Doll Buying Tips
|1. Always ask questions! No question is foolish. Many buyers don't have lots of experience on buying dolls and
may feel that their questions might appear silly. The only way you will learn is by asking questions.
2. If bidding on auctions and you are new to it, BEFORE you start bidding watch auctions for a week or two before
you decide to start bidding on an item. You need to learn what items are typically going for and don't want to
overpay because you didn't know that the item wouldn't normally go for that much.
3. After learning what items typically go for in your mind set a limit and don't let yourself go above that. Bidding at
auctions is almost like gambling and we will show examples below where the bidding frenzy went out of control
causing buyers to pay quite a bit more then market price for the condition of the items. You can get caught up in
the game and before you know it you have gone way over your budget and find yourself in debt. Watch getting
caught up in the bidding game because you can become addicted to it just like a gambler does in a casino.
4. On auction sites they will have the feedback of a seller from whom you may want to bid on one of their items. Be
sure to always check the seller's feedback before bidding. If the seller's has numerous complaints you may not want to
buy from that seller. If the seller has only a couple of negatives spread over a year's time that's nothing to panic about
with the seller because you can't please everyone and their are people that no matter what you do they can't be happy.
5. Many buyers would like to know the history of a particular doll but most of the time that's almost impossible to
answer because the dolls may have been through many hands through the years. Don't expect the seller to know
the exact year that their dolls were manufactured because that can also be difficult to answer unless the model was
made for only one year. You may run into sellers that claim to know the absolute exact year every one of their vintage
dolls were made. Be careful of any seller that makes claims to that because they may be guessing and just using this
"knowledge" as a selling tool.
6. Look at the pictures closely. Always read the complete description and if you are considering purchasing the
item then read the description again to make sure that you have read everything twice.
7. Beware & very careful if you find a doll that is 40 years or more and the seller claims that the doll is MINT
IN THE BOX NEVER REMOVED. The key words here are NEVER REMOVED.
We have watched as one seller in particular will quite often sell a doll as MINT IN THE BOX NEVER REMOVED
on a regular basis and yet claim that it isn't a "put together" set like many other sellers do, when in fact the majority of
these sellers dolls with cases and layettes are in fact "put together". The problem is that we have seen this particular
seller purchase the doll on an auction site and put it in a box like the kind of doll came in, with accessories & then wrap a
few of the accessories in cellophane and then sell these dolls for thousands of dollars. ALWAYS ask allot of questions if
you find a doll that old and the seller is making such claims. Ask questions and more questions before making such a
large investment. You are making a very large investment and should feel secure in your purchase. If you have any
doubts then follow your heart. We at vintagedreamdolls or under ANY of our store names, we promise that if the doll,
case and layette has never been opened and the dolls that have never been REMOVED you can feel confident that you
are getting exactly as we have stated and we would NEVER cover a case with cellophane to make it look new and that is
just plain fraud.
We were very fortunate and lucky to obtain a couple of mint in the display case NEVER OPENED mint Tiny Tears with
their layettes and we can guarantee you that they are mint and have NEVER BEEN OPENED. We will be selling two of
them but the third one I have to keep for my own collection. I just don't have the heart to open the box so she will
remain in her display case wrapped in her original cellophane. It's really wonderful to have something that you know
has never been played with for over 50 years.
8. Educate yourself! Get some doll books on the dolls you are interested in purchasing so you will know what
questions to ask.
9. Be wary of sellers claiming to be experts. We know of one self proclaimed expert who has claimed to have done allot
of research and has written a book. No book has ever been produced despite claiming 4 years ago that the book had
gone to print. It doesn't take that long to have a book published once it has gone to the printer. The statement that this
seller has done years of research has been a great selling tool and helped her look legit despite the numerous
mistaken claims this seller has made about her items. Below is a few examples of claims from this seller.
10. One self proclaimed doll expert claims to never REPLACE wigs unless it has been stated that they have been
replaced when in fact she does ADD caracul wigs to molded head dolls frequently and then sells these very RARE
caracul dolls with platinum, auburn and dark brunette wigs for thousands of dollars. Apparently the seller does not
feel the need to state she has ADDED wigs. She has been seen to frequently buy “junk” dolls that have these wigs or
but the wig separately on auction and will then put them on another doll that is in better condition even though that
particular doll did not originally have a wig or that model of doll may never of been made with that color of wig. She will
claim they have been just DISCOVERED. Another doll recently DISCOVERED was an American Character Potty Baby
with a platinum caracul wig and the seller is selling it for a huge amount of money but the problem is that AC never did
make a Potty Baby that had a platinum wig. They have been discovered all right because she invented these dolls.
