1981 Sindy Outfits and Separates

The 1981 UK Pedigree catalogue had the subtitle of

A whole world of elegance and adventure

and there were some lovely outfits issued this year. 

Some collectors argue that by 1981 Sindy’s outfits had become very mundane and boring, however others who prefer the 1980s outfits point out that the clothes still authentically reflected the fashions of the time. 

Wikipedia notes that the early 1980s witnessed a backlash against the brightly coloured disco fashions of the late 1970s in favour of a minimalist approach to fashion, with less emphasis on accessories. In the US and Europe practicality was considered just as much as aesthetics

This trend does seem to be reflected in Sindy’s wardrobe.

 
The dolls were still predominantly 2nd Gens and there were just a couple of boxed dolls and outfits carried over from 1980.
 
  • A new low cost fashion range was introduced this year called Separates. They were described as “Bright colours at a pocket money price”. There were six garments in this range and unlike the Mix n Match range they did not include shoes. This new range of separates became a staple of subsequent Pedigree Sindy annual fashion releases and actually they really are rather nice especially as they faithfully reflect our fashion casuals of the day.
  • Sindy’s affordable ‘Envelope Fashions’ were now called ‘Boutique’ and were described as “Colourful outfits themed to Sindy’s activities”. All these outfits came with shoes.
  • The ‘Miss Sindy’ range was the next tier up from the Boutique and were the equivalent of the previous 1980 ‘Boxed Fashions”, these outfits were more intricate and were accessorised with an assortment of bags, hats, belts and shoes.
  • Sindy’s most expensive range of luxury outfits for “special occasions” were still the ‘Superfashions’. There were four new outfits this year.
  • Finally, there was Sindy’s ‘Mix n’ Match’ collection for 1981 which this year was a very tasteful set of navy blue, turquoise and white garments.

Sindy’s previous fashion accessories still available were:

  • ‘Dress in Style’ Ref 44403 now shown with a red on white triangular polka dot scarf (see 1976 Sindy for the original set)
  • ‘Jewellery Accessories’ Ref 44417 still shown with the brown jewellery box (see 1978 Sindy) and
  • ‘Fashion Accessories’ Re 44395 (see 1980 Sindy).
Labels are few and far between, the ones spotted are white paper and printed “Hong Kong” in black ink. Fastenings are either round or square metal snap fasteners or square plastic snap fasteners. The only exception appears to be the Ball Gown shown below which had hook and eye fastenings.
 
Just to note there were minor differences between the UK catalogue and the International catalogue, in particular the referencing is confusing because the International dolls have earlier references. The dolls are therefore listed using the UK reference first unless no UK equivalent exists.

It is generally agreed that these dolls were available in 1981, and indeed one is shown on page 163 of “The History of Sindy” by Colette Mansell.

The theory is that these blister pack dolls were a way to clear the Bunches Sindys before the Sad Faces arrived in 1982.

That all seems very reasonable and is probably true. However, we have heard from a lady who told us a very interesting story.

“My mother knew a lady who had a toy shop in Wimbledon. Mother was there when the toy seller man came in, the Sindy packing had been changed to a Sindy in bubble & card not boxed, not many made I believe as it was a trial.”

What struck us was the backing card is printed with “Sindy your first fashion doll”. In 1980, Mattel released it’s first Barbie aimed at younger children called ‘My First Barbie (Ref  #1873). The My First Barbie doll was especially designed to be easier for younger children to handle, and thought was also given to the design of her clothes so she was easy to dress and undress. With one eye on the competition, perhaps, this was an opportunity for a Pedigree market test to see whether there was the appetite for essentially a rack toy Sindy in a blister pack wearing a very simple, easy to remove outfit, using the soon to be obsolete Bunches dolls? Or maybe it was just a great copycat marketing opportunity to get rid of them!

In 1986 Pedigree did release the ‘My First Sindy’ (Ref 42041 Int Ref 42051), a basic doll with straight legs and a velcro dress fastening.

Sindy Your First Fashion Doll (Ref 44499) (Boxed doll outfit)

This uncatalogued sweet Bunches Sindy was simply dressed in a white nylon T-shirt printed with “Sindy” on the chest. It had short sleeves and a boat-neck neckline with a V-shape at the back. It opened at the back where it fastened with one sewn-on metal fastener. It was accompanied by a pair of white silky nylon elasticated shorts with a raspberry red grosgrain ribbon trim around each leg and up the sides of the shorts. Her bunches were tied with two white bows (using the same silky white ribbon as used for other boxed Sindy dolls), and for her feet she wore a pair of her white trainers.

These Sindys were available as auburns, blondes and brunettes.

Most interestingly, these girls came in blister packs which could be hung up like a rack toy.

