UNEEDA Y-SHAPE AND BL BODY AND CANU DOLLS

A friend in USA who knows so much about Miss Suzette and co has put this info together for me with a little help from another collecor. I want to share this informations with other collectors because I myself and many others have believed the info on the dollreference page but they are wrong about a number of things so here it is. I'll translate that into Danish and German if I'm asked but I believe most collectors of these dolls understand english:

UNEEDA Y-BODY DOLLS

 

Uneeda produced 4 y-body dolls in the mid-60's:  Miss Suzette, Miss Debutante, Wendy Ward, and the Children of All Nations United (CANU) series.  And Miss Suzette's boyfriend, Bob (1963), was also a y-body doll.

 

 Miss Suzette was the first of these dolls, and all the y-bodies bear the copyright date of 1962 when she was first released.  She was sold through the W. T. Grant stores (five and dime stores) and she had painted features with black and white eyes like the first Barbie dolls - and a slightly oversized head that rotated on a spring mechanism giving her more realistic movement. This was the purpose of the y-body as well - it allowed the doll's legs to move more naturally.  She came in three hair colors - blonde, brunette and redhead - and her hair was rooted around the perimeter (again, like the early Barbie), tied into a long ponytail with thick, curly bangs.  She did not have pierced ears (and consequently did not come with earrings), but she did have an engagement ring molded onto her left hand.  She came with a strapless maillot swimsuit (usually in some shade of blue with white bias trim, but other colors were also used), and white open toed mules with the words HONG KONG printed on the inside of the toe.  Her box was thin cardboard, and these have not held up well over the years.

 

 Miss Debutante was advertised in 1962 along with Miss Suzette, and she was a combination of Miss Suzette and Wendy Ward. This doll had Wendy Ward's sleep eyes, but Miss Suzette's rooted hair.  This doll did not last long on the market, and is exceptionally rare.

 

In 1964, Uneeda got the contract to make Montgomery Ward's store label fashion doll, Wendy Ward.  She was sold in 1964 and 1965.  Wendy Ward used the identical y-body used by Miss Suzette, but she had sleep eyes (blue-green) and moulded plastic hair so she could accept wigs, like the Fashion Queen Barbie.  Wendy came with three wigs (a thick dark blonde ponytail, a brown flip and a platinum bubble), and wore a pale blue 2-piece baby-doll nightie with a matching nightcap and white Petra-style pumps. 

 

And finally, in 1965 Miss Suzette got a new bend-leg body and though Wendy Ward still appeared in the Montgomery Ward Christmas catalogue that year, they were no longer advertising her.  Uneeda disposed of their excess Miss Debutante - and possibly some Wendy Ward dolls - by marketing the Children of All Nations United series.  These were international costume dolls and primarily used the Miss Debutante heads, but with different rooting patterns.  Whereas Miss Debutante was rooted the same way Miss Suzette was (perimeter ponytail with thick bangs), these dolls came with all sorts of hair rooting patterns - in fact, everything BUT the original Miss Suzette and Miss Debutante style. We have not yet found any ads or catalogues to establish a definitive timeframe for the CANU dolls, so the foregoing is based inference only.

 

Uneeda also began producing a cheap, hollow plastic body for both Miss Suzette and the CANU dolls, but it's unclear when these bodies first hit the market.  Since all these dolls had an oversized head, the bend-leg and hollow bodies are very easy to identify because of the larger, non-standard neck knob.  You simply cannot fit a Barbie or Mitzi head onto one of these bodies.

 

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13.08 | 00:17

Greetings from Canada: I am have a Ahlens Tempo Bobby, and I am hoping you might be willing to sell this "Fraternity Meeting" outfit to me. Cheers, Lee Marie

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06.06 | 19:56

Hej, kan du ikke lige skrive på min mail adresse, den kan du finde flere steder på siden, jeg kan ikke skrive ret meget her nemlig. Mvh Martha

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05.06 | 10:37

20.4- 15-8 1965 var jeg ansat som eneste kontordame, men kender ikke noget til Barbie, men de andre dukker Pusle især. Var der senere for at hjælpe. Kirsten

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23.05 | 19:15

Hi Martha! I have a question today. I believe Evergreen made the Midge doll for the Swedish Co. ÅH in the 60th. But there is another Midge look-alike, which ?

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