Whimsical Winged Kewpie Captures Hearts

By Anne McCollam

January 31, 2014 4 min read

Q: I have been reading your column for years and have a question for you. Enclosed is a photo of a porcelain Kewpie doll that was given to me in 1950 by my great-great-aunt. She told me she got it in the 1920s. Marked on its back is the name "Rose O'Neill" and it is in perfect condition. It is approximately 7 inches tall, has yellow hair, blue wings, rosy cheeks and toes. I have treasured my Kewpie all this time and want to give it to my granddaughter.

Anything you can tell me about it will be appreciated.

A: Rose O'Neill created the Kewpie image in 1912 as illustrations for the Ladies' Home Journal. She was an artist, illustrator, author and sculptor. She quickly realized the commercial value of her popular imp. Porcelain figures were produced by several Germany porcelain factories. As demand grew for O'Neill's Kewpies, a myriad of images were made that included paper dolls, banks, soaps, prints, celluloid and composition dolls, post cards, and salt and pepper shakers. Your doll's rosy cheeks, toes, eyes glancing to the side, starfish hands and little blue wings are typical of the lovable scamp. Some dolls had movable limbs. Kewpie even had a companion, Doodle Dog. Kewpies continue to be made today.

Your circa 1920 Kewpie would probably be worth $150 to $200.

Q: This mark is on the back of an oval porcelain platter I have. About 70 years ago, it was left at my parent's home after a party, no one ever came back to claim it. It is decorated with sprigs of pink flowers against a white background and trimmed in gold. The overall measurements are 12 inches by 9 inches. I have never used it, and it is in excellent condition.

I was wondering if it has any value.

A: Theodore Haviland used the mark you provided. His porcelain factory was established in 1925 in Limoges, France and is still in business.

Your platter was made around 1930 and has a value of $50 to $75.

 Kewpies were the creation of Rose O'Neill in 1912.
Kewpies were the creation of Rose O'Neill in 1912.
 Theodore Haviland China was founded in Limoges, France, in 1925.
Theodore Haviland China was founded in Limoges, France, in 1925.
Address your questions to Anne McCollam, P. O. Box 247, Notre Dame, IN 46556. Items of a general interest will be answered in this column. Due to the volume of inquiries, she cannot answer individual letters. To find out more about Anne McCollam and read features by other Creators Syndicate writers and cartoonists, visit the Creators Syndicate website at www.creators.com.

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