Summertime Fun (International Reference 44641) (Boxed doll outfit)

This Sindy was only released as an International doll. She was a simple basic body Sindy wearing a swimming costume and a wraparound skirt. The one-piece bathing costume was made of magenta pink stretch nylon. The swimsuit was gathered between the bust and it had matching silky cord halter neck-tie straps. This outfit came with a pretty cotton wraparound skirt which had pink and blue flowers with green leaves and stems on a white background. It fastened at the waist with a metal snap fastener and was tied with a pink grosgrain ribbon belt. This outfit came with a pair of white one-strap sandals.

We were not actually sure to begin with if this doll existed because confusingly the same outfit was used for a Sindy distributed by Wesco in the USA and shown on Wesco’s Sindy pages in their 1981 catalogue as “Funtime Sindy”. 

But whilst that Sindy had a similar reference (44641U), we had only ever seen these dolls Mint in Box using a sad face Sindy which is a 1982 doll. 

This doll was also issued in Canada by Arlake and again we could only find a sad face version. These sad face dolls wore white round-toed court shoes instead of white one-strap sandals and have a pink satin ribbon in their hair. 

We think Wesco and Arlake probably originally sold 2nd Gen “Funtime” Sindys in 1981 but we haven’t been able to prove it yet.

But finally after much searching we found a boxed 2nd Gen version which was sold at auction in the UK in 2016 and which we are able to show you with kind permission of the auctioneers. 

We believe this is the same Sindy as shown on page 162 of Colette Mansell’s ‘The history of Sindy’ and we think this Sindy is correct. 

We know she was distributed in France by CEJI Clodrey, which was a French toy conglomerate who held Sindy’s French distribution rights. In France she was called Sindy “en Vacances”.

We know of two versions of the skirt.
 
The first version is shown right. It had pink and blue flowers with green leaves and stems on a white background. It fastened at the waist with a metal snap fastener and was tied with a pink grosgrain ribbon belt.
 
The second version, shown above in the main photo, had pink and violet flowers and red flowers and cherries with green leaves and stems on a white background. It fastened at the waist with a square-shaped plastic snap fastener and was tied with a pink grosgrain ribbon belt.
 
This outfit came with a pair of white one-strap sandals.

There is a very nice additional attention to detail with these boxed dolls. They were secured in their boxes with brown twist ties.

Funtime (International Ref 44642U) (Boxed Doll outfit)

This Sindy was only released in the USA, distributed by Wesco International Inc under license to Pedigree. We know she appeared in the Wesco’s Sindy pages in their 1981 catalogue and we believe she was also called “Funtime Sindy”. She was a basic body black Sindy with a new head mould with beautiful brown eyes, pink lipstick and black hair.
 
She came wearing a swimming costume and a wraparound skirt very similar to the ‘Summertime Fun Sindy’ (International Ref 44641) and the ‘Funtime Sindy’ (International Ref 44641U) shown above. The one-piece bathing costume was made of magenta pink stretch nylon. The swimsuit was gathered between the bust and it had matching silky cord halter neck-tie straps. This outfit came with a pretty cotton wraparound skirt.

Sweetdreams (International Ref 44645) (Boxed doll outfit)

Another International release. The red nightdress on this Sindy has sometimes been called a variation of the Boutique fashion ‘Warm and Cosy’ (Ref 44079) which is shown below but it is in fact a boxed doll outfit for a sleeping eyes Sindy. She wore a full-length brushed nylon nightdress in scarlet red. Just like the ‘Warm and Cosy’ it had a high neck and long sleeves which were gathered at the wrists. The yolk was decorated with four pintucks and a lace edging. Two full-length pintucks decorated the front of the nightdress and the curved hem was also trimmed with lace. The nightdress fastened at the back with one metal snap fastener. The outfit came with the pair of red slippers which were red one-strap shoes trimmed with the red fur (not the white one-strap sandals shown in the International Pedigree Catalogue).

Page 162 of Colette Mansell’s “The history of Sindy” shows a continental Sweet Dreams Sindy in the blue ‘Warm and Cosy’ Boutique fashion. As yet we cannot independently verify that the Sweet Dreams also came in the blue nightdress although Mansell noted it was her original outfit. If anyone can provide any information regarding whether the blue nightdress came on a boxed doll please get in touch.

Active Sindy (Ref 44664 – Int Ref 44663) (Boxed doll outfit)

The Sindy ballerina still wore the pink ballerina outfit that was introduced in 1977. A short-sleeved leotard made of white stretch-nylon, with a scoop neckline to the front and deep V-shaped back trimmed with a white satin binding. For her legs a pair of thick white nylon fishnet tights. Her tutu was made of four layers of deep pink honeycomb netting with an additional top layer of a very fine white translucent netting trimmed at the hem with white nylon lace. The waistband was made of a white nylon binding and it fastened at the back of the waist with a velcro strip fastening. Sindy’s ballet shoes were made of moulded pink plastic and she wore a pink ribbon in her hair.

Summertime Fun (Ref 44716 – Int Ref 44674) (Boxed doll outfit)

The simple basic body doll in a swimsuit introduced in 1980 was again shown in the 1981 catalogue. Sindy still wore the one-piece bathing costume made of magenta pink stretch nylon. The swimsuit was gathered between the bust and it had matching silky cord halter neck-tie straps. This outfit did not come with shoes.

