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Disney Dolls: History, Variety and Designer Dolls

Although you might think that Disney dolls have been around for some time, this isn’t entirely true. Keep in mind, when using the term “Disney dolls” we’re not talking about stuffed items that you can buy in any Disney World. Instead, we are referring to products that are mainly created for pure doll lovers. These items are small pieces of art and resemble traditional dolls like Barbie.

Even if you’re a big reborn doll lover or general collector, you should definitely consider these pieces. While they are made in a factory and they don’t resemble realistic reborn dolls (at least in terms of artistic value) they are still great items to be had.

disney dolls

Your children have a birthday soon? Why don’t you buy them one of these babies? All kids love Disney dolls and we are certain you’ll love them too! 

How did it all start?

When using the term Disney dolls, we’re actually referring to Limited Editions that the company started launching in the last 10 years.

The Limited Edition dolls are really amazing. The first line was created in 2009 and Snow White was its main feature. The Disney Limited Edition dolls weren’t necessarily made because the company wanted to launch a doll campaign; the company created them as a way of commemorating the release of classic Disney movies on blue-ray. All these movies were known as the Diamond Edition release and it was perfectly reasonable to launch additional collectible items such as the Disney dolls.

The Diamond Edition is something else and it represents one of the main reasons why you should give these dolls a chance. Each year, Disney will release two of such editions, usually one during the February and one during the October. This way, they are properly set apart and if you’re saving money to buy some of these special edition dolls, you should always have enough money saved. Bear in mind that the October release is used to give homage to all the Disney princesses.

Since 2009, we’ve seen a number of princess releases from Snow White (2009), Beauty and the Beast (2010), Cinderella (2012), The Little Mermaid (2013), Sleeping Beauty (2014) to Aladdin (2015). The only difference was in 2011 when Disney decided to release Lion King. Needless to say, this one was without a princess. The February releases were also impressive and they featured dolls from Bambi (2011), Lady and the Tramp (2012), Peter Pan (2013), The Jungle Book (2014), 101 Dalmatian (2015). Eventually, the company decided to call this collection the Heirloom collection because of the artistic style that was incorporated. Besides that, the company also relies on the term Heirloom when it comes to the certificate of authenticity.

Diversity of dolls

Because of everything written so far, you probably think that most of these dolls are princesses based on their status. While the majority of them are, there are no preferences in that sense. Instead, Disney tried to feature various popular characters and it just happens to be that most of them were princesses.

For example, you can also find a doll of Alice, (from Alice in the Wonderland), certain princes as well as some notable villains. There are also some characters that are recent princesses like Elsa, Rapunzel, Tiana, Merida, and Anna. These recent princesses do not have a diamond release given they haven’t been around for a long time. Instead, Disney has simply created their dolls to commemorate the release of cartoons with the same name.

But the organization hasn’t stopped there when it comes to its products. Besides the popular Heirloom collection, the company produces other Limited Edition products. In most cases, they are tagged as “Other” on their site as well as sites selling these dolls. Disney’s universe includes a variety of human characters, animals and other beings so it makes sense that there will be a high diversity of doll products.

However, you should always remember that princesses are the most popular items. They can fetch a high price on sites such as Amazon and eBay. Some of the dolls (like dolls classified as “Other”) had trouble selling out. Their popularity increased significantly after the release of movie Frozen which had such a profound global impact and also helped their international doll sales.

Designer dolls

Besides all the above-mentioned collections, Disney has also invested a lot of time in designing and producing Designer dolls. These items are a bit different from all the others as they first debut during the 2011 D23 expo. The first set featured 10 dolls. Each one of the dolls was a popular Disney princess with high couture garment. It was a spin on the popular topic and gave the princesses a completely new, modern look.

The Designer dolls were an instant hit during the expo. They sold out pretty quickly as everything turned to chaos. Seeing the popularity of the collection, Disney decided to release a similar collection but with villains as the main protagonists.

The company added another wrinkle to this collection; instead of releasing them like Limited Edition dolls (2 per year) Designer dolls were released annually. Also, the topic varied significantly each year so for example, in 2011 we had princesses, in 2012 villains, while 2013 and 2014 featured Fairytale line. The company acted more liberally with Designer dolls so, in 2014, we had an additional series that was featured outside of the normal schedule.

Should you buy Disney dolls?

The answer is yes!

Even if you don’t like the theme, these dolls have incredible value and if you check one of the popular reseller sites, you will notice that their prices rarely drop. Not only do they have a monetary value but also a sentimental one; there aren’t many of these dolls so getting your hand on one of them is a real treat.

Furthermore, even if you’re not big on collecting Disney dolls, you can always give them to your kids. We know that this isn’t a popular decision but at the same time, we’re certain they’ll love playing with them!


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