Filed under: 52 Weeks of Personal Genealogy & History
Week 7: Toys. What was your favorite childhood toy? Is it still being made in some form today?
What was your favorite childhood toy?
I remember my bride doll. She had blond hair and wore a white lace wedding dress and of course had a veil. This was before the time of Barbie, so this doll was 18-20” tall. I would dress her, and have a pretend wedding, and try to fix her hair. I also had a baby doll, and a metal doll house. The dolls wouldn’t fit in the house, but I could pretend, as it had an upstairs and a downstairs. Don’t have any pictures of my dolls, or the doll house.
The other things I enjoyed playing with were my paper dolls. Again I was drawn to those that represented a wedding. But these would have the whole wedding party, with their dresses and suits. There was also, clothing for the bride and groom to take on their honeymoon. But there were also dolls that would have costumes from other countries.
The dolls would come in a book, with the dolls on a heavier paper, and the clothes on a lighter weight paper. Sometimes they came in a box. These dolls were on very heavy cardboard. The clothes had to be cut out, and be very careful not to cut off the tab that held the clothes on the doll. You might have dresses, party dresses, wedding dresses, swim suits, and capris. Sometimes there were purses, hats, shoes, boots, and coats. There was clothing for any season. You could pretend all kinds of events happening to these characters. There were men, women, boys and girls to be dressed, although more were girls and young women than any other age.
Sometimes a magazine would have paper dolls that could be cut out and played with. Here is a page from “Wee Wisdom”, a monthly Christian based magazine for children in the 50’s. This page shows a doll that if you wanted to cut out you could. This one is from August 1954.
Now for the question, is it still being made in some form today. Yes, but you have to look for them. I have purchased some for my granddaughters. But the dolls, may have a magnetic covering, and the clothes made of a plastic. If you go to historical sites they may have some books of paper dolls with clothing to represent a specific time period.
There are still baby dolls, and few of the larger dolls other than Barbie, or that size doll. Many little girls still enjoy playing with their dolls.
Amy Coffin of the We Tree blog (http://wetree.blogspot.com/) has yet another successful series on her hands: 52 Weeks of Personal Genealogy & History (http://www.geneabloggers.com/52-weeks-personal-genealogy-history/).
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