Monica the Mystery Girl


I recently had a request from information from a reader regarding this doll. He has recently acquired a case of them and is curious to learn a bit more about them.

He provided me with two photos of Monica and her box. As you can see she is made in Hong Kong for the Good Time Toy Company of Ontario, Canada and Mighty Star of New Jersey, USA. Brandon thinks that she might be from the 1970s and I tend to agree, perhaps the latter part of the decade.

Monica doll NRFB

Monica doll NRFB

The back giving more information.

The back giving more information.

I’ve done a bit of searching and it seems that Good Time Toys were making dolls until 1977. They acquired The Star Doll Manufacturing Company in 1970. Star had been making dolls since 1952. Good Time Toy Co. Star marked their dolls “Star”, “Star Doll” or “Mighty Star” and Good Time Toys used some of the same head moulds. My feeling is that as Monica was made in Hong Kong it may have been an attempt by the company to cut costs before they finally closed.

Here is a link giving some more background to the “Star” name. http://www.saxuet.qc.ca/MyDolls/m-star.htm

Anyway Monica is quite a pretty doll from that era. Does anyone remember having one as a child or perhaps has one in their collection who can add to the story?

 


Fashion Doll Friday – Send in the Clones

Barbie doll clone with YG marked on back of neck.

Barbie doll clone with YG marked on back of neck.

My friend Gillian sent me this doll earlier in the week. She is a modern Barbie clone and has the older twist and turn body type, fairly well made. She is marked very faintly on the back of her neck with the letters YG. I’m guessing that she is made in China. I think her hair is quite a pretty colour though it will need a tidy up and her eyes are an interesting reddish-brown.

Her gown is made of a papery feeling plastic with a fabric overskirt or over-apron really as it is only at the front. She came packaged on this pink cardboard wrapper with an extra dress and some accessories.

Robyn and Friend Go To The Movies


On my visit to the Barbie Aisle at Big W I was pretty disappointed in the dolls on offer as I mentioned in my previous post. I ended up buying a pair of Barbie outfits that I thought were passable though and when I got home I deboxed them for a couple of the girls to model.

A pair of Barbie outfits.

A pair of Barbie outfits.

Although this set has the obligatory pink clothing I thought there was enough variety for me to be able to use the pieces. It is not as big a set as the old Fashion Fever closets. Here are all the pieces including accessories.

Here they are out of the box.

Here they are out of the box.

Today’s models are Robyn, my rescued Fashion Fever girl and my recently bought and as yet unnamed Fashionista. Any suggestions for names for this curly-haired girl will be appreciated as I now have so many Barbies that I have trouble remembering their names myself. If I was their mother I’d be running off fifty plus names trying to remember the right one. :)

Blue distressed look jeans and a black and grey striped top.

Blue distressed look jeans and a black and grey striped top.

Here is our curly-haired model wearing the jeans and top. I quite like these although she will be a tad chilly in a Tasmanian winter in them. Luckily yesterday was a sunny day.

Robyn wears a pink top and a black and white check pencil skirt with pink sandals.

Robyn wears a pink top and a black and white check pencil skirt with pink sandals.

Robyn is wearing the more dressy outfit of skirt and top. I thought this top was a little strange, I hope I put it on her the way it was meant to go. The bling is made of plastic and is easy to put on and the shoes have a slit in the back. I like this idea as I have as much trouble putting on Barbie shoes as any small child and have broken straps trying to do it and lost others when they have gone flying out of my hand or fallen off the doll when I’ve moved her.

Off to the movies.

Off to the movies.

Here are the girls off to the movies. They have their tickets and popcorn but I hope the theatre doesn’t have a strict dress code because they have only one pair of shoes between them. I thought that was a bit cheap of Mattel as the pink ones don’t really go with the jeans and striped top. A black pair would have been nice.

Now Barbie Really Is The Plastic Princess


Warning: This post contains ranting.

Today I unexpectedly found myself with some free time and visited the Big W store at Kingston near Hobart. I haven’t been able to get there for some time so my looking at Barbie’s has been confined to checking out what’s in Target and the occasional run through Toy Kingdom in the city. I don’t even check the internet that often any more.

