Photo by Gavin Ashworth
Grace is our lovely French girl, but loves living in Virginia, and especially in our house in Historic Church Hill. She sometimes sits on our parlor sofa. She has a papier mache with wax head and the brightest blue glass eyes. Grace was born around 1850-60 as I was told by a doll collector of note. . She is an old girl now but has kept her looks. Her mohair wig is original as are her wonderful leather-like boots and red stockings.
When I found her in a shop near Ashland, Virginia, she was dressed in a beautiful fine woolen white dress but, alas…full of moth holes. She was resting on the bottom shelf of a glass case…and she said, quite plainly, TAKE ME HOME!! And I did!
A new costume was needed. I had on hand a piece of thin woolen striped material that would do for the time being.. Her dress was made with care by a friend who is a doll advisor to the NSDAR museum in D. C. Grace’s undergarments were in good shape so she still wears those. However, one day I will treat my beautiful doll to a new white dress…one that will complement her gorgeous blue eyes and blonde hair. And maybe some earrings. I did make her present of tiny coral beads….real ones!! During the photography session, she got careless and the beads do not hang properly. Perhaps she was flirting with the photographer?
Grace’s friend is “Fred” who was born in Germany….we found this small pull toy in Scottsville, Virginia at a flea market on the Fourth of July some years ago. Its long ago owner had scribbled “Fred” on the bottom of the red board. I must make a special notation on my gift list and make sure this dear little horse goes to a good home! I can imagine Fred’s original owner as a tow-headed child dressed in a sailor suit, and protecting his little horse from the hands of his siblings! I have just the grandchild in mind to love Fred. His name is Sam and he is very careful with his toys.