OK more on my doll passion . . . this time another sweet find, a belle femme, a pretty la poupee boudoir or sofa doll with side glancing eyes, a real 1920s era flapper is this little orphan lady.
These dolls are what ladies kept as decoration on their bed, chair etc.
She’s really quite small & slender, lightweight, measuring only about 57cm/22.5 in length.
A sweet face with soft blush, intact lip paint & lovely blue eyes with large eyelashes & brow detail.
Her face is made of plaster or composition, the fragile plaster-like material prone to cracking & chipping as you see in her pert little nose, not uncommon in these old dolls.
I first spoke about old composition dolls here including some from my small collection.
Alluring eyes glancing right, the age related blemishes, the evidence of pre-love, her past life, that add so much to her character.
They are all part of this little lady’s life story. Her chippy nose will stay just as it is, as I found her.
I’m sure you guessed what that black hole thingy was for, the one there at the side of her lip, her mouth? Yes, the little lady is a smoking flapper doll missing her cigar or cigarette which fitted in that little hole. I’ll browse on line for a vintage cigarette perhaps even one with a holder.
I simply cut to size a thick wooden skewer for a temporary ciggy. If I cant find a suitable cigarette I’ll make one.
What about her hair? What she has is remnants of blonde hair. Could be mohair. Sometimes it’s hard to tell if a doll had any hair, or a full head of hair, or if a hat was supposed to cover the area so some or no hair showed or was needed.
The little lady’s hat easily pulls/slips on & off & there are no signs it was glued on. In looking at her head & the outline of hair remnants, it looks like she had a full head of blonde hair, a blonde wig which was glued on. Of course I will look to replace that.
She came just as you see her without clothes. While her black velvet fabric body & limbs are in good shape she is a little shabby revealing some wear and tear. I need to pick off the fluff, give her a good brush & make a few stitching repairs to a hole in her right hand, at her shoulder joint & her feet.
Basically her sewn cloth body is a little unkempt, fragile, with small tears & all easily repairable.
And her shoes need a little TLC perhaps even re-making from scratch.
She is stuffed with a light weight, vintage sort of greyish coloured felt cotton or kapok.
Her head has been inserted into the torso & hand stitched into place.
You can see her feet, her high heel shoes, are somewhat tattered & need repair. As I mentioned, I may replace/de-do them.
Her soft scultured hands.
Of course I’ll re-dress her, sew a suitable dress, bloomers or pajama suit if I can’t find anything suitable ready made.
And here’s a few examples of smoking flapper dolls:-