Annalee Dolls Celebrates 90 Years of Magic and Whimsy

Truly Annalee, a new portrait doll depicting a day in the life of the legendary doll maker Annalee Thorndike. The design honors Annalee’s legacy on the 90th Anniversary of Annalee Dolls.

Honoring the Artistry and Legacy of Founder Annalee Thorndike

Annalee is recognized as an artist and creative force who built a successful company from her kitchen table. It’s our pleasure to commemorate her foresight and achievements with our celebration.”

— Jason Ray, General Manager of Annalee Dolls

MEREDITH, NEW HAMPSHIRE, UNITED STATES, May 1, 2024 / — Annalee Dolls, the cherished icon of whimsical charm, is thrilled to announce its 90th anniversary celebration in 2024. The festivities, set to commence in May and extend throughout the year, will pay homage to the spirit and creative genius of the company’s founder, Annalee Thorndike, and her continuing legacy.

Annalee Thorndike began making dolls in her childhood bedroom. She would hand paint their faces and hand dye felt fabric. Her homespun creations were infused with whimsical smiles, creative poses, and intricate details. Since those humble beginnings, Annalee dolls have captivated generations with each enchanting creation. Annalee’s visionary craftsmanship and artistry laid the foundation for what would become the most-loved and collected doll designs and a beloved tradition cherished by millions worldwide.

Annalee dolls are known for their felt fabric, spirited and mischievous faces, and clever positioning. Made for collectors and decorating around the home, Annalee fashioned her dolls from everyday life and the simpler times she knew in rural New Hampshire. They also reflect her wicked sense of humor. Her early dolls were about occupations, sports, and hobbies and then expanded to include her now-famous mice and elves and an assortment of witty and lovable characters. Her creations are a staple in the holiday and seasonal decorations for millions of people. For many people, Christmas isn’t Christmas without an Annalee Santa. All Annalee dolls celebrate the best of life with a smile. As Annalee said, “If you smile, someone else has got to smile back.”

“Annalee Dolls hold a special place in the hearts of collectors worldwide for their incredible faces, captivating characters, and the stories they tell,” notes Gracie Blackey, lead designer at Annalee Dolls. “We are honored to continue Annalee’s tradition of spreading happiness through our whimsical designs. Each new design still features Annalee’s original hand-designed art. Bringing her remarkable creations to new generations of collectors is a role we take seriously. It’s a privilege to carry on her legacy and celebrate these amazing 90 years, and what’s to come.”

Throughout the year, Annalee enthusiasts can look forward to events and promotions designed to delight. Highlights include:

• An anniversary Getaway Giveaway for two to Meredith, NH, including a private visit to Annalee headquarters where you can build your own special doll, attend a special Annalee-sponsored theater event, and other special gifts. Includes travel and accommodations.

• An open house at the Annalee Gift Shop on May 18th, including a silent auction, special sales, free gifts and refreshments, a book signing with Chuck and Karen Thorndike, and raffle prizes. You can also watch designers assemble Annalee designs.

• Build-a-Doll special event in July at Annalee headquarters, where attendees will get to work with an Annalee designer to build their own one-of-a-kind doll. Advance registration required.

• The release of a limited-edition 90th-anniversary doll featuring Annalee herself, a tribute to the visionary behind it all.

• Exclusive auctions featuring rare and collectible dolls.

• Special anniversary swag featuring reproductions of Annalee’s hand-drawn face sketches.

– Engaging stories shared on the Annalee website, offering a glimpse into the magical world of Annalee Dolls.

• Interviews with Annalee designers and family members, providing behind-the-scenes glimpses into the creative process.

• Contests and prizes, including the much-anticipated Annalee Trivia Quiz.

• A nostalgic journey through the decades with a review of special dolls from each era, celebrating the timeless appeal of Annalee designs.

“Annalee Thorndike is recognized today as an artist and creative force who built a successful company from her kitchen table,” says Jason Ray, general manager of Annalee Dolls. “With each new design, we’re committed to her artistic legacy and her dedication to craft. It’s our pleasure to commemorate her foresight, determination, and achievements through our celebration and share it with the community who love and cherish her designs. Everything we’ve planned is designed to share a smile with everyone who cares about and loves Annalee dolls.”

Annalee Dolls invites everyone to join in the celebration. For more information visit or follow Annalee Dolls on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.

Founded in 1934, Annalee Dolls continues enchanting collectors from its home in Meredith, NH. Annalee Gift Shop, 339 Daniel Webster Highway, Meredith, NH. Visitors welcome daily from 10am to 5pm.

Betsey Pelletier
Annalee Dolls
+1 603-433-6557
[email protected]

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