Are all dolls considered fake if they have a similar look to a reborn sculpt?

If a company creates a doll that has a similar look to a popular reborn doll like Levi for example, but it is not a fake doll, knock off, and has completely different limbs ect. Is this still considered a fake?.
Just like if someone created a baby to look like the Gerber baby or the Olson twins, is creating a doll that looks like a Levi or a Maddie ect still a rip off?.
Another example is if a ton of sculptors create a doll based on photograph so all the dolls look similar, is only the very first one who completed it the one who can claim that particular look and the others would be considered knock offs of her sculpt?.

I just think calling every single doll that is created by a factory a knock off if it has a similar look to a reborn kit is a slippery slope.
I think creating an actual kit that is made from the same mold is wrong absolutely!
I am not condoning the actual rip off China kits or condoning any fakes at all
I just feel like there maybe is a craziness about fake kits that normal moms cant even purchase a doll from any store without worrying they are doing something wrong.

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I don’t see how it could be a knockoff if a sculptor created it and it happened to look similar to someone else’s doll. Just means the baby they drew inspiration from must look similar to it…


Also, I don’t see anything technically wrong with being inspired by a certain look or style and recreating it in your own way. If someone tries to copy another artist down to the littlest thing then just give the other artist some credit “I loved how so and so painted their baby or sculpted, so I tried my hand at that.” There’s no new thing under the sun.


If you make a doll that looks similar to a sculpt, even if not directly copied, it is still copying someone else’s intellectual property. If I copied a picture of Mickey Mouse, but turned his ears purple, and called him Mucky Mouse, and sold said product for profit, Disney would still be coming after my butt. If I write a similar base line in a song that has already been done, and just add a note or two to make it “different,” I can still be held liable. Just ask Vanilla ice :notes:


There’s not very many details in Mickey Mouse…it would just be obvious. How can a newly created sculpt with different limbs and just an similar expression be a fake?? Babies make all the same faces most times. I’ve had 3…all made the same faces.


Same expression I could understand. But if you look at it and say that definitely looks like a Levi, that’s where I have the issue.


I get it though, copying someone’s work isn’t isn’t as creative as coming up with your own. Is there a specific sculpt that is looking like too close of a replica, I wonder?
Only one I think I’ve seen that looks very close is Saskia and Gertie


I think is they are so similar that you think: it looks a lot like this or this sculp ., it can be considered as copied, but not necessarily counterfeit. I am also very against calling any lifelike doll that is not created by an artist a “reborn”.


I think it’s extremely difficult to sculpt a doll that doesn’t have any features that resemble a different doll. It’s the same for humans, and some that aren’t related at all look like twins. It’s said that everyone has a doppelganger. Copying, to me, means using the same mold to make an exact duplicate.


Bonnie Brown’s pouting baby looks like Natalie Scholls new pout that is sculpted from one of Tammy V. girls. There was some chatter in the sculpting world about the similarity.


I call the illegally made kits counterfeit, plus the photos are often used without permission (stolen).

Interesting fact: the sex doll company Realdoll will not make a doll in the likeness of a famous person without their permission. Now I’m wondering if that industry has gone through similar challenges with counterfeit doll copies. Hmm…

I predict this Christmas’ ‘hot toy’ is so-called reborn dolls for girls. :roll_eyes:

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I think about it in terms of how you are marketing.

Lets say you are sculpting your first baby and you don’t have a real newborn in your house at the moment, photos are awesome but they are not in the round, there is only so much you can do when you are sculpting in 3D. So you grab your favorite reborn kit Levi and you use it for reference, inspiration. Meaning you are sculpting with your own hands (no mold making from the original, no 3D printers and 3D software imaging of that sculpt).

You make a version of that baby, but you make it your own. I don’t consider that a rip off or a knock off.

Where you get into trouble is marketing it as Levi. You could say, this sculpt inspired by Bonnie Browns amazing work. I would check with the Artist before I did to let her know. This is a personal decision.

