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Publication numberUS2340172 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateJan 25, 1944
Filing dateMar 28, 1941
Priority dateMar 28, 1941
Publication numberUS 2340172 A, US 2340172A, US-A-2340172, US2340172 A, US2340172A
InventorsJane Buchanan Betty
Original AssigneeJane Buchanan Betty
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Doll and method of making same
US 2340172 A
Abstract  available in
Previous page
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Claims  available in
Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

Jmi. 25, 1944.

B. J. BUCHANAN 2,340,172 DOLL AND METHOD OF MAKING SAME FiledMarch 28 1941 Sheets-Sheet 1 Jan. 25, 1944.

B. J. BUCHANAN DOLL AND METHOD OF MAKING SAME Filed March 28, 1941 2 Sheets-Sheet 2 Patented Jan. 25, 1944 UNITED STATES PATENT OFFICE DOLL AND METHOD OF MAKING SAME Betty Jane Buchanan, Oak Park, Ill.

Ap lication March 28, 1941, Serial N0. 385,583

3 Claims.

The present invention relates to the construction of and to a method of making life-like figures and is more particularly directed to a flexible and unbreakable miniature figure such as a doll structure.

In the usual construction of miniature figures or counterparts of human beings, animals or the like, flexibility is provided for by molding or otherwise shaping the figures from such materials as rubber, paper, yarn or numerous fabrics or by merely filling a fabric covering of the shape desired with sawdust, paper, hair or the like. Such constructions are objectionable either because the materials become brittle with age, tea or fail toretain the shapes in which they are originally fabricated.

With the foregoing in mind, it is an important object of the present invention to provide a structure for a life-like figure in which theseand other objectionable features are eliminated.

Another object of this invention is to provide a method for making a life-like figure which embodies all of the features to be more fully described hereinafter.

A further object of this invention is the provision of a miniature figure so constructed of metal, fabric and wood as to provide a flexible and jointed body.

A still further object of this invention is the provisionof a miniature figure in human or anima1 form or the like having characteristics providing a life-like appearance.

Among some of the features of the present invention is the provision of a skeleton formed of flexible wires of such metal as copper, the skeleton having joints at the extremitiesof the limbs, the neck where jointed to the torso, and at the waistline thereof. Other features include wind ing and padding the skeleton with fabric strips in such a manner as to effect the proper girth, contour and thickness desired whereby the trunk and limbs may be" flexed to any position while retaining their fabricated shapes.

The novel features believed to be characteristic of the present invention are set forthwith particularity in the appended claims. The in vention itself, however, both as to its organization and manner of construction, together with further objects and advantages thereof, may best be understood by reference to the following description taken in connection with the accompanying drawings, in which:

Figure 1 is a front view in elevation illustrat irig a doll construction embodyingprinciples of the present invention; 7

Figure ,2 is a front view in elevation of a flexible wire skeleton around which the figure of Figure 1 is constructed;

Figures 3 to 9 diagrammatically illustrate the steps in winding strips of fabric around the skeleton illustrated in Figure 2;

Figure 10 is a fragmentary side view in elevation illustrating the joint between the trunk and leg when the trunk is bent forwardly;

Figure 11 is an enlarged fragmentary vertical cross-sectional view showing details of construction of the lower portion of the leg and foot illustrated in Figure 1;'

Figure 12 is an enlarged vertical cross-sectional view, with portions'in elevation, of the fore arm and hand construction illustrated in Figure 1; and,

Figure :13 is a side View, with a portion cut away and shown in vertical cross section, of the head construction illustrated in Figure l.

The miniature figure or doll'construction 20 illustrated in Figure 1 is formed of such materials as metal, fabric and wood. The metal provides a skeleton 2i simulating, as nearly as possible, the bone structure of the figure to be constructed, which in the present instance is that of a miniature figure of a human being. it is preferred that the skeleton be formed of Wireand it has been found that copper wire of a size No. 20 provides an excellent skeleton due to its flexibility and because copper is very ductile and has the ability to resist corrosion. It is to be understood, however, that wire of other metals may be used equally as well and thesi'ze' of the wire used will depend upon the size of the figure to be constructed.

As shown in Figure 2', the skeleton 2| is formed of a plurality ofseparate lengths of wire in order that the several portions of'the body and its extremities may be jointed. If desired, the entire skeleton may be formed of a single length of flexible wire with its flexibility only being dependent upon for twisting and bending to desired positions.

