Sparkle Plenty

 Confirmation dress picture from Sidney Jeffery @

Life Magazine - 1947
" The doll is 14 inches high. Her long hair can be brushed and braided.
She is "warm and snuggly" because of  "Magic Skin." will stand washing.
Layette includes sacque and diaper."

The story of this ad was kindly furnished by  Randy in Scottsdale, Az.
This ad appeared in LIFE Magazine on August 25, 1947.
If you are in need of a particular article, Randy has LIFE Magazines from 1936-1948
He can be reached at     <>
This is a quote of the above story.

"Sparkle Plenty"

The daughter of B. O. Plenty and Gravel Gertie
becomes a doll and starts to set sales record.

In his comic strip Dick Tracy Chester Gould has created a repulsive
gallery of characters which includes such figures as Flattop, The Brow
and the Mole. Last year Gould married off two of his unseemly
personalities, B. O. Plenty, an unkempt, smelly old criminal and Gravel
Gertie, a banjo-playing dervish who lived in a gravel pit. Two months
ago this grotesque couple amazed Gould's public by producing a beautiful
child named Sparkly. Her dazzling eyes and hip-length blond hair
immediately won the hearts of Dick Tracy's 26 million readers.
Among them was an ex-all American football player named William
M. Mc Duffee, manager of the toy department of Gimbels, one of the
largest department stores in the U.S. McDuffee reasoned that because
of the popular comic strip a Baby Sparkle Plenty doll would need little
advertising or promotion. Mc Duffee took his idea to the Ideal Toy and
Novelty Co. Forty eight days later, the production of Baby Sparkle
Plenty dolls began. On July 28 they went on sale. At a stiff  $ 5.98 apiece,
10,000 sold in the first five days. Sales in the next two weeks zoomed
to 22,000. At this rate more Baby Sparkle Plentys will be sold in the
last five months of this year than all other types of doll put together.
Mc Duffee, who knows a good thing when he has it, is getting ready
to bring out Baby Sparkle Plenty cradle and a Gravel Gertie banjo."

The Boxes
                                   1st I think
Sparkle must have come in two different type boxes.
I am not sure which is the older of the two.
If anyone knows, please let me know. Thanks.

The Sunday Comics

May 30th, 1948. The Sunday comics. (by Chester Gould)
Sparkle Plenty's first birthday. She really was a
special little girl. She made the Sunday paper!!!


This information was kindly furnished by Angela in London, Ontario, Canada.
Angela has a copy of this ad. She sells the directions to this snow
suit. If you are interested- you may write to her at

Baby Sparkle Plenty Paper Dolls
Saalfield # 1510 1948
.  ........
Front                                                     Back

These Paper dolls are courtesy of Jo Addie of LaGrange, Il.

In the News Again

This full page article is from a 1953  Life magazine.
It gave the story of each doll.
Kindly furnished by Mike Dodson of Tenn.

Sparkle Plenty Soap Sculpture in her Bed
The box (bed) was 5 1/2" by 3 1/4". The doll lay in a bed of pink
cotton. The box said " Modeled in castile soap by Lightfoot, New York.

There was even a Sparkle Plenty Bank


Or perhaps a comic book??


  FEBRUARY 25,1999
updated January 28, 2001



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