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National Doll - Danish, circa 1970s-1980s Object Reg. No: SH 940174

Summary:
National Doll produced to represent a Danish women, it was given to Monica Gates, circa 1970s-1980s. The doll is hand-made and shows the lady knitting. Danish women's folk dress includes a long skirt which was layered over multiple petticoats, a blouse, headdress (either a bonnet or scarf) and occasionally a close-fitting bodice, either laced or fastened with hooks at the front. Scarfs were also often worn to cover the shoulders and throat and jackets were also common. Wool and flax were common materials used, and bodices, jackets and skirts were often trimmed and decorated, with differences in colour, material and style varying by region. Knitting has been practiced in Denmark since at least the 17th Century and bodices and jackets for women's folk costumes were often knitted.

The Gates collection contains 170 national dolls from 74 different countries and some correspondence relating to the acquisition of several of the dolls. The costumes of the dolls represent national costumes from the 19th Century to the 1990s. Monica Gates collected or was given these dolls between 1957 and 1990.

These dolls were purchased as souvenirs of particular countries and like many mass produced souvenirs they are often not accurate representations of a particular country or region, and may actually better reflect neighbouring counties or regions. This occurs because costumes are often stylised and simplified resulting dolls wearing generic costume elements which are common to many countries/regions. Often the fabrics and decorations used are selected to make the dolls cheap and easy to manufacture and aesthetically pleasing. This can result in the fabrics, colours and decorations of the doll's clothing having little or no reflection of the costume associated with a particular country or region they are meant to be representative of.
Description:
Female doll with a green, red and white patterned top over which is a red dress with green trimmings. Over this is a blue, white and black apron with a tartan type pattern. Around the shoulders is a green, red, white and navy blue shall, again with a tartan pattern. This matched the scarf wrapped around her head. In one hand she holds some knitting. Her shoes are black. Her face appears to have been drawn on.
Discipline: History
Dimensions: 15.00 cm (Height), 4.50 cm (Width), 7.00 cm (Length)

More information

Tagged with: clothing, souvenirs, cultural beliefs, dolls, national costumes, children s play, national identity, cultural awareness
Themes this item is part of: Childhood & Youth Collection, Clothing & Textiles Collection, Identity: Yours, Mine, Ours, Immigration Museum Exhibition, 2011-2021
Primary Classification: CULTURAL IDENTITY
Secondary Classification: Ethnicity - Clothing
Tertiary Classification: national dolls
Place Made: Denmark, circa 1970s-1980s
User: Mrs Monica Gates, Victoria, Australia, circa 1970s-1990s
Other Association (See Comments): Denmark

Doll is intended to represent a Danish woman in traditional dress

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