Antiquarian Society of Doll & Toy Research 
Our Goal, the study, research and education related to antique dolls & Toys 
Our clubs first research project: 
A wooden headed doll, afixed to a Santo type figural body. The gorgeous brocade dress with metalic threads is stunning in person. The head with inserted glass eyes, is hollow, though the ears and facial features are carved. Owned by our clubs president, the doll was purchased by a dealer who said it was made in France. A similar head was recently purchased by our club president from another dealer in France. Note it's blue paper weight eyes and similar carving to the first doll shown above - the head was lathe turned as is evident under the paint. 
Here we show samples of both antique and modern Santos figures in a variety ot styles. Note the drawing by Leonardo da Vinci of a young woman with her head slightly tilted down, which is very similar to the traditional Santos figures shown above and below. We compare all types of Santos as we continue to study and learn about the doll in question. Was it made as a doll or a Santos figure? 
Photo collage copoyright 2013 by Michael J. Kouri all rights reserved
Photo collage copoyright 2013 by Michael J. Kouri all rights reserved
Here we see and can examine two 19th century hand carved wooden Creche figures with carved heads, hands, body and feet. Notice how beautifully posed the carved fingers are on figure 1. Figure 2 wears a mohair wig while figure 1 has delicately carved hair. Both figures have holes inserted in their feet so they can be posed on round wooden bases. The clothing is hand embroidered silk with fine gold threads. Similar to the Santos figures, these figures were generally placed in Creche scenes in churches, museums and private collections as they represented everyday people living their lives during the time of the birth of Christ. These two figures are in remarkable condition for their age. 
This modern version of a Christ child Creche figure is made of hollow plaster, similar to those made in the 18th and 19th centuries. Typically found in Spain, other models were made all over Europe, especially in Italy. In the 20th and 21st centuries, these figures are typically made in Mexico in the cottage industry. They are made as a solid figure, with inset glass eyes, or painted eyes. The more modern versions are now being made in resin and other types of plastic, however the early versions were typically made of Gypsum (plaster) and or Gesso over wood. This infant has a removable metal halo made of gold painted metal.