Southern Elegance 

                      Reflections of the South

African American Dolls

"The Praline Seller"

 New Orleans Street Vendors of the 1800's

In the days of old on the street corners of the Vieux Carre' sat the Praline Seller. Her voice echoed through the French Quarter. "Pralines for Sales, Pralines for Sale, sweet delicious Pralines." Pralines are a tasty mixture of sugar, milk, butter, and pecans.    This African American  Doll was inspired by George Francois Mugnier's photo dated 1895.  The Praline Seller Doll  is pictured below seated on a hand-crafted cotton bale designed by Brian Bernard. A basket filled with hand-sculpted pralines lays upon her lap. This African American Doll is 16 inches in height and is dressed in a dusty blue and white print dress. A gray woolen shawl is draped over her shoulders. (Note: Jewelry and dress fabric/print may vary depending on availability). JoAnn has made a handmade wig from gray mohair strands. A red bandanna holds her hair away from her face. The Praline Sellers has two distinct features one is her bare feet and the other is the praline that is sculpted in her left hand. Accessories are gold hoop earrings and a golden brooch. JoAnn's unique body design allows her to be positioned in various ways by bending her arms at the elbow joints and by bending her legs at the knee joints. This feature adds to the life-like quality of the piece. Accompanying the character doll is a booklet and display card designed by JoAnn to include; the number of the piece, the inspirational sketch, a short bio, and a story about the character. All clay pieces are limited editions of 500. A numbered and signed Certificate of Authenticity is also provided with the character doll. Click on the sample booklet for an Original New Orleans Praline Recipe.

African American Doll

The Praline Seller

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Sample Booklet

Click here to view contents of display card and booklet

Clicking of the sample booklet cover (above) will bring you to the story page for this character doll.  The previous and next buttons below photo will surf you through the large doll photo pages. Clicking of the Back button will bring you back to the African American Heritage Doll page. Clicking any of the icons in the menu options row below will bring you to that particular destination.



ŠJo Ann Bernard

JoAnn's Comments: The photographs of Mr. Mugnier can be seen in the book "Louisiana Images 1880-1920, A Photographic Essay by George Francois Mugnier," the Praline Seller is on page 9. I hope to have captured the essence of this New Orleans Praline Seller, she is truly a New Orleans treasure.

Original African American Dolls 

by JoAnn Bernard

An original clay doll collection, for the doll collecting enthusiast

Original African American Dolls recreating Louisiana Life in the 1800's.  Learn about Louisiana Culture through this African American Heritage Doll collection inspired by sketches, photographs and stories of the 1800's.  These African American life like hand made dolls have attached booklets and display cards with short historical essays about the character.  All dolls are reproduced in clay using JoAnn Bernard's plaster molds developed from her original doll designs. Doll wigs, clothing, dress designs, and props are all handmade by the artist.

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Louisiana Heritage Dolls by JoAnn Bernard

Louisiana Heritage Dolls

Figurines, Sculptured Slates/sketches by JoAnn Bernard

Figurines, Sculptured Slates and Inspirational sketches

Oil Paintings by JoAnn Bernard

Oil Paintings

Duck Carvings by JoAnn Bernard

Duck Carving

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Doll Making Techniques/Bio


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