Thursday, April 21, 2011

She's done!........Her name is Victoria.

Yes...... I finished the pancake doll...........which I think is a funny name but descriptive I guess:)

I want to thank all those lovely people who left positive comments about my disastrous attempt at knitting a shawl......but, I  unraveled it and I did it again. I don't have any books on knitting so I went on line and found some videos and I think I did a better job this time around.....

Anyway, about the doll. This is what she should look like.......this is a scan from a magazine.....
Her name is Victoria. I bought the pattern for her in 1981 from Canadian Living Magazine. She was an exclusive design for the magazine by Canadian doll artist Judy Pilgrim Stewart who was the designer of a line of dolls called Jenny Dolls.

There was an article in the magazine about Judy and her dolls. Apparently she was a prolific designer and at the time the article was written she had produced 1,394 dolls and her inventory was growing at a rate of 60 a year!!!!

She graduated from the University of Manitoba after studying textiles, costume design and art history. Her studio was in the attic of a rambling old house on the bank's of Winnipeg's Red River.  She first started making dolls in 1967 with hand painted faces and meticulously researched period clothing.

Her attic loft had a cast of doll characters.......Praline the maid, Lavinia Catchpole the housekeeper, Charlotte the milliner and lovely Blanche the model, all under the strict scrutiny of Madame Clothilde, her workroom supervisor. One of Madame's duties was responding to all correspondence much to the delight of Judy's customers.

Victoria, is a Manitoba pioneer doll circa 1860, named after Judy's youngest daughter. She stands 20 inches tall, with yarn hair and embroidered features.

I never made Victoria all those years ago because there was something about the pattern that I didn't like.  I thought it was her feet but after making the doll I realize now that the legs are not in proportion with the torso. Too short.

Anyway, here she is......


Her blouse is made from cotton - Joan Kessler for Concord Fabrics Inc- and her skirt is made from stone washed cotton. She has a petticoat and bloomers with draw string closings. And, she has a shawl made of "Canadiana" yarn by Red Heart.  She hasn't any shoes...yet:)

I don't know what happened to Judy Pilgrim Stewart. I wasn't able to find very much about her or her dolls. I found one image on a re-sale site:

and, on Etsy someone was selling another pattern from Canadian Living Magazine for Anne of Green Gables:
I also found Judy's copyright registration for the name Jenny Dolls but it is now terminated and no longer being used. I find it so strange that such a prolific doll maker isn't mentioned somewhere on the internet.

I enjoyed making this doll.......would I make her again?.......maybe.

Take care.

p.s. I apologize for the poor quality of the pictures. I think I've messed with the settings on my camera. I need to get the son to fix them for me again.......LOL


  1. Mary Ann, she turned out beautifully and I love here shawl LOL! Isn't it sad that such an amazingly talented (and prolific!) Canadian doll designer cannot be found on the net, I hope that there is someone out there who knows what happened to Judy Stewart and her designs. How sad to think that they are moldering away somewhere or that they have been lost entirely. She sounds like an amazing woman, love the story of Madame Clothilde! Victoria has a beautiful face, I hope her namesake (Judy Stewart's daughter) has continued on with her Mom's designs and continues a wonderful family tradition. Thanks for sharing your beautiful doll and this wonderful (if sad) story of her designer. Deb

  2. I love your dolly's face--that is the hardest part to get right.

    That is weird that Judy is just gone. I wonder if she goes by another name or a trademark or something. How do you up and disappear after doing so many dolls and such??

  3. She's turned out so well - very pretty! I think your Victoria has a nicer hairline and her features are so beautifully done. Well done!

  4. Wow...Victoria is very pretty! My little girl was in the room when I was reading your blog and says to tell you that you make beautiful dolls. :) Her eyes are wonderful!!

  5. Beautiful! Inspires me to finish up those soft sculpture Santas I have hiding in my craft cupboard!

  6. Dear Mary Ann,
    I grew up in Winnipeg as a young girl in the '70's, and I owned (and still do) a Jenny Doll. For years every christmas and birthday I ordered and received a beautiful victorian style dress or outfit which Judy Pilgrim Stewart designed made by hand in her magical attic. I have a wardrobe of about 15 outfits, it was a great childhood passion of mine, and I am very proud of my collection. I was one of many little girls in Winnipeg in that time who had a Jenny Doll, and collected outfits from Judy. Judy was a wonderful lady, and had incredible taste and flair. All the doll's hats were hand crocheted straw, and she would embroider and knit to scale. She usually made the dolls to look like their owners, but would also make fictional characters like Laura Ingalls and the Little Women sisters.
    I still keep in touch with Judy from time to time, as her husband was a teacher at my high school. Judy worked also at the Dugald Historical Costume Museum near Winnipeg. She came back to making Jenny Dolls (named after her daughter) after a long break (my nieces were happy recipients about 5 years ago), but has since quit making them. I have wonderful childhood memories of Judy, an incredible lady with a great passion for craft, design, and history.
    Maria L

  7. Victoria is sooo beautiful! I wish I could sew her for my daughter but I can't find the pattern anywhere. I live in Europe and I only looked in Internet...

  8. Linda boneca! Amei o rostinho bordado e atendeu à minha procura para inspirar uma boquinha bordada. Obrigada.


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