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Cork Pate

Victorian porcelain dolls usually had cork pates. These were hemispherical cork shapes, like a slice cut off the side of a ball, which filled the large eye-setting hole in the head that enabled factory workers to put their whole hand inside the head to set the eyes. This style of head was common even in miniature dolls, here is a Halbig KR head an inch and a quarter high, typical of the type. The cork pate completed the shape of the head to make wig fitting easier.

I make pates for my glass-eyed dolls. They protect all that is inside the head: a bead, elastic, knots, eye stalks and plaster, when you are handling the head. I carve each pate out of cork and glue it into the opening, which in my dolls is just a tiny circle on the top of the head. For 24th scale dolls I make card pates. When you are re wigging, if you peel the wig cap off the head and the cork pate comes with it, just prise the pate off the cap and glue it back into the head hole with PVA or tacky glue. Wait a few hours for it to dry thoroughly before gluing another wig on.

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China painted
Combable hair
Cork pate
Dry cleaning
Eye setting
Fashion Ladies
Glass eyes
Original artist
Wig cap

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