Blogiversary #7: How I became a doll collector.


Today is the seventh anniversary of this blog. A lot of things have changed since 2013 and I never expected when I started, that blogging would become such a big part of our lives. This post is a rewrite of the first post I ever published. I can say for sure that doll collecting is still the hobby that gives me the most happiness.

Theresa with her Raggedy Ann doll made by my mum.

I think that I got my love of dolls from my mother. She used to tell me about the dolls she had owned as a child in the 1930s. She enjoyed making rag dolls and dolls clothes and I think that she was delighted to have two little girls to play dolls with when Naomi and I came along.

I had all sorts of dolls, big hard plastic baby dolls, a walking doll and smaller vinyl dolls. When I was about seven mum got me a Tressy doll for Christmas. I have to confess that although it was fun to make her hair grow I didn’t care for her white hair all that much. To this day I don’t really care for white-haired dolls. I preferred Sindy who had a sweeter expression and Tammy and funny faced, freckled Patch.

Tressy fashions

We also had dolls house dolls. dolls in costumes and even paper dolls.

I played with them all well into my teens when fear of ridicule made me put them aside. Many were given away but a few special ones stayed with me through the years.

For the next few years, mum and I would often go and look at the dolls if we were shopping in the city together but she eventually accepted there would be no granddaughters to play dollies with.

unmarked 16″ Vinyl doll circa 1970-Pedigree type. She was the last doll mum gave me.

Eventually, I started to buy dolls for myself, furtively at first hoping that shop assistants would assume I was buying them for a child.  At first, it was simply looking for replacements for lost childhood dolls like my Kader baby and Patch, or dolls that I wished that I’d had like Sindy’s boyfriend Paul.

Then eBay came into my life and suddenly there were so many more dolls to choose from. It wasn’t just replacing childhood favourites. I had become a collector.

christopher.jpg
Christopher a 20″ baby doll made by Kader in Hong Kong.

23 comments

  1. Hello. Its nice to hear your story. I completely empathise with the business of hoping the shop assistant thinks that I am buying dolls for a child – I’ve been pulling that bit of play-acting in shops since I was in my late teens :-/ I gave up collecting in my mid twenties and went back to it (like you, because of eBay and also photo sharing sites like Flickr) a couple of years ago. I think its wonderful that the internet has allowed the creation of virtual communities for doll collectors of all kinds, and I enjoy seeing what other people like. Best wishes 🙂

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    • It’s so nice to know we’re not alone isn’t it? I’ve been sharing on Flickr and a few doll forums for years now but recently started to share the odd photo on Facebook after being encouraged by positive reactions from people I’ve shown the doll room to.

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  2. Reblogged this on Dolls, Dolls, Dolls and commented:

    This is the first post that I published on the blog three years ago so I thought that I’d reblog it. I think that I have come a long way from my early collecting days. I am happy to tell people that I collect dolls and would welcome the opportunity to show them off at a community event if I were asked. I recently looked around the doll room and wondered how much I’ve spent on them over the past twenty years or so. Some people would say way too much for dolls that are not especially valuable but I think they have been worth every cent for the enjoyment I have had from them.

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  3. Thanks for sharing your origin story again. I hope you continue to share your love of dolls and their fashions for many years to come.

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    • I hope so too. I get a lot of enjoyment out of writing the blog and being able to share my dolls with others. Having lasted three years I hope that I’m set to keep going for many more now.

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  4. Amazing ! You still have that baby theresa doll from the 1960’s? The memory that came with the doll indeed is a treasure! My early childhood dolls didn’t last, they became brittle over time. I love your old dolls collection!

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  5. My Mom is a Doll Collector and has been for some 40 years now. Her apartment is filled to overflowing with her beloved dolls. I have created pages on Pinterest and more recently Facebook called Joan’s #DollHouse showcase her dolls. Please stop by and take a look.

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  6. My wife and I are collectors of anything and everything. Our small doll collection started with a Campbell soup doll, and at Christmas I bought a D&C “Grocery Store Doll and Beautiful Bride Betty , my wife had one when she was 3. Yesterday I bought a 23” Regal walking doll, researching her is how I found your blog.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Nice to meet you. It is always good when partners can share a hobby. A lot of people seem to find their way here while researching Canadian dolls which is funny as we are in Australia.

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  7. Congratulations on your 7th Anniversary, here’s to the next 7 years! Please keep blogging, we all look forward to reading your posts and sharing our hobby online, it’s a great help for doll identification too.

    Liked by 1 person

  8. Congratulations on 7 years! I re-read so much of your (and Naomi”s) blogs as it helps in the tagging/bagging bit of my collecting. I was lucky three of my 5 sisters gave me Ooak home-made dolls. I know I’ll have to write what makes these dolls important to me, but I have little hopes my kids boy and girl or ,grandkids (all boys) will be too keen on keeping them. None of them “perfect”, just precious to me.I love the home-made clothes, and sweet faces of even duplicate/mass marketed dolls..the artistry in molds is amazing to me.The scale is fun too..all those loose bits that bring everything to life . Thanks for sharing!

    Liked by 1 person

  9. Thanks for re-posting this information. I am fairly new here and I enjoyed hearing about how your passion for dolls began.

    I have always had dolls in my life, although I never saw myself as a doll collector. That all changed when I joined a local doll club. Now I have, gasp, a collection (laugh).

    Liked by 1 person

  10. Belated congratulations on your Blogiversary! Wonderful to read how your love of dolls has evolved. I, too, played with my Barbie dolls as a preteen. Then the dolls got put away and some given away, In later years I began collecting. Like you, now I look around and don’t even want to think about how much money has gone into my collection. But, we can’t really put a price on the pleasure that dolls give. I’m so glad you have this blog. It is a great place to get away from the “real” world, especially during this pandemic. I suspect you have a much larger following than you know since many people prefer to only lurk and not comment. But one of the best things about doll collecting is how it lets people connect in person and virtually. Looking forward to many more blog posts.

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