Prices, sales, reborn vibe currently (long winded)

I am taking a little painting break for the day. I am currently finishing up 9 babies (two are cuddles). It is taking a while but I love getting back to painting newborns again. I love hair painting, I usually top root but the hair I really appreciate isn’t available right now so I am doing my best to level up my painted hair.

I painted a couple big dolls for Macphersons that were so much fun. If you are looking to step outside of your comfort zone and paint a big doll these 36 inch kits are pretty fantastic. Unless you have a spare oven (a big one) you will have to use air dry but so worth it. They are so fun to costume.

The newborns now seem so tiny.

I need to raise my prices a bit. Supplies have gone up and some things that I use just are not available at the moment and if I do find them I have to pay a premium for them. I bought a lot of sculpts here at BB during covid when supplies where coming in slowly, sold out fast, and where full price. Eyes, bodies, rings and plugs… it has all gone up and it adds up. I hate the pricing part, to many feels involved, and your inner critic jumps in for fun… it’s the messy part, even if you have a formula that feels fair.

I have been checking in at, seems we have a lot of new artists and people who have been doing this a while know how it goes, people get excited, feel like this is the get rich game they have been waiting for, they make one baby and set up shop. There are those who will last a couple months and some who have skills they didn’t even know they had, and will keep working it, keep improving, and stick around for a while, a very few will become reborn rock stars.

The artists I love most are the old timers who have been doing this forever, paint when they feel like it, and stay humble. They are here on this forum, they are a wealth of information and deserve a whole lot of respect. They were doing this before there were kits, GHSP, rings, plugs, and rooting tools. They paved the way. I am privileged to know them and have had the opportunity to learn a little from them along the way. If you ask nicely… magic happens.

They have seen this hobby grow, change, and evolve over 20 years. I am going to guess they never thought they would see the day these dolls would be sold for over a 1000 dollars (and even higher).

I noticed prices are all over the place. Sales seem to be a little slower but Doll shows are coming back and artists hold babies back for those shows and some people wait to buy from shows so they can get a dream baby directly from the artist.

The economy is worrisome, I know that plays a part in sale also.

I worry China fakes over saturated the market and built distrust but collectors are smarter than that. I am going to hold onto hope that these babies are still going to be loved and collected for another 20 years (at least).

I think I am like a lot of artists and also hoping that Genesis is back up soon. I miss my matte varnish and my big tubs of paint. I surely do not waste a drop now.

Mostly I think about these last couple years and how hard that has been, the toll it has taken and how uncertain everyone still feels. I am personally glad I have the privilege to have a hobby like this (it isn’t cheap) and a creative outlet to distract me a little. I love making things that give people comfort.

Curious how you all are feeling, where you are at in this moment, how you feel about this hobby, sales, availability of the things you need, new sculpts you are in love with, new hacks you came up with when some things were not available, and how you are doing.

The great thing about a forum with so many people from different places, different lives is that we get this common space, we all love this, for what ever reason, it’s a good club to belong to.


Those are gorgeous! I’m itching to paint one but not to try air dry :pleading_face:

I’ve seen amazing babies for sale for under $200… a beautiful one sold for $125 yesterday :flushed: even if that artist bought everything on sale she lost money and then I see some sketchyness in the $600’s


You are right about prices all over the place. I just saw a nicely painted baby on reborns listed for under $300. Rooted.


Your work is beautiful!
I have heard Genesis will be back in mid June
but I am wondering if they have changed the formula.
I am expecting a big price increase on it too because they have seen
what folks are willing to pay for it now. Also they have lost money on lost sales and supplies are in short supply to make it. Not to mention how the economy is with high fuel prices etc.


Your work is always stunning!


That was a beautiful stream of consciousness to follow.

What is your preferred mohair?

Beautiful work, as always!


Holy cow Gina those babies are beautiful! I am just a hobbyist that is too afraid to sell. It sounds like it is getting harder and harder to do and there are more and more dishonest people out there. I worry about the customer service end of things. I don’t want to get stressed. But I can’t keep them all and money would be nice… I only get a few done in a year, and I have a bunch in progress because I don’t want to root lol. I have plenty of babies to work on and have not bought for a long time. Many I know I will keep and I love to gift them as well. I think about maybe getting a silicone sometime since they are becoming a little more affordable, but I am not interested in painting them. I have too many hobbies already. I have art adhd. Who am I kidding- I just have plain old adhd :joy:


You are in good company!