Please see also the international Summertime Fun (Int Ref 44641) above which had a slightly different outfit.

Springtime Sindy aka Spring Time (Ref 44742 - Int Ref 44640) (Boxed doll outfit)

This appears to have been a re-use of the 1978 Marx Sindy boxed doll outfit (US Ref 1000 – Canadian Ref 1000F). Perhaps following the failure of the Marx Sindy it was a thrifty way to use up existing stocks. This outfit was also used for a Schuco-Gold boxed Sindy doll (Ref 14-4816).  Although referred to as “Springtime” in the Pedigree catalogues, her window box label said “Spring Time”.
Sindy’s outfit was a cotton calf-length gypsy-style dress.  It had a printed floral pattern with brown, dark salmon pink, steel blue and tan flowers with cream stalks and leaves on a dark blue background. It had short elasticated puff sleeves and a round elasticated neckline trimmed with cream nylon lace. The skirt had one tier and the seam was decorated with the same cream nylon lace as was used for the neckline. As a finishing touch around the waist was a woven nylon fibre belt which was stitched into the side seams of the opening at the back. The dress fastened at the back with two sewn-on round-shaped metal snap fasteners. For her feet Sindy wore round-toed court shoes. The Pedigree catalogues show her wearing white shoes, although have also seen her MIB with cream shoes.
 
Variations of this dress have been found where the background is dark brown or black. We do not know whether these variations relate to a particular doll or whether these differences are merely the result of the use of different dye lots. These dresses are often found with smudged dye patterns which look similar to an ink stain.

Party Time (Ref 44743 – Int Ref 44643) (Boxed doll outfit)

Party Time Sindy was a blonde bunches doll who wore a brightly coloured dance outfit. It consisted of a stretch nylon fabric leotard with a shallow scoop neck front and deep V back with half-sleeves, and a simple unhemmed circle skirt with a turned-over waistband which fastened with one metal snap fastener. The Sindys came in one of three colours: deep pink, sunshine yellow and bright blue. She had matching ribbons in her hair and one-strap sandals on her feet.

Party Time Sindy was accompanied by a 45 rpm single record with songs by the Video Kids. “Everybody Boogie!” was on side A and “We’re Havin’ a Party” on side B.

Sindy was definitely ‘on point’ with this outfit, and it is sometimes attributed to the 1981 Eurovision Song Contest British entry “Making Your Mind Up” by Bucks Fizz. The dance routine for the song had Cheryl and Jay’s midi-length skirts ripped off in the middle of song revealing shorter skirts. It’s been pointed out that the Sindy skirts can equally be quickly removed to reveal her dance leotard underneath. However, the Sindy outfit would have been devised in 1980 to make it into the 1981 catalogue and Bucks Fizz was formed in January 1981 and performed the dance routine in the UK’s ‘Song for Europe’ in March 1981, going on to win the 1981 Eurovision Song Contest in April. Rather than attributing the Sindy outfit to Bucks Fizz, maybe it was the other way round? Just a thought…

Styling Sindy (Ref 44744 – Int Ref 44644) (Boxed doll outfit)

The pretty Sindy with the extra-long hair made a reappearance in 1981. This time she wore a pale lilac cotton maxi dress printed with three-headed flowers. The bodice was decorated with four vertical pintucks. The dress had a high collar and half-length sleeves. The neck, sleeves and hem were trimmed with white nylon lace. It fastened at the back with two metal snap fasteners. Sindy had a white nylon ribbon in her hair (not red as shown in the catalogue) and we believe she wore one-strap sandals.

She also came with the familiar brush, comb and mirror that was originally sold with the 1975 Lovely Lively.

Separates

1981 saw the launch of Sindy’s new pocket money range consisting normally of just one item of clothing. The back of the packet described this range as “A colourful low priced range of fashion separates for Sindy”. There were six separates in the range.

Shoes are models’ own.

Ref 44030 – Separates

A beige cotton sweatshirt with a wide round neck, long sleeves and three printed red hearts on Sindy’s left breast.

Ref 44031 – Separates

Tight fitting white thick cotton trousers with a red cotton pintuck side seam and a sewn-on waistband which fastened at the front with a square metal snap fastener.

Ref 44032 – Separates

A dark blue denim midi length A-Line skirt with two patch pockets at the front, a sewn-on waistband and braces. It was detailed with red stitching and fastened at the back with a square metal snap fastener.

Ref 44033 – Separates

Perhaps inspired by Daisy Duke’s plaid shirts from the Dukes of Hazard which premiered in the UK in 1979, Sindy had her own fashionable lumberjack check shirt. These long-sleeved cotton shirts had sewn-on collars and cuffs, a yoke at the front and curved shirt hemlines. They fastened at the front with two square metal snap fasteners.

