Celluloid dolls

My grandfather bought these two small Soviet ballerina celluloid dolls for my mother in the late fifties, early sixties. She played with them for a while and then my grandparents displayed them on a shelf in their living room. This is where I have always knew them in my childhood. I wasn’t allowed to play with them, but I don’t remember being interested in them, I had my own dolls. So, they are in a  good shape, except for some discoloration in their faces and except for their dresses. The fabric has stripes made out of metallic ribbon, and the thread between these stripes degraded in time. Especially the faded pink one (which used to be a bright red in my mother’s childhood) is really frayed. I considered sewing them new dresses, but I would prefer to keep these old ones as long as it is still possible. I took two long afternoons this summer to slowly and patiently sew between the metallic ribbons and consolidate the torn fabric, with a very small needle and a very thin thread. It works for now. I only have this grained phone photo for a before, is not really visible how the fabric looked like.

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This small celluloid kewpie from the forties or fifties is a flea market find. Actually, the vendor gave it to me as a gift :). Probably he considered no one would want something that scary :). He is in quite a bad shape, with one of his hands missing. I intend to make him a new hand, out of papier-mache maybe and restring it with the existing one. But for now, I am quite amused to keep in this pretty vintage tin this assortment of creepy but cute dolls. 🙂

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One thought on “Celluloid dolls

  1. The old tin is perfect to store the dolls. The ballerinas have quite a look on their faces – as if they know a secret. So glad you saved the Kewpie – he is worn, torn, and adorable.

    Liked by 1 person

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