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Nelling, Inc.

F r e n c h   D o l l s

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Expressive Bru Jne Size 5 Bebe

16 3/4"
In Former Owner's Storage Box with Extras


The sixty year old Nieman Marcus gift box in which this lovely Bru Jne 5 has been stored is of course not original to her, but a charming part of her history. In the box with her was the icy blue antique silk dress and matching chapeau of the same color, along with some other accessories.

She is a size 5 Bru Jne, marked on head and swivel shoulder plate, has rich, brown paperweight eyes, brush stroked lashes and brows, a closed mouth with a hint of a space between the lips, peach blushed cheeks, pierced ears and her original blond mohair wig. The molding on her face and brows has the slightly frowning look we love that was introduced with the very earliest Gerard Bru bebes.

  Her Chevrot body is almost immaculate with few signs of wear or soil, she has graceful, jointd bisque lower arms and two of her fingers are said to be repaired, but a masterful job. Of particular excellence is the condition of her original chest label, as if she has not see much play, just like the rest of the body.

Her dramatic antique frock of sunflower gold silk has bold lace trim and a highly starched underskirt to support it, along with all other antique garments she wears. Her carmel colored antique lace up shoes are compimented by her antique silk and net covered, high profile chapeau in warm, golden tones.  

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Character Huret Bebe

15 1/2"
From the Provost Period


Featured in the John Darcy Noble Book, A Treasury of Beautiful Dolls on page 197, and also in the 2003 auction catalog of the Maurine Popp collection, is this rare Huret bebe of the late 19th century, early 20th century. She is truly a character child, in the same flavor as the provocative Provost fashion dolls being made by Huret at the time. But her proportions are all bebe.

 This girl's amused expression features blue glass almond shaped eyes with brush stroked lashes and brows, a closed mouth with an almost suspicious half-grin, rosy blushed cheeks on pale bisque and a replaced platinum mohair wig in a short, tousled style. The incised mark at the rear base of her neck is HURET, an elongated neck like that of a young teenager and it fits perfectly into the raised socket of her fully jointed French composition and wood body with a shapley, older girl waist. There is some paint flaking off on her torso (and hands), probably wear from doll stands, and even though there is a pink layer below, the finish of the body looks original and was maybe a top layer. Her antique A-line frock is a smart, burgundy and black striped number, with black velvet trim and she wears an antique velvet bonnet, antique undergarments and black leather shoes. 

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Jumeau Triste Bebe

Size 13


Affectionately called the “long-faced” Jumeau for her apparently somber mood, the Jumeau Triste (“sad” in French) offers an important spot in your bebe collection. Maybe she is just one of those friends who doesn't smile a lot, but instead displays a pensive depth in her natural expression.

What a beautiful look she has, with dark brown paperweight eyes, detailed lashes, brows and shading, an elongated face with a rose pink closed mouth, pale, creamy bisque and pierced ears. Her antique blond wig is a hand sewn masterpiece with long, flowing locks called tails and it is possibly original. The head in incised “13” and the body is the typcical Triste style with the very chunky torso, jointed arms and legs, but with straight wrists and it is well marked in the back “Jumeau Medaille D'Or.”  

Her antique costume is multi-layered with an under dress of feather-light ecru net over a fine silk lining and covering that up is a deepest blue, velvet coat dress with a faint ecru dotted pattern and pearly buttons. Her undergarments are so Jumeau with the crisp half slip and pantaloons, with matching camisole and she wears an antique satin, silk and lace trimmed bonnet, also in ecru. Her black leather shoes are antique child shoes.

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Jumeau Size 7 in Couturier Costume

$5,250.   ON HOLD

How special it is to see genuine, all original Tete Jumeau bebe like this (18"), as she appeared on the market in 1884, wearing a factory made, Ernestine Jumeau couturier dress, bonnet and marked Jumeau shoes in a luscious berry color. She has ocean blue paperweight eyes, a closed mouth, pale bisque with gracefully painted facial features, brows and lashes, pierced ears and her original dark blond human hair wig.

Her head is fully marked with the red Tete Jumeau and artist marks, size 7, as is her body with the blue “Jumeau Medaille D'Or” mark on the lower back. The body is fully jointed, has jointed wrists and original paint, just having some paint missing noticeably at the shoulder joints and usual wear in other places of movement.

The multi-layered silk costume, although melted in certain areas that were most subject to the environment over the decades, is an artful combination of burgundy and berry red accents over ecru and tan that is carried through to the original lace trimmed bonnet. The white cotton underclothing consisting of a one piece camisole and pantaloons and a full slip, both of which have matching details in cut, trim, and closures. The coordinating burgundy stockings could not be more perfect for the most gorgeous, berry colored leather, marked Jumeau shoes, highlighted in gold.

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Steiner Fre. A Bebe

Extraordinary Markings


Here is a stand-out Steiner Figure A bebe, not only due to her especially appealing face, but also due to her presentation, body and shoe markings and sublime antique costume. Let's start with her large, blue paperweight eyes and closed mouth with artful painting of features that give her a sincere and serious expression.

Her bisque is strikingly pale, she has pierced ears and what looks to be her original, tightly curled human hair locks. Her fully jointed Steiner body with slender hands not only has the flag-carrying “Le Petit Parisien, Medaille D'Or” paper label on the hip, but also a boutique paper label on the middle of her back that matches the mark on the sole of her original shoes (One shoe is missing the sole). They both read “A La Mignonette, 4 Rue Notre Dame de Lorette”. The body label also reads “Poupees et Bebes, Costumes et Trousseaux, Mon Guigue”.

