Monday, August 9, 2010
Sailor dolls were created by Norah Wellings, England. Norah, the chief designer for Chad Valley, opened her own doll company Victory Toys with her brother Leo in 1926. Travel by ship was a very popular means of transport during this period and almost all the shipping companies sold the souvenir sailor dolls on board their ocean liners. They were produced right up until 1960, the year of Leo's passing, when the company closed.
The Empire company produced sailor dolls in a similar style. To distinguish between the two dolls, Empire or Wellings, look for the 'Empire' sticker under the collar on the back, or remnants of, and check the foot as Norah Wellings dolls will be tagged.
Each sailor doll wears the name of the ocean liner proudly on their hat bands. Who could resist a little souvenir or two, especially when they are so cute?