Preemie Outfit #3: Gown with Hooded Blanket

Wrap your preemie in love!

Main graphic with a baby pink background and a doll wearing a blue version of the #3 preemie outfit. It says "#3 Gown with hooded blanket" in black text.

1984 Preemie Clothing Series Summary

Description

This outfit consists of two pieces.

  1. Cotton gown with polka dot lace around the bottom hem, at the sleeves, and at the neck. A second type of lace runs down the middle front. The bottom of the gown is a hi-low.
  2. A cotton blanket with lace around all the edges of the blanket and a second, larger lace at one corner forms a ‘bonnet’. There are ribbons to tie at the neck.

Footwear: Knit booties

Light blue version of the #3 preemie outfit, gown with hooded blanket.

This outfit was most likely sold only from 1984 – 1985. Some packaged versions may have sold later than that.

Version Information

My goal is to find every version of every outfit that was produced. Below is a record of each version of this outfit that I have, up to the date indicated. To understand clothing codes, factories and variations, please refer to the suggested readings below.

Suggested readings: 1st Blog – Why do this project?, What are Clothing Tag Codes

If you have an outfit that is not recorded here or does not match my information, (e.g. you have a 3F OK that is pink, not mint green) I would appreciate hearing from you. Information is best sent in the form of pictures. For details on the pictures required, jump to Taking Clothing Tag Pics.

Variations

> So far, there are no observable differences between outfits produced at different factories.

> B-Series outfit #B503 Frilly Gown with hooded blanket

Preemie Outfit #2 – Hooded Gown

All one piece, from the head to the toes!

Large title grpahic with mint green background and a picture of a doll wearing the Hooded Gown outfit. It says "#2 Hooded gown" in black text.

1984 Preemie Clothing Series Summary

Description

This outfit is a cotton fabric bunting bag with an attached hood. The hood, neck yoke and end of the sleeves are one colour/pattern, and the remainder is another colour. The hood, edges of the yoke, and where the two fabrics meet on the sleeves are is edged with lace. The lace is all the same. The bottom of the bunting bag cinches with a ribbon. There is an opening that closes with velcro at the back of the hood.

Footwear: Knit booties

Preemie outfit #2. It is a bunting bag outfit with an attached hood that is pink and white gingham. The body of the gown is white.

This outfit was most likely sold only from 1984 – 1985. Some packaged versions may have sold later than that.

Version Information

My goal is to find every version of every outfit that was produced. Below is a record of each version of this outfit that I have, up to the date indicated. To understand clothing codes, factories, and variations, please refer to the suggested readings below.

Suggested readings: 1st Blog – Why do this project?, What are Clothing Tag Codes? 1984 Preemie Clothing Series Summary

If you have an outfit that is not recorded here or does not match my information, (e.g. you have a 2F OK that is green and white gingham, not pink and white gingham) I would appreciate hearing from you. Information is best sent in the form of pictures. For details on the pictures required, jump to Taking Clothing Tag Pics.

Variations

> So far, there are no observable differences between outfits produced by various factories.

> B-Series outfits:  #B502 – Frilly hooded gown
                            #B501- Velour hooded bunting bag

Preemie outfit #1 – Gown with Vest

A gown with a vest and matching bonnet.

Blue graphic with a picture of a Cabbage Patch preemie wearing a gown, vest and bonnet. It says #1, Gown with vest" in black lettering.

1984 Preemie Clothing Series Summary

Description

There are 3 pieces to this outfit.

  1. Gown: Long cotton gown with a straight across bottom. There is lace along the bottom hem, around the end of the sleeves, around the neck and in a single strip down the middle front. This is the tagged piece.
  2. Vest: A different colour/pattern than the gown. It ties closed at the front with satin ties. Lace edges from the chest area all around the bottom hem. The arm holes are capped with small flutter sleeves.
  3. Bonnet:  Cotton bonnet that is the same colour as the gown. Edged with lace.

    The lace on the sleeves and down the front of the gown is different from the other lace in the outfit.

Footwear: Shoes / Booties

This outfit was most likely sold only from 1984 – 1985. Some packaged versions may have sold later than that.

Version Information

My goal is to find every version of every outfit that was produced. Below is a record of each version of this outfit that I have, up to the date indicated. To understand clothing codes, factories and variations, please refer to the suggested readings below.

Suggested readings: 1st Blog – Why do this project?, What are Clothing Tag Codes

If you have an outfit that is not recorded here or does not match my information, (e.g. you have a 1D OK vest that is pink and white gingham, not white with purple buds) I would appreciate hearing from you. Information is best sent in the form of pictures. For details on the pictures required, jump to Taking Clothing Tag Pics.

Variations

> At this time I can see no observable differences between outfits produced at different factories.

> B-Series outfit: There is a BSeries version of this outfit, but I don’t have the number recorded.   (Future Post)

> 25th Anniversary Preemie Outfit: This outfit looks very similar but the vest is attached and doesn’t continue around to the back. For more information visit, 25th Anniversary Outfits.

Picture of a yellow gown with attached vest. The 25th Anniversary version of the outfit.

1984 Preemie Outfits – Summary and Links

The first series of outfits designed for the preemie of the patch!

Preemie Outfits Summary – Preemie Outfits – An Overview

NOTE: These outfits do not have conventionally agreed-upon names. Therefore, the names used below were created by me purely for the sake of expediency to distinguish one from the other.