I consider a fake reborn a mass manufactured doll, made in a factory, painted with an airbrush and stencils, made by the thousands and marketed at a “reborn” doll. It is not. It is doll. What they are doing is tricking people into believing they are getting something they are are not. Worse is when they steal the sculpt buy making a mold of the real thing and producing it without permission.

It’s like putting a heat set vinyl swoop on a cheap pair of runners and selling them on eBay as “Nike”

You are not getting what is advertised and you don’t have permission to do so.

If a company made a pretty sculpt, mass manufactured them, weighted them, made them look realistic and marketed them as “Sweet baby doll Rosie-buns” and used their own photography and the marketing didn’t take a free ride on our work, I wouldn’t be thrilled but at least that doll is in its own lane.

Baby Alive is a great example.

Doll collecting should be fun, you should have all kinds of fun babies that make you happy. I think what happened is these knock off sculpts showed up, they took over the market with false advertising, stole sculpts, photos, videos, even our descriptions on selling platforms and delivered something that was terrible. “Reborn” started to become synonymous with the fakes and it started to stain our reputations not only that they oversaturated the market with a doll that was 89.00. People were disappointed, got sick of them, figured all reborns were a scam, and we were scammers.

The thing about this art form was that these dolls were made by people. Not matter how good a painter you are these babies take time, most of our dolls are lovingly and carefully made, paying attention to small details, always trying to make the next baby better than the last. No matter how many painters showed up that year we were not over saturating the market, we almost couldn’t keep up.

Some custom artists had waiting lists a year out.

You had so many choices, we were all painting the same sculpts but we all had our own style.

All of that started to get lost with the knock offs.

I don’t think all is lost.

It just isn’t the same.


Probably, yes. I mean, they are sold on AliExpress…


Nowadays, it’s the excuse of artists buying fake kits. “It’s doesn’t matter where the kit came from, I have painted it high quality and I have talent”
It’s a shame. We don’t just fight against knockoff dolls but also counterfeit kits. There’s no end.


I hope I addressed that in my reply.

The doll is well painted and the assumption is it NOT a knock off.

Knock-off, Counterfeit… to me it’s kinda all the same.

But… we need to remember that before kits were being made for people to paint the OG reborners used factory dolls to repaint (reborn).

Still I support our sculptors 100%

I did reborn a vintage doll once but I gifted it, I did not sell it.


That’s the thing, they were repainted, so “reborned”.
Vintage dolls or store bought dolls that are re painted are totally fine with me, they are the root of the art.
I really appreciate and enjoy the sculptors work though, and seing their hard work and talent being stole and disrespect is heartbreaking.
Same for us artists. We now are too being disrespected and treated like trash.


Why would you feel that way?

Because of the so called “artists” that use counterfeit kits: they sell so low that everyone think we are trying to scam them, that our art is not worth that much. When we speak against knockoff, we are told that everyone can’t afford expensive kits, that everyone is entitled to this art and they can buy what they want.
We are now seen as stuck up judgemental gatekeeper.

I didn’t get a single sale since July. Never happened in the 7 years I paint. Prices are so low it’s a joke, a slap in the face.
I don’t have the motivation anymore to paint when people tell me they can get a fake kit reborn cheaper. I feel it’s not worth it anymore.

I am mad and angry, that whatever art or hobby we enjoy that becomes popular is stolen from us by the Chinese. Porcelain dolls, BJD, crochet, felting, drawing … it’s sickening. Creativity and talent is nothing anymore, only money, and not even in our pockets.
I think I am at a breaking point. I have invested so much , all for it to go to waste.

Sorry for the rant :sweat_smile:


Oh, I see what you meant now.
However, my observations on Reborns - highly priced dolls sells, even if they are pre-loved. And silicones sells too, so they are people who can afford them (even for their kids - I was shocked at the DOTWE show how many silicones bough for kids)

And those who are moaning and groaning that prices are too high and they better buy cheap knock off - I am telling myself that they are not my buyers anyway.


Maybe high priced dolls sell, but clearly not mine ! :confounded: They certainly take longer than usual.