This outfit consists of a t-shirt and a pair of overalls. The shirt always has a striped pattern. The overalls are a solid colour with differently coloured piping around the bib, buttons, and leg cuffs. It also has a large brown teddy bear patch with the Cabbage Patch Kid logo on the tummy, in the middle of the chest. This outfit came exclusively on ‘boy’ dolls. This outfit came with blue striped sneakers.
Coleco started selling this outfit in 1985. It likely ended production no later than sometime in 1986. If it is found later on a kid or in a package it was likely because the company was using up old stock.
If you have an outfit that is not recorded here, I would like to hear from you. Information is best sent in the form of pictures. For details, visit Taking Clothing Tag Pics.
It appears that some of the shirts may have come with more than one pair of overalls. This is a problem because it’s the shirts that have the information tag. This could mean that there’s more than one ‘version’ of some letters. (FB Conversation, May 2020)
Factory Variations – none (at this time)
Given the large patch on the chest of this outfit, it’s very hard to confuse it with any other outfit. However, if the shirt is separated from the overalls, they could potentially be confused with shirts from other outfits; however, as these shirts are always tagged, so the confusion would be short-lived.
> This outfit is one of the most popular 500s outfits. Consequently, it has been replicated by many talented seamstresses. A pattern has even been created and is available from Diana’s Patch on Etsy. Handmade overalls can be ordered (at the time of this update) from Originals By Sue.
Brazil outfit made by Dianne’s Cabbage Patch Finery (custom order) and the others were made by Leanne Tattersall.
> The red overalls (517?) are generally considered very hard to find.
> Fun fact: A prototype version of this outfit can be found in the 1985 Coleco Catalogue (p. 3, 16). The shirt isn’t striped like the final version, but the overalls are quite similar!
I know Boots came with Cornsilk outfits #321-324, #326, #328, #332, and #333, but the transitional outfits are more difficult. Transitional outfits came on both Poseable Kids and regular transitional kids. It’s possible that these outfits did not come with a consistent shoe type. At the moment, I know that the outfits below came with Boots, but they may not have come exclusively with Boots. Other options include Ballet Flats, Striped Sneakers, and coloured Mary Janes.
Like most Coleco shoes, Boots have a factory mark. It can be found on the top opening edge. Likely, the boots that came with Cornsilk outfits were only manufactured by the P, KT, and OK factories. Later transitional Boots are likely marked with CHINA or have no mark at all.
So far, I have nine colours recorded. Do you have any others?
Special thanks to Callie Anne for providing pictures and incentives.
This outfit consists of a dress and solid coloured tights. The dress has an embroidered patch of a CPK (from the waist up) that is wearing a CPK Logo Dress. The patch has pigtails and two ribbon bows. The hair, eye, and dress colours change for each version of the dress. The trunk and skirt are made of fleecy sweatshirt material and the sleeves, are a different material and striped. This outfit came with mary jane shoes.
Coleco started selling this outfit in 1985. It likely ended production no later than sometime in 1986. If it is found on later kids, it was likely because the company was using up old stock.
If you have an outfit that is not recorded here, I would like to hear from you. Information is best sent in the form of pictures. For details, visit Taking Clothing Tag Pics.
This outfit was made by the P and OK factories. There seems to be a significant amount of variation between factories when it comes to the hair, eye, and dress colours used. Kat Perhouse has created this very helpful and easy-to-follow chart. I assume that all the outfits that match visually, for example, the two mint greens 511D, are an OK version and P version. I don’t have enough data yet to know about the ones that are not the same.
According to Kat Perhouse “The OK factory ones are the common colours and the P factory ones are HTF colours. The P factory ones stripey material is more course, while the Ok stripey material has a looser weave and is softer. Also, the embroidered girls/decal on the Ok factory seems to be sewn into the waistband, whereas on the P factory it’s not sewn into the waistband.” (FB Thread, Mar. 19, 2020)
Logo Dress: This is a variation of the outfit that came out later. For details, visit 511 Portrait Dress (Post Coming Soon).
Toddler Outfit: This is a later Coleco Toddler outfit (code unknown) that looks somewhat similar.
This outfit consists of a cotton ‘swing’ style A-line dress with matching bloomers. It has a sailor collar with a ribbon bow, lace, and rick-rack. The same rick-rack runs along the bottom hem. On the left side of the skirt is a sailboat patch, with an arched Cabbage Patch Kids logo patch over it. The bloomers match the dress fabric and have no trim around the leg holes. This outfit came with regular lace-up shoes.
There’s some debate about when this dress began being sold. Although it has a 500s series number, most of which started being sold in 1985, Coleco may not have started selling this outfit on dolls until 1986. (Ref#3 p. 399) It likely ended production sometime in 1986 as well. Consequently, it would have been produced for a limited amount of time. If this outfit is found on a later kid, it was most likely the company getting rid of ‘older’ stock.
