Dating paperweights

She told me that when she started working for Christie’s, everybody collected wax dolls, but then people got so frightened about how to preserve them that they started to go for the ceramic ones instead (most people who collect dolls collect ceramic dolls). They tend to discolor and crack over time, but when they were new, wax dolls were much more lifelike than anything people were used to.

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I’ve worked for the Victoria and Albert Museum since 1974.They made them themselves, or their parents or older brothers did.If you didn’t come from a family with a lot of money and you didn’t live in a town, you’d be very much thrown back on your resources for playthings.The two pieces might have been made in the same factory but by different people.If you don’t join the correct head size to its corresponding body, the result looks extremely odd. You still had some wooden dolls around, and you can’t necessarily say what people were using to make homemade dolls.

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