This series came out in 1984, with the original preemies. There are 16 outfits, and they are numbered from 1 to 16 using the same coding convention as the 1983 regular kid series.

Each outfit came with a code that consists of a letter and a number. The numbers represent the outfit type, and the letters represent a specific fabric pattern or colour combination.

Picture of a clothing tag which demonstrates the letter and number code system.

With this series, certain letters seem to have been produced primarily by certain factories. I call these the Primary Factory(PF) for each letter. For example, the P factory produced the letters A to C for almost all the outfits, I think. Here are the primary factories, as proposed, at this point:

Picture of a spreadsheet showing the Primary factories of the various letters in the clothing codes.

However, outfits were often produced by multiple factories, not just the Primary Factory. For example, I know that outfit 8G was produced by the primary factory SS, and by the FW factory. Below, we know that 8E was produced by two factories. Can you figure out which ones?

Spreadsheet showing what outfits have been recorded for Preemie 1984 outfit #8.
Answer: OK, CC

As you can see above, different factories often produced different versions, even if they are given the same code. (Refer to 8E above) Consequently, checking to see if I have something recorded based on the code, factory and description is superior to using just one descriptor.

We need to record all of the factories that made each outfit, as there are often differences between them, even if some aren’t drastic differences. These differences can then be used to identify an outfit’s factory, which may help to identify the possible factory of the kid wearing it or let you know if you need it for a specific kid. These differences can include but are not limited to:

  • fabric colour/pattern
  • fabric type
  • lace/edging material
  • structural differences

Shoes or Booties

All but two of the outfits came with either lace-up shoes or knit booties.

Generally, the first six outfits, all gowns, came with knit booties. Outfits #7 to #14, all came with regular shoes. Outfits #15 and #16 did not come with either.

However, there seem to always be exceptions. I am aware of at least one MIB preemie that came wearing a gown and shoes. This appears to be an exception. Maybe they ran out of booties that day? Maybe it is an example of an in-store switch?

For more information, jump to Shoes: An overview and reference links

The B codes

Some of the codes on these outfits start with the letter B. e.g. B10J

Picture of a preemie clothing tag that has a B code on it, B13H.
Picture courtesy of Heather Woodie.

I have no concrete explanation for this. My theories:

  1. These outfits were not produced until 1985, so were given B tags to match the 1985 B Series.
  2. The B indicates that they were manufactured in 1985. In this case, 1984 was A but not labelled as such. As possible evidence, I have one outfit from the SS factory that has both a B tag and a non-B tag.  Perhaps one was produced in 1984, and one was produced in 1985.
  3. The B indicates they are the ‘second version’ of an outfit that was already being manufactured. However, using the evidence from theory two, I cannot see any major differences between the two SS outfits,  so cannot understand why they would need a ‘second version’.

So far, the only B tagged outfits I have are on outfits #10 – #14, and only SS and WS factory outfits in letters G, H, J, and K. I will need more records to determine which of the theories, or another one not yet considered, is correct.

Other Information

> I have one outlier letter recorded, an R. It is on a #4 outfit made by the SS factory. It is odd that all the letters between L and R are otherwise empty. Could this be a factory fluke, and they used a 4R tag from the 1983 series when they ran out of whatever it was supposed to be? Do you have any other preemie outfits with the letters L-R in their code?

> There are at least two packaged versions of every preemie outfit in this series. It appears that the CC factory, which manufactured only packaged clothing, produced at least letters D and E for each outfit, except #15 & #16, which were made by the FW factory. Other versions, made by the OK, P, and other factories, also came packaged.

> The knit outfits, #15 and #16, were only available packaged and were made by the FW factory, located in China. Interestingly, they came out the same year as the 1984 series knit outfits, which were made by the EX factory, located in Taiwan. Only two versions of each outfit were produced, letters F and G. I have no idea why they chose those letters.

> Preemie Twins and preemie twin clothing were planned, but never produced. You can see them in these catalogue photos. For more information, refer to Ref 3, p. 178.

> For information on clothing for Jesmar Preemies, jump to: Jesmar Preemie Clothing .

1984 Preemie Clothes Series Summary

NOTE: These outfits do not have conventionally agreed-upon names. Therefore, the names used below were created by me purely for the sake of expediency to distinguish one from the other.

  #1 Gown with vest

  #2 Hooded Gown

  #3 Gown with hooded blanket

  #4 Gown with square yoke

  #5 A-line Gown

  #6 Frilly yoke gown

  #7 Dress with bloomers

  #8 Sundress with a bonnet

  #9 Romper with bubble bottom

  #10 Romper

  #11 Bubble romper with vest

  #12 Bunny outfit

  #13 Elephant Romper (Preemie)

  #14 Sailboat Romper

#15 Knit striped sweater set & #16 Knit set with scarf

Preemie Outfits – An Overview

An overview of the various Preemie outfit series and links to more information.

Preemies are 14″ cabbage patch dolls that came out from 1984 to 1989. Hasbro then continued to produce them for a few years. They originally used a limited number of head moulds, hair types, hair colours, and eye colours. (Ref3, p.178)

  1. The first series of Preemie clothes came out in 1984.
  2. The second came out in 1985.
  3. The third came out in 1987 and was a series that mimicked many of the outfits that came before.
  4. Finally, in 1989 a few random preemie outfits were produced.

