This little doll is known as a half doll, a doll that is sculpted from the waist up and the bottom is left free to be replaced with a pincushion or brush. Half doll pincushions reached their height of popularity between 1900 and 1930. Sometime in the 1920s the dolls took on a more modern look with bob hairstyles and flapper attire. They were not as good in quality because they were being mass produced and were poorly glazed.
This half doll has been in our family for as long as I can remember. Her hairstyle and hat makes me think she might have been made in the 1920s but of course I don't know that. The doll was made in Japan. She never had a skirt (pincushion) until a few years ago; I made one for her from feed sack squares. Now she sits on the shelf over my sewing machine.
There are many, many half dolls listed on eBay and for the most part they are pretty expensive to buy. But wouldn't this be a great hobby, collecting half dolls; I won't start another collection though. Do you have a half doll pincushion or remember your mother or grandmother having one? I'd like to hear about the doll.
Oh, by the way, the temperature has been 108* for a good part of the afternoon and has now dropped to 106.5*-- Whew!!