Sindy – ‘The Doll You Love To Dress‘
1963 – Now (kind of)
Woo! I have gotten round to doing a post on a local doll!
Sindy is the British ‘rival’ to Barbie. Introduced in the early 60’s, she certainly looked more like a chubby cheeked teenager rather than the statuesque, womanly Barbie across the ocean. I think this most certainly added to her appeal.
In 1960’s Britain, Barbie just wasn’t as popular as in the States. Hasbro (who manufactured Barbie) gave Pedigree the go-ahead to manufacture Barbie here but they refused, preferring instead to design something new that might grab the public interest a lot better than Barbie.
Tammy was a huge inspiration behind the design of Sindy, and she even uses Tammy’s slogan – The Doll You Love To Dress (with permission from The Ideal Toy Co. of course)
Tammy is one of my favourite dolls and I think that’s what started my growing affection for Sindy in recent years as I certainly saw the similarities between them.
Would you believe it, my own mother had Sindy dolls in the house when I was growing up and I used to say they were ugly and horrid (excuse me while I give myself a firm slap on the wrist. Bed without supper for me tonight)
My tastes have since changed and I think Sindy is absolutely awesome. I have five girls in my collection (I think) and I will always be happy to add more.
Just before her release to the public, a number of young girls were given a picture of Sindy and asked to vote on their favourite name for her out of a small list- the winner was Cindy. The C became S and it certainly suits her better I think.
Then Sindy was born! Hurrah, get the red carpet out.
Sindy was a success, and what followed was a huuuuuge amount of accessories and clothes. Not only were many outfits available for her, but so were furniture sets which included teeny tiny knives and forks. You were also able to buy a working shower for her, a kitchen, caravan and even a doll house.
Other friends and family of Sindy were also introduced. Boyfriend Paul and little sister Patch (She will be mine one day, oh yes, she will be mine) along with various other friend dolls.
Any toy that comes with so many accessories is a winner in my view. It’s just fab to see so much detail put into something so tiny and yet brings so much joy to people.
Heres Brunette Sindy on her official vintage Sindy sofa. Very dated but at least it’s not the pink / purple / glittery rubbish we seem to see all over girl toys these days.
Sindy has rooted hair which comes in blonde, black, brown, auburn and even pink. Older models also had wonderful rooted eyelashes which are just so lovely. A black doll called Gayle was also released who is beautiful – my mum owns one in fab condition and I shall be kidnapping her for a photo shoot soon.
The Sindy doll herself has gone through a lot of changes bodywise and facewise over the years.
Her body started off very simple. With plastic torso and arms and legs. I’m not even sure if the original dolls had bendy knees? Her feet were relatively flat so she could wear flat shoes rather than walking on her tiptoes all her life – poor Barbie never had this luxury.
As new styles of Sindy were released such a ballerinas, she began coming out with slightly more posable bodies which included moveable joints including waist, arms, ankles and wrists.
In the 70’s, a new body also came out which collectors refer to as ‘gauntlet Sindy’ due to the gauntlet shaped underarms (Pedigree – why?!) The reason for the ‘gauntlet’ look was so that Sindy’s arms could move at the elbow – super flexible but it looked silly.
Gauntlet Sindy didn’t last too long.
Her body went back to as it was before, with added versatility as her design was improved upon.
Her is a picture of my blonde Sindy to demonstrate her body. I think she’s late 70’s to early 80’s but I’m not sure. Her body is very simple. Legs which can snap-bend at the knee and hold their position. Arms which move at the shoulder joint but only side to side. And her head can move all the way around (Sindy reserves that trick for halloween)
As the years went on, Sindy’s design became far too similar to that of Barbie. Her face dramatically changed, she became slimmer and generally lost all of her ‘girl next door’ appeal.
Nowadays she is totally unrecognisable as Sindy (sob) but this makes her such a wonderful vintage doll to collect as she is now totally unique.
You can see her rooted eyelashes well in this pic. I also love this girls pales lips.
Sindy posing in the garden wearing some vintage clothes I won on eBay (I think they’re official Sindy fashions).
Genuine, vintage, good quality Sindy clothes can fetch fairly high prices on eBay. But occasionally you can get a sweet deal so it’s always worth looking.
And speaking of clothes, Sindy here is wearing Tressy’s outfit. Bit baggy, but matches her hair ribbon!