Heirloom Doll Guide - Everything You Need To Know Before You Buy!

Heirloom Doll Guide - Everything You Need To Know Before You Buy!

Posted by Feltman Brothers on 9th May 2023

Do you remember the classic dolls of your childhood? Have you ever wondered where you could find beautiful heirloom dolls for your little one, or even your own collection? If so, you don’t have to wonder any longer. Heirloom dolls are becoming more and more popular, especially since “mainstream” dolls are increasingly made using low-quality materials and designs. Parents and collectors looking for beautiful, classic dolls most often turn to heirloom dolls from quality providers like Feltman Brothers.

But if you haven’t purchased an heirloom doll before, you may have a few questions. For example, what is an heirloom doll? How do you calculate the value of an heirloom doll? What are some popular vintage doll manufacturers? Finally, where can you find quality doll clothing to dress up your collectible doll?

In today’s guide, we will answer all of these questions and help you find the perfect heirloom doll for you!

What Is An Heirloom Doll?

When you visit a big box toy store, you can find dozens, perhaps hundreds of different dolls. In almost every case, these dolls are mass-produced using the cheapest possible materials. Similarly, their clothes are very simple and often modern in style. Essentially, an heirloom doll is the polar opposite of these “mainstream” dolls.

An heirloom doll is usually an old-fashioned, collectible doll that is cherished for its quality craftsmanship, materials, and nostalgic value. As the name implies, an heirloom doll is often passed down from one generation to the next, ensuring that your family can associate years and years of special memories with it. This also means that heirloom dolls benefit from having both personal and historical significance.

More often than not, heirloom dolls are made using high-quality materials like porcelain, vinyl, or even wood. The attention to detail is also far greater in heirloom dolls, as they are specifically made to last for years, as opposed to the disposable dolls you might find at your local toy store. Additionally, heirloom dolls are usually dressed in very fine, intricate clothing and accessories.

The Value Of An Heirloom Doll

It’s not easy to put a price on something that holds personal value to you and your family. This is why the value of an heirloom doll is often measured using several different factors. In addition to the sticker price, you’ll also need to consider the lasting value of heirloom dolls, which is determined by factors that can be subjective or unquantifiable, such as:

  • Sentimental Value - If you’ve had an heirloom doll in your family for years, it will hold a very special meaning for you, as well as the generations that came before you and those that will come after. Even though an heirloom doll may not seem that valuable to someone else, it could be priceless to you.
  • Historical Value - Older heirloom dolls may reflect the styles, production methods, and culture of a specific time in history. This kind of value is particularly important to collectors, who may see greater personal or monetary value in a doll that holds historical significance.
  • Craftsmanship - The artistry of an heirloom doll's construction can significantly impact its value. Finely crafted dolls made from high-quality materials, with intricate details and hand-painted features, are generally more valuable than mass-produced alternatives.
  • Rarity - If a doll is part of a limited-edition collection or otherwise rare for its unique features, it will likely have much greater value among enthusiasts and collectors. If you’re interested in buying or selling an heirloom doll, rare dolls will often fetch a much higher price.
  • Condition - Naturally, if a doll is in poor condition, it won’t hold much value to anyone unless it can be properly restored or refurbished. Quality heirloom dolls are specifically designed to last with proper maintenance, so this is typically not an issue.

Vintage Heirloom Dolls

Vintage heirloom dolls are not “brand new,” and are often valued for their rarity or historical value. In the sections below, we’ll look at some of the most popular vintage doll makers:

Duck House Heirloom Dolls

Duck House heirloom dolls were produced by the Duck House Corporation. They were often made in limited edition batches using high-quality materials and production methods. Each Duck House originally came with a certificate of authenticity, indicating its high value for collectors.

The Duck House Corporation is no longer in operation, but the heirloom dolls continue to be cherished by collectors and families alike. This is largely due to the timeless appeal and artistry of these beautiful creations. Some Duck House dolls can still be found in antique shops or online marketplaces, but if you intend to buy one, make sure that your purchase comes with a genuine certificate of authenticity.

Franklin Heirloom Dolls

In 1964, Franklin Mint was founded as a manufacturer of gold and silver medallions. As the company grew in popularity over the following decades, it added more items to its product line, including collectible plates, figurines, and dolls. Today, the dolls created by Franklin Mint are highly valued for their exquisite craftsmanship, classic designs, and historically-themed outfits.

Franklin Mint is best remembered for its special edition doll series, including the Gibson Girl Collection and the Princess Diana Collection. Like the Duck House Corporation, Franklin Mint no longer produces new items. However, the company still sells many older collectibles, including Franklin Mint dolls that have been in circulation for decades.

Golden Keepsakes Heirloom Dolls

Golden Keepsakes is another company that is no longer producing dolls, but it is still well-remembered for its wide range of beautiful creations. Many of these dolls were specifically created to represent different characters and ethnicities, making them popular with a large audience worldwide. Today, these dolls are only available through private sellers or online marketplaces. This has increased their value and made them a popular choice among doll collectors.

Feltman Collectible Dolls

If you choose to get your heirloom doll through Feltman Brothers, you benefit from a modern manufacturer and retailer that still utilizes many of the production methods, materials, and outfits of the dolls from years past. Currently, we have four distinct dolls to choose from: Abigail, Carly, Destiny, and Parker.

Heirloom Dolls


Abigail is a gorgeous little girl with bright blue eyes and blonde hair. She makes the perfect addition to any collection, as well as a great gift for your children or grandchildren!


Carly features bright brown eyes and brown hair. Like Abigail, she comes dressed in a beautiful onesie and bonnet courtesy of Feltman Brothers!


Destiny has a darker skin tone and beautiful brown eyes and hair. If you want an elegant gift for the holidays, consider choosing Destiny and enjoy dressing her up in dozens of unique outfits!


As the only boy in our heirloom doll collection, Parker is truly one of a kind! His light blue eyes are beautiful and realistic, while his blonde hair is easy to style as you see fit.

Not only do our dolls feature sparkling eyes and detailed facial features, but they also have realistic skin pigmentation, real hair, and soft, huggable bodies. But what really sets our dolls apart is the heirloom quality doll clothing. Unlike other dollmakers that use cheap materials to clothe their creations, we used the same high-quality designs and outfits that we sell for babies and small children.

This means that, in addition to the outfit that comes with your purchase, you can choose from hundreds of different Feltman Brothers designs to dress your doll. From Christmas-themed bishop dresses to classic bobby suits, we have tons of timeless designs to add to help your doll look amazing!

Do you want to find high-quality heirloom dolls or doll clothing? If so, be sure to check out the beautiful items available at Feltman Brothers today!