German/EUROPEAN  SKIPPER  #8519 1972

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The "European Skipper" or "Twist 'n Turn Skipper Europe" #8519 was sold only for one year. Some collectors refer to her as the "German Skipper", because she was sold mainly in Germany (though some were found also in England). She did not come with a headband.

 

The European Skipper was packaged on orange blister cards. She had straight legs and basically all the features of the SL Skipper dolls, but in addition she had a twist and turn waist.

 

There was no "redhead", these dolls were only produced as "brunettes" and "blondes". Unlike stated in some sources, blonde dolls aren't harder to find than the brunettes. They both are rare.

 

Her hair looks more synthetic than the vintage SL Skipper's hair. The bangs tend to part in the middle. Many of these dolls have very long and unevenly long hair.

 

About half of these dolls have a factory flaw: One of their legs is longer than the other leg.

 

Other than the pink skin SL Skipper and the Re-Issue Skipper, her face doesn't tend to discolor. Her eyes resemble the eyes of the Re-Issue Skipper dolls.

 

This doll wore a light blue swimsuit with a flower print, bow, and attached white pleated skirt with and pink slip. Since this fabric and swimsuit were only used for this doll collectors pay a high price for the swimsuit (and the doll). Both the doll and the OSS are very hard to find - even harder in a very good condition.

 

European Skippers were the last Skipper dolls which were produced with the early SL Skipper head mold AND side-glance. All future Skippers had centered eyes.

 

The markings of this doll are:

© 1967 Mattel Inc. U.S. Pat'd. U.S. Pats. Pend. Made in Taiwan

In 1973, Skipper #8519 officially didn't exist any more. But Mattel evidently used some left over parts of this doll and mixed them with parts of her successor #8126 (that's what collectors call "transitional dolls"): In the German Barbie booklet from 1973 you can see a Skipper doll dressed in the original swimsuit of Skipper #8519 and with the head of #8519. However, this doll has the stock number 00-8126 (#8126) and the bendable legs of Skipper #8126.

 

Another rarity is a doll with the body of Skipper #8519 and the head of Skipper #8126. This doll wears the blue two piece bathing suit of Skipper #8126. She was sold in the same packaging like #8519. You can see a picture of this doll in the Christie's auction catalogue "The Letje Raebel and Marina Collection" from 2006. I bought a doll with exactly these features a few years ago and am happy to have found proof of her authenticity. You can see a photograph of her by following the link below this paragraph.

 

Another related transitional doll is the "dressed box Skipper #8126" (link below).

About half of the European Skipper dolls found come with a factory "flaw": Their left legs are a little longer than the right one.

Example of a mint blonde European Skipper with extremely long hair (unusual).

Here you can find more photographs/info on this doll:

For a comparison of this doll with the Pink Skin Skipper and the Re-Issue Skipper, please go to the page "Straight Leg SL Skipper ..." (you can find it approx. in the middle of this page).