Doll Digest

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First issue Tammy

Mint in Box Tammy

African American Grown Up Tammy

Tammy's Brother Ted

Tammy's Friend Misty


The Doll You Love To Dress

When the Ideal Toy Company saw the tremendous success Mattel was enjoying with their teenaged fashion model Barbie doll, they introduced Tammy…"the Doll You Love To Dress". She debuted at the 1962 International Toy Fair and provided a perfect counterpoint to Mattel’s voluptuous 11-inch diva. 12 inch Tammy doll was fresh-faced, sweet and innocent, with a figure that reflected the body proportions of real life teens. Her wardrobe consisted of outfits that a 1960s teenager might wear to school, at play, and to travel or work in. The outfits were very well made and simply designed. They were high on "pretty" if not "glamour". Parents who were uneasy with Barbie doll’s exaggerated proportions and looks could buy their daughters a doll that they could more easily identify with. Tammy enjoyed a healthy 4-year release, but ultimately Barbie won out as the top seller in the fashion doll arena. The Tammy line was cancelled in 1966.

Tammy was issued in 3 different incarnations. The first Tammy had straight legs, young, cherubic like hands and a little girl’s face. She had hair in a bobbed style that came in many colors and shades. Honey or ash blonde is the most common. She was issued in 1964 as "Pos’n Tammy" with the same head mold and arms, but with bendable legs. This doll wore her hair in a bob with a braided bun on top. Her final appearance in 1965 was as "Grown Up Tammy" with a brand new older looking and realistic head mold, a pageboy hair style and graceful looking slender arms and hands. She too was a bend-leg doll. This doll was also available in a hard to find African American version that used the same molds. Over the years, several examples of an African American version of the original cherubic looking first issue Tammy doll have emerged, but these are very, very rare. There were many imitators and clones of the Caucasian and black dolls, but all authentic Tammy dolls are marked Ideal Toy Corp. on the head and will have an Ideal mark on the body as well.

Considering she was only on the market for four years, Ideal managed to produce an impressive line of family and friends for her. She had a Mom, Dad, big brother Ted , little sister Pepper and little brother Pos’n Pete. Mom and Dad were only issued as straight legged dolls. Their clothes are tagged Tammy’s Family.

She also had a best friend named Misty who was a bit more hip and glamorous than Tammy. She shared the same body as Grown Up Tammy and came in straight legged and Pos’n versions. An African American Misty may have been produced as collectors have found a couple of rare examples. If these are prototypes or actual production pieces is a mystery.

One of the rarest members of Tammy’s circle is boyfriend Bud. He is often confused with the more common Ted doll, but his head mold is smaller and face paint is quite different. He has very dark eyebrows. Bud dolls rarely make it to market, and lucky is the collector who finds this guy in any condition.

Little siblings Pepper and Pete also had their own set of pint sized pals. Dodi came in both a straight legged and Pos’n versions and Montgomery Wards released an exclusive little straight legged friend named Patti. She is quite tough to find, especially with ash blonde hair in a flip. Most Pattis have dark brunette straight hair that falls below the shoulders. Another little friend was Pos’n Salty. This was the exact same doll as Pos’n Pete. Both dolls were only released in posing versions. The carrot top red head variation of Pepper is particularly desirable.

Between all the doll variations and many outfits and accessories, a Tammy collector can keep pretty busy assembling a complete collection. Some of her wonderful accessories include a sport car, catamaran, jukeboxes, furniture and a house that puts Barbie’s Dream House to shame in the "fun" department. It is fashioned like the rumpus rooms so popular in the 60s and sports a jukebox, Ping-Pong table and soda fountain! Pepper also had her very own jukebox, pony and treehouse. And there are countless licensed and spin-off products like cases, paper dolls, books, games and puzzlesSome of the harder to find outfits are very elusive and take some real hunting and "tree shaking". Among them are a bridal ensemble called "Wedding Belle", a stunning turquoise brocade sheath fashion called "Powder Puff" and an elusive Sears Exclusive outfit called "Formal Feathers". There is even a line of little girl sized Tammy outfits that were very popular and are extremely collectible today.Interest in Tammy dolls and collecting has grown steadily over the past several years. The Internet has allowed folks to build their collections as more and more Tammy & family dolls surface. This spring the first Tammy Convention was held in Chicago and was a huge success. It brought together collectors from as far away as Japan. Plans for next year’s show are already underway.

Tammy's Mom & Dad -1963 Sears Catalog

Tammy's Boyfriend Bud-1965 Ideal Catalog

Tammy's Sister Pepper

Tammy's Little Brother Pos'n Pete

Tammy's Ideal House

"Formal Feathers" Gown-Sears Exclusive