Vintage Visitors – Tressy

This week’s vintage visitors are Naomi’s Tressy dolls. She actually has three of them but one has been living with me for quite some time.  As I’ve mentioned previously my own Tressy, given to me as a child, is unmarked but almost certainly a first issue Palitoy doll. I have read that the very first Palitoy Tressy’s sold in England were imported directly from American Character and still had the AC marking on the back of the neck. The rest of the first issue dolls like mine were unmarked. This is Naomi’s platinum blonde Tressy.AC Tressy in home made vintage floral skirt and untagged yellow top.

fPlatinum Tressy in home-made vintage floral skirt and untagged yellow top.

American Character licensed several other companies to produce Tressy. Regal in Canada, Schildkrot in Germany and Bella in France. I have included some links at the end of this post  which will give more information about these.  In this post I’ll mainly talk about Palitoy Tressy.

Two more Tressy’s were in the vintage doll box and I was keen to have a good look at them.

Two Tressy dolls that belong to Naomi.
Two Tressy dolls that belong to Naomi.

When I did I found that both had a faint mark on the back of the neck with tiny writing which I could not read even with a magnifying glass. Although these two don’t seem to have such high colouring as the others this might be because the Palitoy Tressy’s were made with different vinyl to the American Character ones and some of them were susceptible to fading over time. Of course all of these dolls are now over fifty years old too.

I think that Naomi bought her Tressy’s locally and  although I’m not sure whether a lot of Tressy’s were sold in Australia I expect that they would have come from Palitoy rather than American Character and that a lot of Tressy’s probably emigrated with their young owners like mine did.

Palitoy issued Tressy with three hair colours. Brunette Tressy was generally found wearing a pink jersey shift dress with a roll neck a gold chain belt, honey blonde Tressy had the same dress in turquoise and platinum Tressy had lemon yellow. I distinctly remember my Tressy’s yellow dress which I liked although I spent a lot of time trying to darken her “white” hair with food colouring. It doesn’t look as white to me now as it did then but I don’t think my efforts to turn her into something more interesting had a lot of effect.

English Palitoy Tressy wears a home made gingham skirt and cotton top.
English Palitoy Tressy wears a home-made gingham skirt and cotton top.

Naomi’s Tressy’s are wearing some very nice vintage evening wear which was in the box of vintage dolls clothes she bought. Eventually I’ll try to bring all these great home-made outfits together in a post because they are really well made. Somebody’s mother or grandmother or maybe even the former owner went to a lot of trouble to make these outfits.

The two girls are now going to visit the other Tressy’s in their new penthouse apartment where they will stay for a few weeks before being packed up again.





  1. The girls are lovely. I would love to get my hands on a brunette Tressy one day. I have a couple of Tressy outfits from my childhood, but no Tressy. Our local toystore had the outfits on sale back in the day, but I never saw the doll there. I was very impressed by the clothes and all the beautiful accessories they came with. My Barbies wore them beautifully, though some were a bit tight around the chest for them.


  2. I fixate on things. It began with buying a barbie on ebay that made me smile when I ran across her… she was my favortite as a little girl. The next thing I know, I was on a compulsion spend frenzy bidding like mad on vintage dolls. All of the handmade clothing made me think of my great grandma, and all the love she put into making me beautiful clothing, blankets, pillows, etc. Things I unfortunately lost to an argument with a friend (we never spoke again and I had left my barbies at her home…) I digress, what I want to ask you, as you seem to be quite an expert, were all the Tressy doll clothes marked with tags? I made a bid on an estate barbie lot and ended up with two twin Tressy dolls. I cleaned them up and I am smitten. Aside from the red shift she came in, I have only found one dress that has a tressy tag sewn inside… it’s a beautiful pink dress. But out of all the vintage clothes I have accumulated, I wonder if I have more for her collection that aren’t tagged… I like to match the dolls to their asigned clothing and I would very much appreciate any insight you can offer. I have used google image till my eyes ache and it’s daunting. But I have found nothing to tell me if any of her clothes were made without tags.


    • Hi, I don’t honestly know whether all Tressy outfits were tagged. The site below was where I found a lot of my Tressy information and it does show illustrations of all the Tressy outfits that were released. There are some differences because Palitoy released some outfits for their British version of Tressy which were different from the American Character ones. I only have a couple myself so I’ll check and see if they are tagged. British companies seem to be more lax about tagging things than the American ones. I’ll get back to you again a bit later on when I have looked.


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