A Letter from Leta


I recently had a nice message from a reader called Leta who shared some information that she had found about Deluxe Reading dolls and I decided that I would share it as she wrote it. I hope you will all enjoy reading it.


My name is Leta (pronounced Lee-ta) Learn and I live in Iowa. I am 70 years old ( a widow)  and have collected dolls and paper dolls most of my life. About 20 years ago I started researching and find it to be one of the most challenging, frustrating, and most rewarding hobbies I’ve ever had, especially if your working on doll identification.

I started collecting dolls and paper dolls almost as soon as I started walking because I love them so! When my husband died many years ago, I moved from a huge house in the country to a small house in town and could barely move without tripping over a doll, so I had to sell some of them. My grown children call them – “mom’s junk.” Aren’t they nice? Lol! I needed something to do to fill my time and began researching dolls. I had a Deluxe Reading Sweet Rosemary when I was a child and I think the memory of that may have started me researching Deluxe Reading.

In 2006, I wrote a (self-published and copyrighted) doll book titled EXCLUSIVELY DAWN which now lies in mothballs so to speak. I know two books were already published about the Topper Dawn doll but I wanted to dig deeper and find out things like why the scepter was eliminated from the Deluxe Beauty Pageant set. I discovered Dawn began with a different name and other wonderful things about Deluxe Reading/Topper dolls. There’s an American Character doll that was originally going to be produced by Deluxe Reading. The Candy Fashion Doll was used as a model for a lingerie company. After all these years, you can still get a Deluxe Reading Cinderella Jewelry Coach. I have a few salesman sample photos of dolls and toy sets. 
I love the fact that you share information and photos because I love sharing also and like you, it’s sad to think all this information will be lost. 

I happened to be looking at your Penny Brite and clones on your website and I can add 2 other versions of Penny Brite although they are not clones. Remco purchased what was left of the Deluxe Reading stock, repackaged the remaining Penny Brite dolls in a red and purple box, dropped the name Penny and sold her as Brite. 

Remco Brite a rebranded Penny Brite.
Remco’s version of Penny Brite just named Brite.

Penny’s Beauty Set

Marie Osmond acquired the Deluxe Reading patents and reproduced Penny as a Charisma doll and also in a Happily Ever After fantasy series.

I hope to include more photos and information from Leta in the future.

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6 comments

  1. Yes, the same people sometimes shaming people into purging their dolls are hoarding Action figures, selling off dolls as parts, etc..But as blogs and Flickr and documentation become more common, new appreciation can overcome ignorance. I doubt my kids will ever have my level of interest. but they get it’s my thing. If I document the collections it might be donated/ some day.

    Liked by 1 person

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