AG Doll Face Mold Artist Marks

American Girl has been making their beautiful doll face molds for decades, made of vinyl that is spun cast, leaving no seams or marks externally.[1] Certain American Girl dolls, however, have an “artist mark” on the back of their necks, and it’s a pretty neat thing to look for!

First of all… what is an artist mark?

American Girl Wiki gives us this: “Some dolls have small “artist” markings behind one ear. These are assumed to be from the early production, but cannot be relied on to give a definitive age of the doll.”[2]

Molly — sharpened to show detail

And I give you this: An artist mark is a little patch of scratches molded underneath your doll’s right (or left — thank you to Anna for joining the discussion and letting me know!) ear. Not all dolls have an artist mark — it’s unknown for sure why some doll molds have an artist mark while others do not. But whatever doll or dolls you have, it’s fun to check and see if one or more of them have one of these unique artist marks – keep reading!

Where is the artist mark?

Saige — edited to show detail

To see if your doll has an artist mark, lift up your doll’s hair to get it up off of her neck. Check behind and under her right ear and near the crease of her neck – if your doll has an artist mark and if look closely, you should see a unique patch of scratches on your doll!

Emily — edited to show detail

My dolls Molly, Emelie (Emily), and Jasmine (Saige) all have artist marks. In comparing the artist marks, I’ve noticed all three of them look the same — a distorted hashtag with a C in the bottom righthand corner. Molly was purchased in 2011 and Emelie & Jasmine in 2013.

An interesting observation I’ve noticed is that none of my newer dolls have artist marks (Ivy [’14], Truly Me #56 [’15], Lea [’16]). (My two secondhand dolls were both purchased this year, but I’m not sure how long their owners have had them and neither of them have artist marks). American Girl Wiki did say that “These [artist marks] are assumed to be from the early production.”[1]

Check your own dolls! Do any of them have artist marks? What are your thoughts and observations as to why certain dolls have artist marks while others don’t or why they are there? Join the discussion below!

Much, much love,

P.S. Guess who’s working on an introductory photo story series for her two new dolls? ? I plan to have the first part up this week!

References

1.  American Girl Wiki, Basic Doll Anatomy

2. American Girl Wiki, Basic Doll Anatomy

By | 2017-04-29T00:21:48+00:00 April 24th, 2017|AG Discussions, Doll Stuff|108 Comments

About the Author:

Madison
Hey! I'm Madi, a blogger, writer, doll collector, & minister of the Gospel of Jesus Christ. You can learn more about me by clicking here and more about this blog by clicking here.

108 Comments

  1. EnniMorgan April 24, 2017 at 10:02 pm - Reply

    Interesting! I can’t wait for the photoseries!

    • Madison
      Madison April 24, 2017 at 10:02 pm - Reply

      Thank you so much! Can’t wait to post them! 😀

  2. EnniMorgan April 24, 2017 at 10:04 pm - Reply

    Your welcome! 🙂 I recently started my own blog! It’s hoovesandpens.wordpress.com if you want to check it out.

    • Madison
      Madison April 24, 2017 at 10:05 pm - Reply

      Ooh, your blog sounds awesome! What’s it about? I’d love to check it out!

  3. EnniMorgan April 24, 2017 at 10:09 pm - Reply

    Um, right now I’m working on an article about birth symbols!

    • Madison
      Madison April 24, 2017 at 10:12 pm - Reply

      Ooh, nice! Do you ever post about dolls?

  4. EnniMorgan April 24, 2017 at 10:14 pm - Reply

    I only have one. :). I probably will in the future though! (I’ve only had my blog for three days)

    • Madison
      Madison April 24, 2017 at 10:16 pm - Reply

      Cool! Is she an American Girl one? And awesome! And hehe, I’m sorry sound like I’m interrogating you or something… ? I’m just a curious person. XD

  5. EnniMorgan April 24, 2017 at 10:26 pm - Reply

    That’s okay! I’m curious too! Yeah, she TM #30! I’m saving up for their new contemporary doll, Tenney Grant! I will definitely be doing doll posts in the future.

