Young girls have enjoyed paper doll sets for centuries! They have provided an inexpensive but fun form of entertainment. I too loved paper dolls when I was a child. I remember my mother buying me a Princess Diana set in the early 1980’s when she and my dad went away for the weekend and I was left to stay with my grandparents. I delighted in carefully cutting out the clothes and later playing with the doll and her massive wardrobe.
This set called, “Nancy Fancy,” is one of the earliest American paper dolls ever produced. It is by McLoughlin who was at one time the largest manufacturer of paper dolls and children’s books in the United States.
Nancy and her clothes are hand-colored. This set appears to tell a “Cinderella Story” as the set includes both rags and finery for Nancy to wear. She measures about 5″ tall and is in remarkably good condition for her age. It’s difficult to find paper doll sets of this era with their original envelopes. She may be missing a dress as the set doesn’t have the outfit pictured on the envelope.
Antique paper dolls are one of my favorite collectibles. Visit the link below to learn more about their history! Enjoy!