We know of four variations to the check (plaid) weave and we would be pleased to know if there are any others.

Ref 44034 – Separates

A crisp cotton red A-Line midi skirt with faux side pockets at the front and two jeans-style patch pockets at the back. It had a sewn-on waistband with a front fly opening which fastened with a square metal snap fastener.

Ref 44035 – Separates

A cerulean blue edge to edge cotton jacket with sash lapels and wide stitched cuffs. This jacket sometimes gets mixed up with the 1981 Mix n’ Match jacket. This is not surprising because it is exactly the same design although the Mix n’ Match jacket is navy blue. Nor does it help that the colour is very similar though not quite the same as the turquoise used for that set.

Boutique

Coffee Morning (Ref 44078) - Boutique

A midi length white and red knitted style ribbed nylon dress. It had a red coordinating cotton ribbed V-neck, cuffs and wide waistband which was elasticated in the middle. The dress fastened at the back with three metal snap fasteners. The outfit came with a pair of white one-strap sandals.

Warm and Cosy (Ref 44079) – Boutique

A full-length brushed nylon nightdress in pale blue. It had a high neck and long sleeves which were gathered at the wrists. The yolk was decorated with four pintucks and a lace edging. Two full-length pintucks decorated the front of the nightdress and the curved hem was also trimmed with lace. The nightdress fastened at the back with one metal snap fastener. The outfit came with the pair of white one-strap slippers trimmed with the blue fur.

Pony Club (Ref 44080) – Boutique

Sindy’s yearly riding outfit had a pair of stretch-nylon jodhpurs with inside knee pads. This year they were made of a caramel coloured nylon with soft pale brown brushed-nylon knee pads and white elasticated stirrups. They had a sewn-on waistband made of the same fabric, a fly opening and they fastened with one sewn-on metal snap fastener. Sindy’s top was a bright red stretch nylon jumper decorated on the front with a vinyl picture of a horse head and horseshoe. It had a deep V-neck and the neckline, cuffs and waistband were finished with same red nylon. It fastened at the back of the neck with one sewn-on metal snap fastener. This outfit came with a beige nylon shaped cravat which could be tucked neatly into her V-shaped jumper, a pair of Sindy’s black plastic high-heeled riding boots and a long black plastic riding crop.

Funsuit (Ref 44081) – Boutique

This outfit was a tracksuit made of finely ribbed nylon. It was a brightly coloured ensemble made up of navy, red, white and yellow horizontal stripes with the edges finished in red stitching. The hooded pull-on top fastened at the front with one metal snap fastener and was elasticated at the cuffs and waist. The pull-on jogging pants had an elasticated waist and was also elasticated at the ankles. For her feet there was a pair of golden yellow trainers.

Baby Blue (Ref 44082) – Boutique

Sindy’s underwear set for 1981 appears to have been a reissue of her 1981 Envelope Fashion “Baby blue” (Ref 44073). It consisted of a bra, half-slip and two pairs of pants – a pair of high-legged classic knickers and pair of French knickers. But this year Sindy was given a shorter half-slip.

The bra was made of a pastel blue nylon overlaid with a layer of fine baby blue floral patterned netting. It had blue nylon straps and the top of the bra was trimmed with white nylon lace. It fastened at the back with one sewn-on metal snap fastener. 

Her classic styled knickers were made of a white stretchy nylon with an elasticated waist and the leg holes trimmed with the same white lace. Her French knickers were made of the same pastel blue nylon as her bra, they were shorter cut than the 1979 version. They also had an elasticated waist and the leg holes were also trimmed with the matching white lace.

The half-slip was made of the baby blue floral patterned see-through netting, similar to the 1979 Sindy ‘Sweet Dreams’ net fabric. It had a sewn-on waistband made of the same material and it fastened at the back with one sewn-on metal snap fastener. This half-slip is A-line in shape, but it does not have the additional tier seen with the 1980 version. The decorative white nylon lace is stitched around the skirt about an inch above the bottom hem.

To complete the outfit there was a pair of white one-strap sandals trimmed with pastel blue plush fabric.

Please see 1980 Sindy Outfits and Separates for the longer half-slip version 1980 Sindy Outfits and Separates

Fine and Fancy (Ref 44083) – Boutique

A very pretty two-piece outfit comprising a white drop-waist, ruffle-hem blouse and long-length floral ruffle skirt. The cotton blouse had a high neck of white nylon lace and sheer nylon sleeves with deep gathered cuffs trimmed with the same lace. The front of the blouse was decorated with a vertical lace frill with a red applique flower at the waist.  The same lace was also used to edge the ruffle. The blouse opened down the back and fastened with two metal snap fasteners. The skirt cleverly echoed the blouse with its own wide ruffle hem and it was made of a crisp cotton with a pink, white and yellow flowers on a navy blue background. It had an elasticated waist. This outfit came with a pair of white tassel shoes, but we have seen it packaged with white slip-on mules.


