Sunday, July 12, 2015

Recent Acquisitions: Willow, The Ultimate Collection By Dianna Effner

  It's almost not 'recent' any more! Ken bought this Willow doll for me for Mother's Day back in May.

I've loved the Willow sculpt since I first saw a porcelain Willow at a doll show about 20 years ago.

The sculpt is by Dianna Effner, who also sculpted the Little Darling dolls. I love those too, but they are way out of my reach. I do have the Ashton Drake Alice in Wonderland Effner doll though. You may have seen her in a recent post.
In fact, I got Alice for my birthday in March, and did the post in May about a week before I got Willow. That means it's taking me about 2 months to post a doll. That's getting pathetic.
Don't look at me that way. I'm working on it.
I have a smaller, porcelain Willow doll sold by Ashton Drake, and Effner's porcelain Goldilocks.
Both of which you can see here in my over crowded glass case. Goldy is on the left, and Willow is in the back, right, next to Casper. I have reworked the case a bit since this picture was taken. It's not quite so bad now. Please ignore the scary Shirley Temple at Goldy's elbow. As with many of those dolls, her eyes have turned a weird shade of green.
 They're bisque though, and I hate the feel of bisque. I suppose it shows how common I am, but I prefer the warmer, friendly feel of vinyl. Maybe it's just a generational thing.

This Willow is from The Ultimate Collection, but I have no idea what that means, or what other dolls were in the collection. It seems that both porcelain and vinyl dolls were in "The Ultimate Collection", so I don't know what the criteria for being 'ultimate' was.

 She was produced in 1989 and stands about 2 feet tall. She is vinyl, with a wired, stuffed cloth body.

It's wired, but only her arms and head are posable. You can't make her sit down to save your life!
As you can see, I had laundry on the line the day these pictures were taken...and almost every other day. Please try to ignore my neighbors' ugly fence. I do...

And her arms aren't that poseable. As you can see,our corn is growing. It has tassels now! (or whatever they're called.)
I think she's a bit over stuffed too. She looks very pumped. Check out those shoulders.
"Willow wants to PUMP YOU UP!"
This is her original outfit, minus a cross necklace she came with. Mine was missing it.
I wore saddle shoes just like these when I was a tiny kid. When I was in high school they became popular again. (Let's blame Grease. Oh heck, let's blame the whole 50's resurgence.) Since they were so popular they became the LAST thing I wanted to wear. I never would have thought about buying them for my kids, but they LOVED them, so they all had a pair. (Even Fuzzy, who had a pair of soft, almost tennis shoe looking ones.)

She doesn't have freckles, which I would have liked. Maybe someday I'll add some.

I would also have liked her hair to be more red. The cutest Willows I have seen have had very unmistakable red hair.This hair is almost brown.

I sound like I don't like her, but I do. I love Dianna Effner's beautiful children's faces. It's just me being picky, trying to arrive at my perfect Willow.
This one comes pretty close.

 I'm playing around with the idea of braiding her hair.
Willow has a thinner, narrower face than most of Effner's dolls. They're usually very round.
It's such a sweet face.

Even with those little pouchy bags under her eyes. She looks so real.

Willow would make a great Anne of Green Gables or Pippi Longstocking.

There's that laundry again. At least the underwear isn't in view...
Here are some more pictures of Willow because I just love her.


  1. Hi!
    I was just reading your post, as I too, have a Willow, but she has the freckles and the redder hair you spoke about. Are you looking for the type I have?

    1. Is this the same Willow as mine, only with freckles, etc.? If not, which Willow is she? Is your doll vinyl?

    2. Hi Tam,
      She's similar, purchased in the late 90's, porcelain. I have pics of her. My cousin wants to sell her.

    3. Hi Tam,
      She's similar, purchased in the late 90's, porcelain. I have pics of her. My cousin wants to sell her.

    4. I prefer the vinyl, but I've posted your comment. Maybe you'll get an offer. If you want to leave another comment with contact info, I'll be glad to publish it here so people can contact you if they're interested.

  2. I have a porcelain willow kit, head torso legs and arms, unpainted. Not sure what to do with it. I acquired a lot of porcelain dolls and items and I am strictly a reborn doll person. Any suggestions of price if I list it on ebay or something?

    1. I know Effner dolls and Willow specifically are always popular.Finished dolls seem to be selling for anywhere from $30 to $100.I'm not sure what to suggest you start an unfinished kit at. I don't think they come up very often, but alot of people want a finished doll. Start at $30 and hope?

    2. You can paint her up. She would be cute when finished.

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    4. Is there someone near you that can paint her? Maybe they would do it for you.

    5. The other option would be if there is a doll class near you maybe they can assist you while you paint her.

  3. How tall is your Willow. I have a kit and I'm going to start working on her. Just wanted to get dimensions in mind. Yours is very pretty.

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Thanks in advance for your comments.