When I saw this old magazine offered on Amazon, I couldn’t resist. I spent $6.00 for this issue which originally sold in 1964 at 15 cents. That’s the power of nostalgia. You see, I made three of the featured dolls.
But, if memory serves (and sometimes it doesn’t), I think I was several years younger when I made those dolls as Christmas gifts for three of my nieces – Becky, Polly, and Keri. Perhaps the pattern was offered earlier – or maybe I really was 15. At any rate, I painstakingly copied the pattern onto graph paper (one-inch squares, of course), and Mother, more artistic than I, perfected my lines.
The dolls were made of pink cotton-type fabric – perhaps percale or whatever was available in the early 1960s. And I’m sure that Mother was much more involved than I remember – keeping me on track, making those faces come together correctly, helping with the stuffing (something we both struggled to learn to do).
By the Christmas in question, three dolls were finished, wrapped, and under the tree. I always envisioned that they would have more of those cute outfits, but in reality they only had the drawstring nightgowns.
I have always aspired to make dolls – not fancy dolls – just cloth dolls, sock dolls, rag dolls. To that end, I have a collection of books and patterns on which I have never acted. Why? Well, I have plenty to do and I don’t have a lot of reason to make dolls. And perhaps the biggest reason is that the dolls look better on paper than my work does in reality.
And faces are a problem for me. I do remember that Mother drew the faces on the three baby dolls. But I could probably do it now . . .
When Hallie was three, I made a Cabbage Patch-type doll for her from a kit, but she was unimpressed, and I quickly learned that life in raising Hallie was going to stretch me in other ways. It was fine then and it’s fine now. The love of dolls is my passion – not hers, but it’s a difficult subject for a multi-tasking adult to rationalize because dolls are a thing of childhood. Well – but somebody has to make them, and that person is likely to be an adult and that adult just as well be me – if I weren’t doing ten other things. KW