I was in my local Salvation Army the other day and came across this cutie:
She is Sophie Kate from the Play Along Club doll line, released in 2007. There's something about her that reminds me of a Muppet. :)
She was in rough shape. Her flocking was rubbed off on her thumbs and toes, and she had some dirty spots and rub marks. Nothing like a challenge, though, right? :)
Here are her before pics:
I saw these dolls a couple of years ago in the stores. They were really cute, but I didn't really give them much thought at the time. Then, about a year ago, I discovered the amazing prillycharmin.com, a site full of dolls, doll supplies, and "how to" posts. Once, while I was browsing their site, I came across their page on Mel Birnkrant, a creative toy inventor who has been successfully producing toys for years. That led me to Mel Birnkrant's Website, which tells all about his toy collections and inventions, and even toys that never made it to the market. I loved reading about his successes, trials, and unproduced toys. The site gave an interesting glimpse into what it's like to be a toy inventor. I don't think I'd have the patience for it! Just a warning, I would suggest sticking to the girls toys. Some of his toys for boys were pretty gruesome (at least in my humble opinion)!
Ever since I found the site, I've been more aware of Mel's toys as I've been out and about. So when I saw adorable Sophie at Salvation Army for only $2, I just couldn't resist. :)
Click HERE to read the story of how these dolls came about, in the words of their creator.
Here's how Sophie looks now:
I love the sweet innocence of this doll line, and knowing the story and creativity behind such toys always helps me appreciate them more. These aren't dolls I would actively collect, as I'm more interested in realistic dolls, but she's still a cutie. And it's so nice to find fun, sweet dolls for little girls that don't have cleavage or teeny-bopper clothing. I miss the innocence of childhood that we're quickly losing in our society.
I'm not sure what Sophie's future will be, but my daughters are having fun with her for now. :)