I haven’t missed window shopping for Barbie’s as much as you’d think because as I’ve mentioned frequently I’m not a fan of the current playline dolls. Most of them have blank expressions in their eyes and too wide smiles for my taste. I also dislike the current bodies and the trend to plastic moulded clothing. This trend has certainly got a lot worse. I’d say a good half the dolls I saw today had painted on clothing. The superhero Barbies do, dancers and mermaids often do now and today I saw a new (to me) line with a one piece swimsuit painted on to the doll. Where will it end? Does anyone remember that Barbie was meant to be a fashion doll? The outfits they made for playline fashion dolls, and that was all of them, in the sixties were so beautiful and well made. I didn’t have many genuine outfits for Barbie, Skipper or Sindy but those I did have were so detailed. That’s why I am collecting old Sindy outfits now. Even the generic doll fashions that we mostly bought or were given were much better quality than those they make today.  It’s such a shame.

Admittedly the doll I saw was a Water Play Barbie but I’m not really sure if that was meant as it’s safe to get Barbie wet or Water Play is just another name for a beach Barbie. Either way they must be making pretty poor quality swimsuits if you can’t get them wet. What about if they need a wash?

This is one that I saw. Water Play Raquelle and personally I didnt’ think she was as pretty as the photo here makes her look although Raquelle is probably the nicest of the current playline. I have included the blurb as it is typical.

BARBIE® Water Play Raquelle® Doll - Shop.Mattel.com

“Raquelle looks sun-sational wearing a fabulous patterned one-piece swimsuit that is right on trend and so her style.
Girls will love playing out beach days, pool parties and summer vacation with this adorable doll.
Collect all the Barbie® water play dolls (each sold separately) for a real beach party!

  • It’s a beach day — and this doll looks sun-sational!
  • She wears a fabulously patterned one-piece swimsuit.
  • Colors and design match today’s trends and doll’s style.
  • Collect all the Barbie® Beach dolls (each sold separately) for a real beach party!
  • Doll Includes doll wearing non-removable swimwear.stand alone.
  • Doll cannot stand alone.
 

Battery Required: No | Batteries Included: No

Age Grade: 3+

Country of Origin: CN”

 

I think part of the problem is here in the blurb and it’s something that has annoyed me for a long time. “Age Grade:3+”

Mattel are making playline dolls to suit the youngest age group. They don’t want too many small parts because their target group is likely to eat them! They are not making dolls that offer more imaginative play for the school aged child. They are just offering them formula’s, mermaids, princesses, pop stars with a built in story. Life In The Dreamhouse was a step in the right direction but they haven’t taken it far enough.

I’ll say again that I have no children so perhaps my observations are those of a disgruntled collector of cheaper dolls but I think a lot of toys are going down this road. Take Lego. We loved Lego as children even though it was far more basic than now. You could not get wheels, engines or people  and it only came in red or white but it didn’t stop us from making all sorts of things. We made a lot of houses but we had our own version of cars, planes or whatever else we wanted. Now you can buy sets to make all sorts of things but do the kids think of other things to do with them or just build what’s on the picture on the box?

I think that Mattel get that the collectible dolls which are often bought by adults need to be more detailed but even with these they tend to go the other way and assume that all collectors like their dolls NRFB.  They are so expensive that you think twice about doing anything to them. The Basics were good because they were meant to be deboxed but I know a lot of people were put off by the difficult to pose bodies. I can see that but I loved their faces and they were the last time I really got excited about a line. Fashion Fever were a great playline because there was a lot of variety in their looks although some were rather similar and would be harder to pick once played with. They did have great outfits and were meant to be played with the way little girls play with dolls –  and some big ones :). Even the earlier Fashionistas are starting to look pretty good to me in hindsight.

Well I am still a fashion doll collector so despite the disappointments of today’s dolls I’ll keep looking for that elusive special one that says “Buy Me”.

Canadian Doll ID’s


A young lady from Canada.

A young lady from Canada.

