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Jessie – Zwergnase Junior

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The sheer variety of dolls out there is astounding, and although I’m more focused on play dolls I’m very aware of the various limited edition collectors dolls available, hand-scuplted by talented doll designers, usually in small quantities and with a price tag to match. One of the most unusual doll ranges is the Zwergnase dolls, created by Nicole Marschollek Menzer. Her dolls have odd, yet appealing faces, rather fey in look, or cheeky faces with freckles or buck teeth, wild hair – once you’ve seen one you won’t forget them. Nicole studied design and toy creation in her native Germany and founded the Zwergnase company in Sonneberg in 1994, with a range of dolls of varying sizes and prices released each year. I love the way she seems to capture the essence of a child in each sculpt, a moment in time or in a life, that really draws the attention and the heart.

Lckily for me, Nicole also has a range of play dolls, the Zwergnase Junior collection, with new designs each year both 50cm and 35cm tall, with the outfits available separately.

Jessie posing

Which leads me to Jessie, who is a 50cm Zwergnase Junior Dorte doll from the 2011 collection. She has the instantly recognisable unique little face, in the this case with red hair and freckles and a curious expression. Her hair is shoulder length, with two braids, and though good quality doesn’t easily lend itself to styling.

Jessie has jointed arms and legs and a very poseable head joint, and is slightly taller than the other play dolls. The height is mainly in the legs, she has long legs and the body shape of an older child, with a slender waist and alittle pot belly, though she can share clothes with the other 18″ dolls, apart from them occasionally being too short in the legs. Her arms are long and graceful.

Dorte (official photo)

Her original outfit consists of a long, sleeveless cotton dress with a bold print in dark red, purple, blue and brown, with a dark red net underskirt designed to show below the hem of the dress. Included are a pair of soft beige knickers and beige suede lace up boots with white socks. I love the look of the Zwergnase Junior clothes but the quality of this particular outfit didn’t seem quite as good as what I’ve come to expect from the Kidz n Cats dolls, which has put me off getting any of the other outfits thus far. She arrived in a cloth bag rather than tied into a box, which is unusual but pleasing as a packing option.

Unlike most dolls available, the Zwergnase Junior dolls do not have glass eyes but rather hand painted ones. Now sometimes this can look rather dead and unnerving (the eyes on the Sigikid Die Puppe dolls sometimes have this fault), but as you can see with Jessie, her eyes are lively and interesting, great care has clearly been taken with the paintbrush to ensure the eyes add to her character.

Portrait of Jessie

Jessie is one of those dolls who looks very different depending on what she is wearing, and her expression gives great scope to the imagination. She looks quite the mature young lady in the above image, wearing an outfit from an Ebay designer which you might recognise from the post about Alice.  In the  first image below, she’s wearing a white broderie sun dress with matching shoes from Frilly Lily, contrasted with the next shot of her in a boyish outfit from the Argos Design-a-Friend range.

Jessie in white

Jessie in jeans

The dolls are more expensive than the Kidz n Cats and the lower ranges of Gotz dolls, on a par with Gotz Classic Kidz however, and I think are definitely worth the extra price for the unusual look – I think quirky is the best word to describe them, and any of the Junior dolls would make a good friend for a slightly older child, Jessie is certainly one of my favourites and I’m sure there will be another in the range joining my collection at some point.

Thus far in the UK the only supplier I know of is Trisha at KR Bears & Dolls, who has many of the Junior dolls in stock, and can easily order past dolls and outfits. I note she has an exclusive limited edition Junior doll being made specially, which is sure to be worth a look. She also stocks the collector dolls from various years as well as the current range, well worth browsing, if you can resist the temptation that is!

Jessie in b&w

Image of Dorte in original outfit © Zwergnase


10 responses »

  1. Good to see the Zwergnase Junior in standard 46-50cm doll clothing. Looks like the Designafriend shoes fit her too? Dorte was my favourite that year! The red hair suits that face mould best I think. Does she have painted eyelashes?

    • She’s very versatile & yep, the shoes fit fine. I agree on red hair. The eyelashes are indeed painted, maybe I should have mentioned that?

  2. I’m really enjoying reading about the dolls. Ruby enjoyed looking at them on different sites and printing pictures of them

  3. Glad to have found your blog but can’t work out how to follow it regularly. We have the same taste in dolls – I have Zwergnase Tommy and Tosca arriving next week.

    • Yay on sharing great taste, and its good to know someone else will have Zwergnase dolls, I love the anticipation of a new doll delivery 🙂 I went to your blog but it doesn’t appear to have any content as yet? To follow a blog you need to be logged in and then click “follow” at the top, and then I think you can see posts made in your dashboard? I tend to add things to the blogroll section of my site (you can set that to private so just you can see it if you prefer). Hope that helps, enjoy your Tommy and Tosca – Tosca looks fab from the pictures, as does Tommy, not many boy dolls around so they’re always worth having.

  4. Pingback: Fei Li – Karito Kids | A Doll's Day

  5. Pingback: Piper – Sigikid Die Puppe | A Doll's Day

  6. Hi Blue, I just chanced upon your review of Dorte – I love how you have re-dressed her. I am obsessed with the Zwergnase dolls – and especially the Juniors, as they are that much more affordable than the art dolls. I am eagerly anticipating the new collection, due to be released early November.

    • Glad you enjoyed the review and my fashion choices, she’s still one of my favourite dolls, you’ll be pleased to hear. Zwergnase are amazing and yes, the Juniors are a bit more in range for mere mortals for sure, I’m also looking forward to the new dolls: I loved the 2014 offerings, especially Josef, lost track of how many times I visited your shop site to admire him..:)


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