Wednesday, November 26, 2014

American Girl

I am starting a new blog aside from this one. As a child I loved American Girl. I never got to own one of those expensive dolls but I did read all the books and got whatever American Girl related thing I could buy at the book fairs. Skylar has a best friend that got her into wanting an American Girl doll. I jumped at the chance to live through her- at least I admit it! So my new blog will be about us collecting American Girl together. It will have important information I seem to get asked over and over again and general sharing.

Again +Beth Applegate  made an awesome post about American Girl on her blog or maybe just her fan page. Yeah Beth I wouldn't take Huffington post too seriously its like taking TMZ seriously.

Do I think all families should own an American Girl doll? Yes! Why? Because they are nice to have. No I am kidding you don't have to run out and buy an American Girl doll. Especially if your house is chalked full of boys... then again the mom may need something girlie to keep her from going insane LOL (remember we have 4 boys here and then there is just Skylar) I mean financially if your struggling to buy food should you buy a $120 luxury doll? Of course not. I have gotten several dolls under $30 for ourselves. The steals are out there you just have to have money in hand ready- and knowledge.

I saw this post on Facebook not to long ago. A local mother/teacher that I know was disgusted that someone was trying to sell a "used". "nude" 2008 American Girl doll for $90 whole dollars. Why in the world would anyone pay $90 for a used and nude American Girl doll when they could buy a new one for about $110-$120? I tried to explain to her the simple part of it that the specific doll she was talking about was collectible. All the American Girl dolls are collectible even the Mini dolls can catch quite a price. American Girl, Build a Bear, even Gymboree retires item and it increases their value on the secondary market. Do you know how much some people pay for those Gymboree blankets? I seemed to hit a raw nerve. I get excited easily when it comes to the dolls and I have gained quite a bit of knowledge since Skylar first asked for one. I hit a raw nerve I guess. She would be just as happy buying the Target doll for her daughter. I also don't get why people judge how much I spend on a gift for my child? I am not on welfare (but was in my first life), we pay our own bills on time every month, my husband works hard to provide for us and actually my allowance that is given to me by my husband is usually what funds our American Girl collection. He rarely ever pays for any of it unless he wants to. I know the difference in quality between an American Girl doll and a Target doll is a little like buying a Barbie knock off at the dollar store- those things scare me. You can't expect your Barbie knock off to hold value or even increase in value either. So its just a dumb toy right? Well what if you could have a toy that increased in value? That's something I used to do it in my first life. Adam and I were toy collectors. I loved my dolls (mostly Barbie) and he had a huge collection of MIB Star Wars figures and Transformers. Okay I may be going off with a tangent..

Lets break this down hot toys on kids Christmas lists

Original Cabbage Patch- If you go to Babyland General and adopt a Cabbage Patch kid? That will set you back $225 plus tax. Sure they have a retail store that you can get a $20 and even at most big box stores in your neighborhood they are still widely available under $50 but to get the experience at Babyland general... $225---
In the 80's when they were the rage probably were the same $30 price tag.. $30 in 1980 was worth different than it is now... But because they were selling them faster than they could make them many people had to get them on the secondary market and trust me the price tag wasn't $30. Do all cabbage patch kids hold their value? Have you walked into a thrift store lately? Poor dolls laying there nude with their yarn hair falling out. It does break my heart. Of course my favorite doll is this guy.. btw when I had him valued-- scuffed, eye lined, and doggy bitten and all was worth $50 as of like $10 years ago...
He was my first doll. I got him when I was 3 years old (1983) from my grandfather. 

Okay so maybe Cabbage patch kids aren't as hot as they used to be with the kid market- There are still collectors of specific face molds etc-

But today's kids are still into Lego? Sure Lego's don't always run you $100. You can get the Batman Defend Cave for $40. Which was on my son's Christmas list. Perhaps your son is a tween and not so happy with Lego junior... what was that? The price goes up? Never would have guessed. This Lord of the Ring set is not unlike others in its series and run you $100. I have also known two collectors in my life that like the more expensive options that Santa puts under the tree.. Some of the more expensive buildings that can go up above $100

Then we are of the electronics age... where kids want electronics...

Beats head phones ($100 + price tag)
Xbox One ( says they are the LOW price of $349 average game is $60)
PlayStation 4 ( says as low as $429, does that mean it goes higher? average game again is $60)
Wii U ( says you will put out at least $259 with the average game being $60)
My son has started watching Wii U videos before its release. He was watching unboxing's for months. He still has the old standard Wii that was first released that his adult brother bought (which we had to buy a second one used)
Maybe its my area I live in but I rarely see a kid without an Iphone in their hand.. Those are $100 and up as well.
Itouch? those start at $199 new..
Tablets? Nabi $199, Samsung Galaxy $129-229, Ipads $399 and up...

So buying an American Girl doll for a tween doesn't look so bad? 

Lets look at the value's

The two most popular dolls on the market are Kanani and McKenna... now since they are retired because American Girl only made them for one year. 
McKenna sold on ebay this week just the doll, the box, and the book how she comes from the store yet she is gently used... over $300 Ebay hyper link
2 years ago when she was still available for retail but almost sold out. I did pay a few dollars over retail to get her at $123 (so that means my McKenna increased in value by sitting on a shelf for $200?
Kanani.. we barely missed the boat on this one. Skylar got into American Girl about the time she was popular and she was blessed and happy to have any doll. So I never have bought a Kanani because I do have a rule about trying to keep any doll I want in the average retail range... This Kanani sold this week on Ebay incomplete and used is $187 ebay hyper link

and there are rare ones that are harder to prove their value or authenticity.. Gwen, Sonali, a white bodied doll... etc.. but McKenna and Kanani are the ones that are the most sought after now. Now back to the original doll I was discussing with a friend about Mia from 2008. She's actually on my wish list because she reminds me of my best friends daughter.. Mia nude on Ebay is $129 plus shipping  where as my Facebook friend or I could have had her on a yard sale page for $80. 

You know what my point on spending whatever it takes for my kids? Santa makes wishes come true. As long as my tween isn't into boys and real babies I will buy her dolls to keep her away from dolls and real babies.. Innocence is expensive. 

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