1889 Hand Drawn & Painted Paper Doll with 5 Dresses - image 1 of 16

Paper dolls and their costumes have been found from as early as the 1780’s so we know that people have been making them for at least 250 years. By the end of the 19th century, paper dolls were being manufactured by American companies including McLoughlin Brothers, Peter G. Thompson, Dennison Mfg and Frederick A Stokes and Company, but commercial dolls are an extravagance if you can cut people’s pictures from a magazine and make a wardrobe to fit or better still, draw your own doll and then make the costumes. It is always a delight to find hand painted paper dolls and their wardrobes.

This 4 ½” doll is 1 3/8" wide from elbow to elbow. Her five dresses that are approximately 2 3/4" from should to hem were all painted on what appears to be the back of a heavy cardstock menu for a dinner at E. L. Putney in Newport in 1889. Whether this is Newport Vermont, New Hampshire or Rhode Island is unclear but the dolls were found in New Hampshire. What is clear is that her maker was a fine artist! The little doll has blonde hair and a carefully painted face. She wears a white lace chemise, and black stockings. Her arms are cut so that her dresses can be maneuvered under them. Her five dresses are painted in great detail. They include a yoked long sleeved white lace dress with white high button shoes, a long sleeve button down blue dress with black and white high button shoes, a blue coat with fur trim and matching muff and gloves, a puff sleeve teal on white print dress with a large teal sash, and a provincial costume dirndl style dress with red stockings, matching hat and buckled black slippers.

The doll and her dresses are in very good condition. Two of the dresses do not have tabs. Please examine the photos and don’t hesitate to contact me if you have any questions.

While you are here, do enjoy the other paper dolls I have available for sale at this time. Thank you for visiting my shop today.


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Forget Me Not Antiques

1889 Hand Drawn & Painted Paper Doll with 5 Dresses


    Sentimental memorabilia, books, sewing treasures and dolls of the 19th and early 20th centuries
    Forget Me Not Antiques specializes in the mementoes of women and children from the Victorian and Edwardian eras


    since 2020


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