The “Upper Limit”

Written on May 17, 2013 at 12:00 pm by Michelle
Filed under: Musings

When I first joined the doll hobby, I told myself that I was going to go into the doll hobby with a strict maximum that I would spend on things. I can’t remember how I came up with the numbers, they may be completely arbitrary. But I told myself that I wouldn’t overspend, that there was no doll worth that much. By the numbers, I told myself that I wouldn’t spend more than…

  • $5 for a pair of doll shoes
  • $10 for a doll dress, pair of pants, shorts, hat or coat
  • $200 for a Blythe

And I bet quite a few of you are laughing at the fact that I thought that I could adhere to those limits. Arbitrary limits that I give myself in order to keep myself in check. As I got more involved in the community, and more interested in learning how to sew, I learned why people charge what they charge. When it took me nearly 3 hours to sew one doll dress, $10 seems like a bargain. Heck, even $15 for a doll dress is a bargain – and no, I’m not dropping big bucks on doll clothes on a regular basis. I wish that I could, but I don’t.

87/365 - Why can't I wear both ALL the time?

I’m a lot more selective with my purchases now. Mostly because I’ve just become more picky in what I dress my dolls in, that and after I’ve built up a bit of a wardrobe (and shoe closet), I can afford to be more thoughtful of each piece that comes into my dolls’ closet. It helps that I spend more time with research now, and thinking about how each piece goes with what I already have. Like “Oh, cute pants… but it would go with NOTHING that my dolls’ already own…”, much like I do when I go clothes shopping for myself these days. The combination of having a limited spending capacity results in me being able to afford to be picky. Nowadays, the “upper limit” is a bit more like:

  • No more than $50 for a pair of doll shoes
  • No more than $60 for a doll dress, pair of paints, shorts, hat or coat
  • Erm, no more than $1000 for a Blythe (Kenner…)

Yeah, lets just say that the limit was raised – significantly. Raising the limit isn’t something that everyone is capable of, but nor is it something that needs to be reached – either consistently or even once. Do I need to spend $50 on a pair of doll shoes? Not every day, and nor is it healthy to do so (in my opinion) for the bank account. But it sure can be fun to splurge from time to time on something really special, even if everyone in your life (that doesn’t collect dolls) thinks that you may be completely insane.

3 Responses to “The “Upper Limit””

  1. Jane AKA @maidensuit

    Being selective is a great habit and really thinking about what you have and what can go with it is useful. I have a lot of cute duds that really are great, but that just don’t get worn by my girls very often because it’s so statement-ish or hard to play mix-n-match with.

    I never spend more than $20 on a dress, and that is still PUSHING IT for my tiny budget!

  2. Natasha says:

    I am really grappling with this issue at the moment. I have just one Blythe so far and have yet to buy her anything. My mother did make her a couple of really cute dresses and I plan to sew some more once I have more time. I do plan to get more Blythe’s and build a wardrobe and I find that I am spending a lot of time thinking about where my upper limits are. I watched my absolute dream doll sell on Ebay for well over $1000 this week and I am often shocked by how much people charge for used dolls (sold nude!!) and clothes. I have no disposable cash right now so my limits are pretty much nil but I do wonder how much I would be willing to spend before it starts to feel like madness. I didn’t anticipate the huge amount of self control that would be required for this hobby and I am often left feeling frustrated by not being able to have things that I would like… which is a much less enjoyable side to the hobby.

  3. SonjeB says:

    I’m laughing that you thought you could even FIND a pair of dolly shoes for under $5.00!

    Personally, I enjoy the process of designing and sewing for my girls. I do wish I had more money to spend on the accessories like shoes. That being said, I don’t think I’d spend $50 on a pair. $30 tops seems fair, but they’d have to be really well-made and unique. I’d love to get some sunglasses for my girls, but to spend so much on a doll in these tough economic times (and considering that my medical bills aren’t exactly cheap these days), seems just too frivolous. As for dolls, I’m a bit glad they are so expensive. If I sew something for one of my dolls, I feel obligated to do it for all of them. It is exhausting as it is. I sort of wished I would have bought one absolutely perfect doll and then just spent my money and my creative powers showering her with goodies.

    That being said, I am currently lusting after a Pang-Ju or perhaps a used Alice Cherry Blossom piggy (you know, if I win the lottery or something …).

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