Play, Waldorf Dolls, Waldorf Toys

Waldorf Dolls: Lifelike or Human?

After writing my recent post on Waldorf dolls, I remembered a photograph I took at the New York Toy Fair last February. (Yes, those are dolls in the top photo!) Who, I wondered, would ever buy such a distressed looking baby doll for a child? It would be hard for even the most imaginative child in the world to imagine one of the dolls in the top photo being happy!

Realistic Baby Dolls

Now look at the doll in the photo below. I ask you: Which doll is more human?

There is a big difference, I find, between being lifelike and being human.

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15 Comments

  • Reply Maggie June 9, 2010 at 12:08 pm

    OMG!
    I have seen those dolls somewhere before, and they scarred the heck out of me!
    The ones that have their eye’s closed, that are supposed to look like they are sleeping, remind me of a dead baby, so scary to me.
    As an adult I would get nightmares having such a thing in my house, I do not even want to know what children would do with such a thing???

  • Reply Miranda Makes June 9, 2010 at 12:45 pm

    I totally agree and I really enjoyed reading your last post. Thanks for being such a great resource!

  • Reply Karen June 9, 2010 at 12:47 pm

    hm.
    realism v. impressionism
    photographic v. artistic
    realistic v. _________? what?
    feeling? thinking? living? spiritual?

  • Reply rae June 9, 2010 at 1:18 pm

    those babies are scary!! i have always been in love with the sweet, simplistic faces of waldorf dolls. no constipated babies for us, thank you.

  • Reply Danita June 9, 2010 at 1:21 pm

    Agree, agree, agree. Those plastic baby dolls are frightening. Our favorite dolls are the simple, soft, beautiful babies handmade with love.

  • Reply Nina June 9, 2010 at 2:19 pm

    yikes. that one with its eyes closed looks like its having a seriously hard time going poopy. my son never looked like any of those.

    • Reply Millicent January 24, 2012 at 8:59 pm

      Now that’s sutlbe! Great to hear from you.

  • Reply Sarah Baldwin June 9, 2010 at 3:02 pm

    LOL, Nina! Honestly, I don’t understand what the manufacturer was thinking. Are these dolls intended for CHILDREN? Maybe they are meant as collectibles for adults. When I think of how universally adorable babies are, how could they make a baby that is on one hand so realistic, but on the other so repulsive looking?

    Speaking of babies being universally adorable, anyone seen the documentary “Babies” yet? Movies are slow coming to Maine, but it opens here next week, and I can’t WAIT!

  • Reply Jenn June 9, 2010 at 3:25 pm

    What on EARTH was the manufacturer thinking?? These “dolls” cannot possibly be intended for kids, can they? I mean, really… they would make a child never want to be in the presence of a baby. Admittedly, my son looked much like these babies, but he had severe GERD as an infant and was in extreme pain, which should be a red flag that these dolls are in need of some serious help!

  • Reply Susan June 9, 2010 at 6:25 pm

    Bitty Baby dolls are realistic-looking, and cute.
    I would like to get a Waldorf doll, but my little girl is almost grown up, and I just have 7 boys after that.

  • Reply H West June 10, 2010 at 12:51 am

    Agree. What’s missing from the first pic is childlike wonder. That is something that has been all but lost, but remains entact in the world of Waldorf. And, Susan, you can get some fabulous Waldorf dolls for boys. I have 6 kids- 3 of each. When my boys are little, they love dolls and I let them have at them.

  • Reply Kelli June 11, 2010 at 9:52 pm

    Great post. Simply put, but very powerful.

  • Reply Colleen D. June 14, 2010 at 1:56 pm

    I agree!

  • Reply Trish September 26, 2012 at 2:45 pm

    The doll with the pink knitted cap is one of the loveliest dolls I have seen in a long time, and I have made my share of Waldorf dolls…I would love to know who made this doll so I could send my compliments!!

    My children are grown now, but I made dolls for both of my boys. I also introduced dolls into their world a bit on the early side of their development. I felt a need to ‘get there first’….before the world culture that discourages a boys attachment to a doll could seep in!

    • Reply Sarah Baldwin October 14, 2012 at 2:03 pm

      Hi Trish! Sorry for the long delay in replying to your comment. In spite of my new year’s resolution to write regularly, my blog has continued to be sadly neglected this year as I’ve focused on the growth of Bella Luna Toys and put more effort into Bella Luna Toys’ active Facebook page.

      I am very familiar with your dolls, since we carry the Heavy Baby Doll and Little Baby that you designed! I believe we also know people in common. Do you remember Susan Junge from Washington Waldorf School?

      Anyway, to answer your question, the pictured doll with the knitted cap is made by Evi Dolls in Brazil. I’m sure you are familiar with many of their other dolls.

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