When do you debox a doll?

by Alison Rasmussen

Shimmer by alington
Shimmer, a photo by alington on Flickr.
I'm having a collecting dilemma right now. I don't know whether I should debox this particular doll, which has lead me to consider my "deboxing policy."

Normally, with vintage dolls, it's hard to debox them NRFB. Now, I consider whether you can actually tell if the doll has already been removed. If she has, I don't have a problem. I will remove her, possibly even redress her, and then put her back. If she is sold, I mention I've removed her from the box, and that she isn't NRFB--I'd call her MIB, if she is mint. (It's just a little pet peeve of mine, when sellers call a doll "NRFB, except removed for these photos."

But for less than vintage--take this 1982 Dazzle doll Shimmer, for example--I have to take several things into consideration.
  1. Is the package pretty? If it's pretty--this one has nice graphics (see photos on Flickr for examples)--I have a harder time messing it up.
  2. Is the package mint? If the package isn't in great condition--and this one, the plastic has yellowed and the card is bent just a bit--it's not quite such a big deal to rip into it.
  3. Is the doll hard to find? This doll is from the 1982 release. There were many dolls released in 1981, and Shimmer was only released in a smaller edition size in 1982. She is a bit pricier, and, yes, harder to find.
  4. Is the doll in peril? Sometimes, a doll may be wearing clothing or earrings that can cause staining or green ear, and removing the offending articles is a must. In this case, Dazzle dolls often have rubber bands that turn to liquid glue over time. I can see them in her hair, and they appear all right. But I really don't want them to ruin her hair.
  5. Can I open the package without ruining it? In this case, the nature of a blister card makes it difficult to keep its beauty intact. I could keep the back of the card, of course, but it won't be nearly as nice as before it's opened.
  6. Exactly how badly do I want to play with the doll? Oh, how to answer this question! I can't answer the last time I had so much fun with a photo shoot as I did shooting Crystal and Glossy. (It made me want to add the entire line of Dazzle dolls to my collection, which is just ridiculous... isn't it?)
Truthfully, in spite of my hesitation to simply rip into the package, what will probably happen is this: I'll keep the doll unopened in her package today. One rainy day, I'll put aside all logical reasoning. I'll just need a little pick-me-up and open the doll for a photo shoot and redressing session. It'll be fun.

Fortunately for me, it's going to be 78° and sunny today.

By the way, did you notice Shimmer's miniature Steffie face? Isn't she adorable?