Oh You Beautiful Dolls
Our love affair with dolls
The world's love affair with dolls began in prehistoric times. Dolls were made with bits of animal hair, string and bone. My first love affair began with a doll I named Dee Dee.
This particular Christmas is seared in my memory, because my family had no money. My Father was career military and our family had been transferred to another base that December. My Mother informed my little sister and I that there would be no gifts for Christmas. We were sad, but what could we do? Early evening on Christmas Eve my Father came home with two tall boxes, bigger than me and my sister. In those boxes were dolls, clothes and candy all sent by my Grandmother Flora. I can't remember a better Christmas.
Dee Dee was a life like doll that looked like a five month old infant, who was accompanied with her own baby bottle. As I look back she can't hold a candle to the artful creations of today. The Reborn Dolls are the most lifelike inanimate objects to date. Created in the United Kingdom, these dolls are scarily lifelike. Each mimic the features, wrinkles and curves of the real thing, there are no two alike, and they're truly more art than toy.
At age twelve, my Dad was stationed overseas, my Mother, sister and I lived temporarily with my Grandfather in Oakland, California waiting to join him. That Christmas I received my first Barbie. Oh this was a pre-teens dream; a grown up doll complete with clothes and a boyfriend named Ken. Although today we realize that Barbie's curves are unrealistic, at the time she was the hottest thing going.
Barbie has reigned supreme, for the past fifty years, over the doll kingdom. The clones that followed in her dainty footsteps are nothing like that first stiff plastic doll I received all those years ago. There are a host of versions too numerous to mention here.
There are renditions of Barbie as Wilma Flintstone and Betty Rubble, TV Chef Barbie (a touch of reality vision), The Hollywood legend collection in which Barbie portrayed Marilyn Monroe, Scarlett O'Hara (Ken was Rhett Butler of course) and Eliza Doolittle, an African American Ballerina and even a Goth Barbie. Barbie has playhouses, two story, one story, beauty salons, apartments, condos, castles, Hot Roadster Sport Cars, and a tattoo parlor. Not to be left out, Ken has also sported an Elvis suit.
Remember in the eighties the parental insanity that surrounded the Cabbage Patch Kid dolls? This doll made national news as parents stood in line, freezing and physically attacked each other in an effort to obtain this rather unattractive toy. The niche...adoption papers, this doll celebrated it's twenty-fifth anniversary in February of this year.
There are collector dolls, and if they're vintage, can sell for as much as $2,500.00, and of course Barbie. Let's not forget Strawberry Shortcake, whose creation spawned everything from dolls to movies.
Today, we still have Barbie, Bratz Dolls, American Girl, and dolls from every movie Disney ever made. I think every woman on the planet has a special doll story that they still remember to this day. As long as there are little girls, birthdays, special occasions and Christmas there will be dolls.
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