I get quite a few hits on my Canadian doll page and posts, quite a few of them are obviously people trying to find out more about dolls they have. I always wish I could be more help but information about Canadian dolls seems to be a bit sketchy. When I do searches myself I usually seem to come up with dolls for sale on eBay and a few references to Canadian doll companies but not often to individual dolls.

Pretty much all I know about the companies is posted on my Canadian doll  page already along with some links that I’ve found.  However it occurred to me that by sharing what we know individually we can help each other. So I’d like to invite people to send descriptions of their dolls, preferably with an accompanying photo or a link to an online one to me. I’ll post them here and hopefully others will see them and comment if they recognise them. We could all learn something new.

The email I use for this blog is sadieinoz1957@gmail.com and I will try to check it regularly. Please let me know if you are willing for me to use your photo on the blog and whether you would like your name mentioned or prefer to use a nom de plume.

Child size doll by Regal, Canada

Child size doll by Regal, Canada

Things you can include in your description:

  • material doll is made of: eg, hard plastic, vinyl, cloth, composition etc
  • size of doll: inches or centimetres is fine I’m bilingual :)
  • features: eg eye colour, sleep eyes/fixed eyes, hair colour and style,
  • actions: eg drink and wet, cries or talks
  • markings: makers marks can be found on backs of necks, back and sometimes bottom of dolls, look for letters, numbers, pictures, country of origin
  • clothes: If you think the doll is in its original outfit.
  • background: anything you know that might indicate age

Anyone who has knowledge of or interest in Canadian dolls is welcome to comment or to email me. I’d be particularly interested in hearing from anyone involved in doll collecting  clubs in Canada so that I can post the details for others to see.

I am based in Australia myself and although I do have several Canadian dolls in my collection I’d like to think that people living in Canada have more knowledge and resources that they could share with fellow collectors.

I could start a mystery doll of the week type post if there is interest in me doing it.

image Dee Gee doll redressed

Dee Gee “After”

In a Holding Pattern


After missing last Friday’s Fashion Doll Friday post I felt quite badly because it is the one regular post I still do on the doll blog.  I have by no means shown you all my fashion dolls but a great many of them are stored away because I don’t have shelf space for all of them. A considerable number don’t live with me but with my sister 140km away and I haven’t seen them for months. I really need to take a new batch of photos of the stored dolls so until I have the chance to do that Fashion Doll Friday might be a bit erratic as I don’t want to post re-runs of old ones or photos that I don’t consider good enough to share.

Baby Alive in knitted outfit

Baby Alive in knitted outfit

New display area

New display area

As some of you may be aware my husband has been ill for most of this year and while he is recovering now I think the days of running up to my sister’s place for the weekend once a month or so may be over, at least until we have a new routine and I feel happy about leaving him alone.

I still intend to post on this blog. I’m still experimenting with knitting for fashion dolls and I buy the odd doll now and again so I won’t be totally deserting you all. It’s just not quite “Business as usual” at the moment. The Hobart Doll Show is next month and I do intend to get to that.

I hope you will all bear with me because I do enjoy sharing my hobby and reading your comments. I really didn’t want to write this post so I kind of hope that just the act of publishing it will motivate me to take more pictures and write more posts so that things can get back to normal very soon.

 

 

Fashion Doll Friday – Ideal Grown Up Tammy


Today’s doll is my latest acquisition, a grown up Tammy. I bought her from a collector who is downsizing and although she came from eBay I knew of the lady through a Sindy forum we both post on sometimes. This version of Tammy came out in 1965. She is slightly slimmer than the original Tammy’s and has different arms and a more grown up look although she retains her “wholesome” look compared to the Barbies of the same era.

Tammy is wearing a genuine Tammy outfit called “Pretty Precious” which is complete except for the white sunglasses.

Grown Up Tammy in Pretty Precious.

Grown Up Tammy in Pretty Precious.

Here she is with her younger self. I think that grown up Tammy has gained a little experience in life judging by her expression.

Grown up Tammy in the Tammy House

Grown up Tammy in the Tammy House

Grown UpTammy with her younger self.

Grown Up Tammy  with her younger self.