Sunday, 17 January 2016

Exciting News, International Antique Doll, Teddy Bear and Toy Fair

Great News for the New Year. Daniel Agnew and Hilary Pauley are organising a New Fair this year on Sunday 20th November 2016 called The International Antique Doll, Teddy Bear and Toy Fair to be held in the magnificent Olympia Pillar Hall. This Fair will have Dealers from all around the world so a Fair not to be missed. I will be trading there under my business name The Optimists. 

Even more exciting news on Saturday 19th November 2016 they have organised a day of Seminars in the Olympia Hilton Hotel with lots of  speakers including yours truly with a lecture on Norah Wellings at 10 am. I will be adding more about my lecture on Norah Wellings later. Here is a list of all the speakers.

Bunny Campione from the Antiques Road Show, "Dolls and the Antiques Road Show";
Sue Pearson, "A Lifetime's Love of Teddy Bears";
Eric Petit on "French bears";
Andrew Greetham on "Identifying Early British Teddy Bears";
Hugo Marsh on "Diecast Toys";
Rebekah Kaufman on "Steiff";
Gillian Trotter on "Norah Wellings";
Rachel Gotch on "Rare Dolls";
Olivia Bristol on "The history of early British Dolls' Houses;"
Sarah Holmes on "Merrythought-The Early Years";
Pierre Patau on "The history of the Peepshow"
Deborah Rosenthal on "Photographing your treasures"
Chris Littledale on "Trains"
Davis Pressland "the Art of the Tin Toy"
And some mystery guests to be announced!!

You must take a look at their website so you can see all that will be going  on for the weekend 19th and 20th November 2016 . If you want to book any Seminars you can do it on the website. Not only are there the Seminars and Fair but also the event will be opened by Bunny Campione of The Antiques Road Show and an Exhibition of Bunny Rabbits ( including some from Bunny's Collection). 

You do not have to finish your Seminars on Saturday 19th by going home you can book the Gala Dinner at the same Hotel. There will be a Champagne reception followed by a Piano Recital by Jena Pang, after which will be a three course meal with wine. As I said Very Exciting News so please check the webiste.

Hope you can make it I would love to meet you there :-)

Thursday, 17 December 2015

Wishing You All A Very Merry Christmas and A Happy, Healthy and Prosperous New Year

May the Magic and the Wonder of the Holiday Season stay with you throughout the coming year.

Thursday, 4 June 2015

Copy of Norah Wellings 1936 Catalogue and Supplement

You must have been wondering what on earth I have  been up to as I haven't updated my blog for so long. Amazing that my last article was wishing you all a Merry Christmas,  where does the time go! I am very sorry. 

I have been very busy but at last achieved something I have wanted to do for so very long. I own an original 1936 Norah Wellings Catalogue and have taken it to the printers and had it copied. There are 19 pages / 36 sides showing all the  products available in 1936. The photographs are in colour and black and white. As with most of  Norah Wellings catalogues they only show the photograph and the model number. After some research to help you identify the Norah Wellings products you may own I have listed all the model numbers from this catalogue. Also listed where available are the sizes, materials used and the names given for each of the Novelty Dolls, Animals and Nightdress Cases. Please note Norah Wellings did not individually name the Norene, Jolly Toddler or Jolly Jokers but I have listed the sizes they were made in 1936 and also given a brief description on each Series. Many of the Norah Wellings models shown in this catalogue were made from the mid 1930's right through to the late 1940's and in some cases 1950's. This information will be invaluable to identify some of the Norah Wellings Products, A must for Collectors.

The supplement is printed  on 12 pages of one sided A4 paper, No Prices Are Given. The catalogue was an odd size slightly larger so I had the printers change it to fit on A4 paper and make it easier to use. They were  printed locally with harder card for the front and back cover and with a spiral binding.

