Welcome to The Toy Shoppe
Call us toll free 1 800 447-7995
Bringing you the finest dolls from around the world since 1975
New Storybook Dolls by Zwergnase
Fine dolls, friendly service and easy, interest-free AMC payment plans
- teddy bears
Offering charming Teddy bears & adorable animal friends since 1975
We All Need Hugs Right Now
Call us to help you find the perfect Teddy bear or animal friend
- gift ideas
- sale room
Look in our sale room forSteiff Madame Alexander Charlie Bears Hermann Zwergnase Wee Forest Folk R. John Wright
savings on these favorites...
Your shop for fine dolls, collectible bears
AND terrific values since 1975Free Standard Shipping On Orders Over $99 Apply Coupon Code FREESHIP at checkout.
Not valid on prior orders. Receive FREE standard shipping, via our choice of carrier, with your order of $99 or more of select, clearly marked items. Offer applies to a single, completed order over $99 shipped to a single address within the contiguous USA (Alaska, Hawaii, APO, FPO, DPO & US Post Office boxes do not qualify for this offer). Multiple destinations or split shipments on a single order - including back-ordered items - will incur additional charges. Larger boxes, Heavier boxes, International Shipping, Express Shipping, Signature Services (signature required upon delivery) and Customer Preferred shipping methods may also incur additional charges. Offer not valid on doll stand purchases. Offer subject to change. Call us for complete details.
Black Friday Sale Extended At The Toy Shoppe
No coupon necessary. For a limited time receive a Toy Shoppe Gift Certificate valued at 10% of your entire purchase. Nothing is excluded in this special offer! Gift certificate good on your next order. Your gift certificate will be sent when your order is shipped. This offer is not transferable and not valid on prior orders. Offer subject to change. Offer ends at midnight EST on Monday, December 2, 2019.
THE TOY SHOPPE
Exclusive Steiff Editions you'll only find at The Toy Shoppe!
Friendly, Knowledgeable Staff because we love Steiff, too!
Bonus Dollars means extra savings on your future Steiff purchases!
Flexible Payment Plans because collecting should be stress free!
Special Offers like a free gift with your qualifying purchase!
Extensive Selection Of Discontinued Steiff! True gems!
Steiff Country Exclusives rarely available in the United States!
That's why collectors shop for Steiff at The Toy Shoppe!
FREE Christmas Gift With
Every $200 Wee Forest Folk Order
While quantities last. Receive a FREE gift with your Wee Forest Folk order of $200. Your FREE gift, Snowman or Christmas Tree, will be chosen at random. These special editions by Wee Forest Folk may vary in color per piece. Offer not valid on prior orders. May not be exchanged for monetary value. Offer subject to change. No coupon necessary. Limited time offer. NOTE: free gift will not show in your shopping cart but will be applied when we process your order.
FREE Gift Miniature With
Every $80 Wee Forest Folk Order
While quantities last. Receive a FREE gift with your Wee Forest Folk order of $80. Your FREE gift is this adorable Tiny Top Hat. This special edition by Wee Forest Folk may vary in color per piece. Offer not valid on prior orders. May not be exchanged for monetary value. Offer subject to change. No coupon necessary. Limited time offer. NOTE: free gift will not show in your shopping cart but will be applied when we process your order.
Narrow your choices . . .
Magnificent Porcelain And Resin Dolls By German Artist Hildegard Gunzel4 items
viewsort by4 items
German Artist Hildegard Gunzel
Exceptional Dolls, Teddy Bears & More By Hildegard Gunzel
Hildegard Gunzel: A Leader In The Modern Age Of Dollmaking
Internationally acclaimed for her artistry, German artist Hildegard Gunzel combines sculpting perfection and exquisite apparel, assembled from the finest fabrics, laces and trims in her creations. More masterpiece than doll, each creation radiates a rare beauty that could only come from gifted genius. Hildegard is truly one of the leading doll artists in the modern age of dollmaking! Her dolls stir wonderful emotions within each of us.
Hildegard Gunzel Celebrates 40 Years Of Creating Fine Artist Dolls
- excerpt from introduction by Karin Schrey to Classic Collection 2012 by Hildegard Gunzel
The Enchanting World of Hildegard Gunzel
With a New Book and the First of Her 2010 Dolls, She Continues to Lend Her Inspired Passion to Dollmaking
Gerda is just part of the enchanting world of artist Hildegard Gunzel - in fact, it's one of her favorite dolls - highlighting her 2009 Once Upon a Time porcelain collection. Others in the line continue the fairytale theme - including "Arlecchino," tipping her hat as an elegantly appointed harlequin; "Klara and the Nutcracker Bear" and "Antoinette," complete with shepherd's hook and sheep.
Gunzel may work on her ethereal designs from her home in Germany, but her vision resonates around the globe - bringing to life her dreams and inspirations in the form of resin and porcelain dolls.
"For me, creating a figurine is like a sculpture, only that you can move some parts of it and there are glass eyes," says Gunzel. "I want to keep closest to the human being. Every observer is able to interpret his own emotion, and that creates differences in the character of every doll. Collectors or enthusiasts can, with their own feeling and their personal way of life, hand the doll a real life with their impressions."
