True confession.... I did not play with dolls as a child. The passion came later in life for me. But, I will admit to being a voracious reader as a girl, and one book I distinctly remember reading was "The Wonderful Fashion Doll" by Laura Bannon. What captivated me was the engaging tale of a young girl who searches her family's aging home for a doll that she believes is hidden there... and finds it! It is a story that any collector of any genre of item would enjoy. I know that many of you may have read the book as a child, and perhaps you were influenced in your collecting passion by it as I believe I was. Today, the book is out of print and highly sought after by collectors. I recently came across this copy - published in 1953 - time worn and obviously loved as it is - and I know that a collector wanting a nostalgia-rush will not be deterred by its condition.
This copy is a former library copy that has been pulled from circulation. It is in the sort of condition that you would expect for a library copy of a much-loved of a children's book. The cover is bumped and bruised, the pages are softened with wear and show some creasing and minor tears. The front and end papers show library marks and the places where the checkout card envelope was glued (remember those?). Still the copy is very readable, and the three color illustrations and myriad black and white illustrations are easily seen. What I find fascinating upon reading the book now is the description of the doll in question (named "Gay Event"). While Ms. Bannon obviously loved fashion dolls, her description in the story is of a doll of unusual lineage. At one point she appears to be describing an early papier mache or china of the 1830's. But it is a Lady that has the type of wardrobe items usually associated with French fashion dolls of the 1870s. The illustrations show clothing typical the earlier date, but they also have a bit of the flavor of the 1890's as well. So, you be the judge!
Classic Children's Book; "The Wonderful Fashion Doll" by Laura Bannon