Please note this is a copy with All Imperfections and No prices are given. It will be posted in a plastic envelope to keep the Catalogue and Supplement together and then put into a Bubble Lined Envelope. If you would like more information or would like to order one you can email me here at 
They are £25 for the copy and supplement plus  £4.30 tracked  postage in the UK and £10 International with tracking. Postage is at cost and high due to tracking if you do not want tracking please email me as you will need to pay with  a U.K cheque or Iban. 

Friday, 12 December 2014

To All A Merry Christmas and Happy New Year.

Wishing You All A Very Merry Christmas And A Happy, Healthy And Prosperous New Year.

Tuesday, 8 April 2014

Fabulous Rare Norah Wellings 18th Century English Gentleman.

I am so grateful to My Dear Friend  Mark Rochester for sharing these photographs of his Wonderful and Very Rare Norah Wellings Gentry Man .  It is so nice that Mark has allowed me to share him with you and write about a Norah Wellings Doll  that I have not seen come onto the market before or advertised in any of the Norah Wellings catalogues.

Norah Wellings Rare 18th Century English Gentleman standing with a fabulous Old English Nightdress Case Model model 997.

Photograph of Norah Wellings taken at the British Industry Fair in 1935. She is holding the 'Old English' Nightdress Case and the Rare Gentry Man that Mark has in his photograph.

It was in the 1980's that  I first saw this Fabulous Gentleman .  I saw him in a book showing a  photograph of Norah Wellings at her stand at The British Industry Fair in 1935 ( as seen here).  All the information in books written at that time and later described him and his partner as models of George and Martha Washington. You can see why as the resemblance is close to other dolls of the famous American President and his First Lady. The  books and publications were also of American Origin,. I also thought that was who they were. It was not until I started my research on Norah Wellings for my book that I finally found out who they were made  to represent. I wanted to include the photograph in my book so I needed  to check where it originally came from and after many months finally my persistence paid off.
The photograph was featured in the March 1935 Toy Trader and an article accompanying it  describes the two dolls as being modeled on 18th Century English Gentry. Mystery solved,  however I believe not many of these dolls were made , certainly not like the other dolls pictured with them in this photograph.

I still think although not in any catalogues he would have been classed as one of Norah Wellings Norene Dolls. He stands 24 inches tall and has  a felt head with painted features. He does not have any ears as his silk embroidery hair is scooped back to produce his wonderful period hair style of the time. He has a cotton body with felt limbs, fully jointed and his two middle fingers are joined together. Wearing a lovely authentic period desgn felt coat and long felt vest, lace ruffle around his neck and cuffs. His britches are of art silk and he has fine knitted socks with felt shoes.

 Close up of his unusual molded face and the fabulous hair style of this fascinating Norah Wellings Gentry Man.
They are truly a magnificent couple together, I wonder if any collectors reading this have any other Rare Norah Wellings to share. I would love to hear from you, please email me at

A Big Thank You Once Again Mark for sharing him and your lovely 'Old English' Nightdress case.

Monday, 3 February 2014

Norah Wellings Paintings and Soccer Player

Oh dear what can I say this was meant to be my Happy New Year article!! Here we are at the beginning of February. I hope you all enjoyed the Festive Season it seems so far away now especially with Easter Eggs now in the shops.  I do hope that 2014 will be A Good Year for all of you and sorry for the delay.

 I thought I would show what Norah Wellings items I bought during last year but then  I couldn't remember buying anything. I knew that couldn't possibly be true and as we have just moved I hadn't unpacked everything until a few weeks ago and low and behold I unpacked two wonderful paintings by Norah Wellings. I believe the roses is an earlier work judging from her signature and the pot of flowers painted in her retirement.  There is a similar painting in my book using the same table in the later painting. I am thrilled to bits with them especailly as I enjoyed seeing Norah Wellings garden which was very special to her in retirement and her roses were a favourite , I hope you enjoy seeing them.

