Saturday, May 14, 2022

What I Got at the Doll Show: My New Old Betsy McCall!

   You may have read my post on the recent doll show. (And if not, why not?!) I mentioned that I finally got a Betsy McCall with reddish hair. Well she had her photo shoot yesterday, so she's ready to be introduced.

  This Betsy is the 8 inch American Character doll, 'Tiny Betsy McCall. She's the most common to find, and the most preferred by collectors.

  When I bought her she was completely naked. Luckily I have been saving some clothes I thought might be Betsy McCall clothes. Turns out this dress is an actual Betsy dress. I'm more familiar with the red plaid version, but apparently the dress was made in various fabrics.


 I don't know about the hat, so if there are any Betsy experts out there who know for sure, let me know. It might be a Ginny hat.

  Betsy McCall began life in 1951, as a paper doll included in issues of McCalls magazine. 

 You can download Betsy McCall paper dolls for free HERE.


She has jointed knees.

But I have three Betsys now, and none of them can really sit down. Is that a thing? Or is it just my girls?

  She was included in the magazine for the next 44 years, until the magazine ceased publication in 1995.

She has greyish blue eyes.

The first three dimensional Betsy McCall doll was made in 1952. 

They're sleep eyes.

It was a 14 inch doll, made by Ideal.

Her lashes are hard plastic, with molded detail.

  The next Betsy doll made was today's girl. These 8 inch dolls were made by American Character, starting in 1957 or '58.

She also has painted lower lashes.

  American Character also produced 14 inch, 20 inch, 22 inch, and 29, and 36 inch versions of Betsy, some with flirty eyes. There were even cousins for Betsy. Linda, and a boy cousin, Linda's twin, named Sandy, were produced in 1959, as 36 inch Play Pal type dolls. Sandy is SO cute! I want one!

Her little face is blushy.

  Uneeda produced an 11 1/2 inch Betsy McCall in 1964. You may have seen mine HERE.

And she has the sweetest shy smile.

  In the mid 70's Horsman produced a couple of sizes of Betsy dolls.

Her hair is rooted to a skull cap, which is glued to her head.

The dealer said that, in her opinion, this doll is a golden blonde, but her hair does have quite a red tone to it.

Especially in the sunshine. What colour would you call it?

  In the 80's Rothschild made 8 and 12 inch 35th anniversary Betsy doll that looked similar to a vintage Ginny. Tomi and Larami also made Betsy dolls. Tonner brought Betsy back in the early 2000's, in a new version of the 8 inch American Character doll, that looked very much like the original, and a 14 inch doll that greatly resembled the 36 inch Sandy, with it's slightly alien eyes and watermelon smile. 

They also made a 14 inch Sandy doll, and a 29 inch Betsy as Alice doll. Good thing I didn't know about that at the time. At least she's so expensive now I don't even think about her. There was a 29 inch Little Orphan Annie produced using the Betsy sculpt for the 2004 Tonner convention. I don't like that one. In 2008 Tonner and Effanbee produced the Ultimate Tiny Betsy doll. She was an 8 inch Betsy that also had jointed elbows and wrists!

  You can see my other two Betsys HERE, and HERE. Now, just for the fun of it, and because she's so cute, I will leave you with more pictures of Betsy. See you soon!



  1. I love her! I think she's strawberry blonde myself. Maybe a bit more golden than strawberry, but I can see the red. That dress is a great color for her. I didn't like the Tonner doll, I thought she looked kind of creepy. lol But seeing the original, I like her a lot better.

    1. There was something weird in the expression of the Tonner one. She wasn't nearly so sweet and cute as the original.

  2. I adore your new Betsy! I think she has reddish hair. Light auburn, maybe? She looks so sweet in that yellow dress. I have just one Betsy--a Tiny Betsy. I could have a serious obsession with Betsys if I allowed myself. The doll show pics were awesome! I am still unpacking dollies from GAW last month--if anyone is curious about doll conventions, GAW (Grants-A-Wish, held in Livonia, MI every April) is a terrific one! It is low-key, not super-expensive, and relatively easy to get to. I drive there from WV--it takes about 6-7 hours--but it is a lovely one! One of the highlights this year was Carol Spencer as a guest speaker. She was charming!

    1. I only have three Betsys because the one was amongst a huge, cheap haul at a yard sale, and the other was $1 at a flea market, and new girl was unusually cheap. I didn't think I'd ever have one, let alone three!
      Did you get anything amazing at the show? Livonia is only 2 1/2 hours for me. I might have to go next year! Are you going to go? We could meet up!

    2. I got a couple of great condition vintage Barbie cases, and a really cool 3D printed room divider for dioramas. You should come to GAW! There’s a Facebook page where you can get details. The hotel is a Marriott that’s attached to a mall, and it has great rates—like $95 a night. The room shopping is such fun! I’d love to see you there—I’m already registered for 2023.

  3. She is so sweet!


Thanks in advance for your comments.