Let’s Start at the Very Beginning…

A very good place to start….

In the spring of 2004 I was gifted my very first Blythe by my really good friends from Japan. They brought her to me because they knew I liked ‘retro and funky’ things. They selected for me ‘Inspired by Pinafore Purple’ because she had a purple wig and was a florist. At the time, I too was a florist.

Meet Vi (Violet)

Oh, she blooms..

Vi sat on her shelf in her stock gear for a month or two while I began to slowly and surely discover the world of Blythe online. I also discovered that in Helsinki there were a couple girls who also were collectors. We slowly and surely got to know each other and I also introduced a couple friends to Blythe along the way. We became a cozy group and to this day are still good friends even as our lives have changed, I’ve moved from Helsinki and we all have travelled different paths. This summer found me on skype while we all got together for a ‘virtual’ meet up.

Back in the early years we had ‘Skate Dates’ and outings galore with our girls. Good Times. You can even see one of my first helmets there on my Margaret Meets Ladybug ‘Sylvia’. The Fruit Punch ‘Tama’ belongs to Merino whom I gave a bowl cut to..

The audience

Midsummer we would try and hold our ‘annual anniversary meets’ This picture was from 2005.

The attendees

Usually our outings adjourned at someone’s flat…with refreshments, or a picnic in the park. We even had Blythe friends come from abroad to hang with us!

After skate

Last day sushi picnic

and looking at these early photos its clear I did not have my own camera yet! ha,ha,ha as they are all borrowed.

Back in these days Pocky never made its way to Finland and friends abroad sent us treats to share….we did lots of swaps of goodies, sewing supplies and more with friends around the globe. GOOD TIMES.

 

The goods

Little did we know where this Blythe adventure would take us, or that still 13 years later we’d still be playing with dolls. I’m so grateful for this in my life and I feel so very lucky to have had Blythe with me through many difficult times as well.

Now that things have changed, the community has grown, expanded, migrated etc. Things are different. I’m not going to wax poetic about the ‘good old days’ but I desire to share some of the past and we no longer have that kind of sharing platform. Flickr is a ghost town, the Forums of old are gone… So I will share here where I can…my Blythe Story.

8 thoughts on “Let’s Start at the Very Beginning…

  1. Thanks for sharing your story and pics! Things have changed so much. I miss the forums and Flickr – is Facebook our only gathering platform now?

    My sister and I found Blythe together on eBay. EBL VCB was my first Takara Blythe, and then I got into the mohair customs. Lisa Peterson (Petite Wanderlings) told me about This Is Blythe and my Blythe world opened up there. I do miss the sense of community that we shared all those years ago in the Wide-Eyed World of Blythe <3

    1. i bought some of my first sugar mag stuff from Lisa. Remember when she sold the Doc Martens? I think the problem with Facebook being our only gathering platform..(and truthfully this isn’t simply because Flickr sucks or that forums suck, its just where people go to do pretty much everything online anymore. Its how we USE the internet and how things have changed) I think…sometimes just reading what people say..they don’t share or participate in the hobby like they used to online because their other facebook friends don’t ‘appreciate’ their dolls’. So they are muffled or stifled. We no longer have that one little layer of anonymity which some may argue as good or bad, but perhaps gave us more freedom to ‘play’ vs. having to participate in every group with our real and most likely legal names..I really struggled with my online life merging with my real life (one time I was recognized out of the blue in a city i was not from…and it really freaked me out. Not that it was bad but I was so startled..and it was like ohhhhh crap there goes my internet life and real life intersecting eeeep!!!) Its odd…I don’t know. I’ve been thinking quite a bit about that though…about how forums, flickr…we were all behind ‘handles’ and not in the view of our colleagues, family etc…

    1. Thank you Amy! There are tons of buy/sell pages, depending on what you are looking for. Also i might know someone who has something you might be interested in, a mutual friend I THINK..let me message you on FB about it….

  2. I love this! I started collecting in 2007 and did until spring 2014. I didn’t play with Blythe again until December 2016. They were all in storage. I almost decided to sell them all and now I’m so glad I didn’t. The prices – Wow! – especially for a Canadian. It used to be that I could sell a girl and not feel too bad about it because I could buy her again in the future if I wanted. Now I’m so thankful for the ones that remain. I could never afford to replace them. Girls that used to be affordable are no longer so and girls who used to be expensive aren’t any longer. Right now the cheapest stock Blythe on eBay is Tommy February (cheaper than Mango and Guava)!! Maybe only someone collecting for a long time would understand why that blows my mind.

    I miss Flickr. I miss BK. Seems both have ground to a halt while I was away. Where is Roz? She hadn’t posted to Flickr in a very long while – makes me long did the old days. Looks like it’s all FB and Instagram now. I’ve joined Instagram but I feel like I’m so late to the game. I see Blythe folks with 2,000 followers. I think I have 65. I miss how it used to be.

    Anyway, Ruth, thanks for your blog. It comforts me to hear someone else talk about the old days.

    Sincerely,

    MandyLynn

    1. oh my gosh, I feel the same way! (yes i remember you!!) about selling dolls and seeing cheap dolls like TOMMY!? WHAAAT? and then..where have all the Fruit Punch’s gone?!??? Roz is a little bit on instagram. She had a pretty severe health issue last year and has been recovering. She’s around but much quieter right now. I miss her photos too. Instagram is a pretty good way to connect with people you know/have known in my opinion and share photos. I hate that it now uses a popularity algorithm like facebook so I don’t always see when people post. I almost always miss Roz’s postings. I keep my instagram private because I want to know the people I have in my list and follow there if you have hit me with a friend request let me know…i don’t always approve immediately and check only like once a month…

      1. I think the first thing I did when I came back from my dolly break was look up Roz on Flickr then look at your custom list to make sure I was still there – lol! Thanks for your reply Ruth. I followed you on Instagram. I’m Mandylynnblythe ❤️

  3. Oh, and just reading your response to Kate – yes, the anonymity factor is huge. I’m thankful that there are some ‘closed’ FB groups. But it is for that reason only I reply in your site and not in your FB post. I have always been MandyLynn on TIB, BK and Flickr. It’s only recently I’ve had to associate my real name.

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