Thursday, July 5, 2012

The Melitta Dolls Of Edmund Edelmann

Established in Sonneburg, Germany in 1921, Edmund Edelmann’s doll company was known as a supplier for doll hospitals and most especially the Melitta doll.  The company was, however, short-lived which only lasted in 1933.  Edelmann acquired its doll heads from famous doll makers like Schoenau & Hoffmeister and Armand Marseille.  The Melitta doll was still Edelmann’s famous creation which was distinguished by its five-part composition toddler body frame and baby facial features.  

According to Marion Kaulitz in his historical documentation about the Art Doll Movement, Edelmann was credited to have a hand in revolutionizing the doll manufacturing industry in the early 20th century.  Although it lacked some details and concrete evidence, Edelmann was nevertheless popular for the finely made Melitta dolls.

Here are Edelmann’s dolls common features:
1)      Bisque Character Baby – This doll was a 5-piece body frame made of composition, was jointed at the shoulder, hip, and neck, had a mohair wig, bisque socket head, sleep eyes with real eyelashes, open mouth with teeth showing, pierced nostrils, and generally marked with the label: “Melitta A. Germany M” or “Melitta”.

2)      Composition Character Baby – This was made of all composition body and socket head, its baby body had bent limbs, painted and molded hair or with wig, open mouth with teeth showing, sleep eyes, some may had  pierced nostrils, these were typically marked with the label: “A.M.”, “Melitta Germany”, “Mine”, or “SPBH Mona”.

At present, a good condition Edmund Edelmann doll dressed in its original outfit can cost around $1,000 to as much as $1,800.  An additional $500 is also added to the pricing for an Edelmann doll with a jointed toddler body.  Of course, the bisque made dolls would cost much higher than the compositions ones.  The typical sizes of an Edelmann doll are 16 inches, 20 inches, and 24 inches tall.  Prices for the dolls may also naturally decrease but not as much if the damage is caused by slight normal wear and tear and slight damaged parts that were well-repaired.  

However, the price could go down as much as half if the damage was on a bisque body part even if it was repaired.  Nevertheless, collectors still find it acceptable if the doll’s finger is missing, or have been mended properly.  Damage on the doll’s body that had been repaired properly is also still acceptable to most collectors and may not tremendously decrease its pricing.  The other collectible quality why most collectors would look for Edelmann’s dolls is that there were only few of these dolls made as attributed to its short-lived small business.

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