This outfit was not shown in the International Pedigree catalogue or on the back of the Boutique packaging.

Beach Party (Ref 44084) – Boutique

A cute halter neck jumpsuit made from seersucker cotton. The jumpsuit had a square neck and the bodice edging and halter straps were made of a thick white cotton bias binding. It had and elasticated waist and elasticated ankles. The striped material was predominantly candy pink with thinner contrasting stripes of lavender blue, magenta, tangerine, turquoise and white. It fastened at the back with one sewn-on square shaped metal snap fastener. This outfit came with a pair of white one-strap sandals.

This outfit was not shown in the International Pedigree catalogue or on the back of the Boutique packaging.

Work and Play (Ref 44085) – Boutique

A contemporary sweater and slacks outfit. Made of ribbed crimplene to look like a knitted jumper, the pull-on top was woven with powder blue, white and slate blue stripes. It had a wide roll-neck top, cuffs and waistband. The white cotton drill trousers had a front-fly which fastened with one sewn-on metal snap fastener. A pair of white one-strap sandals came with this outfit.

The sweater pattern is very different to that shown in the Pedigree catalogues which was perhaps a prototype.

Miss Sindy

Stormy Weather (Ref 44344) – Miss Sindy

An olive green, double-breasted trench coat with 4 small green buttons on the front, wide lapels, collar and straps around the wrists was quite authentic. It even was belted at the waist with a separate tie belt. It came with a matching beret and a contrasting yellow triangular scarf. All the garments were made of cotton. To complete the outfit was a pair of Sindy’s knee-high brown boots.

Sleep Tight (Ref 44345) – Miss Sindy

Sindy’s top of the range sleepwear was a cotton, calf-length, red and white polka dot nightie and matching dressing gown. The nightdress was a fashionable tent shape with pretty heart-shaped nylon lace straps. It was decorated with a red ribbon at the neck and ruffle-hem trimmed with the same heart-shaped lace. It fastened at the back with one sewn-on metal snap fastener. Described as a “housecoat” in the catalogue, Sindy’s edge-to-edge dressing gown and half-length sleeves were also trimmed with the heart-shaped lace. The outfit was accessorised with a white brushed-nylon hot water bottle which had white cord loop. A pair of white one-strap sandals completed this outfit.

Beachcomber (Ref 44346) – Miss Sindy

Sindy’s outfit for beside the sea was a stylish colour coordinated casual outfit. The outfit focused on a pair of denim blue cotton dungarees which had a patch pocket with a flap on the front of the bib. The straps were sewn into the back of the dungarees’ waistband where it fastened with a plastic snap fastener. Under the dungarees Sindy wore a bright yellow stretch nylon round neck top with long sleeves. It fastened with a plastic snap fastener at the back of the neck. To keep the sun and her hair out of her eyes, Sindy wore a matching sun visor with a denim blue cotton brim and a coordinating yellow head strap made of yellow bias binding which fastened with a piece of velcro. On her shoulder she carried a denim blue cotton hobo bag and on her feet a pair of yellow slip-on mules.

Shop Around (Ref 44347) – Miss Sindy

For a busy day shopping, Sindy wore an edge-to-edge collarless red cord jacket, a white silky nylon V-neck, long-sleeved blouse which fastened at the front with one metal snap fastener, and a pair of black drill cotton jeans with the front fly which fastened with one metal snap fastener. For this outfit Sindy was given a brimmed hat made of black drill cotton with a black ribbon hat band with a small bow to add detail to one side, and the crown of this hat was intricately stitched into four segments to give it some height and structure. There was also a matching oversized black drill cotton hobo bag perfect for lots of shopping. This outfit came with a pair of black tassel shoes.

We know of two variations to the floral material:

Above is the version shown in the Trade Catalogue with the dress and brim lining made from fabric with big white flowers with red centres and green leaves and stems on a navy blue background.

Shown left is a variation which was made from the same cotton fabric as one of Sindy’s 1979 ‘Dinner Date’ (Ref 44202) dresses. The floral pattern was small white daisy shaped flowers with red centres, tiny yellow buds and green leaves and stems on a navy blue background.

Sweetlife (Ref 44348) – Miss Sindy

A cute semi-formal sundress and jacket set much liked by many Sindy collectors. The dress was a straight sheath floral sundress with shoulder straps and modest side splits. It fastened at the back with one square-shaped snap fastener. Sindy’s jacket was made of white ribbed crimplene, it had a collar and lapels and was decorated with a double row of blue stitching. This outfit also came with a matching brimmed hat with a crown stitched into four segments to give it some height and structure. Made of the same white ribbed crimplene as the jacket, the top of the brim was decorated with a double row of navy blue stitching to match the jacket, and the underside of the brim was lined with the same fabric as Sindy’s dress. This outfit came with a white rectangular shoulder bag made of white drill cotton, with a silky red cord strap. It had a front flap decorated with a row of navy blue stitches and it fastened with a snap fastener (both metal and plastic fasteners have been spotted). For her feet there was a pair of red slip-on mules.

