I remember seeing German and Nippon porcelain half-dolls when I was younger, and I often wondered what people used to do with them. Quite a few of the half-dolls which were torso only seemed a bit lacivious in their expressions and poses. It wasn't until I was older that I learned that these lovely porcelain half-figurines were fashioned into pin cushions for sewing, or had hair bristles inserted into them to make brushes for removing lint from clothing!
We recently came away from the estate sale of a sweet old dear (she was going into an adult living community and didn't want to take anything 'old' with her) who was divesting herself of all her sewing paraphernalia. What we found amidst her things was one of these Victorian Era Vintage Porcelain Half-Doll Upper Body Pin Cushion With Red Velvet Skirt the upper half) that had been made into a pin cushion! Our doll is an 18th century lady, and she is neither ugly, nor lacivious! Indeed, all young ladies of the 18th century posed with one arm behind their powerdered bouffant hair while the other hand cupped a breast! In all seriousness, despite this pose, our little lass is quite the lady. Our Victorian Era Vintage Porcelain Half-Doll Upper Body Pin Cushion has been given a huge red cotton velvet skirt and a lace bow and trimmings and is, overall - quite lovely. She is also quite imposing too, standing a full 7-1/2" in height, with a skirt base that is 6-1/2" in diameter. We have never seen another Victorian Era Vintage Porcelain Half-Doll Upper Body Pin Cushion this large!
Alas, we cannot tell you if our lady is of German or Japanese origin, for she has been very expertly sewn into her pincushion form (see our photographs), and will not come out of her skirt without destroying her ensemble. This is the perfect gift for a collector of German or Nippon porcelain half dolls, or a seamstress, or a pin cushion collector!
Say, where do you put your straight pins?