    • Madison
      Madison April 24, 2017 at 10:28 pm - Reply

      Yay for curious people! 😉 Ooh, that’s so cool! And Tenney is so pretty — I hope you’re able to get her soon! I can’t wait to see them! 😀

  6. Sara April 24, 2017 at 10:26 pm - Reply

    Hey, madison!
    Oh wow that’s so cool I didn’t know about that! Great post! I like to chat for while if you have time?

    • Madison
      Madison April 24, 2017 at 10:32 pm - Reply

      It is! Thank you! Sure!

  7. EnniMorgan April 24, 2017 at 10:29 pm - Reply

    Thanks for following!

  8. SARA?????? April 24, 2017 at 10:34 pm - Reply

    Ok I didn’t know about theark on some AG the sooooo cool! HOW ARE YOU???

    • Madison
      Madison April 24, 2017 at 10:42 pm - Reply

      They are cool! I’m good, how are you?

  9. Sara????? April 24, 2017 at 10:35 pm - Reply

    I meant mark on the doll lol typos ?

  10. Sara April 24, 2017 at 10:45 pm - Reply

    I’m Great just really tired! I’ve been busy all day? oh….I was going to ask you something….??WHAT WAS IT! Uhh..?

    • Madison
      Madison April 24, 2017 at 10:47 pm - Reply

      Haha, I’m really tired, too! I got one hour of sleep on Sunday. :/ Don’t know how many I got this morning… >.< LOL! I forget what I'm going to ask people sometimes, too.

  11. Sara????? April 24, 2017 at 10:51 pm - Reply

    Oh wow really I own had a couple hours of sleep on suday :/ I was to tired to get p for church XD! Actually it’s not a whole lot funny I’m tired?LOL! I know right i forgot what I was going to say!?lol how’s your family?

    • Madison
      Madison April 24, 2017 at 10:52 pm - Reply

      Oh my. ??? They’re good! How are yours?

  12. Sara April 24, 2017 at 10:56 pm - Reply

    Lol??? there good! I’m going to send you a couple pics I took today it’s hallarious!

    • Madison
      Madison April 24, 2017 at 11:00 pm - Reply

      OK! I have to go now, but I’ll definitely check them out later! TTYL!

  13. Sara April 24, 2017 at 11:01 pm - Reply

    Okay me too! Talk to you soon! Ttyl?

  14. Gracie April 25, 2017 at 12:07 am - Reply

    Interesting! I read, and then went off to check my dolls. Turns out, Clara (55, from late 2013) has one! Wow! Julie, who is an older doll from 2008, does not seem too, though, and Grace and Caroline are newer and don’t either. It’s fun to know that now!
    ~Gracie
    P.S. Yay for the new dolls’ photo series! 🙂

    • Madison
      Madison April 25, 2017 at 2:16 pm - Reply

      Ooh, awesome! Thanks for sharing! That really is interesting. Hehe, it is!

      P.S. Yay! I can’t wait to post them! 😀

      • Gracie April 25, 2017 at 11:39 pm - Reply

        Hehe, I was just thinking, what if some American Girl manufacturers schemed to put marks on a few dolls every so often to get people talking, wondering, and thinking that it had some special meaning or something, LOL. It was probably not for that reason, though. XD

        • Madison
          Madison April 26, 2017 at 8:45 am - Reply

          If it was, I’d probably bust out laughing at American Girl’s randomness. ???

  15. Olivia Bell (aka Livy) April 25, 2017 at 12:47 am - Reply

    Interesting! I’ll have to check Caroline to see if she has an artist mark!! I’m not sure why some have them… maybe in early production, people were apart of the production and wanted to mark the dolls they made, and they it turned to all machine made? I don’t know! It’s interesting! 😀

    • Madison
      Madison April 25, 2017 at 2:15 pm - Reply

      Ooh, let me know if she has one! Hahaha, maybe! It really is! 😀

      • Olivia Bell (aka Livy) April 25, 2017 at 11:01 pm - Reply

        YOUR NEW HEADER IS EPIC!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! And the new doll is so pretty along with K.C. and Taryn!! I love the new header, you did such a great job!! 😀

        • Madison
          Madison April 26, 2017 at 8:44 am - Reply

          THANK YOU SO MUCH!!! 😀 😀 😀 I’m SO glad you like it, thank you so much! 😀

  16. Lizfromagh April 25, 2017 at 7:35 am - Reply

    Very interesting, Madi! I will check my dolls later to see if they have any. Have a great day!