If you have an outfit that is not recorded here or does not match my information, (e.g. You have a 504A OK that is yellow, not pink.) I would like to hear from you. Information is best sent in the form of pictures. For details, visit Taking Clothing Tag Pics.
> The Collar: The Taiwan factory collars appear to have an extra flap section with rick-rack that the China factory collars do not.
> The Lace: It seems that the lace used by the Taiwan and China factories is different. It’s hard to tell, but it appears that the KT and P factory lace are the same, while the AX lace is different.
> The Rick-rack: The location of the rick-rack around the skirt hem seems to change based on the factory. KT is right along the hem edge, AX is about 1cm away, and P is the furthest away from the hem.
There are 16 outfits in this series. This equates to between 140 and 150 different versions of the outfits. They came on regular kids from 1985/1986. They can also be found on later kids and in separate packages as Colecogot rid of overstock between 1987 – 89. Photo courtesy of Rebecca Russell.
It’s believed that most of the 500s Series came out in 1985 but that some came out in late 1985 or 1986. It is interesting to note that the outfits believed to have come out in 1986 are also those considered harder to find. This makes sense as they were likely manufactured for a shorter period of time.
Like other Series, certain letters seem to have been produced primarily by specific factories. I call these the Primary Factory for each letter. For example, I think the KT factory produced the letters A and B (if they produced the outfit). Other factories may have made them, but not always consistently.
To the right are my theorized primary factories.
It would appear that not every letter was created for every outfit. In fact, we are quite sure that one outfit only has four options while the largest number for one outfit seems to be between 10 and 14.
For some outfits, there’s more than one version of a code. This is generally caused by variations between factories. This is why it is vitally important to look at both the clothing code AND the description when determining if the outfit has been recorded. For example, the IC version and the KT version might look slightly different.
Taiwan factory outfits (e.g. IC, AX) have been recorded in the 500s Series; however, they are rather rare. At this time, the Taiwanese factories were more focused on producing specialty outfits.
The PMI factory only operated for one year, between 1984 and early 1985. As a result, it only produced 500s Series outfits for a short length of time. (Ref #3, p. 30) Consequently, PMI outfits in this series are the rarest to find. I am unsure how many 500s Series outfits the PMI factory produced. I have a record of only three, the Snowsuit, the Multi-coloured Jogging Suit, and the Aerobics Outfit.
The clothing tags in these outfits are generally in either the shirt or the dress piece. The single exception is the windbreaker outfits, which are labelled in the jacket.
The P and PMI factories continued to use stickers for their codes (for details visit HERE). This can make it very difficult to record the complete code. We know that it was made by the P factory but don’t know the letter. If you have an outfit from these factories with the sticker, please check if it is recorded!
Some OK tags in the 500s Series also have stickers. I think this was done when they ran out of a tag and needed to use the tags for another outfit. They just covered the original code with a sticker showing the new one.
As for shoes, they were specific to the outfit. Certain outfits came with certain shoes, but there were only three options: Sneakers, Mary Jane’s, and lace-up shoes (sometimes called high tops).
For more details on the individual type of shoe, click the labels in the pictures above or jump to, Shoes – An Overview.
Note: The names I used for these outfits are either used extensively within the CPK Community I frequent or were created by myself where no consensus seemed to exist. If you have another possible name, please contact me.
These specialty outfits offered us the freedom to pose our Cabbage Patch Kids. What a cool concept!
These outfits came out in 1985. They were designed to help you pose your doll and were intended to be worn underneath other outfits. There were six different colours available (I think).
The boxes say that they were made by factories in China (P), Korea (IJ), Haiti, and Mexico. As far as I know, this is the only CPK item produced in Haiti.
Actionwear ONLY came packaged. I’ve seen zero evidence that they were ever put on boxed kids. This makes sense; they were never intended to be the only outfit on a doll.
They originally came in packaging designed specifically for them (1). Then they started showing up in packaging designed for the Occupation Rompers (2). Eventually, they were part of the ‘overflowing inventory’ that they had to get rid of, and they started coming out in basic cardboard packaging (3-5).
One minor problem . . .
For anyone who has handled Actionwear outfits, you know that it isn’t uncommon for the outfit to be sans the wires. The wires tend to burst out of the outfit, like an underwire bra! However, some may have been sold WITHOUT the wire. The following was noted in 1987:
“A liquidation firm sold off a large number of outfits on boards that did not have the wire in them. They were not labelled as “Action Wear” but sure looked like them! The tag says Mexico!’
Regular lace-up shoes were manufactured by Coleco throughout the entirety of their production. However, the characteristics of the shoes varied by factory and over time.