Showstopper (Ref 44349) – Miss Sindy

Perfect for theatre night, Sindy’s formal jacket and gown ensemble reflected both the style and colours of the time. Sindy’s gown was a straight A-Line maxi-dress with shoulder straps made from a maroon silky nylon with a very fine textured weave. It fastened at the back with two metal snap fasteners. To add interest to an otherwise plain dress there was a tie belt made of cream jacquard satin. The accompanying jacket was made of the same cream jacquard satin which was woven with a diamond pattern. The collar and lapels were lined with the maroon dress fabric and the jacket fastened at the front under the lapels with a round gold button and loop fastening. A cream jacquard satin “matinee” bag with a gold chain strap and a round gold button and loop flap fastening completed the outfit. This outfit came with a pair of black tassel shoes.

There are two known variations of the overdress which have different lacy patterns as shown above. The fancier flower on the left had a plastic square-shaped sewn-on snap fastener. The larger flower pattern on the right had a metal square-shaped sewn-on snap fastener.

Superfashions

Bride (Ref 33472) – Superfashions

Sindy’s 1981 bridal outfit was a delicate lace netting overdress with a simple full-length slip underneath. The slip was a simple pull-on sleeveless floor-length dress, it had a round neckline which was slightly lower at the front and it was made of white stretch nylon. The overdress was made of white nylon lace. This dress had long sleeves with elasticated wrists with a white nylon lace trim. The lace bodice had a deep V-neckline front and back trimmed with the same lace as the sleeves and was sewn into the waist. The full skirt was trimmed with a wider white nylon lace at the hem. This overdress fastened at the back of the waist with a square-shaped sewn-on snap fastener. This outfit came with a very simple veil made of netting embroidered with a silky thread in a small oval pattern. The headband was simple, the veil was simply hemmed at the top with elastic cord threaded through. The bottom of the veil was trimmed with the same lace as the hem of the over-dress.  Her bouquet was made of three large scarlet fabric flowers with either white or yellow stamens (both have been found) and decorated with two scarlet and two white grosgrain ribbon streamers. She also carried a silver painted plastic horseshoe stuck to a piece of white nylon silky ribbon. For her feet she wore white round-toed court shoes.

Bo-Peep (Ref 44373) – Superfashions

Sindy was given two pretty period costume sets in 1981. Reminiscent of the Victorian bustle outfits, this first one had a distinctly pastoral look to it. The blue and white floral cotton dress was a floor length A-Line shape, it was sleeveless and had a U-neck with both the neck and hem trimmed in white nylon lace. It fastened at the back with two sewn-on snap fasteners. The accompanying navy bustle style coat was described in the Pedigree catalogue as being made of velour, but it was actually brushed nylon. The ‘bustle coat’ had a collarless V-shaped neckline with long leg o mutton sleeves, and it was trimmed with the same white nylon lace as the dress. It was cleverly gathered and stitched at each side to create the bustle shape and it fastened at the front with one sewn-on metal snap fastener. To accompany the outfit was a large cartwheel hat made of the same blue floral cotton as the dress. The underside of the brim was lined with the same floral cotton and the edge of the brim was trimmed with the same lace as the dress and coat. This outfit came with white tassel shoes.

We know of two variations of this outfit. The one most commonly found is shown left which is a delicate blue and white floral print. This dress has square plastic snap fasteners. The one on the right which has a bolder blue and white tulip and daisy print. This dress has round metal snap fasteners.

Sometimes forgotten is this outfit included a simple A-Line floor length underskirt or slip. It was made of white nylon trimmed with a row of nylon lace at the hem. It fastened at the back with one metal sewn-on snap fastener.

Regency Girl (Ref 44374) – Superfashions

Sindy’s second period costume for 1981 was a tasteful Regency style gown and bonnet in dove grey and baby pink. At first glance, this outfit looks quite simple but on taking a closer look you can see that it was quite an elaborate creation. The floor length dove grey nylon polyester dress had a basque-shaped bodice and a ruffle hem. The bodice had a pretty shawl collar and long sleeves with band cuffs. A delicate pink nylon lace was used to decorate the dress, with a band on the top of sleeves, the edge of the shawl collar and the seam of ruffle hem. In addition two vertical rows of lace adorned the front of the skirt and were further embellished with three delicate pink, white and green embroidered, applique flowers. One applique flower was sewn to the waist and the other two at the end of the vertical lace trims where they met the ruffle seam. It fastened at the back with two square-shaped sewn-on snap fasteners.

Sindy’s pretty bonnet would have been perfect for a carriage ride or a public promenade, and in its stylised way it matches the bonnet fashion plates from the Regency era. Sindy’s brimmed bonnet was made from the dove grey nylon polyester. The brim was trimmed with the same nylon pink lace as her dress. The hat band was made of folded pink nylon chiffon with the same applique flowers as those on the dress sewn to each side of the bonnet. It tied under Sindy’s chin with long baby pink nylon taffeta ribbons.