    • Madison
      Madison April 25, 2017 at 2:15 pm - Reply

      Thanks, Liz! Ooh, let me know what you find! Aw, thanks — you too! ❤️

  17. Izzy April 25, 2017 at 7:48 am - Reply

    Cool! I can’t WAIT for the photostory… where I’ll meet Taryn’s sister? 😉

    Izzy?

    • Madison
      Madison April 25, 2017 at 2:14 pm - Reply

      Thanks! And why, yes, yes you will… 😉

  18. Anonymous April 25, 2017 at 8:04 am - Reply

    Now you have me wondering, I’m going to have to check!!!

    • Madison
      Madison April 25, 2017 at 2:14 pm - Reply

      Let me know what you find!

  19. Sara April 25, 2017 at 9:22 am - Reply

    Ooh, interesting! I had no idea. I’ll certainly look at my dolls’ necks! (That sounds sort of weird… XD )

    • Madison
      Madison April 25, 2017 at 2:13 pm - Reply

      It’s really neat! LOLOL! XD

  20. Clara April 25, 2017 at 10:15 am - Reply

    Ooh, thank you for posting about this! Turns out Ava and Poesy both have them, but Ivy doesn’t. How interesting! 😛

    -Clara <3

    • Madison
      Madison April 25, 2017 at 2:13 pm - Reply

      Aw, thanks for commenting! Hmm, interesting! 😛

      • Clara April 26, 2017 at 11:25 am - Reply

        Yeah! 😀 (Your new header is so pretty! I spy a #62… XD)

        • Madison
          Madison April 26, 2017 at 1:55 pm - Reply

          (Thank you so much! Heh heh… ? XD)

  21. From a Doll's Perspective (Anna) April 25, 2017 at 10:18 am - Reply

    Ok, here’s what I got:
    Melanie( purchased 2014): no artist mark
    Chrissa: no artist mark
    Kanani: no artist mark
    Jamey and James(purchased 2014): no artist mark.
    Kit: (purchased used): no artist mark.
    Kaya (I don’t know when she was purchased.): no artist mark.
    Saige : artist mark on left.
    Molly (Pleasent Company doll purchased used ) : artist mark on left.
    Grace: no artist mark but she has two tiny purple lines at the base of her neck that she came with. (I don’t know if that’s a defect or some sort of artist mark type thing.)

    • Madison
      Madison April 25, 2017 at 2:12 pm - Reply

      Wow, I’ve never heard of an artist mark on the left before! I’m going to go edit the post. Thanks so much for sharing!

  22. Grace | The Girl Upstairs April 25, 2017 at 10:33 am - Reply

    HOW DID I NOT KNOW ABOUT THIS??? Welp, you learn something every day! XD
    Anyway, I just checked my dolls, and Saige, Nicole (#22), and Caroline have them! You should have seen my reaction to finding them – SO COOL! 😀 😀 😀

    • Madison
      Madison April 25, 2017 at 2:12 pm - Reply

      XDDD True dat! ;D

      Oooh, neato! That’s so cool! 😀 Thanks for sharing!

  23. ThePolkaDotPatriot April 25, 2017 at 12:21 pm - Reply

    Hmm…Out of my 11 dolls, only 3 have an artist mark! Pleasant Co. Felicity (Probably from the 90’s, since she has soft eyelashes) Samantha (2008) and #33 (2011).

    My Pleasant Co. stamped Nellie (2007) and my new Logan doll, (who also has the Pleasant Co. stamp!?!) don’t have artist marks. Nor do my Emily (2013), #56 (2012) or Ivy (2014)

    • Madison
      Madison April 25, 2017 at 2:10 pm - Reply

      Oooh, nice! Thanks for sharing — my Emily has an artist mark but she’s from 2013, too, so that’s really interesting.