The information in this post is chronological. If you don’t ‘recognize’ your shoes, keep going.
Hong Kong Shoes
For a definition of ‘Hong Kong Kids’, jump to the Glossary.
In the beginning, when production took place in Hong Kong [HK], the shoes had a very distinctive look.
In general, they have a number of these features but do not need to have them all.
They have a thicker feel to the vinyl. In some cases, the vinyl did not mould well, and they have a runny look to the inside.
They have textured bottoms.
Not all have HK shoes have black text in the heel, but if it is black, it’s a HK shoe.
They tend to look less ‘finished’ than other shoes. The edges look more like they’ve been cut out, or the vinyl around the edges has been trimmed.
In some cases, the tongue has not been cut out and is still attached.
Some have black text. I have found some made with a very hard, almost grey vinyl. The bottom edge can be more rounded than in other factories.
The text runs vertical, not horizontal, in the heel. I have not found any P with black text.
In general, KT shoes have more have black text. There are two versions, one with a font smaller than the other.
For more information on Jesmar Hong Kong shoes visit HERE
Post HK Shoes – 1986ish shoes
After the ‘experimental’ Hong Kong period, the shoes became more uniform but still had many characteristics that varied by factory. It can be very difficult to ‘match’ shoes. You THINK they look like they should match, but when you put them side by side, they are nothing alike! They aren’t the same shape, colour, texture, etc.
Most of the shoes have the factory indicator and the words HONG KONG stamped on the inside by the heel, on the bottom. The factory indicator can be inside a circle or not.
After production moved to China, the shoes became more uniform in appearance but continued to vary by factory. Indeed, as more factories began production, the amount of variation increased.
Disclaimer: The following observations have been made based on my collection. I welcome any information and will not hesitate to make revisions as needed.
OK Factory The vinyl feels rather flimsy and thin. The bottoms are flat. The text is either raised and clear or very blurry. The text comes in two sizes, the larger being closer to the heel.
P Factory The stitching decoration is in higher relief than the OK shoes, standing out prominently. The text is in relief and very clear to read. The text can include numbers. I have recorded the following: 4, 3, 2, 1, 6, 7 They can develop pox.
KT Factory They look like a regular white P except: They still have a textured bottom. The vinyl is slightly thicker and continues to have a slight ‘cut’ or ‘trimmed’ look to it, especially the tongue. The text is raised and clear.
IC Factory They have very prominent relief stitching decoration, and the vinyl feels more like Jesmar vinyl. The text is embossed and very clear. A second type looks like the other but has thicker vinyl, which creates a more structured feel. The laces are a nicer, finer, whiter string. The text can include numbers. I have recorded the following: 5, 2
PMI Factory They look and feel like OK shoes. The text says, HONG KONG PMI, in two lines. A line (like that below) was created by the mould and is visible in the heel. They can develop pox.
UT Factory The vinyl is firmer but not rigid, very white, and very smooth (almost glossy). The stitching decoration is in VERY high relief, and it looks like stitches rather than dots. There is a line, in a U shape, around the heel section of the shoe, on the back, not the bottom. It was likely left by the moulding process. There is a pronounced sole ridge. The text says, Made in Taiwan and has a raised relief, embossed along with a circle with UT inside it. The text can include numbers. I have recorded the following: 1, 4
SS Factory There are two styles. The first feels and looks like an OK shoe but is slightly smaller sometimes. They are softer and more malleable. The second looks more like a P and has high relief decoration. There are no words, just the factory identifier, either in a circle or not. There may be numbers located beside the letters. I have recorded: 1,2
The FD and CY factories do not appear to have produced lace-up shoes.
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.
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:
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?
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:
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?
Some of the codes on these outfits start with the letter B. e.g. B10J
I have no concrete explanation for this. My theories:
These outfits were not produced until 1985, so were given B tags to match the 1985 B Series.
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.
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.
> 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.
Original Name: Nightie-Night (Ref#4, Vol 3 Iss. 9, p. 6)
Description: Terry cloth sleeper that velcros up the front, a bear patch on the left breast, and a pom-pom at the toes (generally). Many also have some form of lace decoration (refer to variations below).
Originally Sleepers were sold in 1983 on boxed kids. Around June of 1983, they started being sold packaged, with socks and shoes. Presumably, they were sold until the stock ran out. They were no longer being produced by early 1984 at the latest. (Ref#4, Vol 3, Iss.8, p. 4; FB conversation with Leah Salt, April 2019) However, there is evidence that some stock of this outfit was still being sold off as separately packaged outfits as late as 1987. (Ref#4, Iss. 5, p.4)
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. To understand clothing codes, factories and variations, please refer to the suggested readings below.
