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« 10 Commandments of Personal Finance, Commandment #8: Thou Shalt Teach Your Children to Handle Money Wisely | Main | Stealing Update »

January 31, 2008


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I don't have kids, but I do have a niece given one of these ridiculous dolls to the dismay of her parents.

They just didn't buy the fancy outfits. They're the adults, not her.

Sewing is actually back in fashion. Why not teach your daughter to sew? It's a life skill, as opposed to a $50 18" outfit going to Goodwill in five years.

We had a balance of official clothes and clothes bought at crafts fairs. And I definitely just had a wooden bed from a crafts fair for my Felicity doll...
I agree, sewing is a good skill to learn (and doing it with someone else like parent, sibling, other relative/friend will help build a bond).

It's all about the details. Sewing her own doll clothes can be a real learning experience for a young lady. Take her to the local library and let her research the clothing styles for the time period. She could also make her own paper dolls to create new fashions for her real doll.

That would be really fun to to teach your daughter to make the doll clothes herself. I wish I had learned to sew. And who knows? Maybe Miss FMF might start her own little business making stuff for her friends? :) Check out the Blythe doll clothing on Etsy - a good seamstress can have a nifty side gig.

I actually posted on buying my daughter an AG doll recently. Among recommendations in my comments were:
Springfirls Dolls collection at Michaels or AC Moore (different brand same size?)
Tolly Tarts at Target

I've seen the Target stuff but haven't checked out the other places yet.

I'd love to hear what you find!

I just listed a bunch of my daughters AG doll clothes on ebay! Some were used once and still in the original box from when we purchased them at the AG store in Chicago. She has decided she is too old for her doll now, so we put the doll away for HER daugher and she kept 2 outfits and I sold the rest. I made lots of money and someone got a GREAT deal!! I think the highest paid for one of the new outfits was 12.98 + shipping. NO knockoffs, the real thing! Also, go to the website and periodically check to see if something is on clearance. They are good about their specials!

Link to retired American Girl clothing patterns and an awesome website called American Girl Playthings:

AG Playthings is for adults involved with American Girl dolls- they often have information on sales, unadvertised purchase with a purchase sales, etc. They also have really detailed reviews on whether outfits are worth it- even on knock off clothes. I recommend this site most highly of any online! Currently, a group of folks are working on learning how to sew doll clothes (from the posted free patterns) and posting hints and results.

Another good online source for buying AG clothes is:

I have bought mostly shoes from these folks as I sew most of the clothes for my daughter's dolls- but some of the outfits are just as nice- if not nicer- than what AG offers-- and cheaper!

I knit and crochet for my American Girl doll. There are lots of great patterns, many free-do a google search. It takes time to learn to knit and/or crochet, but its a great hobby and skill and because the dolls are not that big, the projects do not take forever. There are lots of wonderful clothes that are not official AG. You could explain to you daughter that she can choose to say spend $30 on one official AG outfit or get two outfits and some accessories from a non AG source for the same price.

Try local craft shows for doll clothing and accessories for the AG dolls. As a handcrafter of these doll clothes, I am always at local craft shows where you can find doll clothes of fine quality and handmade cost much less than the catalog prices. Look at the seams and see for yourself - we usually pay more attention to detail than the "big" companies do! AND - a big plus - the doll will not be dressed like everyone else's doll; she will be an individual. Some people (myself included) make matching clothes so the doll and her owner can dress alike. (We can't leave our contact info here, sorry.)
Teaching young girls to sew can be rewarding also. Look locally at fabric and quilt shops for classes. You might even find a class or information at your local 4H or Cooperative Extension sites. The money you spend on them will be well worth the investment.

You can try our site. We opened the store so that we could be frugal while helping our own daughters enjoy the American Girl fad. Now we offer clothes, shoes, furniture and more atsignificantly less than AG prices. We also offer an outfit a week for only $12 if you join our club. We have over 200 testimonials from our satisfied customers if you don't want to take my word for it (and why would you :-))

doesn't anyone have real American girls clothes for a cheap price not all people are rich you know.Is it that hard to be a little generous sometimes??????o m g how hard is it?i hope who ever choses the price on the stuff in the magazines should should think about all the little girls who have cry-ed over these things.[including me]all I'm saying is if American girls aren't just for rich people why should the prices be?

I'm 12 and I still enjoy american girl dolls. I think the best route would be to teach her to sew... (depending on her age, it might be a little hard) I took sewing classes when I was younger and now I can make my doll clothing, and I get to choose my own styles, colors, etc. (And it really fofilling after wards to see the finished product!) I hope this helped!:D

I'm Sarah and I have 5 AG dolls, my BFF sowed an ADORABLE outfit for her doll and it lasted a while, but she ended up throwing it away because it was silk- Anyway, I think you should teach her how to sow. Either that, or you could go down to what? Zanesville? (I don't know how to spell it!) And there's this one place where they have a little shopping spree day and they have TONS of 18" doll clothes where you can get them for like $5.00 and they're really nice! But anyway, you can still concider (don't know how to spell that either!!!) sowing! I wish you good luck! (you can get cheap fabric and Wal-Mart.)

Well you can buy some ag doll clothes or for another 18 inch doll at Burlingtons ,Marshalls etc. but i am a child to 9 about to be 10 and when i got my doll the clothes were like 24 low and up but i dont have alot of clothes only 2 outfits and 2 shoes but a ag doll come with a outfit

My best friend and neighbor's mom made me some pink and white booties for my american girl doll. i think sowing is cool and you can work up a great bond. im asking my mom if shell teach me how to sow because i think its so cool!

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