Coleco continued to produce Twin sets in 1986 wearing the original four outfits, but they also started to use twin sets as a dumping ground to get rid of overstock. At this time, it wasn’t unusual to find a variety of combinations in twin boxes, for example:
Especially in the Canadian market, it wasn’t unusual for the dolls wearing these non-twin outfits to be Jesmar as it was at this time that Coleco was looking to rid themselves of the remaining stock from the recently closed foreign factories. (See Jesmars and J Clothing for details.)
Jesmar dolls wearing World Traveler outfits in twin boxes, or who came as twins.
The dolls used for twins in 1986 weren’t always P/OK factory and weren’t always the same factory. For example, there are records of sets being OK and PMI. (Ref #4, March 1988, p. 4) This was rare, but apparently, it did happen.
They also dumped twin outfits by putting them on individually boxed regular kids and Cornsilk kids in 1986 and 1987.
Courtesy of Christy Ho.
Finally, in a last-ditch effort to get rid of stock, twin outfits were sold packaged separately. Often these packages didn’t come with accessories like gloves or shoes.
Other Cabbage Patch Twins
> The Tsukuda factory is the only foreign factory that manufactured Twins (Ref #3, p. 247). Their twins wear regular 1983 outfits with the word “TWIN” silkscreened on them. These sets are very highly valued by collectors.
The first two photos are courtesy of Carolyn Dahl.
> Preemie twins were never produced, but prototypes are visible in catalogue pictures from 1986. (Ref #3, p. 178, 192)
Apparently, the tights come in a variety of patterns. I have found four patterns so far. I named and numbered them to make it easier to distinguish between them.
#1 LINES#2 SPARSE FLOWERS#3 TRILLIUM#4 THICK FLOWERS#5 MEDIUM FLOWERSPicture 5 courtesy of Kristi Prietos Sams.
I have several possible theories regarding why there are so many patterns.
They vary based on the factory of production.
They vary based on when the outfit was produced.
They vary based on the series they came in (somewhat related to the factory, but not quite).
What I Know
The 160s series was manufactured primarily by the KT factory, but a few outfits were produced by the OK factory. Most of the twin dresses were produced by the P factory, although a few were made by KT, and the 718-724 series was produced entirely by the KT factory.
The 160s Series and the twin outfits came out in 1985 and most likely stopped production in 1986. The 718-724 series came out in 1987 and most likely stopped being manufactured by 1988, if not before.
I do not have enough data to even guess which theories (or another unconsidered one) are correct. Can you help?
If you have an outfit with lacy tights, and you know it came together as an outfit, can you please send me the following:
Which lace pattern it is (or a picture if it is a new pattern)
Factory of the outfit
The clothing code of the outfit (e.g. 162H)
If it is a twin outfit, did it comes on a set of twins, or an individually boxed kid?
If it is a twin outfit, is it the sateen version or the non-sateen version?
One outfit comes with BLACK lacy tights, the Girl’s Spanish World Traveler. This outfit was made by two factories. Do you have an OK version to compare to this PMI version? It looks a lot like #3 Trillium above. Jump to: 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)
World Traveler clothing tag codes are different. They have A – #. (For more information on unusual clothing codes, jump to Oddball Tags.)
OKPMIPMI, Courtesy of Jamie Osterbuhr
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 shoes are hard to find and difficult to keep on.
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.
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.
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.
Long versionShort versionOK Boy DetailingPMI Boy Detailing
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.
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.
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.
Coleco Twins in WT outfitsJesmar Twins in WT outfits
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.
The consistency with which the doll tag and the outfit tag factories matched changed starting in 1985. Many continued to match, but not all. Here are the ‘situations’ in which you might find a match that doesn’t match!
From 1986 to 1988 (ish), the most common situation resulted from an overabundance of specialty outfits that were not selling (high $) and a lot of pieces coming from foreign factories that had shut down. In this situation, you might get an OK kid, in a P factory twin outfit, in a single kid box. (Ref. #5, Issue 4, p. 5) Or maybe, a set of P dolls, in IJ animal costume sleepers (Ref #3, p.104), in a twin box. Or even a pair of Jesmar dolls, in PMI World Traveler outfits, in a twin box!
