A beautiful Voit child with the classic leather body was an expensive doll impressively dressed but when I examined her I found that someone had used a dab of glue to hold her wig on, and then later someone took the wig loose and a spot of the dolls' finish was torn away. I have meant to fix that for years. My favorite compound for mending papier mache dolls is Elmer's wood filler. It dries a nice color too that matches the doll's composition. A dab of the filler, left to dry an hour and then sanded, and painted with black Liquitex artists acrylic tube paint Leaves the black pate in nice order again.
While the pretty but not really proper dress is off, the doll's beautiful white kid body is more exposed and I can see that the gussets of the elbows are very fragile. After all this body dates approximately 1845. Some would say 1830. I am wrapping the mid arm with inch wide strips of bias cut muslin, my standard solution for many dolly ills. The elbows will no longer flex as I move the doll about and dress her, but neither will the old leather give up and pour out the saw dust which will eventually rot the whole thing. Wrapping like this does not use pins or glue (horrors) or any thing damaging to the old dolly. A few stitches hold it in place.
The unders on this doll were never really made for her. The chemise is a full size child's garment, just folded and pinned with safety pins to hold it on the doll. The waist band of the pantalets lacks a lot of meeting around her chubby middle. I will look through my stash of doll unders and see if I can do better for her. Meanwhile I can rinse these nice little garments and add them to the stash till needed.
Agnes is another big heavy girl. She has sat around waiting some little touches and finally I have made the changes that make her more attractive. Presentation really is everything! She needed shoes which I fitted for her, and a petticoat which was lacking, and I shortened one from the stash by making a big hand stitched tuck all the way around, hiding it under the broad band of tucks. I made undersleeves of old tule for her arms.
While working with Agnes I have to be careful that she does not clap her heavy china hands together and break them! Jackie found Agnes for me early one morning at Brimfield.
Today a child size dress came from ebay. Look at the box! We are glad a doll or a painting was not inside as it looks like it was run over by a vehicle. The dress is fine and Lucy likes it ever so much.
All in all a pleasant day working on the doll family. e