The other purchase  is a cute little soccer player only 6 1/2 inches tall from the Norah Wellings Novelty Range model 1167 he first appeared in an unmarked catalogue that looks to be 1939/40. I was told by the former Manager  that the first ones were sold wearing Wolverhampton colours. Other colour outfits were made later. These do not appear in any of the 1950 catalogues.

I am amazed I got through last year with only these Norah Wellings purchases, I wonder what this year will bring!

Happy Hunting

Tuesday, 31 December 2013

Norah Wellings Handkerchief Satchets

Norah Wellings Nightdress Cases were very popular in the 1930's  and Norah Wellings also made Handkerchief Satchets a smaller version of the Nightdress Case in some of the models but not all.

The Handkerchief Satchet was listed as being 9 1/2 inches tall  and they were nearly a duplicate copy and  model number of the Nightdress Case it was to represent but with AA after each number.  Some of the outfits vary slightly due to the smaller size so they are not always as elaborate. The earlier Handkerchief Satchets had felt or velveteen heads that would swivel. most of the eyes were painted but I have seen the Mexican and Negress with glass eyes. They wore elaborate outfits mostly representing different National Costume made of Silk, Taffeta, Velvet and Felt. Some wore hats and others had mohair, wool or silk for hair. Their skirts formed the Satchet where you could open the skirt and store your Handkerchiefs and would fasten at the side with press studs to keep the item in place. The Norah Wellings label was either sewn on the foot on  the skirt or even on the back of the body.
The range in 1936 is listed below.

Model  Number    Name  
980 AA                  Negress
981 AA                  Dutch
982 AA                  Eastern Lady
984 AA                  Mexican
985 AA                  Spanish
986 AA                  Italian
996 AA                  Old English
997 AA                  Old English

 It is interesting to note that although  there are 9 different Handkerchief Sachets listed in the 1936 catalogue there were 18 Nightdress Cases in the same catalogue so only half have been made to represent the Nightdress Cases.

Old English, Model 996AA

                                                                Old English Model 997AA

Dutch Model 981AA ( my thanks to Mickie of Yesterdays Toys for allowing me to use this photograph )

 In 1939/40 two other models were introduced 6026 AA  Old English ( child face model ) and 6027 AA Dutch (  child face model).

 By late 1940's all the Handkerchief Satchets from the 1936 catalogue had been discontinued and others had taken their place. I am afraid the later catalogue only mentions the model  numbers not the countries they are to represent  so I have put a question mark next to those I have not been able to identify. Fortunately some have come to me in the past with paper labels and the country stamped on the back of the label. The later Handkerchief Satchets have been found with Felt, Stockinette and sometimes Cotton Heads and arms, all have painted features.

Model Number    Name
6027AA                 Dutch
6045AA                 Mexican
6047AA                 Old English
6048AA                 Italian
6049AA                 Old English ?
6050 AA                Spanish ?

                                                                     Italian Model 6048AA

                                                                     Mexican Model 6045AA


                                              Pages From a 1950's Norah Wellings Catalogue

It does not matter how much Norah Wellings research material I have or how many catalogues there are always models that appear that are not listed or variations that I have not seen before. I do know that I have seen a Teddy Bear and a Trikko the Monkey Handkerchief  Satchets but as yet I do not have a photo of one. I do have photo's of the nightdress cases and you can see them in my earlier articles on nightdress cases on the 30th January 2012 ( listed on the right hand side of page under 'More Articles on Norah Wellings Products' , press on 2012 ). If anyone can help with any other photo's of Handkerchief Satchets or if I come across others I will add them to this article as I get them.

The last photo shows the difference in size of the nightdress case and the Handkerchief Satchet but both models I have not seen in a catalogue. They both belonged to Isobel Nicholls, Norah Wellings niece so they may have been special variations of the 'Old English' model from the late 1940 early 1950's.

I do hope you have enjoyed this article. If you have any different  photographs of Handkerchief Satchets you have come across and are willing to share so I can add them here then please email me at

Happy Hunting