Tuesday, January 3, 2017

It's genetic!

I don't know what the donkeys are made of
but they are covered in a soft corduroy and other fabrics and are just beautiful!
I added the ruler so you can see the height of the figures and church.
The Barbies tower over everything!
With a 10-inch entrance, the stable is not quite tall enough for Barbie.
(Although that would be weird if Barbie showed up at Jesus's birth.)

There are a variety of people inside the church,
including the politically incorrect bellhops and the luggage
I've commented before that my love of miniature worlds was inherited from my father, who owned a large electric train set when I was a little girl, and who made the buildings to accompany the set from cardboard.  In fact, my earliest memory of Dad is him cutting out cardboard to make one of the buildings, and Mom getting annoyed with him because he used her brand new scissors to cut the cardboard.
But I had forgotten about the hobby of my grandfather, that is, my father's father, Anthony "Whitey" Wernke, who died before my parents had even met.  It wasn't until this December when I dug out his handmade toys from the boxes in my mother's basement that I even made the connection.
My father was born in 1933, and from what my mother has told me, Whitey had made toy buildings for my dad.  I don't know if these buildings (you would never use the term "dollhouse"!) were made from kits or if Whitey followed patterns but used his own supplies.  He sawed apart shipping crates to make the bases and frames, and then nailed twigs over the frames to make log cabins and other buildings.  There were hundreds of branches and nails used to make all of them.
Most of the buildings are what are now termed as "1/12 scale," that is, the scale of dollhouses.  A few pieces are larger.  The biggest building is a huge stable that is not quite Barbie sized.  Whitey also bought figures to accompany the houses.  Most of the figures (humans and animals that are molded celluloid, metal or heavy cloth) are dollhouse-sized; again, a few are larger and some are really tiny!  Although some of them have the countries of Japan or Germany marked on them, most have no country written and no manufacturer listed at all.  I'm dating the figures to be from the 1930s because one of the females has on a Depression-era fur coat and cloche hat.
This photo is from 1960, my parents' first Christmas together.
I would be born the next February.
As for the stable, that has been my mother's Nativity set for as long as I can remember. Whitey bought beautiful statues to put in the stable, including an angel that attaches by wire to the roof of the barn.
Mom doesn't use the wood stable any more because it takes up a lot of room, although it's still in the basement.  She just sets the statues out now at Christmas.  I am going to show you some photos from the past and present of these incredible creations.  The style is what you would call primitive, but that's not a derogatory word, it's an actual art term.

Monday, January 2, 2017

Skippercollector: The California line--The Ice Cream Shoppe

http://skippercollector.blogspot.com/2017/01/1988-barbie-ice-cream-shoppe-booklet.html

1988 Barbie Ice Cream Shoppe booklet


Barbie Ice Cream Shop pages 1 and 2,
cover and introduction










pages 3 and 4, how to freeze









pages 5 and 6, recipes








pages 7 and 8, more ideas and warranty







































I was asked in September 2016 to show the recipe booklet that came with the 1988 Barbie Ice Cream Shoppe.  I finally remembered to scan it for you!

Tuesday, December 27, 2016

Fashion dolls love glittery party dresses




Glitter through the decades:  Regal Red, Deepest Purple, Soft & Shimmery Silver & White, Dressin' Up and City Sparkler
Yes, the ladies gossip about Barbie when she's not around, and yes, Miss America is a bit tipsy.


I set up a slightly different display of Barbie dolls for Christmas this year.  For one thing, Barbie herself isn't included!  And there's no sign of my beloved Skipper, much less Ken!  I chose seven Barbie friends to wear shiny dresses and gowns for a Christmas party, and of course, all the dolls and outfits are by Mattel.  However, all the other decorations are 1/6 scale items I've accumulated over the years.  The most unusual item is, of course, the fireplace, which is actually a number of pieces of kindling that have been cleverly repainted and which I purchased at a craft show years ago.
You've seen all these dolls and dresses before, just not arranged like this.  The outfits are from three different decades and all have one thing in common--they are SHINY and GLITTERY and very Christmas-y looking!

The dolls and outfits are:
1970 Twist N Turn PJ in 1457 City Sparkler
1972 Walk Lively Miss America in 3217 Regal Red
1977 Teenage TV Celebrity Marie Osmond in 9817 Deepest Purple
1977 Sweet 16 in 1978 2252 Soft & Shimmery Silver & White
1986 Rocker Diva in 2690 Dressin’ Up
1991 Wedding Day Midge in Dinner Date 4940
1992 Beach Dazzle Asha in Sizzlin’ Style 5969

Sunday, November 13, 2016

willows in the 1990s, part 4

Remarkably, no one got into an argument despite their close living quarters while camping.  From left to right are 1993 Baton Twirling Skipper in #10077 Create Outrageous Fashions with Sweetheart Rhinestones, 1995 Spirit of Love Pocahontas in her original outfit, 1994 Camp Skipper in her original outfit, Cool Tops Skipper in her original outfit, 1994 35th Anniversary Barbie in Greatest Barbecue Ever, 1995 Spirit of Love John Smith in his original outfit, 1995 Sun Colors Nakoma in her original outfit and Camp Ken in his original outfit.
They brought plenty of food for camping!
This is a combination of the food that came
with the Pocahontas playset and the motor home.
The X stand on the right is for drying fish,
of which plenty was caught.  I think they might be trout.