Preemie Series Post Links

1984  First Series of Preemie Clothes
1985  B Series
1987  Preemie Mimic Series (707 – 716) (Future Post)
1989 Random outfits in the 100s (Future Post)

World Traveler Wear

They’ve been around the world and returned wearing wonderful outfits.

World Traveler Kids were only produced in 1985. There were six different outfits manufactured to feature five countries.

The kids came with a suitcase/bag, a World Traveler hand tag, a passport, an airline ticket, a white t-shirt, and a regular birth certificate. The passport had one of three countries on it: the United States, Canada, or Australia. The Australian version is VHTF. (Ref#5, p. 13)

Picture of the items that came with the China world Traveler.


World Traveler clothing tag codes are different. They have A – #. (For more information on unusual clothing codes, jump to Oddball Tags.)

World Traveler (WT) dolls and their clothes were made by the OK and PMI factories. I believe that both factories made all of the outfits, but I still need two outfits to prove this. Other CPK reference sources indicate that WT outfits also came on P kids, but these would have originally been sold on twins, not on a World Traveler. (See below)

This graphic shows the production factories I currently have recorded.

The Outfits

A-1 China.

The shoes are hard to find and difficult to keep on.

Picture of the pieces of the China World Traveler outfit.

A-2 Holland

Like the outfit and the doll, the shoes are labeled with the factory.
The blue fabric used for the dress can come in a variety of shades.

Picture of the pieces of the Holland World Traveler outfit.

A-3 Russian

The Russian World Traveler was not produced as long as the others; therefore, it is harder to find. (1986 NYC Toy Fair Report, p. 2). This may have been because they were not very popular. In fact, stores at the time were reported taking them off the shelves due to lack of popularity. (Ref#5, p. 27)
The shoes are also likely labeled with the factory. Thank you to Kendra for confirming this. They have been found with OK and SD factory marks.

A-6 Scotland

This is one of the only outfits to come with brown Mary Jane shoes.

Picture of the pieces of the Scottish World Traveler outfit.

A-4, A-5 Spanish

There are two Spanish outfits. A-4 is the boy’s outfit, and A-5 is the girl’s. Both factories made both outfits. The boy’s shoes and hat can be hard to find. The girl’s veil and black lace tights are also hard to find.

Actually, there are numerous versions of the girl’s outfit. Each factory produced a long-skirted version and a short-skirted version. Then there are the white accent versions and black accent versions. Here are the combinations I have recorded so far.

Spreadsheet of the Spanish girls dress style and the factories that made them. It shows which have been recorded and which have not.

There are visible differences between the details of each factory version. The boys outfits have different stitching detail on the jacket flaps, and the girl’s outfits use different fabrics, different lace, and different densities of lace.

The White T-Shirts

These were manufactured by the CC and SS factories. If either CC or SS came with a specific factory, I have not noticed yet. The CC factory shirts are made of a thinner material that is more see-through than the SS fabric.

SS vs. CC T-shirts

I have recorded CC versions of all five t-shirts, but not SS.  I am missing China, Spanish Girl, and Scotland.

Broken Promises

There was a second set of World Traveler outfits announced at the 1986 New York Toy Fair, but they were never actually produced. The countries included in the new line were England, Japan, Italy, Ireland, France, and Switzerland. The prototype outfits that were used for photoshoots and at the toy show are out there, as they sold on eBay in 2005. (Leah Salt, FB post, Aug. 10, 2020; Ref #3, p. 93) For pictures of the prototypes, refer to Ref#3, page 98.

The Excess

Like many of the other special editions that came out in 1985, the World Travelers did not sell well due to their higher price point. Eventually, to get rid of overstock, Coleco started putting all sorts of weird combinations together. Consequently, the outfits can be found on twin sets, some of which were Jesmar kids. Twins came out earlier in Canada, and many of the oddball twin sets are found in Canadian boxes. (Ref#5, 82) They can also be found in ‘single’ kid boxes.

Both the WT outfits and the white shirts that came with them also came out packaged separately. They can be found in a variety of packaging styles.

Other

Butterick created a sewing pattern specifically for the World Traveler outfits.

Picture of a Butterick sewing pattern package for the World Traveler outfits. Pattern #3729. Outfits Scotland, China and Holland.
  • This is the advertising picture from the 1985 Coleco Catalogue.

Made in USA Outfits – A mystery

Why were USA outfits created? How can you identify them? Find out.

Some outfits have tags with Made in USA on them (or a tag that looks like the ones below). These outfits are structurally similar to some of the original 1983 Series outfits but have differences. No one seems to know anything about this factory. Nothing.

The predominant thought is that the clothing was licensed by Coleco, for production by a US company, to handle the surge in demand starting in 1984. Producing the outfits closer to home would reduce the amount of time to get it to customers, and in theory, cost less. (FB conversation, Jodi’s Punki Patch)

My personal theory is that, as Coleco had several manufacturing facilities in the US (Source), instead of having another company do it, they decided to utilize some of their own facilities to manufacture the outfits. However, having little experience with that kind of toy and lacking access to the right materials, the final product was substandard and did not meet the exact specifications.

