Found sand in my steps?


So tl;dr I am selling my extra Ashton Drake doll and the woman buying it wanted it to take a paci and I, being the ever adventurous crafter, decided to have a go of it myself.

I have removed the head and upon removing the stuffing also found a bag of sand. Filled with dread, I unstuffed the body and found a second bag of sand and a larger bag of poly pellets. I know that what I should do is replace the sand with glass beads, but I do not have glass beads on hand, nor do I wish to order them. I am also under the impression from the buyer that this is going to be for her daughter. Would it be better to replace the weight of the sand with poly pellets? Or should I just suck it up and order glass beads?

Since I am now very concerned about there being more sand in this doll, I am taking apart the whole thing. I should probably mention at this point that the doll that is currently being taken apart is my own doll; I am going to have her reborned anyway so I’m not really concerned. However, I am wondering now if I should order a new body and just completely take apart and reassemble the doll fresh. So far it appears the limbs have poly pellets which is good. I am thinking about ordering this body from @MacPhersonCrafts; has anyone ever bought this body before/have a picture of it? I am hopeful that it has a gathered bum. I do not have time to make up one of Chelle’s bodies for this doll.


Your doll is from the Ashton Drake site I assume?
Did you write the weight on the bags?

I have heard/seen that that is how Ashton Drake weights theirs. (with sand)


It is an Ashton Drake doll from the mid 2000’s that I bought second hand. I put the weight on the bags for easy replacing. I would be disappointed if AD sells current dolls that use sand. I am glad that I found it so that I can replace it.


Unfortunately they still put sand in their dolls. :frowning: I guess that is just their way of weighting the dolls. I recently replaced the weighting in a newer doll for my niece. Wasn’t a fun surprise.


I found similar baggies in an Ashton drake I bought. The tag on the body even said one of the materials used was sand. Just gross.
I’d toss them and use poly pellets or glass beads.


So you guys think that poly pellets will be a fine weight replacement for the sand? I just wanted to make sure there wasn’t some very specific reason I should use glass beads. I’m glad I found the sand so I can replace it. It’s sad to hear that AD is still using sand when there are so many safer alternatives.


The sand is sterile and used to be an acceptable medium for weighting reborns. It isnt dirty and wasnt taken from a litterbox - lol. The issue with using sand was in the shipping. You cant ship sand (like how you are not supposed to take sand or shells home with you while on vacation). So, reborners had to come with alternate weighting material so they could ship their dolls internationally.


The fine glass beads used by reborners is actually the same stuff used for sandblasting…IT IS SAND. I wouldn’t freak out by sand…as long as it’s not from some beach. It it’s manufactured sand it is the same thing anyway.


Yes glass starts out as sand I have used it in some of the babies I have made for family members I sterilize it myself and they know it is in the dolls and have no problem with it if they prefer glass beads I do that as well .
All of my personal babies have glass beads because I wanted to be sure if any of them were sold I wouldn’t have a issue with that .


So I was under the impression that using sand was generally frowned upon due to the possibility of inhalation. I also thought that most reborners preferred to use larger (1mm) glass beads as opposed to the almost dust-like glass beads used for sandblasting. I think if I was “reborning for realsies” and not just restuffing an Ashton Drake doll I would definitely use glass beads, but for now poly pellets will do the trick.


I remember this being said so often, but I cant find anywhere that says you cant ship sand. It’s not on USPS’s list of restricted items. (It’s crazy I havent looked into it until now) sand is apparently shipped all the time. People just dont want it in their dolls because it is associated with being dirty.


If I brought sand into Canada from a different country I must declare it and ensure it is free of plant, debris or other organic matter. This would be impossible to do if it is inside a doll. I can bring a small amount of sand back from, for example, Mexico as long as it is manufactured (in a souvenir source) but I cannot bring back several bags full of it (like would be inside in a doll). Even shipping my dolls to the USA I include a content baggie on the outside of the box which has a sample of all stuffing material inside the doll so they dont feel the need to open it and remove the head or something. I don’t think this explains what your saying but it is what it is…as well you’re right - sand was thought to be dirty as it was impossible to know if the sand was sterilized (like play sand is that you buy from Home Depot) or if it was from someone’s back yard.


If sand inside a doll wasn’t able to be shipped, how could Ashton drake sell their dolls worldwide?
I think the sand is unacceptable because it is dusty and comes in a plastic baggie. It looks cheap and we don’t know where the sand came from or if it has even been sterilized.


If I bought and paid a good price for a “reborn doll” I would NOT be happy if it had sand in it. I feel like there should be some standards in this hobby (even if there isn’t) and I know a lot of reborners feel the same way. There are people who think stuffing the dolls with “whatever” is acceptable, I don’t. Mostly it is done for cost, the cheaper they can make it, the more profit they make. I understand the issue but if you want to “have and maintain” a good relationship with customers then I think you should do your very best to make and sell an heirloom quality baby. JMO.


I agree. I only use glass beads. I was just trying to explain that sand was used all the time before glass beads became the gold standard.


That is true in the reborn market of today but way back when I started this journey,sterilized sand was a common weighting material to use.Of course using make up and stencil paints etc. was common practice way back then also.Oh and never forget the inks.I am so thankful for my kits and GHSP now. Reborning has come a long way from stripping those factory dolls and redoing them.


@MaryJane, one of the members Karen in Florida has been reborning for many years, way back when it started and she tells some great stories of some of the things and ways that they used to do things. She says the same thing, Reborning has come a LONG way since then. I love hearing all the crazy things they used to do!! Not to mention it sounded like it was really hard to do back in ‘those’ days!!


I would think that one of the reasons dolls shouldn’t be weighted with sand has a bit to do with the way sand absorbs moisture as well. Perhaps that’s why A.D. seals it in plastic bags.