Spring doll sale has fine ladies, bebes, French fashions

DENVER, Pa. – French, German and American dolls from several long-time collections will be showcased in Morphy Auctions‘ April 2, 2011 Spring Doll Sale. Comprising 446 lots, the auction has been cataloged by Morphy’s Fine Doll specialist, Jan Foulke, blackethnicfashiondoll.jpgwho is known not only for her exceptional knowledge of antique and vintage dolls, but also for her accuracy in creating catalog descriptions that assist both the novice and advanced collector.

One of the featured collections in the April 2 sale consists of a grouping of French and German dolls. One of the highlights is a 24-inch French Bru bebe on an original Chevrot body (lot 57).

Also sure to please collectors are a rare Jumeau Portrait Face Lady in stunning condition (Lot 170), a Jumeau Long Face “Triste” Bebe (lot 171), and an extremely rare French ethnic fashion doll (lot 62, shown at right). The latter doll, attributed to Barrois, has a swivel bisque head on a bisque shoulder plate and features a long braided wig, black inset glass eyes and an open mouth with white porcelain teeth. It is elaborately costumed in an original, traditional outfit typical of those seen in North Africa. A dazzling example standing 14 1/2 inches tall, it is estimated at $8,000 to $12,000.

vanrozen_doll.jpgOne of the top lots of the sale, an extremely rare 17-inch French Van Rozen character doll, is presented in all-original condition (lot 291, shown at left). “Van Rozen created several different character faces, with this doll representing one of them,” said Foulke. “Van Rozens are considered important because they were part of the circa-1920 art doll movement.” The features on the doll’s face are extremely realistic, owing to the fact that designer was a sculptor and artist. The doll is expected to make $6,000 to $10,000.

A number of desirable all-original bisque-head Bleuettes will be offered. One of them is accompanied by a wardrobe of original dresses. Foulke explained that Bleuettes were offered as premiums in a French children’s magazine, which only adds to their historical cachet.

Another highlight in the sale is the late-19th-century bisque “Lily” fashion doll. “This doll was sold only by Madame Lavelle-Peronne in her Paris shop,” Foulke noted.

Heading up the German doll selection are great examples of Simon & Halbig, Kammer & Reinhardt, Kestner, Steiner and many other wonderful German bisque dolls.

Foulke thinks the collection of 1930s Effanbee Patsy dolls will strike a chord with collectors, who love discovering rare examples. “There are definitely some Patsy dolls in this collection that you don’t often encounter, like the black Patsy. Some of the dolls in this collection are mint and in their original boxes, as well.”

izannahwalker_doll.jpgSome of the early American examples to be auctioned include a cloth Philadelphia Baby (lot 369A), which was marketed by Shepperd’s Department Store in Philadelphia; a large Columbian rag doll (lot 369B), and an extremely rare, 1860s-vintage Izannah Walker painted oilcloth doll (lot 369C, shown at left). Measuring 19 inches tall, it exhibits the trademark painted corkscrew curls in front of each ear typical of Walker dolls. The charming Rhode Island doll is offered with an $8,000 to $12,000 estimate.

The auction roster is further enhanced by an appealing selection of Steiff and Schuco toys, dollhouses, accessories, and a small collection of German pink porcelain pigs.

All forms of bidding will be available, including absentee, by phone or live via the Internet as the sale is taking place, through Morphy Live or LiveAuctioneers.com.

For additional information on any lot in the sale, call 717-335-3435 or e-mail serena@morphyauctions.com.

Photo courtesy Morphy Auctions.

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