I have evidence for USA clothing coming packaged in a 1984 box (although I could not find out if it was sealed), on a boxed kid in 1985 (FB Conversation, Cheyne Wilelm Gosnell, Feb. 10, 2020; Becca Billard, Feb. 10, July 2022), and on twin sets wearing Fun Furs later in 1985 or 1986. (Photo below courtesy of Sabrina Vanessa Adams). If this evidence holds, it means USA outfits are legitimate CPK brands and were sold for at least four years and were included in the mass ‘overstock’ clear out that started in 1985/86 where they began just putting anything on kids to sell them.   

Other Items

Other items that came with the kids (not official accessories or separately sold items made by separately granted licenses) have been found marked Made in USA as well. So far, the astronaut helmets (no matter the country) and all of the glasses that I have available to check, are marked in this fashion. Were they made at the same factory or just by a US factory that was hired to make them?

Identification and Comparison

I have identified six USA outfits; I believe there are likely more, as of yet, unidentified ones. These outfits can occasionally be identified by look, but always by the clothing tag. There are two versions of the front side, but the tags all have the same opposite side. The only difference is that one says, Made in USA, and one does not. However, they are all USA-made clothes.

UPDATE: A USA dress without a tag has been identified. (Becca Billiard, FB, Feb. 10, 2022)

The easiest way to identify a USA outfit, without looking at the clothing tag, is the silk label. The USA labels are canvas-like, larger, and off-white

PIcture of three different 'silk label's used on CPK clothing. The first is a Taiwan factories label, the middle is a China factories label, and the bottom is a USA factory label.
Top: Taiwan factories label; Middle: China factories label; Bottom: USA label

In general, the material used for these outfits, especially the white fabrics, were much thinner and of lower quality. They also used a lace that is different from the Coleco lace.

Close up of the lace on the leg hole of the bloomers from a a USA bib dress in order to see the details of the lace.

Identifying USA Outfits

Shoulder-Tie Dress (#3)

Differences

  • Lace pattern
  • Lace at the sleeves but not on the bloomers
    • Update: A dress that has lace on the bloomers has been identified. So, they may come with or without it.
  • The white fabric is very thin.
  • The collars are all white with white piping (so far).
  • The neck/yoke areas are always white (so far).

Recorded outfit colours

  • Navy blue and white gingham
  • Light blue and white gingham
  • Yellow and white gingham

Frilly A-Line Dress (#4)

Differences

  • They look more like the Coleco A – D outfits with only two lines of lace. However, the main fabric pattern continues between the lace, rather then being white.
  • Lace pattern
  • There is no flower applique.

Recorded outfit colours

  • Baby Blue
  • Beige
  • Light pink
  • Navy blue and white gingham
  • Green and white gingham
  • Pink and white gingham
  • Red and white gingham

Kitty Jogging Suit (#6)

Differences

  • The clothing tags are located in the pants rather than the top, like most outfits.
  • The cat patches are visibly different from the other patches. Jump to Plentiful Patches Pt. 2 for details.
  • So far, all the recorded outfits are made using grey heather fabric, not solid grey fabric.
  • One outfit has been found with two colours of trim; white and light pink. It looks like the arms and pants from one outfit were used with the trunk of another. This may be another example of substandard work.
Photo courtesy of Jaycee Cook

Recorded outfit colours

  • Fuchsia
  • White
  • White and baby pink
  • Purple (need tag to confirm)

Pinafore dress (#14)

This is the outfit that has the most visible differences.

Differences

  • The fabric is very thin. You can almost see through the white section.
  • The collar is decorated with lace, there is no peter pan collar.
  • There is no blue decorative stitching.
  • There is lace on the sleeves but not on the bottoms.
  • There is lace at the waist.

Recorded outfit colours

  • Navy blue and white gingham
  • Red and white gingham

Bib Dress (#15)

Differences

  • Lace
  • Giraffe patch looks different. Jump to Plentiful Patches Pt. 2 for details.
  • These outfit always has a white collar with no piping (so far)

Recorded outfit colours

  • Green and white gingham
  • Pink and white gingham
  • Yellow and white gingham

Stripped Jogging Suit (#18)

Differences

  • There is no piping where the trunk connects to the sleeves and down the side of the pants.

Recorded outfit colours

  • Pink and white
  • Yellow and white
Main graphic to be used in Facebook posts.

 

Jesmars, Jesmar Clothing, and Jesmar Preemies

A short history of Jesmars, Jesmar clothing, Jesmar Preemies. It also includes how to identify Jesmar clothing, and how you can help to track Jesmar clothing tags.

Preface and disclaimer

I promised myself that I wouldn’t record Jesmar clothing like I am the Coleco clothing. There is a lot of it, and I don’t have the same personal experience with it that I do with Coleco clothing. However, I am breaking that promise as I have been asked many questions, and there is an obvious need. Special thanks to Eve for inspiring this post.

The problem with Jesmar dolls, indeed any of the foreign factories, is that little factual data exists about their manufacture; however, there is a lot of speculation and assumption among collectors. Sometimes it is hard to separate fact from fiction. I welcome any data or primary source material that proves or disproves anything within this post.

This post is intended as an overview of Jesmar clothing. To start, I give a very basic review of the manufacture and body tags of the dolls in order to provide context to the clothing information.