White tassel shoes completed this outfit.

Ball Gown (Ref 44375) – Superfashions

Described as a “coffee and cream multi-tiered ball gown”, this dreamy floor length dress very much reminds us of the Southern Belle ball gowns from southern USA, very ‘Gone with the Wind’. Made from coffee coloured nylon, the simple sleeveless bodice had an enormous frill attached to the neck, which was trimmed with coffee and cream coloured flowered nylon lace. The full skirt was made of three tiers of the coffee coloured fabric, again edged with the coffee and cream lace. The front of each tier was gathered into modest swags and fixed into place with brown satin ribbon bows. This dress fastened at the back with two square-shaped metal snap fasteners.
 
Accompanying this outfit was an elegant chocolate brown velvet choker with a decoration at the front. This outfit came with cream round-toed court shoes.
The Ball Gown outfit above left is the closest example to the Trade Catalogue. But there are variations. Originally we believed there were just two versions with both brown and green ribbons. However, on closer inspection we now think three versions.
 
The first version, the one closest to the Trade Catalogue, is made of a soft silky nylon with a subtle sparkly sheen when it catches the light.
 
The variations shown above and left, can be found with both brown and green ribbons. These are made of a slightly thicker, finely woven polyester material with a matte finish. The lace trims are also slightly different, and in addition the silkier version has a slightly darker binding where the lace is sewn to the ruffles.
 
There is also a version very similar to the second two shown but the material is stretchy
The Trade Catalogue showed a choker very similar to the photo on the left below. This choker, came with the silkier nylon dress and we have this MIB (Mint in Box). It was made of chocolate brown velvet with a round pearlised plastic pendant sewn to the ribbon with a tiny black-hued transparent bead. It fastened at the back of the neck with a small rectangle of velcro.
 
But, this choker is not always recognised by collectors (indeed we didn’t ourselves at first). More readily recognised is the choker on the right. It was made of chocolate brown velvet ribbon and tied around the neck. It was embellished with a diamond shaped, gold edged decoration with a silver metallic hologram centre. This choker came with the polyester gown, but it was not MIB.
We have speculated that the diamond choker on the right might be a later substitute because so many collectors think it belongs with the gown. We did ourselves. Certainly the pearlised plastic pendant is very intricate and would have been quite complicated to make. The diamond choker on the other hand would have been far more easier and probably much cheaper and quicker to produce. We asked if anyone could confirm if the diamond choker did indeed come with Ball Gown and we received confirmation.
 
With regards to 1981 Ball Gown, I can confirm the one I received for Christmas that year as a child was the polyester version with brown velvet choker that had the diamond diamanté. However the diamond fell off so I got a new one with the accessories set a few years later.
 
As noted above, the diamond choker was subsquently repackaged in 1983 in two of the Fashion Assortment packs (Ref 44381) ‘Evening Wear’ and ‘Haberdashery’. Although the ‘Evening Wear’ version used black velvet ribbon instead of brown.

1981 Mix n’ Match Fashions

Sindy’s Mix n’ Match collection for 1981 which was a very tasteful set of navy blue, turquoise and white garments which reused some of Sindy’s 1980 Mix n’ Match designs, with a few variations.

The UK Pedigree catalogue suggested that you could make over 84 different outfits from the 8 packs. Interestingly there was also a second Mix n’ Match set; an International range which were slightly different sets and consisted of just 6 packs. The International packaging was not branded as Mix n’ Match and this range is shown below.

Confusingly, the UK Mix n’ Match packaging showed the International range on the back of their packaging, but showed the shoulder bag which was not in the International range. Only the packs containing trousers included shoes.

This was the very last year that there was a mix and match range which had been a stalwart of Sindy’s fashions for five years since 1977.

UK Mix n’ Match Range

This is the UK range of Mix n’ Match which has been mixed and matched with extra shoes added.

Ref 44062 – UK Mix n’ Match

A turquoise and white striped towelling jacket with a hood lined with turquoise cotton. It fastened at the neck and waist with one plastic press fastener and it tied at the waist with a white silky cord. This jacket was not part of the International range.

Ref 44063 – UK Mix n’ Match

A trousers and skirt set. This was a pair of straight-legged white drill cotton trousers with a turquoise contrasting top stitch down the side of each leg. The trousers had a fly opening which fastened at the waist with a sewn-on plastic snap fastener. The navy blue cotton skirt was A-line in shape made up of three panels with a sewn-on waistband. It fastened at the back with one sewn-on round-shaped metal snap fastener. The front of the skirt was decorated with a contrasting white top stitch faux-fly and a front box pleat. It was below Sindy’s knee in length. This set came with a pair of white tassel shoes, although the Pedigree catalogue showed it with a pair of white slip-on mules.

