When I saw Laura’s photos of a new line of 18″ dolls at Toy Fair, I was immediately intrigued and when she told me who they were by, I was so excited I just had to get the full scoop. This new line of 18″ dolls is called My Imagination and are from the Tonner Doll Company. That’s right, I just said TONNER! The same amazing Robert Tonner that has been creating some of the most beautiful dolls for years.
Mr. Tonner was kind enough to take time out of his day last week and spend time discussing this new line with me via the phone. You are going to love this!
This line of dolls is not Tonner’s first foray into the 18″ doll market. Tonner sculpted the Magic Attic dolls as well as 18″ Ann Estelle dolls and Penney dolls – all from the early 2000’s. When I asked Mr. Tonner what inspired him to create the My Imagination line, he explained that with the popularity of American Girl, a whole new category of doll has been created – the 18″ play doll, and he feels that Tonner has something unique to add to the space. (This is similar to how Barbie created the 11″ fashion doll category.)
One of the things Tonner is very well known for is licensing – dolls and outfits inspired by official characters from our favorite movies, books and cultural icons. Tonner will be bringing these licensing relationships to this line of 18″ dolls. The Super Woman and Wonder Woman costumes the dolls are wearing are fully authorized by DC Comics.
Right now all the dolls have the same face sculpt, but there is another one in the works right now (an African American face sculpt) and there may be others later. (Remember, the dolls in the photos are prototypes and may change as they go through production.) The dolls have inset eyes that do not open and close – this gives Tonner more flexibility with the shape of their eyes. They have vinyl bodies and limbs and can share clothes with most 18″ doll lines. Many of the outfits will be sold separately so any of your 18″ dolls can be Wonder Woman or Glinda! The dolls will have removable wigs.
Since Tonner has the official license for these characters, he is able to give the outfits a unique twist. The artwork on the doll’s shirt is from Warner Bros. Oz and Tonner has taken it and made it the base of a very fun outfit for the dolls. This one happens to be my favorite – the combination of the green in the shirt with her dark hair is just stunning!
Notice how the doll in her “undies” has a bendable knee and is holding a second wig? There will be a basic version and a deluxe version of these dolls. The basic dolls will not have bendable knees and will come with one wig. The deluxe dolls come with two wigs and have bendable knees. All of the dolls have ball joints at the shoulders and the hips.
I just love the traditional costumes and the modern re-mixes featuring some of our favorite characters! I was let in on a secret of some of the licenses that are in the works… my lips are sealed, but you will NOT be disappointed!!
This is a close up – although the lighting is a bit wonky (the Javitt’s Center is not known for its lighting!) – it gives you a good look at these dolls’ features.
So, I know what you are all waiting to find out – when will they be available and how much?
Some of the 18″ doll clothes will be available for purchase this summer and the dolls should be available in time for the holidays. If you have a favorite specialty doll/toy retailer – start asking them about these dolls now! We expect you will also be able to buy them at FAO and of course on the TonnerDoll.com site.
The basic My Imagination dolls will be $79-89 and the deluxe dolls will be $125 and remember, they come with two wigs. Very reasonable!!
In other Tonner news, what is up with Maudlynne? Well, Maudlynne is still here and we may still see new items for her in the future. I was also thrilled to hear that one of my personal favorites – Little Miss Matched dolls are BACK!! Yes, you can buy them right now at LittleMissMatched.com. So exciting!
The Tonner collectibles lines continue to grow and strike a chord with collectors all over the world. Sindy has been a very popular addition in the past year.
Patsyette dolls are just as cute as can be and have a following of their very own!
Every rendition of the Wicked Witch/Elphaba that I have seen to date by Mr. Tonner is just stunning. This one is just gorgeous.
Not only are all of the dolls that Robert Tonner designs unique and beautiful in their own way, but he is so down to earth and truly loves what he does – and it shows in every aspect of his business. Thank you so much Mr. Tonner for taking the time to talk with me last week so I could share all the Tonner Doll fun with the Doll Diaries community!