Table of Contents

1. What is a ‘Jesmar’?
2. Historical Background
       2.1 Jesmar Dolls
       2.2 Doll Body Tags
      2.3 Jesmar in Canada
3. Jesmar Clothing
       3.1 Jesmar Preemies and Clothing
       3.2 Shoes
       3.3 Clothing Tags
       3.4 Identifying Jesmar Clothing
4. Taking pictures for the project

What is a ‘Jesmar’?

A Kid referred to by the factory code ‘J’ or by the term, ‘Jesmar’ refers to dolls manufactured in a factory located in Spain, which produced the second most common mass-market CPK dolls. For a variety of reasons (that I have listed HERE), these dolls are generally highly coveted by collectors. Read on to learn more.

Historical Background

Logo for the Jesmar S.A. Company. Red and white.

Jesmar S.A. was a Spanish company licensed by O.A.A. to manufacture and sell Cabbage Patch Kids within specific areas of Western Europe, starting in April 1984.  For information on Jesmars sold on the Canadian market, go here. The dolls were packaged in boxes and with birth certificates, that were in the language of the country where they were distributed. In some countries, the kids were distributed by another company altogether.

A list of the various countries that sold Jesmar dolls, the company that distributed them, and what Cabbage Patch Kids translates to in those countries.
*Update: Apparently Coleco dolls were put in German boxes for the first little while. Jesmars weren’t in their boxes until 1984 so 1983 kids are Coleco. FB Conversation, May 2021.

Other than Canadian market Jesmars (Jump to: Jesmar in Canada), as far as I am aware, there is no way to distinguish which country your doll was sold in unless you have the birth certificate and/or that box that it came in. There is nothing on the dolls themselves that indicate which country they were distributed in.

“Some collectors, after years of observing Jesmars, feel that there are three to five different types of Jesmar Kids, which might suggest different factories made them. The information on the Jesmar production factories remains a mystery.”

(Ref#3, p. 29)

Foreign factories lose their licenses

In the spring of 1985, O.A.A pulled the licenses of all the foreign factories (Jesmar, Tsukuda, Triang Pedigree, and Lili Ledy).  The leftover material was shipped to the remaining Coleco factories and used.

This resulted in half-in-half Kids. These Kids had heads and bodies made at different factories. “Some of these foreign combinations included Jesmar heads on Coleco bodies, Coleco heads on Jesmar bodies, and there have even been Jesmar heads on Triang-Pedigree bodies reported.” (Ref#3, p.30)

By late 1985, they were selling Jesmar dolls in regular US boxes that had the ‘Made in China’ label on the box covered by a sticker that read ‘Doll and clothes made in Spain’.  The closures might also explain why Jesmar outfits in Coleco boxes were surfacing at Toys R US stores in the US around 1986 and 1987. (Ref#4, Vol 2, Issue 3, p. 2)

To Top.

Jesmar Dolls

The dolls came with head molds #1 – #4. The bum signature, which indicates which year the doll was made, is either black or brown for 1984 and blue for 1985. For both years, the dolls produced earlier in the year have undated signatures, and those produced later in the year are dated.

A great deal of the appeal of Jesmar dolls (or any foreign doll) is the differences between them and the Coleco dolls. Some of the Kids (generally thought to be earlier), had a string holding the heads on instead of a zip tie. Some have eyes that sit higher. Jesmars tend to be a few inches taller than most Coleco Kids. One of their most popular features is their freckles. Jesmar, unlike Coleco, freckled kids with all four head moulds and the freckles come in a variety of patterns. (Ref#3, p. 198-199)

Doll Body Tags

The dolls come with one of five body tags, depending on when they were made and which market they were intended for. Based on data collected so far, I believe the tags without J or OK came after the ‘early Jesmar’ tags, but still early in 1984. They were followed by those with OK in mid- 1984. Finally, they started using the J tags quite late in 1984 and into 1985. (Refer to: Jesmar in Canada)

Leah S. has mentioned that there are Jesmar tags that say ‘Made in Hong Kong’, but I have never seen one. These are supposed to be on some of the earliest Jesmars. (Facebook group conversation, Aug. 11, 2017)

To Top.

Jesmar in Canada

CPK’s in Canada were distributed by Coleco Inc., Canada, which was based out of Montreal, Quebec. For a history of Coleco Inc. in Canada visit: http://www.colecovision.dk/history.htm or Coleco: The Official Book .

According to E.N. Chapman of Patchwork: The Missing Piece Bok Choy Wah Way, “Jesmar’s were fairly common in Canada early on.” (Ref#5, p.32) and “Jesmars were in Canadian boxes long before they were in American Boxes.â” (Ref#4, Feb 1987, p. 4) J. Mullin mentions, “These Kids with the OK Made in Spain body tags were found in either Coleco or Canadiana boxes.” (Ref#3, p.41)

Canada was the only non-European country to have Jesmars as part of their regular distribution along with Colecos. There is no explanation of how or why Jesmar dolls came to Canada and ended up in authentic Canadian market boxes. I have two theories:

1) As the factories were shut down, they decided to funnel Jesmar Kids into the Canadian market before the American market.
2) Even before the Jesmar factory started being shut down because the dolls weren’t selling well in Western Europe, Jesmar got special permission to send them to the Canadian market. No record of such a permission exists that I am aware of.

