Friday, June 29, 2018

Marc Bouwer Cissy by Madame Alexander


After recently reconnecting with Madame Alexander’s Hollywood Cissy and the doll featured here, Marc Bouwer Cissy, I decided to share the photographs of this lovely doll here, too.

This photo and the one immediately below were taken while Marc Bouwer Cissy was still in her never removed from box state.



Introduced in 1999, like Hollywood Cissy, this 21-inch lovely doll entered my collection shortly afterward and has never been displayed.  In fact, the first time she was removed from the box is for the photos taken for this blog post. 

A gold pendant is enclosed in plastic along with Marc Bouwer Cissy's certificate of authenticity (COA).

Marc Bouwer Cissy’s certificate of authenticity reads:
This doll has been exquisitely designed and manufactured with love from our 1999 “Madame Alexander Celebrates American Design” Collection.  Your doll is from a limited edition and is numbered at 0228/500. 
Love is in the details.

The certificate is signed by Herbert E. Brown, [the then] Chairman & CEO Alexander Doll Company, Inc.  A gold tone pendant is enclosed in plastic with the COA.

Scan from The Definitive Guide to Collecting Black Dolls illustrates the Marc Bouwer Cissy featured here.

As shown, described, and valued in chapter 3, page 70 of my first book, The Definitive Guide to Collecting Black Dolls (Hobby House Press, Inc., 2003) Marc Bouwer Cissy has a black curly wig that has straight bangs, as closely seen in the next two photographs.  

Cissy has a beauty mark on her left cheek.
Curly hair is shown from the back with a close-up view of the brown feathered stole worn by this lovely doll.

Marc Bouwer Cissy has brown sleep eyes and a black beauty mark on her left upper cheek.  She wears a brown-fabric-lined brown/gold full-length gown with train and a brown feathered stole.

This is Cissy's first full-length photo out of the box.
The full train of her elaborate gown is illustrated in this photo.
Cissy wears sheer stockings and gold lamé mules.  The brown lining of her gown can be seen in this photo.


Cissy’s face and arms are made of soft vinyl.  Her torso and legs are hard plastic.  She is articulated at the waist and knees.  

The African American Marc Bouwer Cissy is style #26125 as indicated on the bottom end of her original box. 



Other Cissys in the “Madame Alexander Celebrates American Design” collection released at the time of Marc Bouwer Cissy’s release are listed on the inside of this doll’s hangtag, which is shown in the above final image.

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Wednesday, June 27, 2018

Hollywood Cissy by Madame Alexander

Hollywood Cissy by Madame Alexander was released in 2000.

After recently reconnecting with Madame Alexander’s Hollywood Cissy and another Cissy that will be featured under separate cover, I decided to share the photographs of this lovely doll here.

Close-up photo of Hollywood Cissy illustrates her gorgeous face, brown eyes, heavy eyeshadow, faux diamond-encrusted stud earrings and hairpin.  

Introduced in the year 2000, this 21-inch doll has been part of my collection since that time and has never been displayed, only taken from the box to photograph.  My most recent photographs of Cissy are included here along with a scanned image.


Hollywood Cissy’s certificate of authenticity reads:
This doll has been exquisitely designed and manufactured with love from our 2000 Madame Alexander Couture Collection.  Your doll is from a limited edition and is numbered at 0078/1000. 
Love is in the details.
The certificate is signed by Herbert E. Brown, [the then] Chairman & CEO Alexander Doll Company, Inc.

Scan from The Definitive Guide to Collecting Black Dolls

As shown, described, and valued in chapter 3, page 69 of my first book, The Definitive Guide to Collecting Black Dolls (Hobby House Press, Inc., 2003) Hollywood Cissy has long black wavy wigged hair, brown sleep eyes and is dressed in a gorgeous white sleeveless gown that is embellished on the bodice, skirt, and train with iridescent sequins.  

Cissy's long black wavy hair and sequin-adorned train are illustrated above.

Beads adorn the V-shaped neckline and top circumference of the train.  

Front  (and back) of the train is embellished with beads.



Cissy wears a white faux fur cape which has lace and also bead and sequin embellishments.  A white tassel streams from the back of the cape.


Cissy wears white gloves and has a hangtag.



Her jewelry includes faux diamond encrusted earrings, a multistring beaded necklace, and a diamond-encrusted hairpin.  Gray cat-eye sunglasses, sheer stockings and silver lamé (not gold as indicated in my book) high-heel mules complete her fashion statement. 

Cissy’s face and arms are soft vinyl.  Her torso and legs are made from a firmer plastic.  She is articulated at the waist and knees.  


The African American Hollywood Cissy is style #26866 as indicated on the bottom end of her original box. 



Other Cissys available at the time this doll was released are included on Hollywood Cissy’s hangtag as illustrated above.

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Monday, June 25, 2018

Two Circa 1899 Geman-made Composition Dolls

In a photograph taken in 2003, are two circa 1899 composition dolls seated in the back of the doll room enjoying the company of several dolls made of vinyl.

I was inspired to share photos and the available information I have on the above two unmarked composition dolls after reading April's "End of Spring Roundup" post (see the link to her post at the end of this post).  

This doll's composition, as well as the other doll's composition, has begun to craze.

April's post includes a close-up photo of a doll that looks similar to the doll wearing the blue and white print dress, shown above, but April's doll's face is in much better condition.  

