Souraya Zakharia, a famous Lebanese doll maker from the 60s was featured in MEA’s Cedar Wings Magazine February 1994. Zakharia was a UN arts and crafts consultant and “had collaborated with several countries on traditional folklore preservation as well as working closely with President Camille Chamoun’s wife, Sitt Zalfa”.
The story was brought up by the Lebanese Fashion History page, and Souraya’s daughter even shared a letter from Jacquelyn Kennedy, the First Lady of the US at the time praising Souraya’s work.
The picture of the letter shared is blurry but here’s what I could read out of it:
The White House
March 13, 1963
Dear Miss Zacharia,
Mrs. Kenneddy has asked me to send you her sincerest thanks for the beautiful doll you made for Caroline. It is one of the most treasured parts of her foreign doll collection, and she was fascinated by the costumes and native Jewerly. You must have worked many hours making this exquisite doll, in her traditional designs of the Bethlehem area.
Mrs. Kennedy sends you her appreciation and her very best wishes.
I found a reference to Caroline Kennedy’s famous foreign doll collection but there was unfortunately no mention of Souraya’s doll in the exhibit. There is however a mention of dolls from Jordan but it doesn’t say who did them.