To sell in the Canadian market, they needed to comply with Canadian language laws, meaning they needed a bilingual (English/French) side tag. However, there are two distinctive bilingual tags: one with OK factory and one with J factory.

As noted above, the OK tag likely came out around the middle of 1984, and the J tag started being used late in 1984 and then into 1985. I wonder, were these kids manufactured, and/or clothed, and/or boxed at the OK factory in China, and then sent to Canada for distribution? Is that why they have OK on them? Why did they change the OK to J?

As for their clothing, I have evidence of Canadian market Kids wearing just Jesmar-tagged clothes and Jesmar clothes without tags, but I have no evidence of these Kids wearing bilingual-tagged clothes.  This seems counter-intuitive. Do you have a Kid with that combination? (Jump to: Clothing Tags)

What side tag the dolls have, what they are wearing, and which boxes they ended up in, likely depended on how and when they were manufactured or packaged for distribution.  I just do not have enough data to draw any conclusions.

Interestingly, as time went on and Coleco (US) and Coleco Inc. (CAD) found themselves with an overabundance of ‘specialty’ outfits, so they started putting all sorts of wacky combinations together, and some included the remainder of the Jesmar and other foreign dolls from the recently closed foreign factories. In the Canadian market, you can find Jesmar dolls wearing World Traveler outfits, often in twin sets. In some cases, you can find Jesmar’s dressed up as a clown.

Picture of a set of Cabbage patch 'twins' in a box that was sold on the Canadian market. The dolls Jesmar and have red hair, freckles, and pacifiers. They are wearing Blue Holland World Traveler outfits.
Freckled Jesmar dolls wearing Holland World Traveler outfits in a Twin box produced for the Canadian market.

To Top.

Jesmar Clothing

I am working on a research project to track and record Coleco Cabbage Patch Kid clothing. They are generally labelled with a letter/number code. To learn more about this project, visit my first two blog posts. (Blog#1, Blog#2) As most Jesmar outfits are also ‘numbered’ after a fashion, I have started to record this information too.

“Jesmar and other foreign clothing came in a much wider variety of colors, fabrics, designs, and even applique selection.”

(Ref#3, p.363)

Generally speaking, Jesmar produced its own version of the 1983 Series Coleco outfits. The only outfits not reproduced were the Sleeper (#2) and the Corduroy Suit (#5). Jesmar outfits were often made out of fabrics and patterns that were not used by Coleco. These differences add to the appeal of Jesmar dolls.

  • The Velcro on some Jesmar outfits was applied as a long thin strip, rather than the small squares used on some of their outfits, and by all other factories.
  • A single type of Jesmar outfit could be made out of many different fabrics.
  • The silk CPK label might be located in an odd spot on the outfit.
  • Jesmar did not always match the ‘gender’ of the doll and the outfit. (Ref#4, p. 80)
  • Jesmar outfits are known for having many leftover threads inside the outfits. It’s like they never cut off the extra threads at all! Having said that, not all outfits will look like that now, if a previous owner has removed them and not all came that way.

Jesmar outfits are generally considered to be more shoddily made than the Coleco outfits. There was little consistency in fabric, colours, patterns etc. There were also differences in size. Take these two swing dresses. One has 80 on the tag, the other is 89, but they’re definitely two different sizes.

Courtesy of Melissa Crick Gore.

Jump here for a more detailed list of differencesIdentifying Jesmar Outfits

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Jesmar Preemies and Clothing

Collectors believe that the Jesmar factory was in the first stages of producing preemies when they lost their license. The only piece they had in production was the head. This resulted in the creation of half-in-half preemies, typically called Jesmar Preemies. These dolls have a Jesmar-produced head and a Coleco preemie body from the OK factory. They were packaged in Coleco boxes. (Ref#4, 1987, Iss.1 Vol. 2 p. 3)

These preemies should not be confused with the regular Coleco preemies that were sold in foreign boxes. Those dolls were entirely Coleco and wore Coleco clothing. (Ref #3, p. 231)

Three outfits are called Jesmar Preemies outfits, the three velveteen versions of the terry cloth Bunny Preemie Outfit (#12). It is believed that they were originally outfits produced specifically for preemies produced by Jesmar. These special velveteen outfits came in (from least to most rare) navy blue (#12F), steel blue (#12E), and dark green (#12D) (FB Conversation, Jul. 7, 2020, Ref#2, p.96). It seems that, instead of using letters that were not already assigned to an outfit, they chose to reuse the letters D, E, and F for these outfits.

These outfits are labelled OK factory but structurally they appear Jesmar. The Velcro is typical of some Jesmar outfits and there can be extra threads everywhere, which is also typical of Jesmar outfits.

However, the navy blue and steel blue fabric are similar to another Coleco outfit produced in 1986, the velveteen overalls. The green is similar to the material used in the green velveteen twin boys outfit. Was the leftover material also sent to be used by other Coleco factories?

These preemie outfits came on Jesmar Preemies and regular Coleco preemies (FB Conversation, Chris Hansing Tallman, Jan 2024; FB Conversation, May, 2010; Unboxing a Unicorn). In addition, Jesmar Preemies could come wearing regular Colceo outfits. For example, J. Mullin has instances of Jesmar Preemies wearing BSeries preemie outfits from later in 1985. (Ref#3, p.231)

Shoes -Visit: Jesmar Shoes & Hong Kong Jesmar Shoes

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Jesmar Clothing Tags

Jesmar clothing appears to be tagged in one of four ways. It is the information on these tags that is the data I need for my project.

