Located in France, Bru Jne & Cie was one of the best French doll companies that manufactured bisque dolls from 1866 to 1899. The doll company was founded by Leon Casimir Bru and his creations were commonly known as Bru dolls. The Bru dolls are the most sought-after and desired elegant French dolls that collectors would drool over. A piece can even cost a collector several thousand dollars. The most exquisite pieces of the Bru collection had a Bebe design which was composed of bisque limbs, fine bisque head, and kid body.
Some of the Bru doll’s bisque heads were supplied by Eugene Barrois. The company was also a member of the Society Française de Fabrication de Bebe & Jouets (S.F.B.J.). Leo also made dolls which were designed to be fed. These were the Bebe Teteur and Gourmand designs. Moreover, Bru doll had three basic categories available for their demanding customers:
1) Poupee de Modes (Lady Doll) – These dolls were crafted with lady bodies.
2) Bebe Bru (Child Bru) – These dolls were made of leather kid bodies.
3) Bru Doll (Wood Bru) – These dolls were simply made with wood and composition body.
Here is a list of some Bru Jne & Cie dolls that may be worth several tens of thousands today:
1) Poupee de Modes (1866) - This Fashion Lady doll measured 11 inches to 28 inches tall and was made of swivel bisque shoulder plate head. Its kid body is made of leather and rubber (gutta percha) and its wig could either be made of mohair or human hair. Some dolls have painted eyes and some were made with paperweight eyes. The lady dolls’ ears were pierced and had smiling pursed lips.
2) Brevete Bebe (1879) - The doll has a marking with registered patent “Bebe Brevete SGDG Paris” and it measured 11 to 28 inches tall. Just like with the previous batches, the Brevete had a leather kid body and its socket head was made of fine bisque. The lower arms were also made of bisque. The doll had painted lower and upper lashes, pierced ears, paperweight eyes, feathered eyebrows, and skin wig. A tiny gap between its lips is also visible even if it’s closed-mouthed.
3) Circle Dot Bebe (1879) - The doll stands 11 to 28 inches tall and had a bisque socket head, gusseted body, bisque lower arms, and mohair or human hair wig. Its lower arms were not jointed at the elbows while its closed mouth had a gap between it. Its marking on the head was a crescent over a dot or a dot within a circle.
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