The Jumeau firm was founded in the 1840s, and initially made papier mache dolls. From about 1860 they also made glazed porcelain dolls and later unglazed bisque headed dolls with composition bodies, for which the company is best known. The papier mache and porcelain dolls were unmarked, making it difficult to associate them with Jumeau.
The two types of dolls associated with Jumeau, poupees (fashion ladies) and bebes (child dolls).
Poupees were the most popular type of doll manufactured from the late 1850s through to the 1870s. They had adult bodies, and were dressed in realistic clothing, including shoes, hats and accessories, that mirrored the fashions of the time.
In the late 1870s Jumeau commenced manufacturing the bebe (child) dolls, which had bisque heads, paperweight glass eyes, exaggerated eyebrows. Most had closed mouths until the 1890s.
In the 1890s competition from cheaper German imports threatened the French doll producers and more...
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