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Much love to you, my wordy friend :heart:


Stunning work!

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I have been reborning for…well before kits. I spent hours stripping dolls and sanding off molded hair. It was so nice when kits came around and i didnt have to do all that prep work.

That said i havent painted in a year and i miss it. But i am concerned the china market has ruined it. So i hesitate to begin again.


Those dolls are so beautiful :heart_eyes::heart_eyes:, I love reading your posts, you have such a lovely way of expressing yourself in your writing, if you get bored of reborning you could always become an author!!

LOVE LOVE LOVE. :star_struck::star_struck::star_struck:

My gosh what beautiful work…i have always loved your style and these guys are gorgeous

@taylorsgirl Yep…i remember sanding those stinking hard heads…it was a pain in the butt :rofl:

Flood of new artists and chinese knockoffs have hurt the reborn world for sure…

As far as $1000 babies…i never thought MINE would sell for anywhere near that…i started off at a $399 starting bid…and have slowly worked up…i was in awe of people like Helen Jalland and Cheryl Van Pletzen…whose babies consistently sold for way over 5k. …sometimes way over 10k. …:crazy_face:

I think that “collectors” have changed over the last 20 years…used to be they were real doll collectors…now i think its more of a fad/need/comfort/therapy/other…thing???

Another thing that has hurt is not many TRUE mimited editions…is there are.less than 1000 worldwide and people know that…they are willing to bid more.

Yes…it makes it harder for artists trying to obtain a kit to paint…
I remember sitting with a kit IN my cart and hitting send at the exact moment of time and NOT getting it bc 900 other people hit the button faster than me…:rofl:

But…getting one of those kits was always exciting and you knew you could get a decent price when you sold your version!

I am a genesis girl…have no desire to try air dry or work on silicone … too nervewracking…:smiling_face_with_three_hearts:


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Good to see you, Gina! Your work is exquisite, as always. Watching you grow and seeing you put your own spin on each baby has been a great pleasure. You’ve truly taken reborning next level! You have an incredible following and amazing talent. You’re a reborning rock star!

For me, reborning started out as a fun little way to pass time while my kids were in school, a novelty. Bought one on Ebay, got it home, decided I could do it better, not sure WHY I thought that, but I did…took it apart, went to Kmart, bought a Berenguer doll and I was off and running.

No tutorials, no classes, no team of experts to lead the way. I was part of a tiny little forum started by Dawn and her husband. She later became known as Delta Dawn selling mohair, but back then she was learning to reborn just like the rest of us. I can’t even remember how I found her forum or why I was on it, but it was fun to show each other our progress and talk about what kind of paints we were using and debate acrylics over oils, fake lashes and whether or not we should be cutting slits in the vinyl to fit them in and is it okay to slit open the mouth so baby can take a paci??? Ya think??? LOL! Hey…what about using a MAGNET behind the mouth!!! WHAT A GREAT IDEA…alrighty, then, let’s all do that!!! :rofl: It was trial and error every step of the way.

I’d paint on my days off, no rush to finish a doll, no idea most of the time as to what I was even doing really, just taking it slow and using oil paints from tubes I’d used to paint landscapes on dolls I bought at Kmart and took apart so I could get that god-awful deep purple paint inside each limb giving them a natural look on the outside complete with gel penned nails sealed with clear nail polish :rofl: I used wigs when I first started, but then someone on Ebay posted a doll with HAIR, real HAIR… MOHAIR. HALLELUJAH! But how to get those lines smoothed out on those hard vinyl heads??? Out came the sander, smoothing those lines off because we wanted the hair to look REAL, as if it were growing right out of the baby’s scalp! Rooting with a 36g felting needle and the worst excuse for mohair there was. But hey, NOW we were getting somewhere because these dolls looked like REAL BABIES :rofl: Some people were using water balloons inside their dolls to make them “feel as real as they looked” but oh heck, not me…I used play sand and polyfil. It did the trick and I didn’t have to worry about water leaking.

I’ve talked before about the day arriving when DOLL KITS finally came into play…OMG…KITS!!! Greatest invention since sliced bread!!!

The most fun for me, then and now, was shopping for baby clothes. Come look at my closet, you’ll see what I mean. Hoard much??? Yep! But when everything finally comes together and I’m dressing up a finished doll ~ that’s the best part of all of this for me, still. Feeling a curled up baby in my arms, needing its head supported…might be the closest thing to an actual newborn grandchild I’ll ever know if my sons don’t hurry up and do something before they put me in the HOME. But that’s another story for another day.

