Filed under: Musings
One of the greatest joys when it comes to receiving dolls in the mail is the anticipation. This comes with the excitement of getting a tracking number, and then the eagerness of repeatedly hitting ‘refresh’ on the postal service’s website because why isn’t she here yet?!
This feeling comes with dolls, and I love this feeling, but like many I cannot afford to buy dolls on a regular basis. Then comes in the idea of travelling Blythes or hosting a visitor.
While there are some more formal programs to take part of (some official Traveling Blythes that have a strict schedule where participators help fund the cost of the doll and extra postage fees needed for international jumps), there are some less formal travelling dolls as well.
How travelling dolls work is that the previous host (or owner) pays for the postage costs for the doll to arrive to you. You retrieve her from the post office (or perhaps get her at the door) and then enjoy her and all of her things for a predetermined set amount of time. Once your time is up, you pack her and her goodies up (there may be a requirement or expectation that you add to a travel journal or add something to her wardrobe as a ‘souvenir’) and then you pay for the postage (with tracking and, likely, insurance) for her to reach her next post. If the doll had an owner in the beginning, then the last stop would be a return home. If the doll didn’t have an owner at the beginning, there tends to be a draw to see which of the previous hosts would receive the doll in the end.
Overall, I find travelling dolls to be fun! There’s a lot of fun with the anticipation and then you can also act as a tourist in your own city. When I was playing hostess to Makani (custom by Kate/Chantilly Lace) in 2012, I had the fun of exploring around Vancouver, BC with her as well as going to a local park with her for some fun nature shots. It’s exceptionally fun to have that period of anticipation and getting to refresh (and refresh again!) the tracking number for a doll. You get all the feeling and joy of having a “new” Blythe without the gross expense of buying a new Blythe. While there is a cost associated with participating in a (in)formal travelling Blythe project, it still does not end up being as much as it does when you buy a new-to-you custom Blythe or commission for one to be done for you. Plus it’s fun to play tourist!
Have you ever been host to a travelling doll? Would you want to be a host?