Established in 1927 in New York City, Eugenia Poir produced specialty cloth dolls under the direction of partner Alvin Grey. The company was also part of The French Dollmakers. The dolls were initially designed and produced in France and measure mostly within 16 to 23.5 inches tall. However, the company halted its operations in 1935. The dolls were made cloth usually with pressed felt or fabric and cotton bodies. These were also jointed at the neck, hip, and shoulder areas and also had a distinguishable protruding section at front and back of the lower torso. The facial features were painted and had side glancing eyes.
Another distinguishing feature on their dolls made with felt was its dotted eyebrows. The eyelashes on the upper portion were made of real lashes while the lower ones were painted. The mouth was also shaped like a heart on its felt face. The all cotton versions had painted eyelashes on the top and bottom with painted single stroke eyebrows. It still had the same side glancing painted eyes yet the difference can be observed from its height since the cotton ones came in either 17 or 18 inches. A seam running from the front to the back at the center of the doll’s body is another indicator of Gre-Poir’s cotton doll version.
The disc joints of the cotton dolls were also found on the jointed neck, hip, and shoulder areas. Most of the dolls came with mitten type hands with some stitching for its fingers. The Gre-Poir dolls were stuffed with excelsior or straw and its hair could be blonde or red mohair wigs. Its hair came in various styles such as curly, bob cut, and wavy. The dolls wore socks with three stripes on the top on some of the models and these were paired with Mary Jane shoes.
Most dolls also had cardboard or cloth hang tags bearing the label “French Doll Makers” that had the printed marking “The French Dollmakers / Name Of The Doll / My hair can be washed / I can be dry cleaned.” Another interesting addition in its doll series was the smoker and musical boudoir dolls that wore fashionable clothing and stylish accessories.
Those who are interested in collecting Gre-Poir’s dolls may have to scour the internet and auctions to find these rare collectibles. These cloth and felt dolls need special care and perhaps due to its natural fiber materials, it made Gre-Poir’s creations one of the hardest dolls to find at present.