Tuesday, May 15, 2012

Toy Army Tuesday - Blythe

As many of you know I am a Blythe fanatic and collector. However, I have never shared their back story or my trip to the Junie Moon store on here... so I thought it was about time.

Blythe dolls were sold for only a year in 1972 by their manufacturer Kenner. Their large eyes and big heads made them unpopular and scary to children. Kenner quickly pulled them off the shelves. It wasn't until Gina Garan rediscovered and photographed them that they became popular. A friend of Gina's described one of the scary eyed dolls selling on Ebay - Gina fell in love and started collecting them - at one point she had over 200 original Blythes. She later introduced Blythe's to her agent in Japan. The toy company Takara soon began remanufacturing new versions of Blythe dolls and their popularity has grown ever since. Today an original 1972 Blythe doll can easily sell for over $1000. For more of their back story please check out This is Blythe.

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Junie Moon (photographed while on my trip in Japan - above ^) is the official Blythe store of Japan. While many stores may carry them, Junie Moon sells only Blythe products. They sell the dolls, their clothing and accessories, stationery, apparel, and more. Needless to say I was in heaven. Unfortunately, you are not allowed to photograph inside. The only thing I could justify spending money on was some stickers - everything else was priced way too high. For example - a pair of Blythe sunglasses (for your doll) cost $23 dollars - yikes! It sure was fun though giddly oogling over all their products.

I wish I could have taken them all home with me. I did manage to buy a Blythe on my trip to Japan at a Manadrake shop in Nakano which I wrote about in my last Toy Army Tuesday post. I thought it was about time to show her and her sister off...

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Introducing: Ume (meaning Japanses plum). I finally settled on her name today, so I thought it was fitting to show her and Penelope off. I wanted a name that referenced where she came from. Yep. I am a crazy Blythe lady. I need hit up some thrift stores this weekend and find them some new clothes to wear.

Do you have a Blythe collection of your own? I would love to check it out! Have a beautiful day everyone :]

37 comments:

  1. I have to be honest and say that these dolls kind of freak me out but in the same way are totally awesome.
    xx
    justyn
    thoughtsbyapetitebrunette.com

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    1. Haha. I feel like the feelings are always split about them.

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  2. I wish I had a Blythe collection! They're so beautiful and strange at the same time, that's just perfect!

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  3. i love them! who would ever be scared...i think they are cute! like the old 70s kid paintings!

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    1. :] I definitely don't think they are scary enough to be pulled off the shelves, that's for sure!

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  4. One of my friends actually looks like one of these dolls! We call her 'big face' (in a very affectionate way)! She's actually stunning looking.Rx

    http://sandersonsmithstory.blogspot.co.uk/

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    1. Haha, awww. Well I am glad it is in an affectionate way.

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  5. Ume is just as gorgeous as her sister Penelope! I love her dress and headband! Junie Moon will be a must visit for me when I finally get to Japan. It's pretty crazy how expensive dollie clothing and accessories can get. I shudder to think how much I've probably spent on outfits and items for Rena & Ian but sometimes I just can't resist lol.

    Rowena @ rolala loves

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    1. :] I do love all of her fun little accessories as well. I highly recommend visiting the store! It is a bit of a hike to find it but so worth it. Haha. At least Rena and Ian look so classy all the time!

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  6. I've seen these dolls around the net and I think they're really cute! I don't have any, but that's probably a good thing, because I'd go crazy buying things for them :P Have you ever thought about making clothes for them? I used to hand stitch my barbies clothes inspired by the 1500's-1700's. It was cheaper and I'll admit I was pretty proud of them :)

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    1. :] Haha. That could get pricey. As for making my own clothes for them - that is such a good idea! I need to work on my sewing skills a bit first but that would be such a better alternative.

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  7. They are so pretty. I had never heard of or seen a Blythe doll until I started blogging. Now I swear, they are everywhere!

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    1. :] I must admit that I found them blogging as well and fell in love!

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  8. That store looks so whimsical!

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    1. It was! I spent nearly an hour looking through everything.

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  9. I have…Gwen, Sadie Jane, Alice, and Antoinette. I also have a pullip named Eureka and a Taeyang named Sebastian. I have a lot of mini Blythes as well. One named Fran, Sookie, Mocha and Sephora.

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    1. :] I am so jealous of your collection! That is fantastic.

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  10. You got to love Toy Army Tuesdays :) I love them! So adorable!

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  11. Ha I never knew these dolls existed until I started blogging and saw all the crazy Blythe doll bloggers out there! I loved the back story. Its kind of ironic how they were so unpopular and now they're a craze!

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    1. Haha, yeah. If only I could find an original Blythe at a garage sale... I don't get how they were so scary that they were taken off the shelves.

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  12. they're so pretty! i'm addicted to these dolls also but have yet to grow a collection. only have one doll at the moment. still thinking of a name for her though. :)

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    1. :] The name will come to you! They are so fun to collect.

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  13. I don't own any Blythe dolls, I had actually never heard of them until I started reading the blogs although I had seen some random pictures of them. I can't imagine why anyone would have found them creepy, even in 1972, I think they are so adorable. I hope to own a Blythe one day. This store sounds like a lot of fun to browse. Ume and Penelope are so pretty.

    <3Honeysuckelle

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    1. I don't see how they could be creepy enough to be pulled off the shelves after only one year, haha, yikes. Hopefully one will find its way to you. Thank you :]

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  14. Ume is gorgeous! I love her head piece and outfit (with wings?)! That's super cool how creative you got with naming her too, I must say. And Penelope could be your mini-me. haha :)
    The back story was really neat. I could see how kids might have been freaked out by them, even if they are really, really pretty. So if the Japanese dude remanufactured them, could the original creator sue him or anything? I was curious about that. Either way, I feel a bit terrible that now Blythe dolls are all the rage and a successful business for someone else when it was his idea.
    Have a great rest of your week, Allison!

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    1. Thank you! Yes, she does have wings. It is pretty cute. I can't wait to find more practical outfits though for her, haha. :] I need to touch up my hair so I can be her twin again.

      I should have added that. Kenner was bought by Hasbro. Gina Garan went to ask Hasbro for their permission and they didn't even know they owned them. I they are now licensed through Hasbro through Asia - so it is legit. It is a shame though that their popularity came about after the fact :-/

      Thank you, you too!!!

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  15. oh my gosh these are all beautiful photos. im not big on blythe dolls, but i just love japanese culture so i like to see all these phootos.

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    1. :] Thank you. Japanese culture is wonderful and so pretty!

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  16. is ume the brunette? if penelope is the redhead.... it seems like she is supposed to be you, there are so cute, i love how you put them in a real life scene. awwwww gosh. and i want the first photo's blythe doll's glasses

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    1. Ume is the brunette. Haha thank you :] They are so fun to dress up and pose. Those glasses are adorable but too darn pricey.

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  17. So cute doll, love this very much and Just get it from PIJ :)
    I am really happy to see this here.
    http://bit.ly/blythejp

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