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Grandma's Dolls

by Jessica

My grandmother had two porcelain dolls, and although we're not looking to sell we're curious about how old they are, what they may be worth, etc. She was born in 1940, although I don't know when the dolls were made or when she first got them. They may or may not have been intended as a set but they're very similar to each other--I think of them as a mother and daughter. There are no obvious manufacturer's marks on either doll, but they have faces/heads that I've always thought to be distinctive.

The dolls' heads are porcelain, as are the arms and legs. The upper portion of the limbs and the torso are possibly cotton, and feel firm.

I do not know if these are their original clothes, but they're fairly detailed. Each doll has a dress, made of a satiny material with lace trim, which snaps up the back. Under this, they have a frilly petticoat/underskirt with buttons and little pantaloons, as well as another undershirt-type thing under all that. Shoes are painted directly on to the feet (black heeled boots), which are very small and dainty.

The larger doll is approx. 19-20" in total length, and the smaller one is approx. 12-13".

It appears that I can only upload a single photo,so I have uploaded one of the larger doll and included a link to the smaller doll's photo.

It was hard to get a good shot of her, so I have added a closer look at the face for whatever it's worth:

If you could give me any info on these dolls, it would be much appreciated!

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Jun 08, 2010
Re: Doll's clothes
by: Jessica

Ah-ha, I did wonder about the clothes. The underthings fit fine but the dresses, especially the pink one in the uploaded picture, do not seem to fit properly. I did wonder if Grandma had made them herself to replace the original ones at some point, as my research is leading me to think that these particular dolls could be as much as 100 years old.

Unfortunately this means the original dresses are probably gone, as they weren't with any of Grandma's things. Bummer.

Thanks for your comments!

Jun 08, 2010
Grandma's Dolls
by: Anonymous

Germany made CHINA HEAD dolls from 1840 on. Unmarked but some had mold numbers or Germany on them. On cloth bodies, some with china arms and legs. Blonde painted hair is much more collectible as the majority had black painted hair. Unusual hair or fancy hair styles are sought after the most.

The clothes worn by your Grandmother's dolls are not appopriate. They should be dressed in vintage material, not in bright colors and not made of rayon or nylon or other materials not used in the 1840-1880+ period.


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