  24. Taryn April 25, 2017 at 1:14 pm - Reply

    Can’t wait to meet your new dolls! Hmm, I’ve never heard of artist marks. I wonder if they just made them for fun. 😉
    ~ Taryn

    http://lifeofafarmdoll.blogspot.ca/

    • Madison
      Madison April 25, 2017 at 2:09 pm - Reply

      I can’t wait to post the photostory! LOL, that’d be funny if they did. XD

  25. loren April 25, 2017 at 1:59 pm - Reply

    this is so cool! i just ran downstairs and checked all of my dolls. molly, emily, caroline, tracy, savannah, isabelle, and saige all have an artist mark. i had never noticed it before!

    can’t wait for your photostory. they’re always amazing. 🙂

    xo loren

    • Madison
      Madison April 25, 2017 at 2:09 pm - Reply

      Isn’t it? I can’t believe I haven’t posted about it until now. XD Woah, that many? Nice! And thank you! I can’t wait to post it. ?

  26. agsparklesisters April 25, 2017 at 2:54 pm - Reply

    Intriguing! So excited for the photo series!

  27. Daisymermaid April 25, 2017 at 4:40 pm - Reply

    Lea has no artist mark on either side. ??‍♀️

    • Madison
      Madison April 26, 2017 at 8:38 am - Reply

      Neither does mine. ??‍♀️

      • Daisymermaid April 26, 2017 at 4:25 pm - Reply

        Maybe it’s a Lea thing. ??‍♀️

  28. Sara April 25, 2017 at 4:58 pm - Reply

    Hi! Madison!?How are you today??

    • Madison
      Madison April 26, 2017 at 8:38 am - Reply

      Hello! Good, you?

      • Sara April 26, 2017 at 10:38 am - Reply

        Hello, ?Great that your Great! I’m Great! LOL? Guess what I have to watch my cousins dog Elliot from last Saturday to this Saturday for a whole week!!!???????

        • Madison
          Madison April 26, 2017 at 1:54 pm - Reply

          Oh my. ??? You’ll be busy. ?

          • Sara April 26, 2017 at 2:02 pm - Reply

            I know right!!!
            They said until Monday but they were house sitting And my aunt can’t drive because….I’ll tell you through text!

            LOL

            • Madison
              Madison April 26, 2017 at 2:09 pm - Reply

              LOL! Okay!

              • ???? April 26, 2017 at 10:54 pm - Reply

                Keep
                Up
                the
                AWESOME-
                NESS!
                &
                THE AWESOME!
                WORK!
                On EVERY-THING!
                I
                Am
                Really
                excited
                for
                the
                next
                post!!!!!!!!!

                • Madison
                  Madison April 28, 2017 at 12:12 pm - Reply

                  Awww, thanks! ❤️

              • ???? April 26, 2017 at 10:56 pm - Reply

                Ok I don’t know why it did that!
                LOLOLOL!!
                XD!!!

  29. May @ Forever and Everly April 25, 2017 at 6:17 pm - Reply

    OOOOH COOOL. LIKE A TATTOO. XD Also I’ve been meaning to watch your stop motion video??? However, homework hates me so and I have no time. 🙁

    • Madison
      Madison April 26, 2017 at 8:39 am - Reply

      YEAH, LIKE A TATTOO. XD Aw, no problem! I hope you get to watch it soon, but if you can’t, it’s fine! Life is… insane… XD

  30. samanthadolls April 25, 2017 at 6:46 pm - Reply

    This has GOT to be the coolest post I’ve ever seen! I checked all of my dolls, and 6 out of 9 (soon to be 10) have them! Molly, Emily, Kit, Saige, Amelia, and Samantha have one! Mine are similarly shaped to the ones you have, but some have an I and a P, and one has a V and an R!
    This was SO INTERESTING to read! Tanks for telling me about this!
    ~Sam

    • Madison
      Madison April 26, 2017 at 8:41 am - Reply

      Aw, that means so much! I’m glad you like it! 😀
      Ooooh! Don’t they all have the classic mold, and yet they have different signature letters? WOW! Thank you so much for sharing! That’s so neat!
      Thank you again, Sam! I’m so glad it was interesting! 😀

      • Samantha April 26, 2017 at 7:08 pm - Reply

        Yeah, I was SO excited! That is SO weird! I can’t wait to see if my newest #58 will have one when she arrives Friday!
        Molly, Emily, and Saige were from 2013, and Kit, Amelia and Samantha were from 2015!
        Also, I LOVE your new header!
        ~Sam
        (BTW, I changed my username to Samantha rather than samanthadolls, so don’t worry, it’s me not a poser!)

