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Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Buying the dolls you love.

Wake Up Cue by Peak's Wood
No longer in my collection but on her way
I'm currently in the midst of the infamous doll shuffle, the dread game of many dedicated doll collectors. You can look at it as paring down your collection, refining it, streamlining, decluttering--it comes down to redefining what you collect.

I know there are many collectors who don't ever do this in their collections, and often, I feel judged when I sell dolls that I buy. I wish I had the luxury to keep all the dolls that I own, quite frankly, but sometimes I need to declutter for the sake of space and for the sake of the budget.

How do you decide which dolls to keep? I know some collectors decide on a final number, and limit their dolls to that number. When a new doll arrives, an older one has to go. (I don't have that kind of discipline, but what a great idea!) For me, I look for themes in my collection, and concentrate on any shelves that look crowded. I also look at the dolls that have lost their main attraction.

1978 Sun Lovin Christie, a gorgeous Steffie sculpt
A doll I like but don't love 
Depending on how badly I need to sell them, I will try redressing them or restyling the dolls first--trying on a new wig or a outfit often changes the entire look of the doll. I enjoy the process as well, and it will often awaken a new-found love for a doll I haven't played with in a while. If it doesn't, however, then I know it's time to move.

If the doll cost under $200, or if it is a BJDs or non-vintage Barbie, I will often sell it on eBay. BJDs go on Den of Angels and the Resin Café. Vintage Barbie I will sell on consignment with Kathie of Kathie's Fashion Dolls. She can get a much better price than I can, and she has a huge customer base, and it's so much less hassle.

How do keep from being broken-hearted about my sales? The way I look at it is trading up for dolls I love. I might sell dolls I sort of like, but I'll eventually replace them with the dolls I love. I have tendency to buy dolls on impulse, or preorder dolls on a promotional photo, and then find the doll either doesn't meet my expectation or my collection theme. These dolls sit on a shelf, and I feel guilty about them. Why should I keep them if I could be trading them up for a brand new BJD on my wish list? I might have to sell six Barbies for a YoSD sized doll, but it will a) save a lot of space and b) give me more joy in my collection in the long run. It's worth the time and hassle.

I challenge you to do the same. Don't sell any dolls you love, though--and for some people, that might be many more dolls in your collection than mine. But what if you could find 5% of your collection's worth to sell? That might be able to invest you further into the world of BJDs! Wouldn't it be worth it?

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