Four Naughty Little Sisters
Today’s job was to clean up four Patch dolls. Three of them are mine, one belongs to Naomi. Hers is the one with the best fringe, two of mine look they were playing with scissors.
petradolls.co.uk which I find a great visual reference for not only Sindy but other dolls from Fleur and Linda, says that the first Patch was produced in 1966-67. I am not sure if this is completely true because I got my Patch doll in December 1965. I remember this very clearly because we had our Christmas presents a few days early that year before departing by sea for Australia on 23 December 1965.
The first Patch is marked Made in England on the back of her neck, she was made at the Pedigree factory in Merton, near London. On her scalp are the markings J1834 and SISTER. She is 23 cms or 9 inches tall. Apparently these early Patch dolls have a tendency to yellow over time. I have no idea whether my Patch was one of these as I didn’t keep her. Her head came off and back then I didn’t know that there might have been a way to fix her.
All of the Patch dolls I’ll show you today are later editions and all are marked Made in Hong Kong on their backs. Patch was made in a couple of different sizes. Pedigree was very inconsistent about the size of the dolls they produced, especially with Sindy and friends. I’ll be able to show you this better when we get to the older Sindy dolls. The second edition of Patch was made between 1967-70 in two sizes 21 and 22 cms, that’s 8 1/4 and 8 1/2 inches in the old money. There was also an even smaller Patch known as micro mini Patch who was just 20cm tall. She has a wobbly head and hard vinyl limbs that don’t bend.
I would love to have another couple of Patch dolls to display clothing on and I’d quite like to get a Canterbury Patch, the last one made. Those of you who collect have probably found that Patch is even more expensive to collect than Sindy so I’m not holding my breath for that one.
As you can see from their old photos the girls are all in reasonable condition but their arms and legs were a little grubby. When I last cleaned them up I didn’t know about scrubbing with bicarbonate of soda. So today they all got a bath where they were washed with Dawn ( I found another little sample bottle) and then their arms and legs scrubbed with some bicarb on a Norex scrubber which has a soft but slightly abrasive surface. I gave their hair a quick wash and tried to disguise the choppy fringes a bit. Blonde Patch has a pink mark on her face and one of the others has a blue one. They don’t show much so I’m reluctant to use acne cream to remove them in case I damage their facial features.
The girls are all the same size. I measured them from their feet to the top of their heads and all came in at around 23cm, however they are all second edition dolls. People measure things differently.
Here are the girls redressed after their baths. I just bought the little exercise book that goes with Schooldays, cost me $20. I’m missing a satchel, beret, socks and shoes and some pencils for this set.
Next week I’ll go on to some older Sindy’s.