MY PASSION started almost 25 years ago…
Ebay was in its infancy then, but I had a vintage 1950s Ideal Betsy Wetsy doll whom my brothers had offered to my poodle puppy many, many years ago. The puppy enjoyed chewing the arm requiring a new one.
Opinions differ — even honest people have differing opinions on what is ‘authentic’ so we have to rely on what we know for sure based on actual photographs, books, and what we learn from experience.
Doesn’t everyone have a story about at least one or more of their dolls from their childhood? Many of my clients have a story to tell and I have been able to reunite them with their old friend(s). Feel free to add yours here anytime.
Doesn’t everyone have a story to tell about at least one or more of their childhood dolls?
I went on eBay and found a ‘mint in box’ mid-1950s molded hair Betsy Wetsy doll, that I went ahead and purchased. Of course, I still needed an arm for my own Betsy (or BW, as I call them for short), and I went on to buy one and fix up my old baby doll… good as new.
A few things happened almost at once — I found that most of the BW dolls had poorly or non-functioning eyes. Having found a source for original eyes that were purchased years ago from the Ideal Toy Company when it went out of business (1980s?), I began replacing eyes in the little souls who needed Life brought back to their beautiful faces.
Successful at that endeavor, I grew passionate about hunting down and collecting all the different variations of the dresses with matching bonnets the BW dolls were sold with — each doll sold with a single dress that was of similar design, but used a variety of fabrics and trims. Sometimes the dresses were identical but for the lace or ric-rac trim. It intrigued me to learn that Ideal hired women to work at home (back then… only women) and sew up these lovely outfits.
Of course, after awhile, I had a lot of Betsy Wetsy dolls and they were now reunited with their original outfits. There were other BW dolls to document and collect as well… the soft vinyl head BWs that were issued in 1956 with both saran hair or molded heads. There were several sizes, too — 12″, 14″, 16″ and 18″ dolls — I collected them all… over the years more than 1000 of them.
I learned what was original Betsy Wetsy clothing and accessories by finding and purchasing original boxed sets and single dolls by the dozens over the years… at great cost. It became easy to spot them through familiarity with the fabrics, special swirl-cut buttons, French Val Lace and ric-rac trims.
Thanks for visiting today ~
and be sure to check back again soon for my next chapter to find out
“How I know all about dolls”
Be sure to visit my store to view my many special dolls and their outfits