Previously written text that I shared elsewhere about these dolls is copied below along with photos taken in March 2017 and three other updated photos (green background):


Two circa 1899 German-made, unmarked composition dolls with cloth bodies and blue tin eyes were given to me several years ago in exchange for selling dolls on eBay for a woman I met through eBay. I had planned to sell this pair but decided to keep them to restore and paint black (brown). My husband convinced me not to interrupt their authenticity, so they have remained as they were upon arrival. 

Both dolls have brunette hair.  The doll in blue and white has almost waist-length hair that has a wiry texture.  The other doll's hair is short mohair, missing areas of which are covered by a contemporary baby bonnet. 

The face of the doll on the left is more expressive than the other, but that may be because the doll on the right is missing her eyebrows and possibly her once present tongue.

This doll's teeth are visible in the above close-up, which also illustrates her unfortunate crazing.

Both dolls are 27 inches tall and straw stuffed. The pink floral dress-wearing doll has two upper teeth and a separately molded tongue. The one in the blue dress has an open mouth.  It is likely that her once present tongue and/or teeth are now missing.  


The doll in pink has a tag on her right wrist that reads, I am Marthe.  The number 69 is underneath "Marthe." (I believe Marthe's number was assigned at a doll auction.)  

Marthe wears black leather shoes (they were dusty in this photograph but have since been wiped with a moistened cloth).
Marthe's black leather shoes appear to have been once worn by a child as baby shoes.  She also wears white cotton socks.  

The other doll, that I just named Mimi (after the woman who sent them to me) has a hang tag that reads: 

Dorothy’s Dollies.
1 Corinthians 10:31.
Handwritten on the inside Mimi's tag is "Composition Germany circa 1899."

The referenced scripture reads:
So whether you eat or drink or whatever you do, do it all for the glory of God. – 1 Corinthians 10:31 NIV
Whether therefore ye eat, or drink, or whatsoever ye do, do all to the glory of God. – 1 Corinthians 10:31 KJV


Marthe and Mimi traveled here together and have been displayed together since the late 1990s, some 100 years after they were made.  

Mimi and Marthe are seated in the back of the doll room.

Mimi and Marthe are shown in a final photo, taken after a doll room reorganization several years ago. That area of the doll room is currently filled with several more dolls than the picture illustrates, and some of the dolls in the picture no longer live here. The doll room also is not as organized as it was in 2003 when this last photo was taken. 

View April's post here.

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April, if you read this, do you agree that Mimi, the doll in blue, looks similar to your doll?  

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Friday, June 22, 2018

Field House Museum Black-Doll Exhibit

Photograph of my 1960 Black Chatty Cathy along with descriptive text and courtesy
credit is part of the wall display of the Field House Museum's "From 
Caricature to Celebration, a Brief History of African American Dolls"
exhibition.
Published in the St. Louis American on June 21, 2018, "Black Dolls Help Map Our History" briefly discusses Field House Museum's Black-doll exhibit that I covered in a blog post in May.  The exhibit closes on July 15, 2018.

I am mentioned in the St. Louis American article, which can be read here.


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Thursday, June 21, 2018

Precious Little Sister

18-inch hand-crocheted doll, Precious, by Creations by Ba'chaum

Seen briefly in my birthday dolls post, this post is devoted entirely to Precious.  An 18-inch hand-crocheted doll by Ra'chel Ba'chaum of Creations by Ba'chaum, Precious was a gift from my daughter and son.

She arrived on the day of my birthday, as adorable as I had imagined.  I took several photos of this cutie after adding the following entry to my Excel doll inventory spreadsheet:

18-inch hand-crocheted doll has black yarn hair styled in four squared-off sections (two on the top sides and two in the back) with spiral crocheted ponytails and bangs; two mint green crocheted butterflies accent the top side ponytails; mint green yarn is wrapped around the back two.  She has black eyes, black plastic eyelashes, sculpted nose and crocheted lips.  Mint green dress has pink, yellow, and white trim; panties and shoes match the trim; wears mint green butterfly-shaped earrings.  Has signed COA which indicates she is 1 of 1. Ribbon label on back reads:  Handmade by:  Ra'chel Ba'uchaum 2018.   

She has the sweetest face with a sculpted nose and crocheted lips.

Precious wears the traditional little black girl hairstyle from back in the day of four sectioned off ponytails.  I love the way Ra'chel defined the parted hair with lighter color yarn for the scalp color.
Her crocheted-on panties match the trim of the dress and the color of her shoes.
The crocheted-on undies have ruffles in the back!  Is this cute or what?

Shown in the first photo of this post, here is a closer look at Precious' certificate of authenticity which is signed by the artist and dated.
As illustrated in this photo and the next, Precious is as cute from the side as she is from the front.


I love the pastel colors of her dress, which complement her caramel complexion.

Joined by her sister who is "a few months" older and slightly taller, Precious has settled into her new environment.

Sisters!

"You and me, Us never part
Makidada
You and me, Us have one heart
Makidada
Ain't no ocean, ain't no sea
Makidada
Keep my sistah way from me
Makidada"

I can just hear Precious and CoCo singing the above hand-clapping song that was sung by Nettie and Celie at the beginning of the movie, The Color Purple.

Makidada is of Swahili origin and means "little sister."  CoCo is happy to have her little sister home.

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See other creations by Ra'chel on her Facebook page.

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