Some of these outfits were made by factories that did not produce kids, only packaged outfits that were never intended to be sold on kids.
A similar situation happened with outfits originally designed for specific kinds of kids. For example, occasionally you will find Cornsilk and Talker outfits on regular kids from 1987 onward. This doesn’t occur as often as situation one, but it does happen. This situation could also be the result of in-store outfit switching.
Regular Kid in Cornsilk dressRegular kid in Talker’s dress
IC kids were made in Taiwan and, according to their side tags, which are numbered IC to IC7, there may have been at least eight factories. However, there are NO clothes with IC# on them. However, several Taiwanese factories did produce clothing: AX, CY, FD, HP, WW, HRS.
I have evidence that IC kids came wearing IC, AX, and other Taiwan factory clothing. The same has been discovered about the UT factory. Although UT kids could come with UT clothes, they also came dressed in AX and WW clothing. (Jump to: AX and the UT Kids)
In addition, IC kids came wearing specialty line outfits that were made at other Taiwanese factories (HRS, CY, FD), so their tags would not match. For example, Western Wear and All Star kids. (Ref #5, Issue 3, p. 5)
Top: CY Western Wear outfit and AX outfit, Bottom: CY All Stars Outfit
Hong Kong Tags. Some Hong Kong Kids had no factory indicated on their tag. In this case, for MIB kids, it can be assumed that if the kid is OK, the outfit is OK. However, if the outfit is not original to the kid, it is either P, OK or KT. (Ref#3, p. 28) My personal experience with HK outfits leads me to believe they will be either OK or P, as the tags themselves more closely resemble OK and P tags, rather than KT tags.
Twin outfits are all P factory. However, some were put on OK kids. In this case, the tags would not match.
There is evidence that ‘Made in USA’ outfits did come on boxed kids. There are no ‘Made in USA’ kids, so the tag cannot match in this situation.
It appears that some SS factory outfits came on MIB regular-sized kids. As the SS factory did not make any regular-sized dolls, there will be a mismatch between the kid and the outfit. I’ve confirmed this on one OK factory HK doll.
How do you know if an outfit originally came with the doll? Here’s the first step to finding out!
There is no way to know what outfit originally came on a doll. The choices were made randomly. However, you can match the production year of the doll to the production year of the outfits, and in some cases, the factory information.
1983 – 1985ish: A Match!
Coleco dolls produced from 1983 to 1984 (and some stuff in 1985) generally came with clothing made at the same factory. So, if the doll was OK factory, the outfit and shoes were also OK factory.
KT Boy OK Girl
Dolls wearing 500s outfits which came out in 1985 also matched factories.
However, I know of at least one collector who admits to taking kids out and switching clothes AT THE STORE, so even if you bought a kid from the store and it didn’t match, that doesn’t mean it didn’t originally come with the correct outfit!
Series Specific Pairs . . .
Some lines of kids had specific clothing created just for them. In many of these cases, the dolls and the outfits always match. There may be two factories producing them, but there is always a match.
Many outfits were sold packaged separately, some that came on the dolls and some that didn’t. When were they produced and what outfits were they?
Packaged Outfit: an outfit that was sold separately in its own box, without a doll.
Early Coleco Packaged Outfits
Coleco marketed four different packaged clothing lines.
The first was produced in 1983 and was never sold on the kids. It was called the Casual Wear Line and included at least eight outfits.
Photos courtesy of Kat Pershouse.
The second line was small, with only three outfits, and was produced in 1984. I call it the 1984 Knit Series. It was produced by the EX factory.
The third came out in late 1983 I think, or early 1984. The contents are all 1983 series outfits. Although outfits from many factories were packaged, the CC factory only produced clothing for packaged outfits. If iti’s a CC outfit, it didn’t come on a doll.