Used to be that selling a doll, boxing it up, sending it off gave me a great sense of satisfaction, knowing my customer would enjoy opening the box and peeking inside, getting that first glimpse…and I’d be getting a fun email letting me know “baby arrived safely and I’m in LOVE” and I’d smile and be all happy and go on to paint another one. Ahhhh, the good ol days.

That was then, this is now.

China, scammers, liars, and fakes have really taken my love of reborning down a few notches, especially lately. It’s all finally catching up to me and I’m teetering between quitting or just plain throwing in the towel. The stress of knowing there are people out there willing to trash a doll and file a claim so they can get a refund or simply wait 6 months and then do a chargeback because item wasn’t “as described” or gosh, the charge was unauthorized and they have no way of knowing how in the world their 3 yr old managed to buy a doll online using their PayPal account. Those things haven’t happened to me, YET, but I figure give it time because we all get our turn, just like having my entire listing stolen from the Reborns site and put on a scammer’s FB page for sale ~ so now why would anyone believe that the doll I have listed is actually in my possession because after all, whatever is on FB MUST be true, right?? :rage: Like I said, we all get our turn. It gets tiresome, having to explain or prove myself just to sell a doll only to start worrying about delayed delivery, chargebacks, and fraud.

Dolls are not a necessity, I realize that. They are not a need, they are a want. The economy is in the tank right now. Doll sales are slower these days. I don’t care. Been here, done this before. Used to worry me that people would stop buying dolls. They won’t. Dolls have been around since the cave man days, they aren’t going anywhere. PLUS…I’ve never used reborning as my only source of income. I am not in that league of big time money making high end selling reborner. I’m a middle of the road, paint a baby when I want to, sell it if it sells kind of reborner and happy to stay in my lane. But still, I can’t say it doesn’t smart a little, remembering back to when I’d list a doll and it would literally be sold in 10 minutes. I’ve got one now that’s been sitting a month.

It’s a lot.

Is it worth it?

I can’t honestly say that it is any more. As I’ve learned very recently, life is short and can be snuffed out at any given moment. We are all lucky to be here to enjoy one more day. I prefer not to live out my days stressed to the max. My choice here is to either sell my stash, donate my hoard of baby clothes and get out or keep going. Experience shows that no one really wants my stash unless I want to sell at 1/4 the price I bought the kits for in the first place…we’re all looking for a bargain, I get it, and if I want out that’s what I’ll have to do.

But gee, do I LOVE painting these babies. More than anything else. I LOVE painting babies. For now, at least, I’ll keep going…or get a dumpster big enough to hold this stash…we’ll see. Today I feel like painting. Tomorrow might be different.


No more true words ever spoken and my exact feelings!


On line shopping, Amazon, Wish and walmart… those are what makes reborning difficult, even before knockoff. They promote cheap and fast. People got used to that. Reborns are not seen anymore like high end ultrarealistic pieces of collectable art, but like toys that can be buy cheaper.
Real true collectors still exist, thankfully, but now they are a minority. Same happened to Waldorf and BJD and so many more. People value cheap and easy buy over quality ooak. Sad.


Hi your second kiddo in black and white reminds me of Stevie Nicks. JMO I know , off topic. Your big toddlers for McP are very attractive and different (love that) . Have a nice break.


That makes me so sad.

I hope collectors far and wide know and understand the value of a doll made by an artist.

Thanks for paving the way.

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I wish there was a way that people who do the work to make something could find a place to sell and be seen without the risk of being cheaply imitated. Etsy use to be the cool place for that, and everyone who shopped there knew they were getting something special, not so much anymore. I am still holding onto hope.


Best reply ever.

The reborn community still needs the pioneers, we need to remember how to level up, be resourceful, try new things and not be intimidated.

At the end of the day it’s all about the love for this right? Not everyone can do this well, and those cheap knock offs can’t hold a candle to a well painted reborn. I am going to hold onto hope that cream rises to the top, and collectors value artists over a cheap factory doll.

I appreciate all the tips and and advice I have collected from you over the years (and not just about painting babies).

I hope all your todays feel like painting, I am always happy to see one of your babies pop up on Facebook all dreamy and fairy brush painted.