Jul 10, 2017

Dolls and a very sweet lady...

A month or so ago, I volunteered at Sharlot Hall Museum's annual Folk Arts Fair.  It's good fun--and fascinating to me to see all the folks in period costumes from the late 1800's.  Various hearth-crafts and entertainments are demonstrated, from chair caning to wood-carving to spinning & weaving.  This year there was a table teaching corn-husk doll making to the kids.  I was envious of the wool dyer guy and his art--what gorgeous colors!

Of course I was showing how dolls were made, at least the kind a pioneer family might have.  So I brought some paper mache doll heads and an antique doll body to show how a mom might have purchased a "fine" doll head and made the body in order to afford the doll. 

A very sweet lady named Lucy arrived to look at the dolls, and (this seemed to be a theme) wanted to tell me about her doll.  Only unlike so many who told about their antique dolls, handed down from mothers and grandmothers, usually French or German porcelain dolls, Lucy wanted to show me a doll her Aunt made for her as a "First Apartment" gift.  I'd never thought of moving into your first place as a gift-giving event, but I love the idea! 

So the event was for two days, and the next day, there she was with her doll.  Lucy is almost 90, but her lively ways and spirit make her seem decades younger.  This is Lucy with her doll (on the right) along with a lady who fell in love with a Raggedy Ann type that I'd made. 

As I enjoyed visiting with her so much, Lucy and I keep in touch.  She recently sent me this photo which had apparently appeared in the Sharlot Hall Museum's newsletter.  I don't often like photos of myself, but I guess this one is an exception--for once, I'm not making a face or squinting my eyes shut.  I had curled my hair and put the rest in a "bun" at the back with a tiny snood, trying to dress for the period as much as possible--but there was no way I was going to wear long sleeves and petticoats! 

Hope your summer is going as you would have it--stay cool and enjoy!


  1. Jan, A beautiful assortment of dollies, perfect for the time period. I love dressing up in period clothing. It's so much fun when I go to Missouri town with my friend and help her in the old fashioned candy store. Great photo, you look lovely!

  2. What a great picture! Of the dolls and of you! You DO look lovely! How sweet of you to keep in touch with Lucy!

  3. Great clear pictures. the ladies look very happy and you look very pretty too. the raggety Ann is nice as are all the other dolls on your table. I would like to have seen some of the other crafts too. We just don't have things like this where we live. thanks for sharing. showing how people put store bought heads on home made bodies was a good idea and I know people were interested in all your dolls.

  4. What a wonderful couple of days you had at that fair! Such a lovely story of Lucy and her doll.

    You're such a beautiful lady and so are all those dolls you made. So glad your art appeared in the Sharlot Hall Museum's newsletter. What a delight!


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