Welcome to My Red Cape. Long ago in another time my husband Jack and I lived in a little old red house. It was the stuff of dreams to us for the few years that we were there. I live there still a number of hours every day in imagination, with old dolls and paintings and fabrics and feather trees. I draw inspiration and happiness from the memories of that space in time and share some of it here with friends who remember how to step with Alice through the looking glass and take delight in whimsies and antiquities.

For more than sixty years I have studied, collected, repaired, and bought and sold antique dolls. They have been back ground music in my life at every stage, sometimes louder, sometimes subdued, but always there with me. To see only the posts about dolls on this blog, click the banner on the right titled Dolls for My Red Cape. Keep clicking “Older Posts” to see more. Some of the posts featuring rug hooking are gathered under the banner For Cathy. From time to time items are offered for sale under the banner “O’Neill’s Antiques” which was our shop name for many years. ~Edyth O’Neill

Sunday, July 15, 2018

Edyth O'Neill Closet Sale

Dear Friends,   As I am overcome with projects and parts and past creations, I have decided to list some here. I will add new items at the top not the end.  To purchase an item, pay by paypal, show the payment as for "goods and services" which allows that company to have their small percentage.  As you make a payment, there is a box to include a note to the seller. Please state the item you are purchasing!  This is vital or I do not know what to send you!  First come first serve, I will refund to you if the item is already sold.  Paypal knows me by my email address, joneill816@austin.rr.com  Be sure the address you show there is correct to mail the item.  Money back, minus my postage if you are not happy and return the item to me as you received it.  Be sure to email me if this should happen.  Most people who read here are friends and I treat you as such.
  Due to a heavy load of emails I cannot answer questions about items  not yet listed, just those you see offered and priced below.  I am working on it!  Thank you for looking, e

If an item sells, I will mark it sold and remove it after  conclusion.

#12.   SOLD, Thank you.    Straw Hat for a Large doll.  The color is more like the picture of the underside, a rich golden straw.  In very nice vintage condition with a pleasing faded cloth rose.  Note the straw is just cut off blunt and ends abruptly on the edge at the bottom of the first picture. This came on a big papier mache doll  and is old but not that old.  11 inch diameter. $20 includes priority mail.  If your big cloth doll needs a hat when she goes out in the garden, maybe this is it!

#13. A lot of three pieces of clothing for a tiny child or a big doll, plus a neat very tiny bib.  The bib is 6 inches over all, fine for a medium size baby doll. Not stained, looks never used. front and back shown. Price for complete 4 piece lot,  $37 including priority mail.

 A white baby gown, no fastener at the neck in back.  A loop and button can be added. length 28 inches.

A red and white  cotton dress, great for a large cloth doll.   Nice condition, length 20 inches, 9 inches across the shoulder.

Beautiful creamy white wool flannel slip, no holes!  Nice detail at the hem line.  Overall length 20 inches.  

 A few age spots, as shown, no others that I see.  very clean lot.  $37 for all four pieces.

#2.  a new unused autographed copy of Rugs for my Red Cape, $95 including priority mail.

#3.  a new unused autographed copy of Rugs for my Red Cape, $95 including priority mail.

#5.  A labeled Greiner doll head on its Lackman style drop seat body, missing arms and face repainted before I got her.  Feels good and  solid. The body is worth the asking price.  overall doll 19 inches $85. including priority mail.

#8. Adorable Steiff Polar Bear, with tag and button, in very nice condition, a good size for a large doll to hold. Size 4 1/2 inches tall.     $135 including priority mail.


#9.  My mother called simple flat dolls pancake dolls.  I made this one several years ago, 15 inches tall, Oil painted face, clean condition, $45 including priority mail.

Thank you for looking, I will try to add more along. There is a table full already and I am still in the closet.  e

Wednesday, July 4, 2018

Happy fourth of July

Time flies!  
Today I finally made the commitment to myself to gather and sort and re box a few  things in my  out of control storage. I want everything sorted and labeled. But I must begin with a few and work out from there. To that end I emptied drawers and boxes and began new piles with names on top of each stack like Doll unders or doll clothes or whites to make doll unders or lace for 18th century dolls and doll body fab and on and on.  One  rubber made bin got put away in the garage, labeled wood and wood carving tools. I do not plan to carve anything just now. Another is hoops and hooks and rug tape. I will add to it as I come across more here and there.  You get the idea what I am working with but could not imagine how much there is and how mixed up it is after moving many times and stirring through it. A box says string, another says bungies. Another holds cross stitch supplies and frames, another Paternayan yarn. Several big ones hold light bulbs. When these are gone what in the world will I do with my iron lamps and hand made shades?   There are more than 150 picture frames in there plus all the stuff you would expect, scales for weighing packages and empty boxes and packing supplies and on and on. 

