Take A Look At These Babies. Can You See What’s “Wrong” With Them?
Oct 25th, 2021
Have you ever seen a ‘reborn’ baby? If you haven’t, then 49-years-old Susan Gibbs, 49 from Canada can show her her collection.
Susan has a huge love for making baby dolls. She said, “I saw reborns for the first time in 2009, and I couldn’t believe how real they looked. I purchased my first one that same year, then added two more after a couple of months. I realized they were expensive dolls to collect, so I tried my hand at making them myself.”
So Susan decided that she would have to make ones similar to the reborn dolls herself. She has dedicated her life to perfecting them. She said, “First, I was only making them for my family and me. Then it took off, especially when I made the switch to silicone dolls. Now I teach worldwide how to paint silicone dolls.”
It will take four weeks for Susan to perfect each of her “babies.” She would layer paints to create their realistic appearance and give them the ‘natural’ look of skin. And of course, these babies need real hair. She meticulously inserts hair follicles one by one until she is happy with the result. This requires such a long time, usually, around thirty hours of labor. And that is for one doll alone.
She said, “Each doll I try to make better than the last one. When I do my online class, I finish painting a doll in five days, but on average, I make one or two newborns a month. I don’t take custom orders. I sell what I finish. Some are more expensive than others, depending on the price of the doll and the quality of the kit I use.”
Her hard work is paying off. In fact, Susan’s dolls are quite popular. She has been receiving so many requests that she can’t keep up with them. She said, “I get a lot of inquiries daily.
I can’t keep up with the messages. I always tell them that I will post photos on my social media when I’m done, but usually, my dolls sell before I start painting them. People message me what my line-up of kit is, then they secure the doll that they want to adopt. ”
There are so many reasons why people are interested to buy Susan’s dolls. She said, “Most of these dolls are used as therapy tools in nursing homes. Some are memorial dolls for mothers who have lost their babies or had a miscarriage. While some are just collectors’ items. They are also used as special effects props in the film industry, especially birthing scenes.”
She can still remember back in 2011 when she gave a doll to an elderly woman as a present. She said, “She never had a doll as a child. So on Christmas, I gave her a doll that I made to look like me when I was a baby. It was her very first doll, and she was 83. She squealed like a little girl and cried happy tears. That was priceless.”
She added, “I know most of my customers. Interestingly, they are young mothers between [the ages of] 30 [and] 40 from the USA. I don’t have a big clientele like eBay users do, and I don’t like selling on there because I want to know where my babies go. I don’t do custom orders.”
Dolls are not only for little girls. Like Susan, these real-life baby dolls are giving a lot of women a sense of belongingness.