Doll Detective Mailbag: Italian Dolls

A couple of weeks ago I received an email from reader Vlastibor who found these old dolls while clearing out a family member’s basement.

We are hoping that readers  will be able to supply a little more information about them. This is what we know so far:

Doll No. 1 with the silver hair. 

  • Height of doll: 45 cm
  • Material: hard plastic
  • Eyes: sleep eyes, blue color, “real” lashes
  • Marks: on the back of the neck it says Ratti made in Italy, also across the top of the back, just above a battery slot, on the front torso it has a sticker with the number 19 (pics included)
No idea if this outfit is original, it seems to have oxidized, I’d guess the doll is from 60’s-70’s
I do know that Ratti was bought out by Mattel around 1969 but I am not sure if they continued to use the Ratti name after this time. I am inclined to think this would be a late sixties or very early seventies doll myself and that the outfit probably is original as it seems to be a good fit. The silver hair is quite unusual too. I have found a few other Ratti dolls listed on eBay with similar features to this one but nothing exactly like her. I am bemused by the sticker on her torso too. Why would you put it there? Although Vlastibor has mentioned this doll is hard plastic it is possible that she is vinyl or transitional with head and body made of different materials. I don’t think there would be many all hard plastic dolls being made by the late sixties.
Anyway she is a cutie so if anyone has seen something like her please comment.
Doll No. 2 brunette
  • Height: 50cm
  • Material: the head is a softer plastic while the body and limbs are much harder the head is also slightly darker than the rest of the plastic, I guess it aged differently?
  • Eyes: sleep eyes, blue color with “real” lashes
  • Hair: rooted in the dolls head, brown, (I think I skipped this in my previous message, but for that doll it was also rooted in the head and silver-colored)
  • Marks: I wasn’t able to find any, however her chest has a speaker, and her back has a screw (see pics) her limbs seem to be attached by some kind of elastic string

My guess is that this doll may also be Italian, most certainly European made. They often seem to have those wide set apart eyes. Vlastibor says that they were bought in what is now Slovakia, then still Czechoslovakia. I’m not sure what sort of doll manufacturing was going on in that part of the world in the 1960s but this one could have been made in Eastern Europe.

She has a battery compartment that takes a large size battery.

It’s always fun to receive letters and pictures of readers dolls and even more so if we are able to learn a bit more about them. Let’s see if anyone knows anything about these two.


One comment

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.