Besides my teddy bear, I only have one doll from my childhood. I recently decided that it would be worth it to clean her up and make her some new clothes. I always like to improve my sewing skills but my leg is bothering me so I am not up to using the machine for long periods. It seemed a good idea to sew some small doll clothes and maybe do some hand embroidery, so I can have some enjoyment while I heal.
This is Pammy, who must be about 50 years old or more. I had cut up a scarf way back in the 1970s when I was a teenager in an effort to pretty her up, and she had been wearing this old rag ever since. She had some graphite, ink, smudges of dirt and bits of house paint on her, as well as some general discolouration of the vinyl. The baby finger on her right hand looks like it has been chewed, perhaps I did that when I was very young?
I bathed her twice, and then used some WD-40 to get some paint and marks off, and then bathed her three times again.
She is marked on the back of her head:
And on her body at the neck:
After doing some research I find that she was made by the Star Doll Manufacturing Company which was founded in 1952 in Toronto, Canada. This makes sense since we lived in Toronto at the time. Apart from that it is impossible to track down the model or year. I was interested to read that they had in-house sculptors who designed many of the dolls.
Although this little girl does not wet or drink, she does have a face reminiscent of some editions of the ubiquitous Tiny Tears doll. For me, she has the sweetest face compared to baby dolls of today who always look freaky to me and not at all cheerful.
I didn’t have any fabric of a small print that was suitable for her colouring but she looks good in deep blues with accents of red or peach. At some point I will take her to a proper quilt store and find something breathtakingly beautiful for her. I did buy something cute at a sale at Fabricland that is a good blue for her.
I also bought the McCall’s 4338 pattern for two sizes of baby dolls. Hopefully I won’t have to fiddle too much with fitting. I thought the little sundress and pants and sunhat might be suitable, but I’m still thinking about it. I bought a ball of yarn in the dollar store to make a little cardigan for her and I have a free pattern, so it’s just a matter of getting gauge. If it doesn’t work out I only spent $1 and can try again with something else.
I often read about how we should honour important things in our lives, including childhood treasures, so I think this is a nice, quiet way of reconnecting to myself.