The Very Root of Doll Collecting

Meet us at the library... in the Tonner Reference section!

Hiya, all!  It’s my favorite time of day:  snack time!  Usually around 4pm or so, I prepare my snack (sliced cheese/fruit/unsalted almonds), and every other day I sit down to blog to my favorite Tonner Peeps (you!).   And no, I’m not ruining my dinner.

Today, though, I’m trying something different:  I’m blogging as myself for Tonner, instead of as Tonner.  You all will have to let me know how you think it’s turned out.  🙂  Maybe I’m just not that interesting….  Well, let’s get to it, shall we??

What I’d like to delve into today is the very fundamentals of doll collecting.  For example, there are loads of different techniques used to build, maintain and share collections, probably as many as there are collectors out there!  Some buy their dolls only from a very special doll dealer, some never take their dolls out of their boxes, other collectors completely redo the doll by re-rooting the hair and repainting the face, some collectors completely deconstruct their dolls, other collectors rename their dolls and give them a new and improved identity, some create to-scale furniture, jewelry, etc, etc, etc.  Right?

Doll Collecting has spurred and inspired a whole other sect of hobbiers and crafters.  For example, people who like to paint and are skilled at it may repaint their dolls.  Or others enjoy sewing, and creating their own fashions, and do so for their doll collection.  Still others are interested in photography, and having a model who cannot talk back (kidding, folks!  Who would want that??).

The point is that doll collecting encompasses so very much more than it’s implications.  What we at Tonner would like to explore more in our blog  is the techniques used in this process.  One better:  We’d like to compile a Doll Collecting Technique Library of sorts, where we discuss all of the infinite techniques at length.  Ideally, we’d love to have YOU all be a part of the creation of this resource, and would like this to be something we can all contribute to, and for it to evolve into an amazing, self-sustaining resource for old and new collectors alike.

The very first part of this segment is going to be a guest blog post by our very own Miss Nancy Shomo.  Not only is she the keystone of the Tonner staff, but she is a very serious collector in her own right.  She’s going to answer the elusive question, ‘what is collecting’?  Look for it sometime this week!

6 responses to “The Very Root of Doll Collecting

  1. Hey, this sounds like a great idea! I’d like to add my own little niche of doll collecting to the encyclopedia, if I may – I have found, while writing, that my dolls come in mighty handy when I get stuck. If I am working on a scene, and somehow cannot muddle my way through it, I will grab some of my dolls and have them act through it for me. At one point while I was growing up, I wanted to be Mel Blanc – who was responsible for most of the cartoon voices in the classic Warner Brothers cartoons – so I do all the voices and dialogue myself.

    Would it be possible to have my blog added to the list on the right? I occasionally post guest columns on The Fashion Doll Review, and I also have my own blog, Random Doll Blathering.

    1. Hi Miladyblue!

      Oh yes, please send us the link to your blog, we would LOVE to add it to our blogroll. Also, we want to have guest bloggers to help us round out this Encyclopedia of sorts. That way, everyone can contribute, and it will be an amazing resource for everyone. So, yes, we would LOVE it if that was something you’d be interested in doing!! Thank you so much for leaving us a comment about your excitement of this new project 🙂

      Thanks again,
      Joanne Canapini
      Community Manager

  2. It’s so great just to read this, that the Tonner Company is cool with repainting, rehairing and making up new stories, etc. I was always kind of worried that if you found out that I was messing with your product, you’d zip in and take the dolls back. Silly, I know, but some hobbies embrace the ‘crafter’ aspects, and some are more ‘there, it’s MIB and perfect just the way we intended it, don’t mess with it’.
    And there’s a really strong strain of ‘MIB’ in doll collecting.
    I always figured making clothes was okay, after all, Tyler Wentworth was all about the fashions, but nice to know that you’re not going to send doll-ninja-lawyers to cease-and-desist me.

    1. Betsy,

      We completely love our collectors and the work they do. For Robert it has always been about the “power of play” and our wonderfully passionate collectors.

      If you have any thoughts about techniques we’d love to share them with others. Just send them to . Or we highlight our collectors regularly on our blog, and each week pic a picture someone has uploaded on our Facebook page as our profile picture; for instance take a look at our most recent highlight of James Griffen:

      Dir. of SoMe
      Tonner Doll Co. Inc.

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