What is a Doll?

How long have we had this love affair with Dolls?

Pearls of Wisdom:

New World Dictionary describes a doll as - "a child's toy, puppet, marionette, etc. made to resemble a human being."

Sunday, August 1, 2010

"The Edwardians " (part one) an introduction.

Albert Edward, Prince of Wales
The Edwardian period in the United Kingdom is the era covering the reign of King Edward the VII, 1901 to 1910 and it marked the end of the Victorian era.

" The Edwardians"

"The Children "

In the words of Samuel Hynes," it was a 'leisurely time when women wore picture hats and did not vote, when the rich were not ashamed to live conspicuously, and the sun really never set on the British flag'. It was also a time of great inequality, in which the privileges of the rich were made possible by the labour of their servants, an age when the inequalities of wealth and poverty were starkly delineated and the conventions of class were still rigidly defined - there was a place for everyone and everyone knew their place.”

Girl holding her favorite Kestner doll, late 19th century...notice similar outfits on girl and doll.

All bisque doll with silk crocheted dress, Hertwig ca. 1890

Edwardian Sailor Boy, all bisque doll with modelled clothes by Hertwig ca. 1890

Big sister and baby brother attired for a fun day at the lake .

It was during the Victoria era and into the Edwardian ,that the beach hut began its life, as a bathing machine; a wooden cart, with wooden or canvas walls. Men and women needed somewhere to change into their bathing costumes if they intended to go swimming in the sea. As men and women bathed on different beaches, a bathing machine allowed them the privacy they needed. They were then towed into the sea, out of the view from the rest of the bathers on the beach, as part of the sea-bathing etiquette.

Sweet Edwardian bathers... National Museum of Liverpool

Bathing Beauties ca. 1890's

Edwardian Teenage Girls ca. 1901

Fashion Poster

The death of Queen Victoria in January 1901 and the succession of her son, Edward, marked the start of a new century and the end of an era. While Victoria had shunned society, Edward was the leader of a fashionable elite which set a style influenced by the art and fashions of continental Europe—perhaps because of the King's fondness for travel.

Edwardian Biker

Edwardian bride and brides-maids

Renoir "Famille"

The Edwardian period is frequently extended beyond Edward's death in 1910 to include the years up to the sinking of the RMS Titanic in 1912, the start of World War I in 1914, the end of hostilities with Germany on November 11, 1918, or the signing of the Treaty of Versailles on June 28, 1919.

Brandenburg Wedding Group

"Fritchie" Opera Singer ca. 1837

Edwardian Fashions "The Delineator" ca. 1901

Madame Alexander "Portrait Dolls"

"Amber and Lace" Edwardian Memento

This period also corresponds to the French Belle Epoque. Despite its short pre-eminence, this era is characterized by its own unique architectural style, fashion, and way of life. Art Noveau held a particularly strong influence. Artists were influenced by the appearance of the automobile and electricity, and a greater awareness of human rights.

Edwardian Lady's Basketball Team

"Apples are good, but peaches are better; if you love me answer my letter"
signed...from J.P.N.

ca. 1885 Alt Beck & Gottschalk

Dainty little parian doll . Original antique muslin body stuffed with sawdust. Has tan leather hands & brown leather boots w/pinstriped stockings. Features are very fine with deep molded tiny lips, nose & eyes. Brown eyebrows and tan colored hair. Wears pink silk dress with heavy aged beige lace as overskirt & at neckline.

Edwardian Child

You've Come Along Way , Baby! Women Suffrage Slogans

"The Picnic" James Jacques Joseph Tissot

Winter Finery

The Edwardian period is viewed nostalgically as the romantic golden age of long summer afternoons, and garden parties. It is often referred to as the "Gilded Age", a perception created in the 1920s and later by those who remembered the Edwardian as they look back to their childhoods across the abyss of the Great War., It was a time of peace: sandwiched between the Boer War (1899-1902) and the First World War which broke out in 1914. The Edwardian age was also seen as a period of pleasure between the great achievements of the preceding Victorian age and the catastrophe of the following war .


  1. So very informative! I love the dainty Parian doll in the pink silk with the lace over-dress. I made a costume for a doll once that sort of resembled that! Interesting the way we romanticize the past..... always thinking that back then was a better time! And "back then" keeps changing! I love your music and your collection of pictures too!

  2. Thank you so much for visiting...I love that little doll too. There is such a variety of parians and they are all lovely and so delicate.
    And yes, I agree its interesting to see how far we've come through the ages.

  3. Just love the images. The era was perhaps more revolutionary than you imply as Impressinism swept the art world and Socialism was an important movement, and women began to believe in themselves. Fascinating period though.

  4. Thank you Phillips... Of course there is more to come on this post. This is an introduction to the era. Some of the most colorful characters lived during this period
    eg. Oscar Wilde, Lilli Langtry etc. and a definitive movement to break away from Victorian strict regime I'm hoping to cover most of it.

  5. This is so informative.....and great pictures, an amazing collection. I love that era.I'm always interested in the past.Things seemed to be more interesting and very colourful. Thank you for sharing, I just love your Blog.

  6. Que bien!!
    siempre encuentro imágenes que me sorprenden, en tu blog, teniendo en cuenta que mi biblioteca de indumentaria es muy extensa...
    Este periodo Edwardian en Inglaterra, en Francia:Art Noveau en España:Modernismo, en Alemania:Jung style,etc.
    En mi ciudad lo tenemos muy presente gracias a la arquitectura de Gaudí y otros arquitectos prominentes.

  7. Thank you Erica...I'm so glad you enjoy visiting!
    This is a lot of fun for me. I just love history, and thank heavens for the Internet there is a wealth of information out there....

  8. Hola Maria, Y gracias...siempre espero con anticipacion tus comentarios, tu sabes muchisimos de las modas y lo que eran las usansas antiguas...Perdona my ortografia, hay palabras que se me han olvidado.
    Muchos besos

  9. Como siempre Marta tu reseña es muy interesante e ilustrativa!!
    El retrato de muñecas hermoso!!
    Gracias por tomarte el trabajo de compartirla!!!
    Un abrazo!!

  10. Gracias Ma.Cristina,
    Como siempre eres muy amable. Este "post" de los Edwardians abarca mucha informacion. Era una epoca de cambios drasticos, tanto en la moda como en la cultura. Espero les sea a todos interesante.
    Muchos besos