Not rated yet
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