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, April 20, 2008

1860 Paper Doll


This sweet Mcloughlin paper doll was given to me in the 1950's by a lady in Hamilton Texas whose name was Katie. Last name began with E, perhaps Edmondson. It had come down in her family from a girl my friend Katie was named after. The doll is thought to have belonged to Katie Holland, a child whose heart never learned to keep a proper rythm and died in childhood. Little Katie must have enjoyed quiet toys. On the back of the doll is written in pencil the name "Helen".

I have kept the paper doll over 50 years, in an envelope. Now I am passing her to a much younger doll collecting friend to ensure safe keeping for another generation! In thinking of how to share this adorable image of the demure little paper doll, so rightly termed ephemera by collectors, I hit upon the idea of printing a book mark with the image. So now when I remember to put it in the books, I mail the book mark to people ordering my books.

A lovely hooked rug




Rug hooking friend Leah sent photos of her adaptation of my bed rug pattern (available from Barb Carroll at Woolley Fox as are all my rug patterns). Leah chose not to work the center of the design as she wanted to use it under a table and chairs. Her cats think she hooked it just for them! I love the deep colors in Leah's delightful piece, she has created a real treasure! Edyth

Sunday, April 6, 2008

Lassie come home




Jack and I went to a large Antique show in Round Top Texas last Wed, (180 miles east of us) and saw many friends there, and had a really nice time. We used to set up and show there. It became too hard for us many years back. I am sure if we had not had the fire we would still enjoy being in business, with the shop in our beautiful big white stucco barn building there beside our house. We both still enjoy the antiques.
In the antique show we found one of Jack's beautiful hutch tables he made back in the 80's, signed and dated of course. I wished we could buy it back! Jack said if things we have made are beginning to show up in antique shows, we must be getting old!
And in another booth was one of my own dolls, number 10 from 1983 signed and dated of course. The owner began to tell me who made the doll.. Edyth someone, not Edyth Head,.. and I said "me." She said Oh you are Edyth! The doll had been in a Houston estate of a long ago dealer friend Agnes Terry. We did bring her home.
In the 1980's I made and sold a number of cloth dolls. Several of the first ones looked like this blond doll. The second doll and two more were spoon heads, like "Old Spoon" pictured also. Then I went entirely to a round 4 part head with applied and quilted ears. Those looked much like the doll in the red dress. Then 36 big Belsnickle dolls with quilted beards. There were about 125 dolls in all. Last were 6 molded face Izzy looking dolls like this red dressed one, mentioned before, the difference being a better profile.

Last night we went to two art receptions and sat and listened to music until nearly nine. Outside under trees on a big deck, behind one of the galleries. We held hands and relaxed and enjoyed it so much. In Fredericksburg we have vacation all the time! Or maybe I am just feeling the joy of spring. Best to each of you, E

Tuesday, April 1, 2008

note to a sweet friend this morning

Dear Anita, How wonderful to hear about you and how things are going in your life. Thank you for writing to me! Glad you like the blog. I have ideas for more I want to put on it. I have been collecting shots of my rugs (many are gone, lost in the fire or sold since etc) Many of the remaining ones are darker in color from the smoking and cleaning. So good fresh photos like we used in our book will go on the blog as a slide show soon. I have also been collecting photos from friends of the old house interior, and I want to do a slide show of cape shots. Ditto some of the antique dolls. I have the 2 blogs, and enjoy hearing from people so much. I miss old friends!
We are well settled in a modern house in town, but looking always to downsize some and have a one story that we can treat with more warmth. This one has the high ceilings and white tile floors and so forth. We put the yard in after we bought it, this is our third spring here, and the yard pleases me. There were no trees at all, and of course what we have planted does not ever get the cozy old treed look. But we are working on it! Bird feeders and blooming things and healthy tomato plants are joy. When God put man and woman in a garden, He had me in mind! Have a great day, Edyth

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