The vibrant, antique red dress is a strong, with a prominently ruffled bodice treatment, and her bonnet compliments it all with a subdued orange red, woven cap with red silk trim and ties. Fine, burgundy woven stockings finish the package but we must not forget to mention the quality, multi-layered undergarments with pink woven thread trim and some matching lace edging on the pantaloons and the half-slip. Such an exquisite example of this doll!

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Earliest Bru Teteur Brevete

  In the fascinating chronology of Bru bebes, the Bru Teteur, or "Nursing Bru", has a chapter all its own due to the several stages of production on this innovative doll.  Shown here (13 3/4") is the earliest in the line of these dolls that replicated the act of nursing, which was made possible by inserting in the open mouth glass bottle with rubber tip that was also offered for sale.  In the bisque head was a heavy rubber balloon that could ingest water through the mouth with suction caused by turning a knob outside the back of the head.  The earliest dolls had the ivory knob like this one, which was later replaced with metal.  None of these work anymore due to the drying of the rubber.
This early head is known as the Brevete and it portrays a very young child or even infant.  At the bottom of this listing I have provided a photo of the same doll in a Christening gown taken when I had her in my collection of early infants.  During a couple of years of production, the nursing Bru's were made using Circle Dot and also Bru Jne. heads which are more readily found.
The dramatic coloring on this child is due to the rich brown paperweight eyes against the eggshell white bisque, brought to life with gentle rose-tinted cheeks and lips.  Part of her original skin wig remains as shown in the body shots, however she also sports a replacement skin wig elsewhere, which fits on top.  She has a swivel neck on bisque shoulder plate and bisque forearms.At the middle left side of her forehead is a faint Y hairline that she has had all the years in my possession (Photos available).  Her leather body is sturdy and clean with some typical bending.
Most enjoyable was finding this antique, white knit bebe ensemble that she models, using several combinations of pieces in each photo.  There is a darling one-piece camisole and pantaloon garment, a half skirt, a full dress or shift, a sweater and a matching bonnet, all with the same design.  Crocheted socks and linen shoes are also antique.  A super special doll with an endearing presentation.

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Galloping Wind-Up Horse and Rider


Although this interesting wind up toy is much older than any of us, he brings to mind the mood of the film, “Lawrence of Arabia”, with his galant, multi layered costume of the Middle East and his riding pose on his four-legged desert transportation. Purchased in Paris France, he has a French bisque character head with brown bisque, brown glass eyes, an open mouth with teeth, and a paper mache body with metal hands, jointed at the shoulders and hips.

His intricate costume with hooded head turbin is a combination of cotton, linen, felt and cord trim with black boots and he sits on a leather saddle with reins.   His mohair covered horse supplies all the action as when you wind the key under the belly, his legs pivot front to back to cause a galloping motion, with the rider changing posture as needed.

The entire piece is about 11" tall,  and 11" long, with the mane and tail of the horse being of real horse hair!

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E.J. Bebe Size 7


Emile Jumeau introduced the EJ bebe early in the 1880's as a transition from the early portrait, the faces of the two models were sometimes so interchangeable, it was difficult to differentiate them. During a couple of years of production, the EJ face took on a softer, and just as beautiful quality and it is the second series EJ that is shown here (16").  Here eyes are a bottomless pool blue in paperweight with soft, flowing lashes and lush brows, her mouth is closed and painted a blush rose, her ears are pierced and she is incised “E7J” Depose on the back of the head. Smooth pale bisque is a palate for her soft shading and the blond mohair wig she wears is original,

The jointed wood and composition body with loose balls and straight wrists is stamped “Jumeau Medaille d'Or on the lower back. It has its original finish with a few small ares of typical wear and a strip of paint loss on the upper right arm. This vision in sea foam green, light wool is wearing her original dress and most likely original undergarments as the camisole, pantaloons and slip all button together at the mid-section. She wears a frilly antique cotton, ribbon and lace bonnet, antique crocheted stockings and French leather shoes.

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"M"  Bebe Commissioned from Jumeau


This dreamy, attractive bebe (12") with her familiar, but unique look is surely from the Jumeau factory but she is marked with an incised “M3” telling us she may have been marketed through a retailer who preferred not to use the Jumeau name. Many department stores and boutiques in Paris would commission Jumeau to supply them with unmarked bebes for this very reason. Her wide, almond shaped, brown paperweight eyes and delicate flowing lashes and brows are very calming as there is a peaceful quality to her whole face including her richly colored closed mouth and her very pale but somehow warm bisque tone.

She has an antique, ashy blond mohair wig, pierced ears and a French composition body that is jointed at the shoulders, elbows and hips,but not the knees.What may be her original black and white plaid silk frock is very fragile on the whole back side, however so sweet that it needs to be kept to gently display her or store with her. She wears a luxurious black velvet chapeau adorned with antique blossoms and she wears lovely brown antique French shoes marked with “3” with antique beige socks. Sweet little bebe.

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More French Dolls go to page 2


Post Office Box 4327  n   Burbank, CA 91503

      Cell (818) 738-4591   n Home Phone (818) 562-7839 

Don't forget to look at the Miscellaneous page!

[ home ] [ about us ] [ accessories ] [ all bisques ]  [ early ] [ fashion dolls ] [ french dolls ] [ furniture ] [ german dolls ] [ misc. dolls ] [ policies ]