        • Madison
          Madison April 28, 2017 at 12:11 pm - Reply

          *screams* You’re getting #58 on Friday? That’s today! YAAAY!
          Ooh, thanks for telling me! That’s really neat!
          Yay, I’m so glad you like it! Thank you!

          P.S. OK! I figured it was still you, hehe!

  31. AGfan April 25, 2017 at 7:05 pm - Reply

    WOW!! As soon as I read this post I checked my doll Caroline and she had the mark!! (Behind her right ear) Then I google searched ‘artist mark’ and this is one thing that came up:

    In addition to the neck stamp, many dolls also have an additional mark which is found at the hairline toward the doll’s right ear (looks a bit like #@). This is called the artist mark or designer mark and is actually the mark of the designer of the original head mold.

    The presence of this mark is very random as it can be found on some old dolls made in West Germany, brand new dolls made in China, and signed dolls. However, it is also absent on some old dolls, signed dolls and new dolls. Despite a lot of attention that is given to it, this mark does nothing to help in the aging of a doll or in the determination of the country in which it was produced.

    !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    • Madison
      Madison April 26, 2017 at 8:43 am - Reply

      Ooooh, that’s so awesome!

      And thank you so much for sharing that! I searched Google for artist mark too but the only thing I found was on AG Wiki. Do you know what site you found that from / what page that was on? I’d love to reference it in my post, if possible. Thank you so much for sharing! 😀

      • Ms. AGdoll April 26, 2017 at 2:56 pm - Reply

        Not trying to be weird….but I just copy and pasted that artist mark info into google search and found where it was from! It was on the page titled “Collectible American Girl Dolls: An Insider’s Guide” at ebay.com.
        Here’s the link (you have to scroll down some to find it the part on artist marks): http://www.ebay.com/gds/Collectible-American-Girl-Dolls-An-Insiders-Guide-/10000000000962859/g.html

        ~Ms. AGdoll XD XD

      • AGfan April 26, 2017 at 5:55 pm - Reply

        Oh thanks Ms. AGdoll!! No problem!!

        • AGfan April 26, 2017 at 6:00 pm - Reply

          BTW Madi, I LOVE your new header pic!! Its AWESOME!!

          • AGfan April 27, 2017 at 3:23 am - Reply

            haha……just noticed the dolls in the stunning header are in the same order as the as on your ‘Meet the dolls’ section!! :P…is it in the order you got them?!!

            • Madison
              Madison April 28, 2017 at 12:13 pm - Reply

              Yes, you’re right! They are in the order that I got them!

          • Madison
            Madison April 28, 2017 at 12:10 pm - Reply

            Thank you SOOO much! I’m so glad you like it! 😀

  32. Taryn April 26, 2017 at 9:24 am - Reply

    Holy cow! You got a new header! I love it so much!!! But wait, who is that unnamed doll at the end?!?! 😉
    ~ Taryn

    http://lifeofafarmdoll.blogspot.ca/

    • Madison
      Madison April 26, 2017 at 1:54 pm - Reply

      I sure did! Aw, thank you so much — so glad you like it! UHH… NOBODY… XD

  33. emeraldpheonix April 26, 2017 at 11:50 am - Reply

    LOVE then new header!
    Felicity has one, but she’s the only one. Lea, Alexandra, Maryellen, Isabelle, and Logan do not have one.

    • Madison
      Madison April 26, 2017 at 1:56 pm - Reply

      YAY, I’m so glad! ?
      Ooh, thanks for sharing! Yeah, my Lea doesn’t have one either.

  34. Alyse April 26, 2017 at 12:18 pm - Reply

    Audrey, #33 (2011) has it, and so does Macy #14 (2011), but Rebecca (2009) does not…

    ~Alyse~

    • Alyse April 26, 2017 at 12:24 pm - Reply

      I find it odd, because I got Rebecca the year she came out….

      • Madison
        Madison April 26, 2017 at 1:57 pm - Reply

        Hmmm, that’s interesting…

        • Alyse April 26, 2017 at 4:35 pm - Reply

          So does it have something to do with early production? If so, the Rebecca that I got must be wrong…

          • Madison
            Madison April 28, 2017 at 12:10 pm - Reply

            That’s what’s assumed, but we don’t know for sure.

