Sepia Saturday give bloggers an opportunity to share their family history and memories through photographs.
What has struck me in writing for Sepia Saturday is how limited the photographs were in my childhood - either taken on a seaside holiday or formal school portraits. Of course there was no flash for the average home camera - so no photographs of Christmas, birthday parties, or playing inside - nor do I have any taken in winter. So finding photos for this prompt was a challenge.
There were occasions when I stayed overnight with a friend (and vice versa), but the term "sleepover" had not yet reached us from America, and it was very much a one-to-one arrangement - not a group of friends. Even so we chatted into the night and did not get much sleep. I cannot remember any photographs being taken of the occasion.
The same pattern continued with my own daughter and this is the nearest I can come to this week's theme - as she snuggled down in bed with her menagerie of furry friends.
She was never a particularly "teddy" girl - panda was her favourite. Here is Scottie dog, with two owls perched on top of him and alongside two pandas, a koala bear present from Australia and a Brownie, knitted from a pattern in "Woman's Weekly" magazine - a great source of ideas for home-made toys for children.
What struck me in the prompt photograph is the girls looked quite grown up (by today's standard) to be playing with dolls.
I was a "dolly girl" - I loved my dolls which, as my mother was a dressmaker, were the smartest in the street. With my best friend, Carol, we would wheel our dolls' prams up and down the street and put the dolls in their cot (an old box), with a crocheted blanket and lace trimmed pillow and quilt cover, again courtesy of my mother, or set up the doll's tea set for a tea party.
My dolls were not particularly sophisticated, though I had one that said "Mama" if you pressed it in the right place. My mother made rag dolls, but my very special doll she made me in 1953 for the Queen's Coronation, with a long fur trimmed purple velvet train, and embroidered, beaded dress. I so wish now I had kept it as a family heirloom.
I had a "Last Doll" for my 11th birthday, which seems in today's lifestyle, really old for a doll. The inspiration came from the book "Sarah Crewe or the little Princess", by Frances Hodgson-Burnett, where Sarah was given a grand doll with an extensive wardrobe on her 11th birthday. I saw the book serialised on television and decided that would mark the end of my "dolly" era - it didn't really, as I went on to collect costume dolls.
And no - I have no photographs of my dolls at all.
Around the age of 8, my own daughter had a collection of Cindy dolls - the British version of Barbie, I think - with a lovely wardrobe of clothes again made by my mother.
My little granddaughter shows not the slightest interest in dolls but she too struggles to find a place in bed amongst the myriad of soft toys.
So dolls remind me of my own childhood and my mother's talents - with. below. some of the dolls she later made for craft competitions and displays.
An Upside-down Cinderella Doll
|My mother Kathleen Weston, nee Danson|
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