Here's a better view of Camp Ken and the Baywatch Jeep.


Wishing Well Park in the 1970s (which I wrote about last week) by the 1990s had been changed to Willows Park (I just made all that up).  It's still a good place to go camping, offered with either full amenities or for completely roughing it.  Both versions can be seen here, side by side.

Contemporary camping was quite popular, as Mattel made many playsets for it in the 1990s.  Some of them were the #7460 Cool Tops Skipper Vespa Motorbike in 1990, the #11620 Starlight Motor Home tent in 1994 and the #67206 Baywatch Rescue Wheels Jeep in 1994.  Yet there were also numerous horses sold, as exemplified by Skipper's palomino pony #10081 Chelsie in 1993, and the various Pocahontas playsets in 1995, such as the #67218 Powhatan Village Play Set.

Sunday, November 6, 2016

Willows in the 1970s, part 2

The dolls are 1974 SunSet Malibu Ken, the 1977 Jones baby from Barbie Babysits, 1971 SunSet Malibu Francie, 1974 Curl Tuli-Chan, 1971 SunSet Malibu Skipper, 1974 Curl Chocho, 1975 SunSet Malibu Barbie, 1979 Sun Lovin' Malibu Ken, 1974 SunSet Malibu Barbie, and 1976 Young Sweethearts Melinda and Michael.

"Thank heavens for Google!" I've said a number of times in the past 10 years.  Without it, I would not have been able to ascertain that the 1971 Country Camper is a Dodge Conversion Van, the 1974 pop up trailer is by Bethany Fellowship, the bicycle from 1974 was probably copied from a Schwinn and the tree in the 1976 Young Sweethearts Wishing Well Park is called a snowdrop tree.

Today I discovered that the tree in the Wishing Well set can be either a snowdrop tree with little white bell flowers, or it can be an apple tree with fruit hanging from it.  I also realized that the Ten-Speeder is actually a man's bike!  A woman's bike has the top bar running parallel to the bottom bar.

My 1970s dolls went camping at Wishing Well Park outside Willows.  I set up a display with the 1971 #4994 Country Camper; the pop up camper from the #8669 Goin' Campin' set; the pond, tree and bench from the 1976 #9538 Young Sweethearts Wishing Well Park; the bicycle from 1974 #7777 Ten-Speeder; and the pup tent and accessories from the 1979 #2316 Campin' Out.

I've shown all these pieces separately before, but not outside and not all together.  I'm not going to write all that much about these items or the dolls I've pictured with them, because I've done that before.  I was really pleased with the photos I took this time.  I don't know I'm getting better at setting up these little displays, if these items are easier to photograph or if I just lucked out with the weather and the backdrop today.

Barbie is in #3412 Fun Flakes and
Ken is in #1472 Casual Scene, both from 1971.

Ken is in Best Buy #7762, the Jones boy is in his original outfit, Francie is in #3458 Olde Look,
Tuli-Chan is in #7846 Rough N Ready Comfy Camp-Ins, Skipper is in #3467 Teeter Timers
and Chocho is in #7848 Beachy Bits for Sunny Fun.

They've put on their good clothes, have packed up and are ready to go home.

Here is the driver's side of the Country Camper with the attached tent closed.

Barbie in #7842 Neatest Tennis Set at the Net, plus the Campin' Out hat,
Ken in Fashion Collectible #1376 (from 1980),
Barbie in #7815 Palazzo Pants Outfit plus the visor from the tennis outfit because it matches
and Melinda and Michael in #9585 Party Day Blue.

Sunday, October 30, 2016

Willows in the 1970s, part 1

Willows, Wisconsin, got many new businesses in the 1970s, but I have examples of only two of them.  The most exciting and most famous one is, of course, Barbie's Friend Ship from 1973, a United Airlines doll case/plane.  So Willows must have built its own airport.
The other business I am showing you is Cafe' Today.  Actually, it's my sister's from her childhood.  You've seen both of these playsets before, but now they are next to each other.
Once you disembark the plane, you can go there to eat.
Some of the other businesses Mattel created in the 1970s were:
1971 Unique Boutique
1976 Fashion Plaza
1977 Beauty Boutique
1978 Photo Studio.
I took some photos of the Cafe' Today and the Friend Ship outdoors.  The plane is on the sidewalk, which makes a good runway.  You've seen these dolls and items before, just not outside together.  I like showing the exteriors of the playsets with dolls, which you seldom see.

Twist N Turn PJ, Living Skipper and Bend Leg Ken catch Living Barbie trying to sneak into 1970's Cafe' Today.
The dolls and outfits also are from 1970.

The reason I have Kelley on the Friend Ship's cart is that she is disabled (her arms and legs tend to fall off).  Mod Hair Ken and Quick Curl Barbie are dressed in their United Airlines uniforms and Quick Curl Kelley is in two Best Buys (the coat is pictured in the interior of the plane).  Walk Lively Steffie in All-American Girl, both from 1972, matches the plane!

I tried, with only moderate success, to get both the plane and
the shop in the same photo, but the plane is simply too big!