Tuesday, May 19, 2015

Cute as a Button, Again

Effanbee Baby Button Nose, 2004

One of the most famous and longest-produced Effanbee dolls is Baby Button Nose. This doll started as a composition doll in the 1930s and was at that time more of a toddler like Patsy. She was called "Betty Butin Nose" with "button" misspelled. Betty has the Patsy body with bent arms and molded hair and was often dressed in elaborate international costumes or sometimes in regular children's clothing. A smaller "Tinyette Butin Nose" also came in international costumes but wore baby clothing at times.

You would think, as long as Butin Nose and Button Nose dolls have been produced, they'd be pretty common, but they aren't. Effanbee cleverly changed the doll entirely every so often, so there aren't many of any one version around. Even the 1970's and 80's Button Nose dolls are quite valuable, which is unusual for dolls of that era.

Ann Timmerman sculpted this doll.

As far as I'm aware, the most modern Button Nose is the 2004 sculpt by Ann Timmerman. She is sometimes shown in this outfit in pink and is called "Blush and Bashful" Button Nose and other times she is called "Sara" and "Button Nose" and sometimes is just "Button Nose". She's an amazingly beautiful and realistic sculpt. Her entire body is blushed here and there. Her blue glass eyes have incredible color, and her white blond hair is soft and feels like human hair.

Baby Button Nose and Patsy Baby

They have the same bracelet tag.

I am impressed with Effanbee's and Timmerman's attempts to keep the classic Effanbee baby doll details. If you compare this doll with my Patsy Baby from the 1930s you can see the same effort to blush the doll's face and entire body realistically. They even have the same heart-shaped metal bracelet tag that reads "Effanbee Durable Dolls"! Effanbee tried to produce baby dolls that would look and feel real and would appeal to very young mommies and their mothers alike, and I think they've continued the tradition perfectly with this version. This little towheaded toddler resembles my niece quite strongly!

The sculpt is extremely lifelike.

The face and body are blushed.

Attention to detail is also prevalent in the clothing design for the doll. Her dress and underclothes alone encompass six pieces: body suit, tights, bloomers, dress, slip, and jacket, and then she wears little lavender shoes and a hair ribbon. My daughter is the same age as this doll and I can remember one outfit she wore a lot that was really similar to this. Only the bloomers are tagged, but the pieces are all original.

The bloomers are tagged.

There's a stain on the hem in back.

This doll doesn't look used at all, or even like she was displayed much. There is a yellowish spot on the hem of her dress in back but I have trouble getting it to show in photos, it's so light. The doll and her clothes had very light all over dust so I gently cleaned everything. I think she was probably placed in a box for a long time. She doesn't have any faded areas from sun exposure, so I don't think she was on a shelf. She cleaned up beautifully and except for the one small spot, looks wonderful.

The face is realistic.

I know many little girls who would love to adopt such a sweetie, and this is really one of the "must-have" Effanbee dolls for collectors. My last Button Nose, a 1980's version, sold before I could ever get her listed or even photographed. Besides Button Nose, I am selling some Vermont Teddy Bears and other items to raise money for our local marching band students. They need new uniforms, so I am donating my time and commission to help them reach their goal. Please visit Atelier Mandaline to see all the items shown in this post.

These Vermont Teddy Bears are being sold as a fundraiser.

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