The Artist's Work
Gunzel, a former fashion designer, created her first doll in 1972, when she "tried to create a little person for my eldest son." That was all it took - soon, Gunzel got what she called the "virus" and "never gave up. This moment reflected my childhood, when I played with dolls."
When she started her dollmaking career, Gunzel considered it "fun," but she especially enjoyed the 1980s as a time when the collector market was developing. "I arranged seminars all over the world," she says.
Gunzel's true joy of dolls, though, is in the inspiration, followed by the creation. "Everything that is realized by me [inspires me]," she says. "[It could be] some scene from my youth or just images." For examples, check out Gunzel's Web site archives, which show in stunning detail her porcelain creations from 1994 to the present and her resin collection from the past few years.
Her 2008 puppenkollektion (doll collection) was themed Passion and Inspiration. It, like most of her lines, is a fine example of how no detail goes unmissed - such as a pointy gold crown atop tightly coiled curls of red or a teddy bear companion. In 2007's Romantic Highlights, white ruled the collection, with dolls wearing finery of all kinds swathed in white fashions. That was a noted change from the 2006 La Vie en Rose collection - which was a bit more playful and upbeat and noted by color, even the occasional green/yellow plaid.
Gunzel herself is very involved in the dolls' costumes. In her new book about Gunzel (see "New Book Immortalizes Gunzel" sidebar), author Karin Schrey writes, "Each of Hildegard Gunzel's collections is a composition of color, in which harmony and contrast play a charming game with each other. Her designs would do any couturier proud."
But no matter what collection or what costume one looks at, the faces are what draws one in. When asked where Gunzel brings such joy and personality to the dolls' faces, she says, "Passion and positive mental attitude for living. I have been modeling dolls for 37 years - and one part is ability, and the other part is artistic donation godsend."
Schrey adds, "As if in a delicate, dazzling cocoon, they are enclosed by their own particular aura, from within which they seem to communicate."
To create her art of designing dolls - which is about one year from initial idea to production, Gunzel says - every creative person needs a special atmosphere. "I find it in my studio at home with its gorgeous view of my romantic garden," she says. In fact, gardening is one of Gunzel's greatest joys outside dollmaking. "Gardening, sculpting and fashion are things I'm living for," she says.
Schrey actually speaks much about Gunzel's inspirational garden in her book, which includes lavish photographs of Gunzel's dolls, sculptures and busts in the striking and rather palatial surroundings. "I feel a kind of secret understanding with my garden ... [it] is my pride and joy. In a garden, I can find the secret of nature in its full beauty," Gunzel is quoted in the book. "My garden and nature then give me the necessary leisure and calmness to process all impressions in my oasis and transfer them into dolls and sculptures. Here everything gets its right and final form."
Both resin and porcelain have been successful lines for Gunzel; her first resin line debuted in 2006 and was well received.
She enjoys all mediums, but resin does have its benefits, as she mentions in the book. "Resin dolls may be touched, they are real 'touchable children' and do not mind being arranged in different poses," she says. The author adds, "Resin, the artist thinks, is made for giving her dolls a rosy, delicate complexion which looks like that of children who often get fresh air."
Gunzel will introduce additions to both the resin and the porcelain lines in 2010. The first new doll of the resin line is the 22-inch "Miriam" debuted on the cover of this issue of DOLLS. The sleeping baby with closed eyes and closed mouth features a jointed head. She is dressed in a white cotton dress trimmed with lace and an underskirt made of delicate yellow silk.
"The porcelain dolls for the new line are still in my head - not modeled or created - so be surprised," she says.
"I would like to work with my dolls as long as I am able to do it, as long as God keeps his eyes on me because it is a passion - I won't stop before I have to go," Gunzel says. "Dolls belong to nearly every culture for a long time - because to play with the doll and take care of the doll teaches children to become diligent and thoughtful adults."
Book Immortalizes Gunzel
The book published in Germany (written in both German and English) uses large, stunning photos and elegant prose to describe prolific doll artist Hildegard Gunzel. Passion and Inspiration: Hildegard Gunzel's World of Dolls by Karin Schrey traces the artist's work from 1998 to the present. The title was inspired by Gunzel's own words used to guide her 2008 doll line. Although Gunzel's first doll dates to 1973, another book, Enchanting Doll Journey, traces the early history and work of the artist. In her 144-page book, Schrey says, "Hildegard Gunzel's dolls are deceptive; they invite to dream and at the same time are willful. Sometimes they provoke, but it is always the mysterious innocence of the little creatures that attracts and captures the onlooker so much."
The Artist's Favorites
Doll artists generally give a stock answer when asked, "Which of your dolls is your favorite?" They often say, "That's like trying to choose a favorite child." But Hildegard Gunzel did offer a short list of some of her favorite creations:
- From her current porcelain line, both "Gerda" - "for sure Gerda!" - and "Arlecchino"
- "Miss Camille" with dogs, "Smoothy" and "Duchess of Catsfield" (1997)
- "Stephana" (1998)
- "Allegra + Pierrot" (2007)
call toll free 1 800 447-799511632 Busy Street
Richmond, VA 23236
local (804) 379-7995
fax (804) 379-2780