I live in Northeastern Ohio and we have a chain of stores called Marc's. A quarter to a half of each store is devoted to their closeout department and I swear every treasure I ever happened onto came from Marc's. Back when I got out more, I would shop there 3 or 4 times a week because they would get the most miraculous things in and would sell them at unbelievably low prices. Problem is, you best have the money in your pocket because if you don't buy what you see when you see it, you'll never see it again.
I found these particular gems somewhere between 1990 and 95, along with a couple of the motion Santas. I'd never seen these dolls before and haven't seen one since. There was no name of a manufacturer though there was a made-in-China label on the bottom of their boots that I have since peeled off. Each doll has two pigtails that plug into a midget light set. One pigtail lights a bulb in or near one of their hands and the other puts them in motion. Their little heads turn from one side to the other while their arms go up and down.
It is not that I am a doll collector but when I saw these it took me back to many childhood Christmases when my parents would dress us up and take us downtown to see the decorations and do our shopping. One of the many spectacles was the motion window displays the large department stores put up with their beautiful moving figures. It was a wonderful memory lost now to the younger generations. We don't have any major department stores downtown any longer.
The "artist elf" is pretty much the way he was when I purchased him except for the addition of the painting in his lap. I made a clipboard complete with plans and added the sled for the "worker" elf . When the tree lights go on he actually lifts the clipboard to study and then as his head turns his other arm lifts the sled for him to inspect his work. He's my mascot tinkerer.