I know that many folks that play with the ten inch dolls and are lucky enough to have several of each sculpt like to rename their dolls and some want to name them with “official” Mary Engelbreit names. For those so inclined I’ve done an informal survey of names that have been used over the years by Mary herself and by companies to whom she licensed for dolls. I looked at both two and three dimensional dolls; both cloth and hard product dolls. Here is a list, arranged with the most frequently used names at the top:
Ann Estelle (4)
Audrey Ann (2)
Little Red Riding Hood (aka Red) (1)
Sweetie Pie (1)
I’ve also heard two versions of why Tonner chose to name the boy in the ten inch series Michael (who appears as one of the magnetic “paper dolls” and a non "Home Companion" paper doll) and not Tommy (who appears often with the “Home Companion” paper dolls.) One is that Tonner gave the choice of the two names to a group of fans at a convention and they voted for Michael. The other is that there was some sort of licensing conflict with the name Tommy, thus he used Michael instead.
It looks like both the above explanations about why Michael is Michael are urban legends (i.e. false). Claudia did the intelligent thing and just plain asked Robert Tonner recently and he said he liked the idea that Michael was a clothes horse and that is why he choose the name over Tommy. I am guessing this refers to a description in Mary Engelbreit's 1997 "Child's Play" paper doll book: Michael has "a closetful of clothes to choose from whenever he gets dressed. And he always tries to choose the right ones for whatever he's going to be doing ..." So there you have it! R.
And so you can also name your dolls' pets with true ME pedigree, here is a list of the pets’ names from the paper dolls:
Bingo = Gracie’s hamster
Bonny Rose = Lilah’s puppy
Bubbles = Ann Estelle’s goldfish
Frank = Tommy’s mouse
Henry = Ann Estelle’s dog
Jean Pierre = Gracie’s guinea pig
Mabel = Audrey Ann’s cat
Maggie Lou = Georgia’s dog
Violet = Gracie’s cat
What, no one keeps pet birds?! R.