QOTW: How much for a custom doll?

Written on April 14, 2014 at 12:00 pm by Michelle
Filed under: Question of the Week


Occasionally I see posts online about how people feel that $X is too much for a Blythe doll when just a few years ago, the norm was $Y. Are customized Blythes really that expensive nowadays? I decided to do some investigating! I went onto the popular Facebook group, Dolly Adoption, and decided to add up the prices (without shipping) for the first 30 dolls that I saw being listed and calculate the average. To make it fair, I only looked at customized Blythes – no Middies, no Icy dolls, no dolls that were being listed as “factory” or “TBL”. If the price was marked down, I use the lower price as it clearly wasn’t selling at the higher price. I converted all prices to USD, when needed.

Some numbers for you all:

  • The lowest price was $125, the highest was $1275
  • The average was $599.50
  • The mode (value that showed up most frequently) was $300 (at 3 times in 30 listings)
  • Only two listings were at or above $1000
  • Half of the listings were below $500

Obviously there are varying factors for what makes a customized doll worth it’s value. Was the base doll used expensive to begin with (customized anniversary dolls, I’m looking at you!)? Was the hair rerooted? What was it rerooted with? How extensive is the carving and make-up? Is there art on the eyelids? Is there a non-stock body? What is the doll’s theme? Is this reflected in the charms? What kind of eyechips does she have? Are they handpainted? And, the most important question of all, who customized her? Because the name means a lot – much like how a luxury sedan costs more than the run-of-the-mill minivan, the artist behind the doll adds value to the doll while an unknown customizer won’t fetch as high of a price. As customizers become more skilled, they should charge more for their work, much like how if you have more relevant education under your belt, your employer should, in theory, be upping your salary. But what a customizer charges and what the market will pay are two very different things – hence the reason why some dolls stick around for quite a while, waiting for someone to snatch them up.

What is the most, or the least, you’ve ever paid for a customized Blythe doll?

Dressing for Meets

Written on April 11, 2014 at 12:00 pm by Michelle
Filed under: Musings with tags:

My goal for doll meets usually includes the following:

  • Bring dolls that haven’t been to a meet recently,
  • Change the dolls so that they’re no longer wearing the same thing that they have for months, and
  • Ask what dolls people are interested in seeing of mine (and hopefully make an effort to bring them to the meet)

What actually happens is usually something different. I bring the dolls that had a wardrobe change most recently, which may or may not be a doll that I took to the last meet, who may or may not be a doll that someone is interested in. Oh, and if I manage to actually put shoes onto a doll, I consider that to be a major win. And I never, ever remember to bring stands. The day I remember to bring stands, you’ll know I had way too much time to prepare for a meet that I a) actually remembered stands and b) actually packed stands in with the dolls.


The girls tend to travel in their carrier bags. I have a few at this point, plus a Middie-sized one for Kitty Brighton (no Petite-sized bags yet though!). Some dolls have their own bag (Sophie and Eden Mouse) with I have two others that are more for general use amongst the girls. Unlike Sophie and Eden, they don’t mind sharing (often). The carrier bags are great as it helps keep them more ‘contained’ within my bag, and the shoes can’t go flying off their feet, as they are likely to do.

I try to dress my dolls in meet-appropriate outfits, especially if the meets themselves have a ‘theme’ to go on. For instance, I will be attending tea with my dolls and some lovely local doll hobbyists this weekend. So my dolls will dress accordingly to fit in with the overarching theme that is high tea. I may even put shoes on them (but that hasn’t been confirmed just yet…). Hopefully it won’t be until Sunday morning that I decide to pick who’s going to the meet though, because that would just be awful (and I’ll just end up grabbing whoever’s dressed!).

Love, Sophie: A Couple Secrets from the Humans

Written on April 9, 2014 at 12:00 pm by Michelle
Filed under: Article with tags:

Hello, my adoring fans! It’s time for a little love from me, Sophie! Did you miss me? I bet you did!

I thought I’d share some dolly secrets with you all, yes dolly secrets. It’s secrets that we, the Blythes, have from you, the humans. And don’t worry, my plastic-fans! You and I both know that the humans will just brush this off because there’s no way that their sweet, innocent little Blythes would ever do anything wrong.

Secret the First: We know your log-in information. For everything. Yes, this includes your email (so we know when you ‘won’ that eBay auction for a new sister) and your Paypal account. Did you not think it odd that several new lots of shoes arrived in the mail? You probably chalked it up to late-night bidding and drinking a wee bit too much… Don’t worry, it could have been that as well. *coughcough*

Let's see...

Secret the Second: When we say that we’re pleased about having a new sister, we’re likely lying. And if we say we’re not lying, we’re definitely lying. Nobody is ever happy about a new sibling. Just ask your own children if they relish the idea of sharing all their toys and clothes with a younger version of themselves. And when we get older? Definitely not. I have sisters who think my shoe closet is fair game. My shoe closet. No, nobody is ever happy. I don’t mind them, I suppose, but I’d be an only doll if I had the choice! Except for maybe Kindred, everydoll needs a sidekick.

Secret the Third: … I think I’ve said enough for now! I may be inclined to share more later! Teehee!

Sophie is a mostly stock Cappuccino Chat that came to live with me in June 2009. She loves shoes, new clothes, playing with her hair, fashion, magazines full of fluff and shopping. She aspires to be a model and would like to model for some of the ‘great’ dolly fashion houses one day.

QOTW: Buying NFRB, minty, or bait dolls?

Written on April 7, 2014 at 12:00 pm by Michelle
Filed under: Question of the Week

I confess, I’m a bit of a snob when it comes to Blythe. Then again, Blythes aren’t a necessity of daily living, so I guess we’re all a bit spoiled in that regard when it comes to being able to own the luxury that is Blythe…

Of all of my Neo Blythes only two were bought second-hand/used – the first being my Velvet Minuet, Kindred, and the second being my mohair Friends with Blythe custom, Halo. All of the rest of them? They were all NRFB. Which led me to thinking – I’m probably not in the norm when it comes to Blythe collectors, or there wouldn’t be such a busy doll marketplace for used and customized Blythes. So clearly if I’m not in the norm, I must be the odd one out. Which leads to more thinking about the idea of who buys what kind of dolls.

A little Halo love

I have 11 Neos – 2 were secondhand (stock used and customized), 9 were NRFB (never removed from box) and I had the pleasure of taking off all that tape. I also have 3 Kenners – all of which were bought used and definitely not with stock clothing or boxes. Oh, and 1 Middie that was NRFB, and 2 Petites (one used, one NRFB – both gifts).

Do I just love to torture myself with a bunch of tape, ties and really bad box hair?

The answer is: probably.

Do you buy NRFB, minty, or bait dolls?

Orchid’s Designs Gift Pack Giveaway: The Winners!

Written on April 6, 2014 at 12:00 pm by Michelle
Filed under: Giveaway with tags: ,


As this year’s March Talent Showcase winds down to an end, I’d like to take a moment and thank everyone who entered and all those that I interviewed for sharing their talent and skills with the community, and with me.

Many thanks to Monika of Orchid’s Designs, who generously decided to give away 5 gift packs full of goodies! Each gift pack will consist of postcards, sample pages from her Dolly Fashion Sketchbook and a knitted scarf for Blythe.


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