The lower portion 22 of. the torso or trunk is trapezoidal in shape and formed of two loops of wire, the ends of which are forme'd as elongated loops extending outwardly and downwardly from the lower corners at its wide end to provide legs 23 and 24. The upper ends of the legs are coiled around the lower corners 25 and 26 along the pelvic line 21 to provide additional strength and to hold the trapezoidal loops together. The coils atthe corners 25 and 26 thereby provide hip:

joints. The U-shaped ends of the legs are bent outwardly to form feet 28 and 29. I

The upper portion 30 of the torso or trunk, generally trapezoidal in shape, is formed of a length of doubled wire, the ends 3! and 32 of which are coiled around the short waistline 33. The coils 3| and 32 provide joints at the waistline of the body. The wide end of the trunk portion 39 is slightly curved to form the shoulders 34 and 35. Elongated loops 36 and 31 of wire form the arms and their ends are coiled as at 38 and 39 around'the upper corners of the trunk portion 39 at the extremities of the shoulders 34 and 35. It is preferred that the arm loops be coiled so as to extend from the rear of the trunk portion 30 to more nearly simulate an actual jointed shoulder construction.

A short loop of double wire forms the neck 43, V

tion that the skeleton construction 2| provides joints at the base of the neck, at the connections of the arms to the shoulders, at the waistline, and at the connections of the legs to the trunk of the body.

The skeleton is now ready for application of the material necessary for the provision of girth and contour to give shape to; the body of the figure to be formed. For this purpose, it is preferred that strips of flesh-colored outing flannel be used, although it is to be understood that other materials may be used such as paper, various fabrics, or the like. The width andlength of the strips depend entirely on the size of the wire skeleton used and the ease with which such strips may be wrapped around the various portions of the skeleton. In models so far made and which were approximately nine inches in height, the strips were approximately one-half inch wide and of a length necessary for the number of windings to cover a definite length of the skeleton and provide that portion thereof with the proper contour and thickness.

The manner in which the skeleton 2| 'is wrapped with strips of fabric to form the construction of Figure 1 is diagrammatically illustrated in Figures 3 through 9. In all the windings to be described, each convolution is so wound that a marginal edge thereof overlaps a marginal edge of an adjacent convolution. As shown in Figure 3, a strip 42 of material is looped as at 42a intermediate its ends around the neck 40 of the skeleton in such a manner that the ends 42b and 420 cross at the front of the neck. The strip length 421) is then wound under and over the shoulder on a bias as at 42:1. The end of the strip is so wound as to bridge the shoulder coil 39 and is wound on the bias down a side of the upper trunk portion 30 as shown at 42e. The end of the strip is wound to a position adjacent the center of the waistline 33 where it is looped under and passed upwardly along the front of the skel-' eton as at 42 to loop over the opposite shoulder 34 and down the back as at 42g to the pelvic line 27. The end 42h is then wound on a bias around the left-hand portion of the pelvic line 21 where it bridges the coil 25 and is woundupwardlyas at 422' around the left-hand side of the lower trunk portion 22. The free end is then brought transversely acrossthe front of the lower trunk portion 22 at the waistline 33 to a position illustrated at 427'.

The length of the strip 420 is wound on a bias over and under the shoulder 34 as ilustrated at 42k. The strip then bridges the coil 38 and is wound downwardly on a bias as at 421 along the left-hand side of the upper trunk portion 30. The end of the strip 420 is then wound to a position adjacent the center of the waistline 33 where it crosses the strip 42b and extends upwardly along the front of the skeleton as at 42m where it is looped over the shoulder 35 and brought down the back of the skeleton as at 4211. to the center of the pelvic line 21. The strip is then wound on the right-hand portion of the pelvic line 21 as at 420 to bridge the coil 26 and then upwardlyas at 42p until it reaches a position adjacent the waistline where it crosses transversely of the lower trunk portion 22 to the position as illustrated at 4211.

The shoulder and the sides of both trunk portions, the waistline and the pelvic line are thereby wound on a bias for strengthening the trunk of the body and efiecting a covered skeleton portion for receiving additional wrappings to give the trunk proper thickness and contour., The strip portions 42g and 42n form a spinal column at the back of the skeleton.

