Friday, June 3, 2011

Antique Paper Doll - Lillian Russell

One of the treasures I collect are L&B antique pressed paper dolls that were sold both under the name of the German maker L&B (Littauer & Boysen) or also by the US distributor Dennison.

These dolls are amazing in person, since they are large, heavy duty embossed lithographs.
The actual pieces for this Lillian Russell doll is around 14 inches tall assembled, when you add a torso to her.  The head portion of this doll is 4 inches high, her legs are 7 inches high and her torso 5 3/4 inches high.

One of the dolls currently in my collection is of the late 19th century Actress Lillian Russell.
Since these paper dolls are over 100 years old and getting harder and harder to get; when I first purchased my doll she did not have the correct color of ballet slippered legs.  Luckily, I've since been able to acquire the correct color of legs and now have all the correct parts and pieces.

I finally have all the correct parts for this paper doll
 It took me a while to get all the correct parts to complete this 
Lillian Russell doll but here she is - at last!

The beautiful and talented Lillian Russell
Vintage photos of the Actress.
I love Victorian images.  
It's so much fun to see the clothes and hairstyles.

Lillian Russell doll as I originally purchased her
 When I originally purchased this doll, from a nice lady in Australia;
she had the green ballet slippers of another doll - Adelina Patti
(see the next post)

These are the 3 Actress Ballerina dolls by L&B.

3 Ballerina Actress Heads by L&B

3 matching pairs of arms and legs - Blue, Pink and Green
I don't own the two sets above so I can't provide a better scan of the parts;
but I love how the image shows they were once all attached from the
manufacturer when they left L&B in Germany and wanted to show them.
( I have each of these dolls parts separately, just not the complete connected sheets 2844 and 2849)

Another look for the Lillian Russell doll

Back in October I did a project using this for a Halloween Witchy look
where I paired her head up with another set of vintage L&B legs and arms in Black.

This is the original scan of doll parts I used for my Halloween project
I started with this original scan of parts and then made some alterations in Photoshop.

This is what she looked like after I altered her in Photoshop
 I wanted a Witchy look for my project so I changed her bodice
to orange and then I cleaned up the black on her legs and gloves.

An original vintage torso for the L&B dolls
 This torso is original to the age of the L&B
paper doll and is 5 3/4 inches tall.
With the bodice in place you can dress up the doll any way you
like it or you can just cover the torso in a pretty pattern and let her be a corset doll.

The great thing about these dolls is that I can scan them in, clean them up, change colors 
when needed and use them as many times as I want in art project while the originals 
are safely protected in a special binder waiting for more lovelies to join them.  
If I'm lucky I'll find another doll or two before the year is out.  
Wish me luck!


  1. Thank you so much for sharing. I just love these dolls!

    1. Thanks for letting me know LaRae - I'm so glad you like them.

      Best Wishes,
      Evelyn aka EKDuncan