I am just beginning this research journey and need a lot more data to make any final determinations. In the case of Jesmar clothing, I also need more than just pictures of the tags. If it is available, I also need information about the doll it came on, the box it came in and, in some cases, how it was purchased. (Refer to: Taking pictures for the project)

1. Jesmar Tag Only

Picture of a tag from a Jesmar Cabbage Patch swing dress (red plaid). It has the Jemar logo and a circle with the number 1 in it. The printing is in red and the tag is rectangular and made of silk.

To date, for these tags, I have recorded various numbers between 1 and 100. Unfortunately, there doesn’t seem to be a pattern as to which outfits have which numbers. For example, I have five outfits with the number #89. They consist of three different outfits and all five are different colours/patterns.

As other Jesmar factory dolls have similar tags, it has been suggested that they are somehow related to Jesmar operations rather than anything specific to Cabbage Patch Kids. If that is the case, then my tracking is useless. (FB Conversation, June 6, 2021.)

I speculate that outfits with only a Jesmar tag were intended for foreign markets, or for the US market (which did not require bilingual tags) after they began closing the foreign factories.

2/3. Bilingual (French/English)Tag – with & without the small Jesmar tag

Picture of a Jesmar shirt (mauve and yellow striped), with both the regular Jesmar tag and the larger white tag. The white tag says P1B.

As these white tags are bilingual, we can speculate that the outfits with these tags were intended for the Canadian market. Bilingual tags (French/English) are required by law in Canada. Generally, you find both a larger white tag and a small Jesmar tag on an outfit, but not always.

Side one of all the bilingual tags has one of two ‘factories’: FS or J. I have no idea what FS stands for or if it is referring to a factory at all. However, it is on the tag in the same format as all other ‘factory’ marks.  

The white bilingual clothing tags found in Jesmar Cabbage Patch Clothing. Front and back of both tags. The FS tag has P1B on the backside. The J tag has P3A on the backside.
Front and back of each bilingual tag.

So far, all of the J tags have the codes P3A or P2A on the back, and all the FS tags have the codes P1B or P2C. (Information on Coleco clothing tag codes) Unlike the Coleco codes, I do not know what these codes refer to or why they are there. There is no pattern as to which outfits they are in. Unfortunately, I only have a small data set, so this could easily change. Over time we may find more codes, a pattern to the outfits, or something else I haven’t even considered.

I have one confirmed example of a Jesmar outfit with ONLY a bilingual tag. There is no small Jesmar tag. This situation appears to be the rarest. Why did they do this? Did they run out of tags and decide that they were unnecessary for the Canadian Market? Did they start doing this because of the closure? I just do not know.

4. No tags

Why some Jesmar outfits come without any tags at all is a complete mystery, but other foreign factories, like the Tsukuda and Triang Pedigree factories, produced most of their outfits without any tags.

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Identifying Jesmar Outfits

Here are the differences other collectors (Ref#3) and I have observed beyond those of fabric, pattern, and construction when compared to the Coleco versions.

(The title links will take you to information on the original Coleco outfit.)

Swing Dress (#1)
* Some dresses have no ribbons. If they do, most of the ribbons are a silkier ribbon-like material. One example of a small cotton bow has been found as had an example of the ribbon as a nice cotton.
Courtesy of Andi Hicks (FB Conversation, April 2024)


* Some of them don’t have ‘ribbons’ at all! (Lori Clark, Sept 2023)
* The tights don’t fit. They are often too short and made of a thicker knitted material.

Kitty Tracksuits (#6)
* They aren’t always grey. They also came in brown, red, green, etc.
* They don’t always have a patch.
* The patch may be located lower on the shirt or in the middle of the chest.

Elephant Romper (#7)
* Some come with striped shirts; some come with solid-coloured shirts.
* Some have no patch or they often have a cat patch instead of an elephant patch.
* The buttons didn’t actually ‘unbutton’ because the straps were sewn to the outfit through the button.
* Sometimes the patch is located in the middle of the bib section.
* The shirt hem is not finished.
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31 Tracksuit  (#8)
* The silk label is on the pants, not on the shirt.

Bubble Romper (#9)
* The sleeves on the sweater are sometimes rather short.
* Like every other factory, the knit pattern of the sweater and booties is unique.
* The silk label may not be in the right spot.

Windbreaker (#10)
* The logo looks different on the windbreaker. It is smaller than Coleco’s logo.
* The shirt’s bottom hem is not finished.
* The windbreaker is sometimes made from a thinner silkier material.
* The pants are made of thinner cotton-like material; it’s not jean material.
* The shirts can be multi-coloured stripes, not just white/colour.
* The shirts may have come in ‘not striped’ patterns although I’ve only seen one example of this.

Knit Ducky Dress (#11)
* Most did not come with a duck patch.
* They came in more vibrant colours.
* They had a different style hem at the sleeves.
* They don’t open all the way down the back.
* They have elastic in the waist of the bloomers. MOST Coleco do not.

Ruffled Overalls (#12)
* The buttons are clear. (Coleco only used clear buttons in 1983)
* The blouse has white lace, not rick-rack at the sleeves and neck.
* There may have been striped knit shirts with some of them.
* They don’t have velcro down the legs.
* The buttons don’t ‘work’. They are sewn.

