The Austin Doll Collectors Society is an organization of antique, vintage, and modern doll collectors, dealers, and artisans. We meet on the first Monday of each month and our meetings are fun and educational. We begin with refreshments and socializing, and, following our brief business meeting, there is a special doll-related program and "show and tell." The Austin Doll Collectors Society is a nonprofit organization and is a member of the United Federation of Doll Clubs.

Thursday, January 17, 2019

January 7, 2018, Meeting

These three dolls bundled up in winter clothes greeted members at the refreshments table.

Member Elaine Jackson gave a program on doll quilts.

She explained that originally bed covers, for both people and dolls, were woven.

However, people learned to make warmer coverings by stitching together woven fabric, sometimes with a layer of padding for added warmth.

For pieced quilts, individual scarps of fabric were stitched together.  This was a thrifty way to make use of scraps, old clothing, and other material. 

Often the fabric was pieced together in a geometric pattern.

In crazy quilts, however, odd-shaded pieces of fabric were fitted together in an apparently random pattern.  A wide variety of fabrics, often embellished with embroidery or lace, was used.

Crazy quilts were often made out of bits of fabric and scraps that had a special meaning to the maker or the recipient.  Elaine made this crazy quilt for herself.

Another method was to tie together layers of woven fabric.  This "yo-yo" quilt is an example of such a tied quilt.

Two wooden "Hitty" dolls from Elaine's collection rest on beds covered with miniature quilts.

This vintage doll bed was made out of an old wooden cigar box with posters made out of wood clothespins and feet from wooden spools.

This antique china head doll rests on a quilt made by Elaine's grandmother from pieces of family clothing.  The antique doll bed is also an heirloom and was once used as a magazine rack.

Elaine brought many examples of quaint and colorful doll quilts.

Other members also brought quilts to share.  These examples belong to Myrna Loesch.  The quilt on the doll bed and doll bed itself are family heirlooms.  

Two tiny cribs and a miniature quilt sit atop a crib quilt.

This doll quilt was pieced together from "tobacco felts."  These small printed felt or flannel pieces were made in a wide variety of designs and sold with cigarette, cigar, or other tobacco products in the early 1900s as premiums.  Larger pieces could be obtained by saving and sending in tobacco coupons or boxtops.    

Wednesday, December 26, 2018

Happy Boxing Day!

The day after Christmas is celebrated in the United Kingdom as Boxing Day, traditionally when servants and service providers received a Christmas box or other gift or gratuity. This gracious lady seated upon a silk-covered box would be a welcome gift for any collector. Her bisque shoulder head, arms, and lower limbs are from the German maker Galluba and Hofmann and she is 10.25 inches tall.    This belle on a box is from the collection of member Sharon Weintraub and is featured on her blog.

Monday, December 24, 2018

More Holiday Cheer!

Member Sylvia McDonald puts up this display every year.  She says that it reminds her of children putting on a Christmas pageant. The first two dolls on the left are by artist Sabine Esche and Annette Himstedt designed the other three standing dolls. Baby Jesus is played by “Ricky,” designed Hildegard Gunzel for the Gotz Company. 

Sunday, December 23, 2018

Another Holiday Scene

This sweet scene is from Member Kara Lee Bell.  The doll is  Bitsy by doll artist Bonnie Chyle.  Kara Lee has redressed her.

Friday, December 21, 2018

Holiday Scene

This antique baby doll posing by a Christmas tree is mold 454 by Heubach Koppelsdorf and belongs to member Sylvia McDonald.  Sylvia says that the pretty pink sweater was made by her grandmother in the 1940s for Sylvia's childhood dolls and that many dolls have worn it through the years. The cap was made for a real baby by her grandmother and Sylvia loves to put it on this little one in the winter.

Tuesday, December 18, 2018

December 3, 2018, Christmas Party

The club held its annual potluck holiday bash at our usual meeting place.

Member Myrna Loesch helped bring in the holiday spirit by sharing her collection of collectible vintage Santas by the Harold Gale Santa Company. In 1946, Harold Gale and his wife Viola began making department store display Santas at their home. Their Santas were successful and eventually their enterprise expanded into a 3,000 square-foot factory. The company produced a wide variety of Santas, ranging from large motorized Santas for store displays to smaller versions for home decoration. The company ceased production in 1988.

In addition to the traditional red  and white outfit, there were Santas adorned in colors such as gold, pink, and white.

The Santas came with a variety of expressions.

Members did not have to wait for Santa to come down the chimney to bring them presents, as they exchanged doll-related gifts.  Looks like no one got coal!      

Thanks to Ann Meier for acting as photographer!

Sunday, December 9, 2018

Happy Belated Brownie Day!

December 8th was National Brownie Day, an unofficial holiday which celebrates this sweet treat. Although brownies have been enjoyed in this country since the early 20th century, the origin of this scrumptious snack is unknown. One legend credits the pastry chef at Palmer House Hotel, who was asked to create a piece of cake suitable for the boxed lunches being supplied to attendees of the 1893 Chicago World’s Colombian Exposition.  Another legend states that the brownie originated in Bangor, Maine, when a woman decided to go ahead and serve a chocolate cake that failed to rise instead of tossing it out.  A recipe for “Bangor Brownies” appeared in cookbooks as early as 1904.

These two little girls are preparing to celebrate Brownie Day by indulging in a chocolatey treat.  They are both all-bisque character dolls by the German firm of Gebruder Heubach.

Sunday, November 25, 2018

November 5, 2018, Meeting

A festive fall theme greeted the members. 

Member Beverly Evans did a program on Mold 390 dolls by Armand Marseille. Despite his French-sounding name, Marseille was born to a wealthy Russian family in St. Petersburg in 1856.  His family later settled in Germany. Marseille bought a porcelain factory in 1884 and by 1890 began producing bisque doll heads. He acquired several other small porcelain factories, becoming one of the most prolific doll producers in Germany.  Marseille decided to add a line of affordable play dolls and in the 1890s began production of the Mold 390, a socket head, and Mold 370, the shoulder head version.  These molds were produced in various sizes and quality, and can be found on a wide variety of bodies.   Beverly brought many examples from her collection.  

Mold 370 is the shoulder head version, typically found on a kid body with bisque lower arms.

Other members brought examples to share.  This big ball-jointed girl belongs to Myrna Loesch. . . 

as does this diminutive doll.

Elaine Jackson brought this pretty example in a lacy pinafore.

This all-original Belgium milkmaid is on a fully jointed body and is just 8 inches tall.

Sallie Howard brought these charming child dolls by Miroslava Brodlova of My Meadow Dolls for show and tell.