Thursday, 28 February 2013

1960's Sindy outfits.

Sindy or Barbie? Which one was your favourite? I loved playing with my Sindy dolls when I was little. I did have a few Barbies but Sindy was my favourite as she was more real looking, had a friendlier face, a more normal body and looked  less 'plastic', in as much as a plastic doll possibly can. My sister and I had two floors each of the Sindy house that we shared. I had the roof terrace as I had the swinging hammock and the table with the umbrella and of course Sindy's dog who needed to be able to go outside. I also had Sindy's writing desk which came with Holly Hobby pencils and a notebook and had a clipboard to go in a pocket in the door. I also had the hostess trolley with the cutlery and plates and the chicken legs and lumps of peas, carrots and mash that went with them. I have very very fond memories of hours and hours of playing Sindys.

The bit I liked best though was dressing Sindy up so that she was ready to act out whatever scenario I had invented. I remember the treat of being able to pick a new Sindy outfit in the shops, choosing something to fill the gap in her wardrobe. I played with Sindys in the early 1980s so there were some top quality outfits. I remember a red puffy ballgown designed by the Emmanuels which will have been from the time that Charles and Diana got married. I think it had a black velvet floor length cape too.

Some of my favourite Sindy outfits were ones that my mum knitted for me. One came via Father Christmas and was a lemon yellow suit with a pencil skirt, a crossover cardigan and a matching hat trimmed with a blue flower. She also knitted some ra ra dresses, one was short and red and yellow, one was long and blue and peach. I have all these in a box, all my Sindys, all their clothes, all the furniture, all the chicken legs.

So when I entered the London Fashion and Textiles Museum to see the exhibition covered in this post I was surprised to find a small display of 1960s Sindys. I loved seeing this array of 1960's fashions on such a small scale. Sindy was first produced in 1963 by Pedigree Toys. She has been through many incarnations since and my Sindys of the 1980s look a bit different to the 1960s ones. I think it is amazing how well her outfits followed fashion and some great ones are shown in the following photographs. No wonder she was known as the doll you love to dress.

The Sindy doll to the left is Sindy as she was when first launched, in her 'Weekenders' outfit of a stripey top, jeans and trainers. To the right is Miss Mod. You can see several fashions on here, white patent boots, baker boy caps, capes, coloured trousers and  Springtime patterned blouses (1964). The houndstooth checked cape is from 1963.

The scene is set in London in the Swinging Sixties. Here we have lots of mini dresses and skirts, geometric styles, two tone, Mondrian checks, monochrome, tunic tops and polo necks. The Two Tone dress is from 1968 as is the Mini Gear outfit of the balck polo neck and green skirt. The dress at the front is Op Art and the one behind to the right is Miss Cortina (1966).

Some psychedelic fashions here, I like the Trendsetter (1969) dress at the front and the trousers and blouse. Also a PVC coat, Mary Quant style florals and large buttons. The mac at the front is April Showers.

Look at the record player in the foreground! The dress on the left is called Dream Date (1963). I really like the mini dress Career Girl (1968) on the right. I would wear that if it were in my size.

Two fantastic suits to finish with. Psychedelic Town and Country (1968) on the left and corduroy (1967) on the right. Town and Country came with a matching skirt. Look at the lovely Mod scooter in the background.

This site is fascinating and was where I found the names of some of the Sindy outfits featured.


  1. I think that Sindy dolls did hop the pond and were sold here in Canada and/or the States for at least a while, but I don't recall seeing them in toy store shelves in the 80s or early 90s when I was growing up here in Canada. Such a shame! She's really adorable and I'm sure I would have enjoyed playing with her as much as I did with my beloved Barbies. If I should ever come across a Sindy doll was yard saling or thrifting, I'll definitely bring her home with me.

    ♥ Jessica

  2. If you ever do find a Sindy it would be interesting to see it. Spoke to a friend yesterday who read this and recognised the original Sindy in the jeans and striped top as one that she had! She is looking to see if she still has it. Did you have a favourite Barbie? I had love heart Barbie and magic moves Barbie who was very glamourous and had an aqua blue cape with a white fur trim.