A baby doll is supposed to look or act like a human baby. Many different types of baby dolls were made in the late 1960s and early 1970s, and most came with accessories such as pacifiers and diapers. Toy companies such as Remco Industries, Mattel and Horsman also produced numerous doll variations, including styles that could walk, speak and "wet" diapers.
Baby First Step
Mattel's Baby First Step doll was made through the late 1960s and early 1970s. It was a mechanical doll that could walk and dance. Most Baby First Step dolls had pink outfits and all came with a short blond hairdo that featured fringe. The tag line on the Baby First Step box read "I Really Walk All By Myself."
Mattel's Baby Beans doll was introduced in the early 1970s. They were essentially the predecessor to the Beanie Babies of the 1990s. The Baby Beans dolls had a plastic head affixed to a cloth body that was stuffed with beans. The attached arms and legs were also made of cloth and filled with beans. The variations included a black doll called "Bitty Beans" and a denim-swathed "Jeans Beans."
Baby Tender Love
Baby Tender Love made its debut in 1969. Some dolls in the Baby Tender Love line could speak, but all were made of vinyl. They had loosely jointed arms and legs, so it could "tumble over like a real baby" according to its ad in the 1971 Sears Christmas catalogue. Baby Tender Love dolls had a few sayings, such as "Kiss Baby," "Go Bye Bye," and "Night night."
Baby Teenie Talk
Mattel's Baby Teenie Talk came out in the late 1960s. They were programmed to say 11 different phrases, any of which might be heard when the child pulled a cord on the doll's back. These phrases included "I like it when we talk together," "I will go to sleep if you do" and "I can blow kisses, can you?"
Blanket Baby Thumbelina
The Blanket Baby Thumbelina doll was a soft cloth doll with vinyl limbs and head. It would wiggle when the owner pulled the string on the doll's back. Unlike many other baby dolls, Blanket Baby Thumbelina had moulded hair that could not be brushed. A variation was In-A-Minute Thumbelina, which did come with rooted, brushable hair and would "stir," "fret" and "pound" her high-chair table when her string was pulled.
Drink 'N Wet Baby Dolls
A trendy line of baby dolls was the "Drink 'N Wet" series. These types of baby dolls would "wet" their diapers with the water fed to them through a toy bottle. There were many different wet babies, including Butterball, Layette, Bunting, Fair Baby, Baby June and Baby Janie.
Horsman dolls were invented in 1865 by Edward Horsman, who became a "leader in the toy industry" according to the Doll Reference website. Horsman baby doll types of the late 1960s and early 1970s included Tuffie, Zodiac Baby, Bye-Lo Baby, Happy Baby and "Baby's 1st Sofskin." The Sofskin baby doll, which debuted in 1971, was so popular that Horsman launched an entire Sofskin series. Horsman baby doll specifications varied. For example, some were made with rooted hair, while others were made with moulded hair.
- Wish Book Web: 1971 Sears Christmas Catalog
- Doll Info: Kaylee's Korner of Collectible Dolls; Mattel's "Baby Beans"
- Doll Reference: Mattel, Inc. - Dolls 1945-1960s
- Doll Info: Kaylee's Corner of Collectible Dolls; Mattel's "Baby Tender Love Dolls"
- Ruby Lane: Mattel Baby Teenie Talk Doll from 1966
- Doll Info: Kaylee's Korner of Collectibe Dolls; Mattel's "Baby First Step"