Continued wrapping of the ends of the strips 4% and 420 is illustrated in Figure 4. The ends 427' and 42q cross each other as at 43 at the back of the figure. The end 427 is transversely wound upwardly along the lower portion of the trunk 30 andterminates at 45 where it is stitched in place. The strip end 42q is wound transversely downward as at 46 along the trunk portion 22 to terminate at 4'! where it is stitched in place.

i A short strip 48 of material has one end thereof stitched as at 49 and is wound transversely downward on the trunk portion 30 until it meets the terminal 45 of the strip 42c]. The terminal 50 of the strip 48 is then stitched in place. 4

In this manner, the entire trunk comprising the portions 22 and 39 are transversely wound along their lengths.

The arms are next wound as illustrated in Fig ures 5 and 6. A strip 5| of material has an ir 1 termediate portion placed against the back ofthe neck portion 40 with the ends 5m and Bib thereof drawn forwardly over the shoulders 34 and 35. The strip end 5la is passed under the shoulder coil 38 and is then wound downwardly on a bias as at 5Ic along the length of the arm 36. The free end of the strip portion 5la is then wound upwardly as at tile on a bias angularly and oppositely disposed to the bias winding of the portion 5lc. The end of the strip 5le ,isbrought diagonally across the shoulder coil 38 as at 5lf, as shown in Figures 5 and 6. The strip portion tilt) is wound on a bias down and back along the arm 31 in the samemanner as the strip end 5la just described. The end 519 of the strip- 5lb is diagonally brought over the shoulder coil:

39 as at 5lh. If the ends 5le and 5 lg arelong enough and it is necessary to providefor addi-' tional thickness in the arms at and 31, t ends are brought across the chest withthe end- 519; be-

ing wound diagonally; over the shoulder coil-38 and on a bias down the arm 39 to the wrist portion 52 where it is stitched in place. The end 5| e is brought diagonally over the shoulder coil 39 and wound on av bias down the arm Wrist 53 where it is stitched in place. a

In order that the arms may taperprope rly; from the shoulder to the;wrist, the, -s trips -are;

31 to the.

wound sothat the overlapping of marginal edges of adjacent convolutions is greater near the shoulders than at the wrists.

After the arms 36 and 31 have been wound to provide a longitudinal taper, the forearms 54 and 55 are shaped to the proper contour in a manner now to be described. As shown in Figure 7, ovalshaped strip portions 56 are laid around the back and a portion of the sides of the forearm 54 to provide the desired contour. A short strip of material, not shown, is then wound on a bias in opposition to the bias of the strip 51c from the elbow down to the wrist 52 where it is stitched in place. The forearm 55 on the arm 3? is provided with a similar padding and a wound strip to give the contour desired.

The legs 23 and 24 are then wound as illustrated in Figure 8. A strip 58 has an intermediate portion thereof stitched as at 59 to the strip covering the lower end of the trunk portion 22. The ends 58a and 58b'of the strip 56 are then wound transversely around the trunk portion 22 until the coils 25 and 26 defining the hip joints are reached. The strip end 58a is wound diagonally, as at 580, over the coil 26 and then on a bias down the entire leg as at 5801 to the foot 29. The end of the strip 58b is wound diagonally, as at 586, over the coil 25 and then on a bias as at 58f along the length of the leg 23 down to the foot 28. If the strip ends 58a and 58b are of a sufficient length, the legs are additionally wound along a bias and in an opposite direction upwardly with adjacent convolutions overlapping in the same manner as the arms 36 and 3'! are wound. These windings provide a longitudinal taper downwardly from the hips to the foot on each leg.

The lower portion of the leg from the knee to the foot is shaped similar to the forearm of each of the arms as previously described herein.

As shown in Figure 11, a sufficient number of oval pads 69 are stitched to the back of the lee below the knee 61 to provide a calf portion. A strip 62 is then wound from the hip 25 to the foot 28 along a bias in opposition and angularly disposed to the bias of the winding 58 The leg 24 is finished in a similar manner.

As shown in Figure 9, the trunk of the body is next shaped and wound with strips to a desired girth and contour in proportion to the finished arms and legs.

