Maud Humphrey

Maud Humphrey

Sunday, May 1, 2016

Thrift Store Dolls Heading to Ebay!

Well, I guess it's been awhile since I've last posted, huh?  So let's remedy that right now!  I honestly don't know where all the hours in my day go, but I do know that some of them are spent at the thrift stores, hunting for treasures.  I just can't resist!  Here are some of the sweeties I've picked up in the last couple of weeks which I fixed up and made presentable, ready to head to Ebay:
Back row:  Madame Alexanders
Front row, left to right:  Heidi Ott on a donor body, Magic Attic Heather, & Journey Girls Kelsey

I love 18" dolls, all types.  Actually, I love most all dolls, really, but what did we ever do before 18" dolls arrived on the market and became so popular?  It seems like every store/company/manufacturer has their own version of an 18" doll, and some of them are really hard for me to resist!

Here are a few Disney & Me Princess Dolls by Jakks Pacific which are also currently residing in my very crowded doll/sewing room:
At first, I wasn't sure that I liked these girls.  Their eyes looked kind of "buggy", and their expressions seemed vacant.  However, the more I came across them at the thrift stores, the more I started feeling a little sympathetic towards them.   ARIEL was the first little waif to come home with me.  She was naked and her hair was a mess, but just look how cute she looks now!
Ariel is my favorite of the three...I love the intense blue of her eyes and her gorgeous, long red hair.  Boy, it took me forever to comb it out, though!  I set it on some sponge rollers, and now she has some pretty curls.
Of course, I can't ever let a doll stay naked for long!  So I made her a pink dress with a white underskirt, based on my interpretation of the pink dress she wears in the "Little Mermaid" movie.  I love how it turned out.  So sweet.
Here's a back view of her gorgeous ringlets

The pink fabric is cotton sateen, and the white is a "fancy cotton" that I purchased from JoAnn's several years ago.

After Ariel, "Belle" was the next little lady to jump into my shopping cart at Goodwill.
I just love her dark, brown eyes and thick, curly hair.  As nice as I think these dolls are, I don't think their hair quality is very good for young children to play with.  It would/could become a huge rat's nest in a very short time.  I was pleasantly surprised that this doll's hair was still in nearly "like new" condition when I found her.

She came with her original dress and crown.

Back view of that gorgeous mass of curls!

The last Disney Princess doll to follow me home was Anna:

She was naked except for her boots (go figure!), so I made her a dress based on her "coronation gown" from the movie.   I'm really pleased with how it turned out.  The blacks and greens go really well with her complexion and hair color, I think.

Her hair was still in it's original braids, lucky me.  I didn't have to spend hours playing beautician with her.

Her darling boots.  I was surprised she still had them, since footwear is usually the first thing to get lost on a child's doll.  But maybe these were harder to get off and lose?

I really like the older Madame Alexander dolls, the ones with the sweet faces.  Some of the newer ones that Walmart carried have harsher expressions and eye make-up. Not my style.  I like my dolls to look like sweet little girls.  Like this one:
2007 Madame Alexander--doesn't she have the sweetest expression?

I had a lot of naked dolls to dress, so one afternoon I sat down and sewed up six of these cute sundresses, all in different fabrics.  I love this purple print with yellow daisies.  It looks so vintage to me.

Her hair must have had a braid in it at one time, judging by the kinky waves that are left behind.

And then we have this beauty, with her platinum blonde hair:
2009 Madame Alexander

Pretty, thick hair with lots of wave.  Very nice to look at, but a disaster for young children to play with.   It has a cottony texture which can get easily tangled.

But oh, what a pretty doll!

And how gorgeous is this ethnic beauty???
Madame Alexander 2009

She has a different face mold from the other two, but still so very pretty.

And that hair!  I love it.

I remember when Magic Attic Dolls first came on the market...I thought they were so unique compared to the American Girl dolls.  Unlike American Girls, they had all-vinyl bodies of heavy quality.  I never got one back then, but I have managed to pick up a few at thrift stores here and there.  I don't find them nearly as often as Madame Alexanders, though.
This is Heather.  Originally, she had long hair and no bangs.  Her former little owner must have wanted to play "beauty shop" with her.  I really like it, though!  I think it gives her a younger appearance.

While her dress is the same style as the ones I made for the Madame Alexanders, I had to cut the bodice a bit smaller since her torso is slimmer.

Whoever cut her hair did a nice job.

I have always thought that the Journey Girls dolls are fabulous.  Their faces are some of the prettiest ones on the market, I think.
This is Kelsey.  She has auburn hair that's also been cut into a very short bob, and the most fabulous green eyes you'll ever see! (She has stray hairs across her face in the photos because it was really windy outside when I was taking these pictures!)

