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Doll

  • Place of origin:

    England (possibly, made)

  • Date:

    late 19th century (made)

  • Artist/Maker:

    Unknown

  • Materials and Techniques:

    wax, glass eyes and hair wig, embroidered silk satin, chiffon and lace dress, cloth body with leather shoes

  • Museum number:

    T.54-1917

  • Gallery location:

    In Storage

Physical description

Late 19th century wax head with glass eyes and wax arms attached to a ca. 1800 (possibly) cloth body. Shoes, stockings and blue silk petticoat could be ca. 1800 as well. Doll has a human hair wig arranged in the style of the 1780s, and is dressed in an elaborate pink silk satin (faded to oyster) bodice with self-fabric stomacher panel, ivory satin petticoat with embroidered floral sprigs and gathered flounces of sheer silk chiffon, edged with gilt metal fringe and caught up with satin ribbon bows, ribbon knots and artificial flowers, also trimmed with polychrome silk braids. Silk chiffon sleeves en chemise a la Reine tied in with ribbons, overskirt in back of silk chiffon. Gauze cap to match dress flounces, trimmed with artificial flowers, ribbon knots and lace.

Place of Origin

England (possibly, made)

Date

late 19th century (made)

Artist/maker

Unknown

Materials and Techniques

wax, glass eyes and hair wig, embroidered silk satin, chiffon and lace dress, cloth body with leather shoes

Dimensions

Height: 63 cm

Object history note

This doll is very elaborately and extravagantly dressed in the style of the 1780s. While the body of the doll does appear as if it could be c.1800, being quite crudely made by later 19th century standards, the wax head and arms are of a later date, probably around 1900, and the extravagantly fashionable, elaborate outfit seems to be closer to an Edwardian aesthetic than late 18th century. The shoes, stockings and possibly the blue silk petticoat may be old, with added braid trimmings, the skirt of the dress is probably made from antique embroidered satin. The outfit is a pastiche of fashionable woman's dress of circa 1785. It is relatively unlikely that a cloth-bodied (or even a wooden) doll of the actual period would have been quite so elaborately and sumptuously dressed. The doll may represent Marie Antoinette.

Descriptive line

Doll, wax and cloth, dressed in late 18th century French fashion

Materials

Wax; Glass; Human hair; Silk satin; Silk chiffon; Lace; Ribbon; Braid; Artificial flowers; Leather

Techniques

Doll-making; Embroidery

Categories

Fashion; Dolls & Toys; Embroidery; Clothing

Collection

Textiles and Fashion Collection

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