From the legacy of Barbie and Cabbage Patch Kids comes a new era of dolls, Blythe dolls.
Like Barbie, Blythe dolls are fashion dolls that stand 11 inches or 28 cm tall with an oversized head and eyes that change colour by a pull of a string. They can come with moveable body parts for an additional charge. The unique charm and appeal of these dolls stem from the adorable characters that they portray. Once you choose your Blythe doll by hair type, you will receive your doll with one outfit and accessories. The surprise of what you receive makes for an exciting reception. In the rare occasion that the particular style of the doll is not to your taste, you can also customize clothing to suit your taste. The eyes can be changed to match with a specific outfit or personality. A cord coming out of the back of the head will close the eyes and change them to another colour. The direction of the eyes also changes in the process. You will be able to buy additional outfits and, with some research, find patterns to sew your own clothing. These dolls are an art that ties at the heartstrings. Sentimental doll enthusiasts will complete their collection with these dolls and retain enjoyment for years to come.
Blythe dolls were originally created in 1972 by Allison Katzman and produced by Kenner but were not well received as a children’s toy. This model was only produced for one year.
Later Gina Garan used a Blythe doll as the subject in many photographs and published a book called Blythe Style, which showed her Blythe doll as the model for her fashions. In 2001, Takara and Ashton Drake produced Blythe Dolls, and Takara continues to produce these dolls today.
These dolls are great as collector’s items and make an excellent toy for children and adults alike. Their gigantic head, eyes and shiny skin set these dolls apart from other dolls, though they are also available with less glossy matte faces also. If you prefer a matte finish, a matt sealant can be sprayed on. The hair is put into the scalp piece of the doll and is available in a variety of colours. Legs are made out of a thick rubber that makes them bendable. Arms and the upper body are made of a harder plastic and are not as flexible unless you upgrade to the more moveable option. Real stock dolls from Takara will come in a box specific to that doll’s release and will have a particular outfit. They will have a set of eye chips, hairstyle, and stand. Factory dolls are not the original stock dolls and do not have a stand; however, they are great if you plan to do a lot of modifications to change the stock look or if you want to purchase your own accessories and clothes for them.
Modifications can be made to the dolls to change the look of the eyes or to changing their gaze to appear higher. Purchasing factory dolls are preferred for those planning to modify the dolls. This way it does not take away from the collector’s resale value and reduces some of the stress for those who are new to doll modification. Below is a list of some of the modifications that people have done:
There are times when Blythe customization can get complicated. Don’t have time to customize one? Visit our Custom Blythe Doll section to browse hundreds of custom dolls and see if you like one. Each custom doll listed on our page is completely unique and they can take days to customize in some cases.
1972 Kenner -70’s look
2000 TBL Factory Fake stolen or rejected parts that employees took and reassembled
2001 BL Neo Blythe posable eyes and legs, boggled eyes, some matte faces
2002 EBL Excellent Blythe – posable legs, no longer had boggled eyes – softer eye gaze
2004 SBL Superior sparklier eyes and based on original Kenner design
2006 BBL Radiance Blythe – more childlike face and modified head
2009 FBL Fairest Blythe – fuller cheeks, semi-matte skin, larger eye pupils
2013 RBL Radiance Blythe Plus – slight modifications to face and thinner plastic
2014 FG Factory Girl model – modern factory version
When searching for a Blythe doll for sale, you may see those nude Factory Girls and Fake Blythes range from $50-$120. Original release Blythe dolls from 1972 start at $2500 because they are rare collector’s items. Modern Blythe dolls range from $80-$4500 depending on artist and level of customization.
Purchase original releases if possible because of the collector value; however, if you are new to Blythe doll and looking for a Blythe doll for sale, a factory girl makes sense because of the price point and for you to see if you would like to invest more into a collection.
Believes there is no fear in love
Says that when her legs are black and blue it’s time to take a holiday
Likes to put sugar on her avocados
Looks at life thru news lenses – one blue, one pink
Will hold a buttercup under your chin
Never misses an episode of “Will and Grace”
Wears flowers in her hair
Knows a good moneyshot when she sees it
Knows when to say no
Has a lot of legal issues
Bases her entire existence on the number 3
Will never EVER fall asleep with her makeup on
Believes that when you love someone it’ll be for all time
Blythe is every woman
She’s all you need
By Gina Garan
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