A strip 63 is folded in a plurality of thicknesses and laid on the chest portion of the upper trunk 36 where the edges are stitched in place to the underlying strip 48. The number of folds will depend on the depth of chest desired. Similarly, a strip 64 is folded and stitched at its edges to the strip $8 in a position below the folded strip 63. Another strip 65 is folded and stitched in place at the waistline 33. Usually the folded strips 63, 64 and 65 are of a thickness to arcuately shape the front of the upper trunk 36 from the neck to the waistline when viewed from the side. However, the thicknesses of the strips may be varied in accordance with the type of figure to be formed. Male and female figures are provided with strips to properly shape the upper trunks accordingly. An athletic type of figure is shaped with the strip 63 being folded to provide the greatest number of folds with the strips 64 and 65 having proportionately fewer numbers of folds whereby the upper trunk 36 tapers sharply to a narrow waist. A stout type of figure requires that the strips 64 and 65 be folded to provide greater thickness at the waist than at the 'Tchest. If necessary, additional folded strips (not shown) may be stitched to the strip 46 over the lower trunk portion 22 to provide an abdominal protrusion.

Along strip 66 is looped at an intermediate portion 66a behind the neck 40 with the free ends 6% and 660 brought forwardly over the shoulders 34 and 35 and down the front of the body over the folded strips 63, 64 and 65. The ends 6611 and 660 are then looped, as at 66d and 666, between the legs 23 and 24, over the pelvic line 21 and brought upwardly as at 66 and 66g along the back of the body. The ends are looped as at 66h and 652' over the shoulders and brought down the front of the body along the portions designated 567' and 66k. With the ends of the strip hanging downwardly, folded strips 61, 68, 69 and 16 are inserted between the strip portions 66 and 36g and the underlying wound strip to provide for a seat and shoulder blades.

The remainder of the free ends 661) and 660 of the strip are then looped as at 661 and 66m around the pelvic line 21 and are crossed at the back of the lower trunk portion 22. The strip end portion 661?. is then wound transversely around the lower trunk 22 from the waist down and the terminal 660 is stitched in place to the underlying strip 46. The strip end portion 66p is wound transversely aroundthe upper trunk 38 from the waist upward where the terminal 66q is stitched in place to th underlying folded strip 63.

The wire loop is forming the skeleton neck is next wound witha strip H as shown in Figure 6.

. This strip of material is coiled at one end as at 12 and placed against the front of the loop 46 to form the larynx and the end of the strip is wound around the coil l2 and the wire loop until the proper neck thickness is obtained. The terminal of the strip is stitched in place.

In order that the thighs ofthe legs have a muscular appearance when the figure is that of a man, particularly of the athletic type, strips such as 73 and 14 are stitched in place as shown in Figure 1. Similarly, strips 15 and 16 are sewn on the shoulders to give them a squared appearance. Likewise, as shown in Figure 10, short strips El and 18 may be sewn across the abdominal region if desired either to reinforce the transversely wound strip portion 6612 or to provide additional padding for a stout figure.

The figure, wound as described above, is provided with a smooth covering to give a finished appearance. An oblong strip 16,0ut on a bias, has a central opening to slip over the wound neck H Adjacent edges are sewn together along seams and st extending from th armpits to tlie ends of the strip adjacent the hips. Similarly, strips 82 and 33 also out on the bias, are wrappedaround the arms 36 and 31 and adjacent longitudinal edges on the inside of the arms are sewn together along seams 84 and 85. Strips 86 and 81 of bias are wrapped around thelegs 23 and 24 and sewn along the inner longitudinal seams 8B and 89.

The figure illustrated in Figure 1 has stockings 96 and 9| made of silk, rayon, nylon or other suitable or similar material, the edges of which are either sewn, glued or otherwise suitably connected to form seams depending on the material used. If desired, the entire figure may be covered with the stocking material to provide a smooth skin efiect.

Soles 92 for the feet are cut either from sheet cork, heavy paper or other similar or suitable plastic.

material. The heel of each foot is formed by inserting a small ball 93 of cotton batting or like material within the stockings 90 and as shown in Figure 11. Plastic wood isthen applied to each foot and molded into the'shape of a shoe, sandal or other footgear 94 and the sole 92 is applied while the shoe portion is still If desired, the sole 92 may be glued to thefootgear after the plastic wood has hardened.

As shown in Figure 12, each of the hands 95 is cut from cork or wood or is molded from plastic wood or the like. In the preferred form, the body and fingers 96 of the hand are cut from cork or wood and the thumb 91 is molded of plastic wood. The wrist portion 98 has a slot for receiving therein the wire wrist portions 52 or 53 of the skeleton. Connection therebetween is by means of glue or a pivot of metal, thread or the like (not shown) passing through the hand and the wire loop.

