Doll Collection

Your Doll collection should remain in the original condition, there is a few things you should be aware of. This article gives tips on how to care for and store your collectible dolls.

If you want your doll collection to stay beautiful, there are a few things you need to do. Within this article are tips that will ensure your collection remains in original condition.

First of all, when you purchase a doll, be certain to save all packaging, inserts and tags. This enhances the value if you ever decide to sell. Remove the tape from her hair bows. The tape's glue discolors fabric. Also remove any metal that can rust.

When storing dolls for an extended period, a layer of acid free tissue should be put between the doll and her clothing. This prevents fabric colors from "bleeding" into the doll's body. If your doll has inset eyes, store her face down.

If the body of a doll leaks sawdust, put a few drops of glue on the hole. If the hole is large, cut a round patch out of kid or muslin and glue it in place.

Check dolls that are in storage on a regular basis. Inspect them carefully for insects in sawdust and clothing.

If yours is a sleep doll, clean the eyes with a mixture of isopropyl alcohol diluted one-half by water. Lay the doll on her back, hold her eyes open and drop enough solution into the eye to cover it. Open and close the eyes several times. Turn the doll face down. This allows the fluid to drain. When this has been accomplished, stand the doll up and hold a soft, clean cloth to her eyes as you tip her forward.

Never change the original hair or clothes. Keep the doll in her box in a dry place. If you wash her hair or clothing, the value of the doll is lowered.

Always clean your doll with a soft cloth dipped in distilled water. Soap residue will cause discoloration.

Wooden nesting dolls sometimes stick together. If this happens put a few drops of baby oil in the space between the dolls. This should allow them to come apart easily. Remember to wipe the oil off immediately.

Be sure to check wooden dolls for insect infestation. If you find a doll is infested, isolate her until she has been chemically treated. Insects will travel from one doll to the next. If insects aren't detected immediately, your entire collection is at risk.

Never wet a wooden doll. If you must wash her, dampen the cloth and then clean her. Water that is put directly on a wooden doll will leave a stain.

When purchasing old cloth dolls, put them in a closed box with an insect strip for two or three days. This will kill any insects that may have come with her. Do Not let the strip touch the doll.

If you want to vacuum a cloth doll, do it through a layer of nylon netting. Never vacuum silk.

Clean a cloth doll's body with cornstarch or talcum powder. Never use water. Rub the cornstarch into the fabric. Leave it for about 8 hours, then gently brush it off.

Always store vinyl dolls in a cool place. Heat darkens the vinyl. If you have to remove dirt or pencil marks from a vinyl doll, wrap her in a towel with only the marks visible. Apply vegetable oil to the dirt and leave the doll in the sun for five hours. If you do this for several days, the mark will vanish.

Soft vinyl dolls were popular in the 1950's. These dolls are often stained with black and green marks. This is usually mold. Use a commercial mildew remover that is chlorine free but be sure to test it somewhere on the body of the doll before applying it to areas that can be seen. If the test goes well, wipe the entire doll, then wash with warm, soapy water, rinse and dry thoroughly. Remove mildew from hard plastic dolls with a chorine free bathroom cleaner.

Never use chlorine bleach or products containing chlorine on a vinyl or plastic doll. This will destroy the "skin" coating.

Tip: When buying a doll as an investment, keep her in the original unopened box. This keeps manufacturers instructions intact and keeps dust and dirt out.

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