8 Collectible Dolls That Sell Well on eBay


From the beginning, eBay's primary growth came from the collectibles market. There are two basic models for eBay sales:

1. Currently available consumers goods. This is a price- driven model, and although smart sellers can earn above- average prices, buyers are there looking for a bargain and price is the #1 consideration.

2. Other buyers are collectors, looking for one-of-a-kind unique items that they can't locate elsewhere. Here, price isn't as important as it is with consumer goods. The power of this market is obvious because, before eBay and the Internet, most collectors were confined to a local market.

Dolls have always been big sellers as eBay collectibles and eight of them are especially strong sellers:

1. The Cabbage Patch Kids began in 1978 and are never "sold". They are 'born' at Babyland General Hospital in Cleveland, Georgia and proud parents pay an 'adoption fee'. The Cabbage Patch Kids were one of the greatest toy phenomenons of the later 20th century. At one time, it was a common sight to see grown women shopping and lunching with their babies in hand. In restaurants, the Kids had their own chairs and were always appropriately dressed for the weather.

2. Precious Moments began in the early 1970s when creator Sam Butcher began drawing the endearing teardrop-eye children as gifts for family and friends. Today Sam's Precious Moments artwork is among the most recognized in the world, and eBay prices reflect this popularity.

3. Madame Alexander dolls were created in 1923. These beloved dolls range from Charlie Brown to babies and children to elegant dressed women to glamorous and famous women like Greta Garbo and Judy Garland. With all the varieties of costumes, a single doll can be a 1920s flapper as easily as a member of the court of Louis XIV.

4. Lee Middleton dolls, according to legend, are so real in appearance that grown men sent for a rescue squad to save "the baby" from a locked car! Mistaken identity is supposedly a frequent occurrence and the dolls have been counted as "passengers" on airplanes and rescued from store countertops to prevent the 'baby' from falling. As one happy owner says, "These dolls are so lifelike it's uncanny."

5. American Girl dolls are loved by millions of little girls (and grown ups, too!) They are not only from different times and places, but are ethnically diverse: Felicity from colonial Virginia; Josephina from the 1830's in New Mexico; Kirsten is "a pioneer girl of strength and spirit growing up in Minnesota in 1854"; Addy is alive in the 186o's, having escaped from slavery with her mother; Samantha is "a bright Victorian girl living with her wealthy grandmother in 1904"; Kit is growing up in 193os, during America's Great Depression; Molly lives in the 1940's while her dad is away at war; Kaya is a Nez Perce Indian living in the northwest.

6. Hasbro dolls are one of the products of the gigantic Hasbro company, who claim to have been making toys for eight generations, including famous games like Monopoly, Scrabble and Clue.

7. Bratz dolls, unlike older dolls like Madame Alexander and Cabbage Patch Kids, have no long history as favorite toys or collectibles. Nevertheless, their price has astonished eBay sellers and the Bratz collection was one of the 'super hits' of the 2003 holiday season and sales have been strong ever since.

8. And, no surprise, Barbie is the best-selling doll on eBay. Since Mattel has recently announced that Ken and Barbie will no longer be an "item", dolls from the 'good old days' when the name "Barbie" was rarely heard without 'Ken', will inevitably become more valuable.

Anyone who loves and understands the doll market, can do very well selling dolls on eBay. They've been strong sellers for the 10 years eBay has been in existence and are almost certain to remain popular for years to come.

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