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Elizabeth Taylor Paper Dolls

The bulk of this post was actually written a few weeks ago, but I kept pushing it back to accommodate other posts.  Now, suddenly, it’s very topical, so enjoy with a bit of mixed emotions.

A few weeks ago I wrote about Ayyam-i-ha.  One of the things I didn’t mention is that Ayyam-i-ha often includes the giving of gifts.  My Mum sent a package with the loveliest presents: a cloisonné thimble, and these Elisabeth Taylor paper dolls:

The front cover. I wish she had smiled more

The book was published in 1957, and includes two dolls, one on the front cover and one on the back, and seven pages of ensembles.

And it is in pristine, uncut condition.  Go Mom!

Back cover. Isn’t that swimsuit fabulous?

The present isn’t as random as it sounds.  I’ve collected paper dolls since I was a little girl, mostly modern ones by Tom Tierney, but vintage ones too when I can get my hands on them.

The pages of ensembles in the book are just fabulous, even if I really doubt they have any relationship to what Taylor actually wore in real life!

First, you have dresses “For the Gala Opening”, complete with little fur wraps

Va va VOOM!

And a photo of Elizabeth Taylor:

Awwwww (also, needs to smile more)

Then you have suits and jackets for “On the Avenue”

Love the completely random colours. So late 50s!

Followed by “Cruise Clothes”.

That sailor dress just makes me melt

I wonder if Taylor ever went on a cruise?  If she did, do you suppose she wore anything like this?

Tee hee. What do you do in this outfit anyway? Is it a swimsuit?

Returning home, Taylor got to have ‘Lazy Days’

This page is my favourite

I want this dress:

Could I get away with it? Or would people ask “why the backwards apron?”

It wasn’t all play though, because she also has a page of ‘Big Town Togs’, each with their own hat.

Look at the buttons on that blue number! Talk about bling!

My favourite (of course) is the pink one (though the green outfit is tres cute!):

Mostly I just like that the hat makes me giggle. It’s like a levitating fringe!

Finally, fulfilling both men’s fantasies at once, Taylor has a page for ‘Sleepy Time’ (yeah, really practical for sleeping in) and ‘Busy Time’.

Those frilly nighties don’t look like they are meant for sleeping in!

As for ‘Busy Time’.  Well, it’s a well known fact in Hollywood circles that Elizabeth is particularly remembered for her excellent roast turkey:

Turkey or no, that little black dress is darling!

And the retired shopkeepers well recall the oft-seen sight of her perusing their vegetable bins, laden basket in hand.

What every Hollywood housewife wore for their vegetable run

Poor Liz, her life was never as simple and happy as the paper dolls tried to portray.  I just hope that she got to smile a lot more than they show her too!

 

 

 

11 Comments

  1. i so want this! although I would play with it all the time…lol. maybe just have to settle for making some of the clothes? 😀

  2. Beautiful! I so want a pea-green tweed suit like the one in “Big Town Togs”!! And I also collected paper dolls from a young age–love Tierney’s collections! I think the Harper’s and Godey’s based ones were my favorites. Though I confess a fondness for the random first family ones as well–President Jackson and his family, that kind of thing 🙂 Many happy hours meticulously clipping historical paper costumes.

    • The many happy hours of meticulous clipping is the problem – I’m now going back and re-buying the ones I cut out as a kid so that I have pristine ones!

  3. That backwards apron dress is what you can make out of the Mexican fabric! Remember I was trying to explain it but couldn’t quite see it right in my head. That’s the dress for it all right. Would look a treat on you 🙂

  4. Aw, cute!

    When I used to play with paper dolls, I just had to cut out people in Barbie coloring books. And none of the outfits were as cute as these!

    I like that blue “Big Town Tog”.

  5. Marilyn J. Hollman says

    Where can one find these?
    This “book” had more pages than I recall. I never liked pages where all the clothes were for one type of occasion only.
    My Elizabeth Taylor paper dolls had two dolls, also, and the dolls had two different hairdos and “approaches.” One seemed more stern, or more distant, hair was shorter. The other had longer hair and seemed more care-free. I put them into my own “Beverly Gray” stories. This was one of those girls’ series about a journalist. Related to Nancy Drew.
    My mother had a special set of scissors, sharp w/fine points, that were ideal for cutting out the white space when hands rested on hips, etc.

    • I imagine you can buy these off of places like E-Bay: no idea what the value is, but probably reasonably pricey for one in really good condition. Dover does a nice series of modern paper dolls by Tom Tierney, and there might be an Elizabeth Taylor one (I have his Vivien Leigh book), but the outfits will be movie costumes.

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