Monday, March 14, 2016

Black Beauty Bookmark and Kissing Kousins Dolls by Karen Oyekanmi

Black Beauty Bookmarks by Kissing Kousins are 12 inches, made of felt, have hand-painted features, and wear cloth dresses, each a one of a kind, $20 each.

After seeing the above image of  bookmarks in the shape of dolls, I contacted the daughter of the woman who made these and ordered one as a gift for a friend. The bookmark arrived last week and I love it so much that the doll collecting reader in me has unapologetically decided to keep it.

The bookmark, as you can see from the above images, is quite unique and works much better than the Cheerios coupon I had been using as a bookmark for the current book I am trying to decide if I want to complete.

The coupon had been the first thing I grabbed from my nightstand when I was reading another book.  It transferred over to the current book prior to receiving the Black Beauty Bookmark by Karen Oyekanmi of Kissing Kousins Dolls.

Of course I have other bookmarks and some of them also have a doll theme, but none are quite like this one and none of the others came with a certificate of authenticity signed by the artist.

Along with the bookmark, as a most generous gift, Karen sent a mirror compact, the front of which she has decorated with sheet music and the bust of a woman sculpted in polymer clay who appears to be in song.  On the back is written:

by K-K
2015 1/1

I love it!

In my Facebook and email conversions with Karen, who, according to her daughter, began her Black doll journey in 1982, she shared photos of some of her doll creations, some of which are in shadow boxes.  Most of the photos she shared are of dolls that are currently on exhibit but they will be available for sale after the exhibit closes on March 26, 2016.  See these photos with associated prices below.

Drink up Alice, a 14-inch, fully posable doll of felt is a one of a kind (OOAK) with shadow box (positioned sideways).

When asked if she works only in cloth or in mixed media Karen replied:
I make porcelain baby dolls on request... I also sculpt dolls in polymer clay. I love working in felt so the majority of my dolls in the past five years have been felt dolls. The doll, Drink up Alice (shown above), is in the shadow box sideways as shown. She can be removed from the box; she is attached with Velcro . She is fully jointed and would love to stand or sit in a chair!

This doll and the one immediately above it are Mama's Babies, 8 inches, felt, $85

My Angela, 14-inch  OOAK felt doll, fully posable with chair $100

Presentation is a 6-inch fairy with frog, $85.

Sitting Pretty is a 3-inch fairy on a 3-inch clay pot, $100

Spring Arrival, 12-inch wooden jointed doll in shadow box, $90

Karen is working on additional bookmarks and plans to launch her website soon.  If you are interested in purchasing a Black Beauty Bookmark or any of the dolls shown above, Karen may be contacted through her Facebook page here.


Check out my eBay listings here.



  1. Her work is outstanding! I really like the idea of the compact. It's like having a doll and a work of art in your pocket.

    1. I love her work, Muff! I just viewed additional photos of past work and am even more in love than I was before! I wish I had an ounce of her talent, just an ounce!


  2. Love the style of the dolls - the combination of facial details and simple bodies is really unique.

  3. Her work is awesome!! I love her cloth dolls, especially My Angela. She is really pretty! Great post!! Thanks for sharing.


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