Bindi and Piccaninny by Metti, 1970s
Most black dolls made in Australia represent indigenous Australians, the original inhabitants of this continent. My first Native Australian dolls are the two pictured above made in the 1970s by the Metti company of Australia. They are all vinyl and stand 13 and 10 inches, respectively (33 and 24.4 cm). Each one has a cardboard boomerang with its name on front. According to one Internet source, the Metti Company discontinued doll manufacture in November 1976. The company's production manager and his wife purchased machinery from Metti and continued doll manufacture under the name Netta in December of 1976. The Netta Australia company is still operational.
Pilawuk, an anatomically correct girl by Netta Australia, Photograph Courtesy of eBay seller, SandyChanel1
The above Native Australian doll is an example of dolls manufactured by Netta Australia. Pilawuk is all vinyl with brown, rooted hair and brown eyes. She measures 40 cm (15.7 inches) with bent baby legs. Netta Australia also manufactures an anatomically correct boy, Kobi, as well as other dark skinned dolls. Click here to see Kobi and the others.
Mullyan (Yanni) is a Wendy Frank Original
Yanni is a custom-made doll by Wendy Frank. He has a painted mask face, cloth body, and red curly hair. His overalls are made of felt as are his sneakers. He is 15 inches tall (38.1 cm). In one hand he holds a Maori doll that represents the indigenous people of New Zealand. A stuffed kangkaroo is held in his other hand. No two Wendy Frank dolls are exactly alike.
Karda was another manufacturer of dolls representing Native Australians.dbg ◦