A head 99 is formed preferably in the following manner although it is to be understood that it is Within the scope of this invention to form the head structure entirely of wood or other suitable material, either cut or molded to the finished shape.

A tapered bottle cork illustrated in dotted lines of Figure 13, has the portion I00 cut away to form the chin IOI and the front portion of the neck I02. form the rear portion of the neck I04. Plastic wood is applied as at I05 around the hair line to properly shape the skull and, if wavy hair is desired, the plastic wood is provided with transversely extending grooves I06.

Hair I 01 of mending floss, mohair or other similar material is glued to the plastic wood after it has hardened. A nose I08 is cut from a flat strip of cork and glued to the, face with nostrils I09 being formed of plastic wood. Ears IIO, also out from a-flat strip of cork, are glued to the head 99. The eyes III and the mouth II2 are painted or inked on the face of the head 99.

A transversely extending slot H3 is provided in the neck of the head to receive therein the loop 40 of the skeleton. Connection therebetween is by glue or other suitable means in the same manner as the hands are affixed to the skeleton arms.

Th finished body construction is then dressed with whatever garments are desired for depicting historical, dramatical, or other characters. As the garments form no part of the present invention, they are not illustrated or described herein.

It is to be noted that the elbow and knee portions of the limbs have the least number of strips wound therearound thereby permitting greater flexibility for bending the limbs to positions in which the figure assumes various poses.

The joints at the shoulders and hips are so wound'as to permit flexibility at the ends of the limbs. As illustrated in Figure 1, the coverings for the arms and the body are not connected in order that the arms may be twisted without Another portion I03 is cut away to the coverings twisting. As shown particularly in Figure 10, the strip material crossing diagonally over the hip coils and 26 at 58c provides the only connection between the wound trunk portion 22 and the wound leg 23. 'The diagonally extending strip portion 580 connects the wound trunk portion 22 and the wound leg 24. Likewise, the strip of material connecting the arms to the upper trunk 30 crosses the shoulder coils 38 and 39 diagonally as at 5If and 5Ih as shown in Figure 6.

It will be apparent from the foregoing that I have provided a flexible and jointed life-like figure construction formed of strip material wound in a particular manner on a wire skeleton having a body and limb portions which retain their shape when twisted or bent to various positions.

While a particular embodiment only of this invention has been illustrated, it will, of course, be understood that the invention should not be limited thereto, since many modifications may be made and, therefore, it is contemplated by the appended claims to cover all such modifications as fall within the true spirit and scope of the present invention.

I claim as follows:

1. A skeleton for an imitation life-like figure comprising a trapezoidal-shaped loop of wire forming the lower trunk of a body, a second trapezoidal loop of wire forming the upper trunk of said body, the ends of one of said loops being 7 coiled around the other loop to form a jointed like figure comprising a leg portion having a. wire skeleton core and a covering of material strips around said core, an angularly extending foot on said leg, a ball of material at the heel of said foot, a covering for said leg portion, holding said ball of material at the heel, a molded shoe embracing said covered foot, and a sole connected to said molded shoe.

3. A doll skeleton comprising separate loops of wire formed to provide a bust body section, a pelvis body section coil connected thereto to form a waist-line, a neck coil connected to the bust body section, loop arms having both ends of the wires forming the arms coil connected to the bust body section, and loop legs having both ends of the wires forming the legs coil connected to the pelvis body section, said loop legs havin the bight portions thereof bent to form 7 feet.


Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US3070920 *Aug 4, 1960Jan 1, 1963Aniforms IncPuppet like figure and animation apparatus
US3395484 *Jun 22, 1966Aug 6, 1968Betty Y. SmithDoll figures having an internal wire skeleton
US6800016May 30, 2003Oct 5, 2004Mattel, Inc.Flexible dolls and posable action figures
US7479054Sep 20, 2004Jan 20, 2009Mattel, Inc.Flexible dolls and posable action figures
US20050037686 *Sep 20, 2004Feb 17, 2005Wittenberg Mark S.Flexible dolls and posable action figures
US20050191936 *Jan 5, 2005Sep 1, 2005Marine Jon C.Doll
US20120289117 *Nov 15, 2012Montana Bach NielsenModular figurine and accessory system
US20130109004 *May 2, 2013Design Ideas, Ltd.Human model
U.S. Classification446/370
International ClassificationA63H9/00
Cooperative ClassificationA63H9/00
European ClassificationA63H9/00