My garage is an untamed wilderness. At this point I am committed to sorting doll clothes and fabrics for them. Whatever else gets done on the side as I go along is a bonus. But I can’t dress the dolls without this basic start.  

Here is Kathryn, a lovely 24 inch wooden doll carved by Kathy Patterson in the style of the mid 18th century woodens.

Kathryn is among the most beautiful dolls I own. I am trying different fabrics for her clothing.
I should explain that I enjoy making dolls and doll bodies and have made my own patterns dating back to newspapers cut up in the 1950's in all sizes.  Unfortunately I do not enjoy making doll clothing other than the simplest pieces.  Many of my old dolls have old clothing I have bought for them over the years.  I will not be able to dress my Kathryn as she should be, though I have nearly a dozen books on 18th century clothing, and many articles on them from doll mags plus a large computer image file. 

When my daughter Beth was born, I had made for her a Christening dress with 52 hand rolled tucks across the bodice and tiny hand stitches throughout.  When I made bed hangings for my bed in the old cape the hand stitched French seams were 90 inches long all over it.   Once I could sew.  I had a thimble on my finger from the age of five.  These things are not going to happen now.   

So Kathryn is out of luck on the best clothing. I have found some mid-19th century unders that she is going to wear and I have the finely quilted piece of old blue polished cotton that I hope will make a quilted petticoat for her.  I have made her a day cap and will make a few more. One gathered to frame her face is wanted.  Some sort of jacket or short gown will happen I hope!  Her apron will be a tiny handkerchief with bobbin lace made by my dear friend Eula.   

The set of 19th century unders is hand stitched so finely I had to use a magnifying glass to see the stitches.  The petticoat is cartridge pleated, on a band with a button, not the ties Kathryn would prefer. The split drawers are not proper for the doll, but I would not want to separate these three pieces made together long ago with so much love and care. So Kathryn shall wear  them.  We will not mention the early glass eyed papier mache doll off in a corner crying over all this, having lost her unders from over 150 years ago! 
Sad to do this.  wrong, wrong. My bad.

A little moppet I have made, dressed in fabric out of the sofa as discussed in earlier posts. 

My old one has been named Marley, that is an English name meaning pleasant wood.  Marley has been to the spa in Canada with David and Paul for a bit of restoration and stabilizing. Here is her picture there with their doll Elswyth.  Marley is on her way home to me now. I will be glad to have her back!  E

Saturday, May 12, 2018

Dolls everywhere.

What happens next when I want a bevy of compatible dolls to have tea and play together, and I cannot even find any more like my English girl to buy? And when I see them the condition or the amazing prices are a bit off putting.  Just the same I am watching for at least one more to buy.  Meanwhile I am playing with creative paper clay and fabric and a list of crafty things to see if I can make some little dolls to enjoy dressing.  The originals are carved of wood, my hands are not up to that.
 Here is what my dining room table looks like:
The wax doll on the left is from about 1840, old enough to associate with these others.

I am documenting the clothing and fragments of clothing from the wooden doll. And gathering lovely white lacy things to make caps and bonnets.  

This wooden doll dates from 1780 to 1820.  The presence of the older silk dress in an earlier more fitted style suggests the earlier date, as does the fact that her head is all wood, the later ones were often made with a mask of plaster for faces to cut back on carving time.

The sun porch is where I stuff and sew the bodies and model  little heads, around papier mache eggs .  Then they will have legs and arms like Sophie here. 

In the 1980's Jack and I bought a country sofa from Barbara and Don Ladd of Connecticut. Made as it was from an old rope bed, this one needed fresh ropes and to be recovered. After we got it home to our shop in Texas, a full day went into taking off the layers of old fabrics. Jack and I were both curious and excited about what all came out of the sofa! As interesting as the coverings if not more so were the things used as padding. There were many wads of cotton rags, clearly once garments. There were parts of old linsey woolsey quilts, now called whole cloth quilts of hand woven linen and wool. And one beautiful but cutup piece of a small woman's dress. Much of the bodice was in the stuffing of that sofa, I have kept the brown cotton vermicular print fabric of the dress bodice. Over time I have used some of it nicely on Pockets and sewing roll ups and have always intended that a special doll should be dressed in it. I think it is about 1830 or so because it was in the sofa. The brown lining of the dress is twill with a great patina for a cloth doll. So last week I made one, a wild little thing, I may have to applique on another face if I cannot stand this one! She has 5 sisters in the making, all will have layers of paper clay and gesso and proper noses. But this waif gives me a doll to sit by me as I sew. I think her name must be Sophie for all the years she languished in the sofa stuffing, and she must have at least a nice pocket from the brown print cotton.

I painted the first two today, they will look better when they have wigs and mobcaps.    

For reference, here is an antique one I am looking at. I have a nice file on them.   e

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