My name is Adam and I collect dolls.
There, I’ve said it. But wait! Let me explain!
For starters I am not, definitely not ever talking about the freaky kind of victorian dolls that are supposed to look at all realistic. I hate them. I hate how they stare at me with their cold, dead eyes. There’s more life in a shark’s eyes, and significantly less malevolence. No, I’m not taking about those dolls, or the ones that are babies so you can pretend you’re changing its nappy (why would you EVER want to do that?!). I’m not talking about inflatable dolls either, or matryoshka, or action figures.
I collect Kokeshi dolls.
Kokeshi dolls are traditional, hand made/painted Japanese wooden dolls. I forget how I was first introduced to them, but my love for them certainly blossomed when I visited Japan several years ago. Obviously they are fairly prevalent there and not long into my trip I found myself buying one after another, unable to get enough! I posted a whole collection home, a few as gifts but mostly for myself and have slowly added to my collection over the years. I think I have around eighteen now and they currently adorn our music room, which has thus been given an Asian theme with other things I sent back from Japan, as well as my anime drawings on the walls.
What drew me to them was the simplicity of their form and the beauty of their design. How the severe dark bob of the hair contrasts with the light face and often brightly painted kimono and indeed how beautiful the colours can be, just like real kimonos. It’s just one of those things that speaks to me I guess!
Unfortunately they have been bastardised slightly over the past few years and sites like eBay are flooded with crappy Chinese knock-offs, cheap plastic keyring style ones as well as what are called ‘Momiji’ dolls which are essentially much more childish, brightly coloured factory made Kokeshis (think Kokeshi dolls made by Paperchase), none of which I can stand personally. Thankfully it’s easy to tell the bad from the good.
Next on my list: