Monday, March 24, 2014

Lucy Goes Native

Well, as it turns out, eating quesadillas, finishing Cissy dolls, shopping at consignment sales, and all my other ambitious weekend projects, were not the best of ideas. Yesterday, after I worked for about an hour on the custom doll commission I received, I became feverish and had to lie down for a while.

Today, although I feel much better, I have been taking it as easy as possible. I did work on a lot of little projects, but only those I could complete while sitting. I went for slow walk tonight, but it was cut short when an opossum dropped out of a tree almost right on top of me and started hissing at me and acting weird. I decided it was a sign I should return home and get back to work.

A little while back I bought a big, filthy lot of Alexander-Kins and Ginny-type dolls and clothes. Two American Indian dolls were mixed in with the lot. In my haze of illness I glanced at them and assumed they were tourist-type dolls. I planned to clean them up a little and list them for about $20. However, when I started cleaning them I noticed one doll was much better-made than the other. In fact, she looked just like a Virga Lucy doll. I wondered if Virga ever made Lucy as a Native American. I knew Fortune made a Pam doll as a hula dancer and that doll is worth a lot more than the regular Pam dolls. I decided to look the doll up before I listed it, and I'm glad I did!

It turns out Virga did make various ethnic dolls, as did Vogue and Fortune, using their Lucy, Ginny, and Pam molds. All these, if from the 1950s, are extremely rare and valuable. Searching the Internet and eBay brought up only one other 1950s Indian Lucy.

Lucy, Pam, Ginger, and the other Ginny clone dolls are difficult to identify. Ginny dolls are always marked, but many of her clones are not. Once a clone doll became popular other companies would make even cheaper clones of the clones. Some were advertising premiums. Sometimes the face and body molds were changed dramatically while using the same name.

Lucy dolls have C-shaped arms hooks and fused third and fourth fingers.

Lucy dolls, though their faces are nearly identical to Ginny and to some Pam dolls, can be identified by their arm hooks and hands. The Lucy arm hook is shaped like a C. Her third and fourth fingers are fused.

The shoulder split, before and after repair.

Lucy needed re-stringing and she had a shoulder split. I made these repairs and cleaned the wool blanket dress the doll originally wore. I found another outfit, faux "buckskins", in the clothing lot. I think these may have been originally made for Ginny or Ginger, but they are perfect for the Indian Lucy. She can wear the shirt open and do a little gender-bending to become a brave.

This outfit may have been made for Ginger or Ginny.

The other Indian doll really is a tourist doll, and the doll is very cheaply and poorly made. Her costume is amazing, though. Her dress is embellished all over with beads and trimmed with real fur. She carries twin babies, papooses, on her back. She even has tiny beaded moccasins. I combined all these as a lot, because I thought if someone didn't want the tourist doll they might want to use the clothes for rare, valuable Lucy. I might have removed the clothes myself, but I felt bad doing that to the tourist doll. I always wanted one of those when we went to Michigan in the summers, even though the 1970s ones were far less impressive, but my mom would never let me have one!

I will be listing many more little 8-inch dolls from this lot as I finish them, slowly, since I'm trying to preserve my recovery. Make sure to check my store for those:

These dolls are the same size to share clothes.


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