Friday, September 30, 2005

Cutest Victorian Graphics






Don't you just love these four animated Victorian Graphics. They came from Victoriana.com (Graphics by Victoriana.com, The Victorian Era Online). They are all part of the Victoriana.com collection of animated gifs assembled from the original 19th century illustrations.

I had to share them all with you because I think they are all just so precious. Of course, then I am biased. My passion is THE VICTORIAN ERA. Of course, you'd never know that by looking at the types of dolls and doll patterns that I design and have available on my Linda Walsh Originals website, now would you?

Friday, September 16, 2005

My Mom, A Classic Beauty At Any Age




Everone in our family and everyone who knows me knows that I poke fun of my mother all the time. How can I resist the urge? I can't. She's a classic beauty. Plus, I'm her eldest daughter, the one she is toughest on. And, unfortunately, I'm just like her (yikes! heaven help me! - see what I mean), minus the classic beauty part.

Anyway, I can't help it because my mother is just so easy to kid around with and is so good natured about it. She puts up with a lot of grief, kidding, and loving aggravation from her five adult (and I use this word loosely) children all the time. She even has to put up with it from her sons-in-law, daughters-in-law, and even her grandchildren. We tell her, after all, you created us! We didn't ask to be born. She just smiles and says "Yes, Dears!"

A little while ago I was shopping with my mother and found a pillow that was embroidered with these words: "Mirror, mirror on the wall - I am my Mother after all!" When my mother and I saw this we both burst out laughing. Much to my horror, it was true.

My mother was born in 1930 and grew up during the depression. She lived with her brother, parents, grandfather, and great Aunt in what was common at the times, one great big extended family all under one roof. At times there were other people living with them as well. She watched her brother go off to war in WWII, went to college, was a beauty queen, and married a WWII war veteran, my Dad. If any of you have seen the movie "Mona Lisa Smile" then you know what I mean when I say she was a "dutiful housewife." However, she raised her two daughters to be proud of who we were, to think for ourselves, to always treat others like we wished to be treated, and to give everything our best shot. For my mother there was never anything we couldn't do. She was the Julia Roberts character in "Mona Lisa Smile" before Julia was.

So, what is the point of this story? My point is this. My mother is a classic beauty at any age. Beautiful inside and beautiful outside. What better example do I have for my "Gray is Beautiful, Too! doll pattern series than my mother. She has aged beautifully and has never done anything artifical to herself. There is nothing fake or phony about her. She is proud of who she is, proud of how she looks, proud of her age, and proud of her life. And, it shows. She is the epitomy of DROP DEAD GORGEOUS!

So, Mom, I give you a lot of grief, you know that. However, you are and always have been my BEST FRIEND. You are and always will be my BIGGEST Linda Walsh Originals fan, my own personal cheering section. You are my role model, my mother, and I love you for it.

Thursday, September 01, 2005

What Is A Doll Really?



In thinking about the anniversary of Raggedy Ann and about dolls in general I had to wonder "What is a Doll, Really?"

According to Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia, a doll is defined as: a model of a human (often a baby), a humanoid (like Bert and Ernie), an animal or a fictional character (like a Troll or a Smurf), usually made of cloth or plastic. Sometimes, intended as keepsakes or collections for older children and adults, it could be made in wood, porcelain, bisque, celluloid or wax. Some dolls are intended as toys for children, usually girls, to play with. Others are for decoration or have some cultural significance, possibly for use in some ceremony or ritual, or as a physical representation of a deity. Archaeological evidence places dolls as foremost candidate for oldest known toy, having been found in Egyptian tombs which date to as early as 2000 BC.

While I think all of that may be the physical representation of what a doll is, the definition is sorely lacking and misses the point entirely. Dolls are much, much more to those of us who loved them as little girls and who still love them as grown-up girls.

They are and were our first BEST friend. They are and were the keeper of all our hopes, dreams, and secrets. We would tell them things we would not tell anyone else. They shared our joys and our sorrows. They were cherished items that if destroyed would break our hearts. We learned and practiced our social skills from our tea parties.

They were our first forums for they listened to our fears, gave us advice, and offered silent counsel. They helped us to think for ourselves, and provided us with a sounding board to bounce our ideas off of. They were what we held if we cried ourselves to sleep at night. They were the first to hear about our sorrows and dry our tears. They offered us counsel, albeit not always wise counsel. If we were angry and mad they bore the full brunt of it, sometimes losing limbs in the process.

No matter what we did to them they ALWAYS stood by us. They ALWAYS remained faithful, loving, and hopeful. They were our first and biggest fan club. Always rooting us on from their perch on our bed, shelf, floor, or where ever they lay. They were usually the first thing we saw in the morning and the last thing we saw at night. For us, at the time, our dollie was everything.

So, while the description in the encyclopedia is correct as to what a doll really is, they are much, much more to us. For all of us that loved them as little girls and continue to love them as grown-up girls, our dolls are priceless and cannot be defined.

Copyright © 2005—All Rights Reserved - Written By Linda Walsh