Ref 44064 – UK Mix n’ Match

A second trousers and skirt set. This was a pair of straight-legged navy blue cotton trousers with a white contrasting top stitch down the side of each leg. The trousers had a fly opening which fastened at the waist with a sewn-on plastic snap fastener. The turquoise cotton skirt was A-line in shape made up of three panels with a sewn-on waistband. It fastened at the back with one sewn-on square-shaped metal snap fastener. The front of the skirt was decorated with a contrasting navy top stitch faux-fly and a front box pleat. This skirt is about 1 cm shorter than the navy skirt above and is more a knee-length skirt (not sure if this is by accident or design). This set came with a pair of white tassel shoes.

Ref 44065 – UK Mix n’ Match

The third and last UK trousers and skirt set. This was a pair of turquoise cotton trousers with a navy blue contrasting top stitch down the side of each leg. The trousers had a fly opening which fastened at the waist with a sewn-on square-shaped metal snap fastener. The white drill cotton skirt was A-line in shape made up of three panels with a sewn-on waistband. It fastened at the back with one sewn-on square-shaped metal snap fastener. The front of the skirt was decorated with a turquoise top stitch which highlighted the front seam and provided the impression of two hip pockets. This skirt is knee-length. We believe this set came with a pair of white tassel shoes.

Ref 44066 – UK Mix n’ Match

A top and bag pack. This top was white cotton ribbed towelling sweater. It had a round neck and fashionable long batwing sleeves (described in the UK catalogue as “lap winged”). The neckline, cuffs and waistband were finished with a very finely ribbed white stretch nylon. The top fastened at the back of the neck with one white square-shaped metal snap fastener. The bag was made of navy blue cotton with a single shoulder strap and a sewn-on side pocket made from the contrasting turquoise cotton. The edges of this bag were decorated with a white overlock stitching. The bag was not included in the international range.

Ref 44067 – UK Mix n’ Match

A blouse and T-shirt set. The collarless V-neck blouse was made of turquoise brushed nylon. It had long sleeves and fastened at the front with two sewn-on snap fasteners (both metal and plastic fasteners have been found). The second top was a round neck T-shirt made of white stretch nylon printed with a turquoise “Sindy®” printed across the chest. It had short sleeves and it fastened at the back with one square-shaped metal snap fastener.

Ref 44068 – UK Mix n’ Match

This set consisted of a jacket and a sweater. The long-sleeved tailored boxed jacket was made from turquoise cotton. It had a sewn-on collar and turned back lapels made of the same material. The collar, lapels and front edges of the jacket were decorated with a navy blue top stitch. It fastened at the front with one sewn-on square shaped snap fastener. The navy blue stretch nylon sweater had long sleeves with sewn-on cuffs, V-neck and waistband. It fastened at the back of the neck with one square-shaped metal snap fastener.

Ref 44069 – UK Mix n’ Match

A navy blue edge to edge cotton jacket with sash lapels and wide stitched cuffs. It came with a navy blue and white striped cotton scarf. This scarf is wider and shorter than tie belt version accompanying the navy blue jacket in the International Mix n’ Match set (Ref 44094).

International Mix n’ Match Range

The International range was described as the “collect-a-range” in the Pedigree catalogue and that by mixing and matching you could make many pleasing alternatives. The International packaging was not branded as Mix n’ Match. There were 6 sets in this range.

One of the most noticeable differences was that all of the International range could be standalone outfits and included shoes; including blue tassel shoes that were not included in the UK packs, although they were shown in the pack pictures. Only the UK trouser packs included shoes. Each complete outfit is shown above.

It is unknown as to whether the International packs were made available in the UK, although they do turn up from time to time from UK
sellers.

Ref 44090 International Mix n’ Match

 
The collarless V-neck turquoise brushed nylon blouse (Ref 44067) was described in this range as a jacket and was matched with the white trousers (Ref 44063). This set came with a pair of blue round-toed court shoes.

Ref 44091 International Mix n’ Match

The white cotton ribbed towelling sweater (Ref 44066) and the turquoise cotton skirt (Ref 44064). This set came with a pair of white tassel shoes.

Ref 44092 International Mix n’ Match

The white “Sindy®” stretch nylon T-shirt (Ref 44067) together with the navy blue cotton skirt (Ref 44063). We believe this set came with a pair of blue tassel shoes.

Ref 44093 International Mix n’ Match

The long-sleeved tailored boxed turquoise cotton jacket (Ref 44068) and navy blue cotton trousers (Ref 44064). This set came with a pair of white round-toed court shoes.

Ref 44094 International Mix n’ Match

This was the navy blue edge to edge cotton jacket with sash lapels and wide stitched cuffs (Ref 44069). It came with a thin navy blue and white striped cotton tie belt rather than the UK scarf. The turquoise cotton trousers (Ref 44065) accompanied the jacket together with a pair of white round-toed court shoes.

Ref 44095 International Mix n’ Match

This was the white drill cotton skirt (Ref 44065) teamed up with the navy blue stretch nylon V-neck sweater (Ref 44068). This set came with a pair of blue tassel shoes.