In 1973 Ideal decided to expand their already uber-popular Crissy doll fashion line, by producing a new version of Crissy. The new version was known as Baby Crissy. Baby Crissy was supposed to be a life size version of the Crissy doll, only in the form of a baby.
Baby Crissy is 24” tall, with the same growing hair feature as the other Crissy dolls. However, instead of the belly button and knob system used for shortening or lengthening the hair, Baby Crissy has a string that comes out of her back. When you want to shorten her hair, gently pull the string out. To lengthen her hair, simply pull straight up on her ponytail, which comes out of the top of her head. Baby Crissy’s hair is auburn on the White version, and black on the Black version. She had painted jet black eyes, thick eyelashes, painted eyebrows, pink painted lips and painted white teeth.
Originally, Baby Crissy was made of a hard vinyl material. This quickly changed however, when Ideal began producing her in a soft vinyl material to make her seem more life-like. Instead of being wasteful, Ideal decided to use up their old stock by making the dolls out of both hard and soft vinyl material until the hard vinyl material was used up. This meant that some dolls were produced with both hard and soft limbs.
Baby Crissy was introduced wearing a two piece dress and matching panties set which was either pink or lavender, depending on which race of doll you got (pink for the White, lavender for the Black). This outfit however, was not Baby Crissy’s sole clothing set. Ideal was very proud of the fact that Baby Crissy was designed after an actual nine-month old baby, and could therefore wear real baby clothes. Baby Crissy was not sold wearing shoes. This version of Baby Crissy was sold between 1973 and 1977.
Interestingly, in 1981, Ideal decided to re-issue the Baby Crissy using the exact mold from the 1973 dolls. This made it so that it was virtually impossible to tell the two versions apart (The 1981 versions even had the same 1972/1973 copyright on the base of the head and the upper back). The 1981 versions were produced wearing a white romper with a yellow flower applique on the trim.
Ideal did produce one other Baby Crissy doll later in the 1980s but it wasn’t anything close to the original Baby Crissy. It had a very different look (face, hair, etc…) and did not have the growing-hair feature.
Above and to the right is an ad from one of the original growing-hair Baby Crissys, showing both the White and Black versions. Above to the left is the instruction sheet included with the growing-hair Baby Crissy.