A dangerous question

by miladyblue


"What would you like for Christmas/Your Birthday?"

This simple question can make the strongest friends/family members of doll collectors cringe.

Once upon a time, after figuring out how to get online, I stumbled across a picture of some Tonner dolls by accident. I remember being bowled over by how beautiful they were. I was a longtime Barbie collector, so I had a definite idea already of what I found attractive in a doll. The Tonners definitely fulfilled that. Except for one tiny problem.

At the time, I was still dealing with an inner miser that was unbelievably tightfisted. I remember the days when I thought paying $15 for a playline Barbie was outrageous. I argued with the inner miser, that $40, while outrageous, might be worth it, because the basic dolls were just as pretty as the dressed dolls, and if worse came to worse, I could always fall back on my old standard of finding fabric scraps to make my own "designer originals."

A Blue "designer original" - Jason Wu, eat your heart out!
But, I could not bring myself - or more accurately, my inner miser - to loosen the purse strings just a little, and buy one of those dolls.

Fast forward to mid 2007. I was checking the dolls and bears section on eBay at random, and stumbled across a seller who was offering a Kingstate dress for Tonner sized dolls. It was a simple black sheath with silver tinsel threads, a beaded neckline, and it was being modeled by a raven Angelina doll.

My inner miser has since been beaten into submission. Well, mostly.

The first brand new Tonner doll I purchased was the FAO Schwartz exclusive, Super Stripes Angelina, which people see all the time on my personal blog, Random Doll Blathering.

My little brother Chet, however, thought the price was outrageous, and, compared to what I was used to paying for playline Barbies, my inner miser agreed. At least until I opened the box, and held that beautiful girl for the first time.

Angelina can still knock the average inner miser senseless
In the time since, I have taken to buying my Tonner dolls nude. Not because I dislike their outfits, though to be honest, I am not really into high fashion, but because it is cheaper to do so. I will never forget the first time I bought a doll from Dreamcastle Dolls. Carol, the owner, has a page on her website for splits - this means she takes a doll from its box, removes its outfit, then sells the doll and outfit separately.

I asked about the en Chocolat Angelina doll, which had just been released, and Carol sent back she found my inquiry amusing, because I was the first person in about three days who asked after a doll, rather than an outfit.

en Chocolat now looks like a sorority sister.
As I have become more familiar with fellow collectors and their dolls, I have also become familiar with the prices of various dolls. I still felt uneasy, as I beat my inner miser to a pulp, over the prices I was paying for my lovely dolls. Then I saw the prices of the ball jointed dolls other folks were collecting, and didn't feel so bad after all.

Chet was razzing me, which is, after all, in his Little Brother union contract, about what I was spending on my dolls. He thought they were pretty, but rather outrageously priced. However, I had a little something for shock therapy.

I had found, thanks to one of the folks on Prego, my favorite doll board, a link to a ball jointed doll manufacturer. I found a particularly beautiful, top of the line doll, and showed it to Chet. Then I scrolled over to the price, and said, "Check THIS out."

It's been a while since he has razzed me about what I spend on a single doll, but he still cringes whenever he asks what I want for Christmas or my birthday.