Sadly this is hurting the true factual history of many of these dolls and that is disgraceful. The buyers who pay
thousands of dollars for these dolls are the unfortunate victims of greed. We have a copy of the listing where this very
same seller recently purchased at auction one of the rare platinum caracul wigs. Shortly thereafter another RARE
Platinum 13.5 inch Tiny Tears doll appeared on her web site and it is very easy to figure out how this new doll was
discovered and that is simply by gluing this platinum wig on a molded head Tiny Tears. The doll is being sold with what
the seller claims is her original layette and case for thousands of dollars. Of course she is claiming as she does with all of
her cases that this is not a PUT TOGETHER case as other sellers do. Of course it is! She states in her ad that this is a
1951 FACTORY ISSUED TINY TEARS DOLL with her original layette and case that she found. Bull! What is really
amazing is that this seller claims that you can be assured that she won't scam you like other sellers and she is claiming
herself to be an expert. For an expert she has made allot of mistakes in her research and changed her research very
frequently depending on the doll and accessories she is selling at the time. She the next tip for more on this very same
seller and you decide if she is really and expert and not a scammer.
On a more positive note please know that the majority of doll sellers are honest. It's only a few that spoil the profession.
other buyers and sellers hundreds of dollars bidding or purchasing so called rare clothing or accessories that didn't
even belong to that brand of doll. For instance, this one (expert) the same one that sells the dolls with rare wigs a few
years ago claimed that a light blue organdy dress and bonnet was a rare party dress original to the smaller Tiny Tears
dolls and it was just something she had in stock. This mistaken claim convinced other buyers or sellers to have a
bidding war when this dress when appeared on a popular auction site. This "original rare blue party dress" went for as
high as $400 in bidding frenzies. Unfortunately the dress actually belonged to the Baby Chrissy doll and was never
original to the Tiny Tears dolls. Even today despite several people that have been trying to get the word out that this
dress never belonged to Tiny Tears, sellers in their ads are still stating it is original thus this dress still can often go for a
high price even now. These poor people are paying allot of money for something that was never original and once
someone makes an erroneous claim like this instance, it's very difficult to get it straightened out and buyers will continue
to be deceived as to the originality of the clothing. This very same seller that started this fiasco still sells this dress with
her Tiny Tears but now says that Tiny Tears has claimed the dress as her own. Below are photos of this very dress.
12. This is where research is important on this tip. Through the many passing years many bodies of
these vintage dolls can wear out, especially the rubber bodies. To save the doll many people will
replace the broken body. Sometimes either because they can't find one they will put any kind of body
on the doll just so she has a new body. To keep the value of the doll it's very important that the doll
has the same brand of body. Unfortunately there are many sellers out there that will put just any body
on the doll just so that they can sell it. Do your research and get to know everything you can about the
particular brand of doll that your interested in so you know what the dolls body looked like so that you
will know you are getting a doll that has the same brand of body as the head. There are little differences
between every doll manufacturer. The hands and feet can have a unique look, the wetting hole on the
dolls body can be in a particular place. For example, on the Tiny Tears original body the wetting hole
was always on the left side of the buttocks. So do as much research as you can so that you know when
purchasing a doll that she has the correct body for her head.
13. Always ask if the doll has all her eyelashes if that's important to you and look closely at the photos to see if the
are clear. The best thing to do is if you are unsure ask the seller if the doll has all her lashes and if her eyes are
clear. If it a doll whose eyes are suppose to open and close ask the seller if the eyes open and close properly.
Do remember that sometimes in photos and depending on your computer's monitor the eyes may look discolored but the
doll may not have a problem so be sure to ask the seller.
14. Look closely at all the photos and be sure to read the description thoroughly. In fact read it several time so you
don't miss something important. Some browsers let you zoom in so use the feature to zoom in closer on the photos. If a
seller won't answer your questions then be more careful.
|Examples below of bidding frenzy getting out of hand causing buyers to pay quite a bit more
then items are worth on the market. It's easy to get carried away with bidding!
|Fifteen inch American
Character Tiny Tears
No makeup left,
at edge of scalp, on face,
and around eyes. Hair
appears to have been
chopped. Price: $225
|Dress claimed to be an original Tiny
Tears Party dress is not original to Tiny
Tears but is original to doll in next photo.
|This is the doll Baby
Chrissy Is the doll that the
dress originally came on.
|THIS IS THE REAL
ORIGINAL BLUE TINYTEARS
ORGANDY PARTY DRESS!
|Brunette American Character Tiny Tears
sold for $405.
Body is in good condition but face is with
some greening at hairline,with some
greening at hairline.
|Eleven inch Tiny Tears with rubber body original
romper, original diaper and new coat and hat.
Rubber body is in very good condition but face is
extremely discolored with orange stains all over
face. Sold for $770