The fourth ‘line’ consists of the specialty outfits that were produced in 1985 and later. Some of these outfits were intended only for sale as packaged outfits but were sold on dolls eventually. Eg. Sports Collection. Others were only packaged when Coleco found itself with an overabundance of outfits. Eg. Twin outfits, World Traveller Outfits. Although these outfits were not officially promoted as a ‘line’, they all came out around the same time.
In 1989/90 Coleco started producing a number of outfits that were only sold in packages. These make them hard to find as they were not sold for long and were only available separately from the kids.
The Outfits line included outfits in the following code series: 120s, 130s, 400s (that I am aware of to this point), and transitional Hasbro outfits. Some of these outfits were also produced by Hasbro and do not have recognizable tag codes.
The COLECO Deluxe Outfits line includes outfits in the 140s series along with other new pieces.
Hasbro must have found themselves with an overabundance of Designer Line (DL) outfits, as the Deluxe Outfits that they packaged (on virtually the same packaging as Coleco) consisted of entirely DL outfits. Currently, I have evidence for the use of the 170s and 180s series of DL outfits, not the 150s series.
Middle photo courtesy of Holly Jean.
Hasbro then produced three packaged outfit lines independent of Coleco. This most likely occurred from 1989 to 1990+. As they are not numbered in the ‘traditional sense I cannot slot them into the clothing record I am creating. However, they are interesting, nonetheless. They are:
Deluxe Fashions – Not to be confused with the Deluxe Outfits.Fashions – Hasbro; Photos courtesy of Nichole Sorensen Barnes.Fashion Separates – Hasbro; Last two photos courtesy of Nichole Sorensen Barnes.
During the transitional years, Hasbro also produced a type of packaged outfit that included a ‘gimmick’. As many of the outfits used were already in production, it may be that they were trying to get rid of extra stock. This is not clear.
The Splash and See Surprise packages contain an outfit and a small pouch with a surprise in it. When you wet the pouch it would melt away and your surprise was revealed. During a 2020 Facebook group discussion, it was noted that these pouches were included with kids as well. (Ref. FB discussion, Jodi (Punki Patch), Feb. 7, 2020) The surprise items included sunglasses, hair barrettes, hair combs, or outfit pieces. Some of the clothing came from the 150s clothing line produced by Coleco in 1989 and some only have Hasbro tags.
The first three photos are courtesy of Jodi (Punki Patch).
If you have any packaged outfits that you can ‘unpackage’ safely, or that have already been ‘unpackaged’, I would love to get pictures of the outfit and its tags! I have many information holes that need filling.
Not all clothing tags were made equal. Some have codes, some don’t. Which do? Which don’t?
Although MOST Coleco clothing has a code on the tag, not all of them do.
The 1983 outfits have a variety of tags! Each factory had a slightly different look to its tags and some factories changed the look often. After 1985 the tags become more consistent in look and information but there were still variations by factory and over time.
Examples of tags from various factories.
In a previous post, What are Clothing Tag Codes, I noted that some factory codes were put on with stickers so that they were washed off (P, PMI, some IC), some were written on and illegible, and some were stamped on badly. Although these tags are rather rare, they can be annoying. Hopefully, somewhere, you will find the same outfit with a code!
Unfortunately, in some cases, they never put the code on to start with!
The 1983-84 Mess
Some factories like CC, KT, IJ, and PMI always have a code on the tag (if it hasn’t washed off).
Some factories, like the OK and P factories, were generally pretty good with putting codes on their tags, but there are some failures.
For example, early P and OK Hong Kong tagged outfits were hit and miss, and some of the later regular tags did not have codes (pictures below).
OK Side 1OK Side 2P Side 1P Side 2 – sticker goneEarly P factory with stickerEarly P factory – back
Some Taiwanese factories, like IC and AX, put the codes on a few tags.
Some never put a code on their tags. (e.g. UT, HP, EX, SW, CY, FD, WW, USA)
I have also seen tags where they appear to be trying to fix a mistake, or they had run out of a tag. They’ll substitute a different one and then make the correction with a pen or a marker!