I chose fabrics that would bring out the green in her eyes and the red in her hair.  This is my favorite sundress of them all.  I had to modify the bodice on this dress as well, since Journey Girls are also rather slim in the torso.

She is missing two, small hair plugs on the side her head.  I don't think it detracts from her beauty, though.  And I really love her short hair!  It really makes her stand out from all the other 18" dolls who mainly have long hair.

I remember when Target came out with their "Faithful Friends" line back in the mid '90's.  I thought they were really pretty, but I was kind of an American Girl "snob", so I didn't buy one back then.  Plus, they didn't have the same kind of body as an AG (no jointed arms and legs) so they couldn't stand on their own or wear the same kind of clothing & shoes as AGs.
Still, I was always drawn to their cute faces!  I've picked a few up at thrift stores over the years (I hardly find them anymore) and figured out a way to make them "blend in" with my other 18" girls--I give them new bodies!  I simply pick up the cheap, knock-off 18" dolls from the thrift stores (like Target's TollyTots, Battat, or My Generation), and remove their heads.  Then, I remove the Heidi Ott doll head from her body, and put that head on the donor body! Voila!  A new doll that can now stand, pose, and share clothes with most of the other 18" dolls on the market.

Isn't she adorable?

Heidi Ott dolls aren't known for their great hair quality, either.  I have a couple of these dolls which I've given new, better quality wigs. But this little sweetie still has her nice, original wig in great condition.

I don't remember when BFC Ink dolls were new in the stores; I must have been too busy with AG dolls at the time to notice them.  However, they seem to have quite the following.  Especially since they are no longer manufactured and the only place to acquire one is on the secondary market.
This one is Kaitlin.  She is so pretty with her green eyes and blonde hair.  Speaking of, this doll's hair was a MESS when I found her...all snarled up into a ratty ponytail which took me three hours to comb out all the tangles.  I wish I would have thought of taking a "before" picture to show you.  Oh, well.  Just trust me on this one...her hair was hideous.  But not anymore!  As I've explained in previous posts, fixing ratty, snarly doll hair isn't that hard, it just takes lots of time and patience.  First, I wash it and get it nice and drenched.  Then begins the painstaking process of combing it all out.  This is the part that can take hours.  This is also where I get to catch up on all my favorite tv shows on Netflix!  After the combing comes the fun part--use a hair straightener (flat iron) on low-medium heat on WET hair and run it down a small section of hair several times.  The heat from the straightener helps "melt" the fibers of the hair together so it is smoother and less frizzy/poofy.  After this step, I set her hair on perm rod rollers, and then did a "hot water dip".  You can youtube this.  Basically, you dip your doll's hair in hot, boiling water for a few seconds at a time--this can set the curl or also help straighten hair and make it more shiny.  Let hair completely dry.

I was really impressed with how her hair came out.  Now she has beautiful, shiny, bouncy curls.


Oh, the babies. I can't forget the babies!  I'm a sucker for a cute baby, especially the big Berenguers!  Their faces are just the best.  Like this one:
20" bundle of pure sweetness!

I would have died to have a baby doll this realistic and cute when I was a little girl.

How precious is this?!?  She's even wearing real, newborn size baby clothing.

Stop! The sweetness is killing me!

And then there's this little cutie:
15" Zapf Creations Chou Chou Baby

So incredibly sweet.

So, there you have it.  Some of what I've been up to over the past week. I love rescuing dollies from the thrift stores, and I especially take pleasure in how nice I can make them look again.  Sometimes, I keep them, but more often than not, I put them on Ebay to find new homes.  This allows me the chance to earn some money from home, doing something I love.  It also gives me some "fun money" to spend on a new doll that I've been eyeing, like this one:
Have you heard of Zwergnase Dolls?  They're a German doll company created by Nicole Marschollek.  You can always recognize a Zwergnase doll by their very realistic and sometimes homely faces.  And their price!  They are very expensive, usually hundreds of dollars or more. However, Zwergnase has recently come out with a "junior" line of dolls which is made for children and collectors alike.  They have painted eyes instead of inset glass ones, and the wigs are more durable to stand up to play.  This makes their price point much more affordable. (Under $200)  I actually like their faces better than their more expensive counterparts, and I just love how they're dressed.  This little girl, "Azalea", is new for 2016 and I've just fallen in love with her!  She stands about 19" tall on a full vinyl body and has a wig of lovely, red, wavy hair. 

So, I don't think I'll be able to resist much longer before placing an order for her!

In case you're interested in viewing or "adopting" any of the above dollies I talked about, they are now on Ebay, looking for their new homes.  The auctions end next Sunday evening, on May 8th.   My Ebay seller name is dotsydoodle.   Here's a link you can copy and paste:  

Have a nice evening!

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