Pinafore dress (#14)
* The pinafore section can come in off-white/light beige instead of white.

Bib dress (#15)
* The bibs may be patterned, completely blank, or have a different patch.
* They are physically smaller than Coleco bibs.

Denim Romper (#16)
* The romper is not always made with jean fabric; it is often made of thin cotton.
* The shirt has a peter pan collar and buttons at the back with a single button.

Heart dress (#17)
* They didn’t always come with the heart applique.
* Sometimes the heart appliques were the same colour as the dress.

Striped tracksuit (#18)
* They do not have a collar at the neck.
* Sometimes they don’t have stripes at the arm and legs.
* Sometimes the neck and bottom hems match other accents, instead of being white.
* Sometimes they don’t have any piping.

Sailor Suit (#20)
* The ribbon is silkier, not cotton.
* It doesn’t always have an anchor applique.

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Taking pictures for the project

If you would like to send me information on a Jesmar outfit, please include the information listed below for each outfit. I welcome information on any outfit. Don’t worry if I have it already. We know so little that almost anything I receive at this point will provide me with information. Just have fun taking pictures one afternoon! (Instructions for taking great pictures)

> Pictures of the outfit itself (as outlined in the instructions)
> Pictures of the clothing tag(s) (if any); both sides if there’s a bilingual tag
> Outfit’s fabric type

If you have the original Kid it came on:
> Was the Kid a boy or a girl?
> Pictures of both sides of the dolls tag
> What country it came from (language on BC or box), if known
> Approximately when it was purchased, if known
> Where it was purchased, if known

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Special thanks to Erin Cavill for editing the first draft of this post. Her information, ideas, and questions were instrumental in improving all aspects of this post.

PTP: Wonderful White Shirts

Oh no! An elephant romper without a shirt! What ever will you do??

A plain white cotton shirt comes with the Elephant Romper outfit (#7) and the Corduroy Suit (#5). All of those that came with the Elephant Rompers have decorative navy-blue zig-zag stitching around the hem of the sleeves and the neckline.
The white shirts that do not have decorative stitching are a clear minority and only came with the Corduroy Suit. The Corduroy Suit generally comes with the plain shirt but could have come with both.

So far, it appears that if the jacket in the Corduroy Suit is the tagged piece in the outfit, the shirt is pure white; if the shirt is the tagged piece, it has blue stitching. I have no data to back this up. In my personal experience so far, both of my plain white shirts have been with KT outfits. Comments are very welcome.

UPDATE: The white shirts started coming out on KT kids in the Cord suits very early. WE now have evidence of one on a triple HK KT kid.

Identifying Factory

The zig-zag decoration on the shirt can be used to identify the outfit’s factory of production.
This is useful because, in many cases, it is the romper or the jacket that is the outfit piece that is tagged, not the white shirt. If the white shirt is missing or becomes separated from the rest of the outfit, it is difficult to know which white shirt can replace it.

Some of the factories appear to have a distinctive look to the zig-zag pattern used on the white shirts. If you match the pattern to a factory, you can match a shirt to a shirtless outfit.

The pictures below are the factory patterns that I have confirmed. If you have a #5 or #7 outfit that you know came together and is from a factory not seen below, I would appreciate pictures.

For PMI factory information visit Unique Accents: PMI

If you have a shirt that does NOT match the patterns here, I would welcome the information. It may be that a factory produced two different stitch patterns, or it may be that the patterns used for the two outfits are not the same.

Factory information that I know I am missing:

  • LF
  • WW
  • IC
  • FW

PTP: Unique Accents: PMI

One of these things is not like the others, one of these things just doesn’t belong.
~ Ernie, Sesame Street

The 1983 series outfits that the PMI factory produced (letters S and T) were unique in several ways. One of them is the colour of the trim and thread used to accent the basic white shirt and the white blouse.

The White Shirt

The basic white shirt came with the elephant romper outfit (#7) and the corduroy suit (#5). Most of them came with a decorative navy-blue zigzag stitching around the sleeve hems and the neckline. Some factories can be identified by the characteristics of this zigzag stitch, but that is a different post!

The unique thing about PMI white shirts is the COLOUR of the decorative thread. Unlike the other factories, the colour of the thread matches the colour of the outfit itself.

The PMI factory created two versions of each 1983 outfit (that they made; they didn’t do all of them). So, there are four white shirts with decorative zigzag stitching that isn’t navy blue.  I know of these two, do you know of the other two?

Also, if you have these outfits and know, can you provide complete codes for them? I don’t know if either is S or T.

The White Blouse

Like the thread on the white shirts, it’s the rick rack on the blouse in the ruffled overalls outfit that is a colour match. Once again, I have one of the two PMI outfits, but I don’t know the complete code. Do you have this outfit or the other PMI outfit? Can you send me pics?

Bonus Pics!

I am still looking for information on PMI versions of the following outfits. If you have them, please send tag pictures!

Frilly A-line Dress (#4)
Corduroy Suit (#5)
Elephant Romper (#7)
31 Tracksuit (#8)
Square Yoke Dress (#13)
Bib Dress (#15)
Denim Romper (#16)
Sailor Suit (#20)