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Doll Collecting: Bringing Generations Together


I could not keep back the tears last month while attending a junior doll club event with my precious granddaughter, Mattie. As I helped her to get settled at the large banquet table in what must have seemed a massive banquet room at a hotel in Beachwood, it occurred to me how blessed I am.  There we were, grandmothers with their granddaughters, mothers with their daughters and an occasional niece all brought together across the generations for the love of the hobby of doll collecting as well as the love for each other.

In a time of iPads, computers, and cell phones and such fast pace living something as simple as a doll, in this case Eloise had brought us all together and it was difficult to determine who was enjoying it more.

We all had the same interest in the story of Eloise, how she was created in the form of a book, written by Kay Thompson in 1955, while living in New York City’s Plaza Hotel. Later the illustrations of the precocious little girl were interpreted into a doll by Madame Alexander and later many other doll artists.  Seeing the dolls lined up around the room and the girls giggling with each other with the anticipation of winning one of the raffle prizes was not the most memorable moments for this seasoned doll collector. It was the sharing of this time and the passing from one generation to the next the love and passion of this most simple hobby. It was very apparent to me as I observed the girls in the room both young and young at heart that the memories we were sharing would go far beyond this day or this one event.

As so many generations before us have handed down their stories and even important historical events through much the same way of folk tales, story tellers and yes even doll collecting we were doing our share that wonderful fun filled afternoon with our precious daughters and granddaughters to promote our hobby and teach them the appreciation of the art and that the meaning goes beyond the enjoyment of the one day and any one doll.

For Mattie and myself, we look forward to many more doll events and much more sharing from Harry Potter dolls to her knew venture of collecting The Pirate’s of the Carribean dolls. I am sure all of our doll collecting friends  will also continue to look for that next doll we just have to have right along with us knowing all the while we are sharing, loving and building memories for the next generations to share with their daughters and granddaughters.