    • Madison
      Madison April 26, 2017 at 1:56 pm - Reply

      Ooh, neato! Hmm, interesting.

  35. Ms. AGdoll April 26, 2017 at 3:01 pm - Reply

    This is so cool!! I never knew about this…….XD

    I checked my three dolls (MAG #24, Caroline, and Pleasant Company Felicity), and Lissie is the only one who has one!

    ~Ms. AGdoll~

    P.S. I spy a mysterious unknown doll in your new header…….

    • Madison
      Madison April 28, 2017 at 12:08 pm - Reply

      LOL! XD

      Ooh, that’s so neat! You have a PC Felicity? That’s so cool!

      P.S. Ah, yes, you do indeed… 😉

  36. Light4theLord April 26, 2017 at 4:03 pm - Reply

    Soo cool! 🙂 I went to my dolls directly and checked each of them…. only Katie has one! 🙂 I LOVE YOUR NEW HEADER! DID YOU NAME HER WHAT I THINK YOU NAMED HER?!?!!??! SHE’S GORGEOUS! YOU FINALLY GOT IT UP! AND TARYN AND K.C. ARE THERE TOO!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! 😀
    Light4theLord
    https://dollsnall.blogspot.com

    • Madison
      Madison April 28, 2017 at 12:09 pm - Reply

      Isn’t it? Ooh, so cool! Katie was originally a Kit doll, right?
      OOH THANK YOU! MAYBE! TEHEHE! 😀 SO excited to introduce them both!

  37. SierraMist April 27, 2017 at 10:37 am - Reply

    Hey Madi ! IDK if my dolls have artist marks or not because im not home i didnt bring my dolls on vaca with me.But i will check! Miss u !

    • Madison
      Madison April 28, 2017 at 12:16 pm - Reply

      Ooh, let me know what you find! Miss you too! Please be back in time for youth camp this summer… if I have to go without you I promise you I’m gonna die. ?

  38. Kendall April 27, 2017 at 2:24 pm - Reply

    I’ve never noticed these before!
    Here’s what I have…
    #23, purchased in 2009- no mark on her, but I had her head replaced last summer… may have something to do with it!
    #39, purchased in 2011- Yep, on the right!
    #24, purchased 2016- Nope.
    This was cool Madi, thanks for sharing!
    Also, I LOVE your new blog photo!!! <3
    Can't wait to formally meet K.C. and ?? !!! 🙂

    • Madison
      Madison April 28, 2017 at 12:19 pm - Reply

      Oooh, that’s so cool! I wanna check my friend’s #39 now and see if she has one, too.

      Aw, thank you! 😀

      And YAY! So glad you like it!!

      I can’t wait to introduce them! I’m about to post something… ;D

      • Kendall April 29, 2017 at 10:54 am - Reply

        Yes, you should! 🙂

        I saw Heads Up Part 1! Loved it! And I LOVE the name Delaney! <3
        🙂

  39. Sara April 28, 2017 at 12:57 pm - Reply

    Hey madison!
    I can’t see your reply ☝up at kind of the top lol

  40. Maddie April 30, 2017 at 12:46 pm - Reply

    GOOD GOLIATH’S GRAVVVYYY!!!! My mind has officially blown through the roof. THIS IS SO COOL!!!!! You know what’s even cooler?!?!? THE ANTARCTIC!!! or me…ya’ know I’m cool too XD wait I just realized those are two different definitions of ‘cool’….. but anyway putting my random kidding-ness (sorry I’m making up words here) aside what’s even cooler is, my Sage doll has this mysterious signature on her neck also! This is so cool, and I can’t believe I never noticed it before XD thanks so much for pointing this out!!!

  41. violahope May 19, 2017 at 2:57 pm - Reply

    Hi madison,
    My name is Hope Hyink. (aka violahope).
    I Like your blog.
    I just found an artist mark on my Gotz doll.
    The info you posted is very helpful.
    Thanks,
    ~violahope`

    • Madison
      Madison May 20, 2017 at 3:34 pm - Reply

      Hey, Hope! I’m so glad you found my blog! I’m really happy you like it. 😀 That’s so neat! Thank you for commenting! ❤️

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