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

Friday, August 10, 2018

A new old bonnet

A sweet bonnet arrived in the mail today. Bought from Moira Hatton of Hatton's Gallery on Ruby Lane, it has a cloth back and bavolet with a straw brim. I have saved a vintage straw hat with a very wide closely woven brim for years in my ever bountiful garage, in hopes of making just such a bonnet. A closely woven straw placemat can also be used to cut the brim from. Narrow ribbon, often velvet, binds the front edge of the bonnet and hides the wire that gives it shape. The bonnet is machine sewn in tiny stitches like my feather weight makes. The fabric is cotton not silk.

There was quite a stir among the dolls when I unwrapped it. Jessie Lidianna whose name is written in old brown script on her sleeve, and who carries her Merritt Museum auction tag in her pocket, felt she needed it most. But it is a bit small for her and see who got it! Miss Walker from the house of Walton. It is so sweet with her green dress.  The small textiles and accessories for the doll family are an important part of the collection. 

The bottom of the brim should be close to the chin line. It is too small for her.

Jessie's printed apron is a wonder!

A magnificent doll, my favorite in the now closed Merritt museum.



Sunday, August 5, 2018

A few wooden dolls and friends.

Not just a Hoot! I think she is a Scream! Her shift needs to be gathered in at the neck, She has a petticoat of a nice old print.   I am not through working on her clothing yet.     Mary G gave me some lovely hands she made herself, I have been holding off waiting for better dolls, maybe I won't get more dolls made.. I am going to use a pair of the hands on this one, Thank you Mary!    

Marley on the left below,  has coral beads from Aunt Linda. 

Phoebe would like a gown of this early green cotton. I have saved it for years, bought it one year when we sold at Comfort.  Phoebe is the second hand carved doll I have ordered from Kathy Patterson. Like the larger doll Kathryn, Phoebe is exquisite.  They mirror the early 18th century English woodens.  I could never have those originals.  But now I do have two later 18th century dolls, Marley and Abigail with the blue eyes above. And I am enjoying the moppets I am making to dress in that style.

 Phoebe has a new shift and petticoat. I cut them from a fine old infant dress. The resist dyed Linen with the large pattern is a scrap from the long panels I made years ago for our red cape. The living room curtains were all sewn by hand and lined to protect them from light. It is a Williamsburg print I just love. I have pieces left, might use it on a doll some way. I see in pictures a number of early wooden dolls wear very oversized prints. Phoebe's features are delicate, I do not want to over play the clothing. Friend Linda brought me the linen shirt from a tag sale last week, good fabric and will needle so well.
Having fun, e

Note for Kim who asked, all my rug patterns and more besides are sold by Katie Hartner in Tyler at a nimble thimble.

Saturday, August 4, 2018

Sometimes you have to see my grandchild!

Bailey is having a lovely summer in Wyoming working on a ranch with trail rides for guests.  The picture she sent picking flowers on her horse  just touched my heart!   How wonderful to be 20.   e

 The Blue roan's name is Bullet,  Bailey loves him.  Hers for the summer.

Beautiful scenery near Jackson Hole.

Wednesday, July 25, 2018

July's hot days in west central Texas

Friends have asked how I am  this summer,   Happy and grateful for each good day is my answer.   Outside my home I struggle to keep the green shady look of my dooryard garden. The front yard I do not show you as it is suffering from drought. I have lost three plants in the atrium this last week also. My atrium is watered only with buckets of water carried, it takes 6 buckets to water there.   Many areas near me have had some rains this summer, even other parts of our tiny city. But happenstance or bad luck has left me a long stretch with only a few sprinkles to tease.    The Mexican Oregano draws humming birds in the cooler parts of the day.  I am watering but have not yet had a single bloom from the Little Gem Magnolia which would be covered in lovely flowers in a normal year..

Inside thanks to the air conditioning I am comfortable and happy and busy. A few times a week I venture out to run errands in the heat and come back short of breath and red faced. So good to get back in the cool!   It is the height of peach season for us now, they are luscious and sweet and I eat as many each day as I can. I used to keep a big peach cobbler pie most of the months of July and August, but am just enjoying the fruit fresh this year.  So a trip to the country fruit stand is added to my routine.

My on line closet sale has been very successful and helped change out some of my storage. It has kept me busy making labels and wrapping packages and gathering boxes for a trip to the P O.  Sorting through doll clothes and parts is helping these things be better organized.  As ever, I am enjoying my doll family. Marley, the little English wooden has returned from a stay in Canada with top restoration experts to stabilize her finish.  She has found a place among other early wooden things and old pewter in my big northshore cupboard.  I find pleasure in the sight of her each time I pass by.


Tuesday, July 24, 2018

A Family of China Dolls

A happy box came in the mail from Ruby Lane shop Red Dog Dolls, Theresa sent me two new dolls. I have been wanting that little boy for about a year! The other in a brown dress is a nice sister to the Kloster Vielsdorf girl I already had in dark blue, shown together. The girls are both a scant 18 inches, the boy 13. That hen looks too close for comfort, hope it does not scare the little guy! The fabric of his wonderful jacket is under stress, I think I will slip a soft piece of cotton batiste under the jacket where the points of the shoulder head are, front and back. Of course his clothes are why I had to have him! His clothing is so striking as to approach the level of folk art.    e

Mostly Chinas, with a few others.  e

Blog Archive