If you have an outfit that is not recorded here or does not match my information, (e.g. you have a 2D OK that is pink, not purple) 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.
> There appear to be three lace patterns used on Sleepers. The pattern appears to be factory specific, rather than gender-specific, as many collectors have speculated.
Version 1: Full – KT factory and P Factory – lace down either side of the velcro and around the collar Version 2: Partial – KT Factory – lace around the collar and sleeve hems Version 3: No lace – OK Factory – They used no lace at all.
> Mimic Outfits: Similar footed sleeper-type outfits were created for preemies, Sipping Kids, and BBB‘s but this is the only 16″ outfit of its type.
> The crotch closure depends on the factory. The OK and KT factories do not open where the crotch meets the front closure, whereas the P factory outfits open entirely.
> The patches used can vary. The teddy bear patches on the sleepers are yellow and gold colours whereas the teddy bear patches on the Cord Suit(#5) tend to be in shades of brown and dark beige. > Sleepers were sold on bald dolls, both boys and girls. This was one of the only outfits that had bald girls. (Ref#4, Vol 3, Iss. 8, p. 4)
When Cabbage Patch Kids came out in 1983, each was wearing one of 18 outfits. These outfits came in a variety of colours and patterns, but there were only 18 to choose from. (Ref #4, Vol. 3 Issue 9/10/11, p. 6)
A 1983 catalogue that appeared to have prototype outfits in it named each outfit. However, over time collectors have created new names that better describe the outfit, allowing for easier identification. For example, the outfit below was originally called the Snuggle Suit but is generally called a Bubble Romper by collectors. (Ref #4, Vol. 3 Issue 9/10/11, p. 6)
As explained in an earlier post ( What are Clothing Codes?), 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. With this series, certain letters seem to have been produced primarily by certain factories. I call these the Primary Factory for each letter. For example, the KT factory produced the letters A and B for all 18 outfits, I think. Here are the primary factories, as proposed, at this point:
However, outfits were often produced by multiple factories, not just the Primary Factory. For example, I know that outfit 7A was produced by primary factory KT, and also by the LF, P, and OK factories. Below, we know that 2C was produced by two factories. Can you figure out which ones?
In addition, not every letter was produced for every outfit. For example, the Sleeper (#2) only goes to letter K. Letters L to R (CC and SS primary factories) were only used for packaged outfits, and apparently, the Sleeper was not sold separately. Also, it was not manufactured by the PMI factory because the factory began production after they stopped making the Sleepers.
The outfits produced by primary factory SS (P, Q, and R) are often close copies of earlier letters, making them difficult to identify. For example, if I had the red and white check Swing Dress (#1) recorded, you might think you didn’t need to check the one that you have. Unfortunately, I have the 1G (factory P) version, and yours is the 1Q (SS factory) version of the outfit, which I need to record. Consequently, checking to see if I have something recorded based on the code and factory is superior to using a description of the outfit.
We need to record all of the factories that made each outfit, as there are often differences between them. These differences can then be used to identify an outfit by 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, differences in:
small changes in the structure of the outfit
silk tag placement
Below is 1Q, as made by three different factories. Can you spot the differences?
Finally, just to make things difficult, some clothing tags, primarily those from the P and PMI factories, came with the codes on stickers that can wash off. Of the two, P factory tags like those below, are the most difficult to recognize as they do not actually have a P on them. However, even without code information, knowing which factory an outfit is from is a step in the right direction. (Jump to: What are Clothing Tag Codes)
As for shoes, they were specific to the outfit. In general, each outfit came with certain shoes, but there were only four options: Sneakers, Mary Jane’s, lace-up shoes (sometimes called lace-ups or high tops), and knit booties. Occasionally, as this is Coleco and they don’t stick to their own rules, kids will come with ‘unusual shoes’ for an outfit. For example, sometimes you will find dolls in the Bubble Romper with regular lace-up shoes.
Shoes that came with these outfits are labelled with the factory inside, about 1″ from the heel. They generally say ‘HONG KONG’ but were most likely produced in China, unless they came on an early 1983 doll. Like with the clothing, the shoe factory should match the dolls factory. If the doll is KT, the shoes should be KT. For more details, jump to: Shoes – An overview and reference links
Casual Wear Line – Packaged Outfits
This is the only other line of clothing that came out in 1983 and all of these outfits came packaged. They did not come on boxed kids. For more information jump to Casual Wear Line (1983).
Outfit Summary Shortcuts
Below are shortcuts to information about each of the 1983 series outfits. This information includes the versions s that I already have recorded and those I am still looking for information on. Each outfit will open in a new tab, allowing for easier navigation while you work. I would appreciate any help you can provide and accept tag/code information at any time.
For information on taking clothing tag pictures in order to assist with the research project, jump to: Taking Clothing Tag Pics