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How Did You Know?

Mar 4, 2012

    1. My grandmother just told me she's going to be writing me a check, and I'm about to get my first BJD for an early birthday gift. However, now that I have the money, I'm feeling a bit nervous. This is a new hobby for me, and it is a bit expensive. So I have one question:

      How did you know this hobby was for you?

      I have never been to a meet, never seen a doll in real life, and I'm a bit nervous to make that plunge. Is that normal? Thank you for your help.

      Mods, feel free to delete this if a thread exists already or move it if it's in the wrong spot.

      EDIT: Thank you so much for everyone who responded. Not only have you helped me a whole bunch, I can see now (that my doll is home) that everyone was right: If you never try, you'll never know. I'm certainly enjoying this hobby and I've only had Allison for two weeks. I hope this helps others as well who feel they are in the same boat as I was. Thanks again! :)
    2. Being nervous is fine, you are about to take a journey in to a new world with your doll companion. Now is this doll one that you want for you or are you getting a brand or mold other people have told you to get. If this is your doll and your dream then buy. What a wonderful grandma you have too.

      What doll are you going to get?
    3. Simple answer: I didn't. I had never seen a BJD in real life before I took the plunge and bought one. I had moments before she arrived where I did question if this was for me. It's such an unusual hobby and I had never been that interested in dolls prior to discovering BJDs. I was also anxious about the money spent, I am generally a thrifty person and I rarely make expensive purchases on luxury items.

      Worst case scenario, if you find this hobby isn't for you then you can always sell your doll and probably gain back most of what you spent, and just chalk it up to experience.
    4. Before you buy in haste, you really should try to attend a local meetup to see some dolls in person. This will give you the opportunity to see the various sizes in real life and will give you an idea of the size you might want to try first. That way, you can begin your search for the right doll for you with a little more information. It can be scary to walk into a room full of strangers, but as soon as you introduce yourself to someone and tell them about your quest, I am sure you will fit right in. Most doll owners are very happy to talk about their dolls to interested newbies. Good luck!
    5. I had never been to a meet-up, never seen a doll in real-life, but I had already wanted one for two and a half years when I got my first.
      I bought a cheaper one, and different size than the one I originally wanted, actually I picked the cheapest Yo-SD I could find which I still liked the looks of. That was stupid of me, because if I had just saved the money I could have gotten my dream doll earlier than I now did. Even though I felt this hobby was for me, I still didn't take the chance on a more expensive doll.
      However, when I got my cheap(er) little girl in the mail and unpacked her, I knew at once that I'd been right and the hobby was for me, and even though she wasn't my dream doll, I still love her (especially now when I've gotten my dream doll too).
      Point is, if you feel the hobby is for you, I'd say follow your feelings, and pick the doll you want the most at first. If you're still reluctant, you could do as me and choose a cheaper doll, but the chance is great you won't become as attached to him/her as the one you want the most.
      Worst case, you could sell it again, and thus get at least a good percentage of the money you spent back.
    6. I originally fell in love with and bought a particular doll; that she was a resin BJD was secondary, really, just another kind of plastic, so what?. Once I got my hands on her, though--the resin felt wonderful and warm in my hands, she posed like no other doll I'd had, and that I could change her hair and eyes was a revolutionary idea to me. I was lost from that point, just head over heels in love with BJDs. Love the doll first, the rest will follow on its own.
    7. DollyKim: Yes, this doll that I want is the one I want to buy and I've been staring at her for a good long while, haha! I'm hoping to get a Kid Delf, but I've also been looking at other companies. I don't really have other people pressuring me to buy another sculpt if I don't want it since most of my family is a little reluctant to help out (besides my grandma).
    8. Get the one you love. And in this hobby if you don't bond, you can always resell. I didn't know any local owners until after I got my first, so there was no way I could see one in person. But when he was opened, it was love at first sight!

      If you've been staring at her for a long time, then that's the one you'll be happy with, hopefully.
    9. I knew I'd love it because I love dolls period. Figurines and all that fun stuff. Plus lolita and goth stuff and well... yeah.
    10. Well, I guess there's no knowing for sure. But if you've been admiring that doll for a long time and can picture yourself in the hobby, it's generally one that doesn't disappoint. And look! You're into it enough to have made a DoA account (which is more difficult to get into than your average hobby website).
      Worst comes to worst, kid delfs are great, affordable dolls and not difficult to sell. You'd probably get the majority of your money back if you decide to sell her.
    11. Jumping into any new hobby can be nerve-wracking! That's absolutely normal and part of the fun of it. I have been a long-time doll collector, starting with Barbie, so when I moved into BJDs I did my homework. I scoured DoA for information, looked at dozens of different dolls and websites, talked to other collectors.

      While I'd never been to a doll meet, I was fortunate enough to meet a woman at a convention who had brought one of hers and she was kind enough to let me hold him and ask questions. That was the last bit of encouragement I needed and once I got home, I quickly found the doll I wanted (that's her in my avatar) and ordered her. And I've been crazy about them ever since.

      You'll find the doll for your and whether you go on to buy more or just keep the one, you'll have a great time in this hobby!
    12. Gosh, um... I guess I didn't really know for sure until I actually held my first bit of dollie resin. My practice head arrived before my 'real' doll and just holding this head and handling it felt good :D. By that time, of course, I'd already ordered a complete doll (and I knew next to nothing about BJDs when I ordered him).

      I have always liked dolls in general, so there was that... I was pretty sure I was going to love my doll, just because he was cute and freckly and a doll - but the ABJD and hobby aspect I wasn't that sure about. I'm still getting 'confirmed' in my choice whenever I hold my dolls, make things for them and work on them. You can't really know until you've touched resin, really handled a doll, removed a head, ... When these things feel good to you, then you are definitely an ABJD person, is what I would say. For me, doing face-ups and sanding and (eep! haven't found the courage for that yet, but I know I will one day!) restringing and enjoying it deeply is what made me realise that this hobby is really for me :).

      Which doesn't mean you can't just love and enjoy dolls without working on them. Feeling happy because you see one is quite enough ;).
    13. I knew because I love dolls. I saw my first picture of a bjd (Volks' Shirou Tachibana) many years ago, but I didn't see one in person until A-kon in 2010. I loved how the doll just gave off a sense of realness because of the way it was constructed. Barbie's arm was articulated in one spot when I was a kid: her shoulders. I wanted a doll that could stand up and be, well, "real!" I didn't actually hold a doll until a few minutes after talking to a girl at that same con. I knew this particular branch of the doll hobby was for me because of the customizing aspect and the sheer amount of detail that goes into everything. Realistic tread on the bottom of doll shoes, eyes in every color and pattern under the sun and imagination with the muscle pattern on the irises.... I was in awe and so excited. Sadly, most of my willingness to go "crazy" and experiment was spent on my Barbies as a kid, but the desire for a doll that I could make exactly as I wished never went away. This hobby allows me to indulge that wish and I love it!!
    14. When I bought my first doll I didn't know enough about them to realize that it was a "hobby" or that there was even a community out there. I just wanted the doll. I had a vague idea that I might try and do his faceup someday, but that was about it. It wasn't until after I got him, that I saw what could be done with them, knew I wanted more than one, and became involved in the community.

      So basically, I had no idea if this was the hobby for me or not.

      I would say if you like art of any kind, you can fit BJDs into your life. If you like simply looking at pretty things, or making up stories or any kind of hands on creating, BJDs are a good fit. It's a versatile hobby, like the dolls, you can customize it to fit your needs :)
    15. It's okay to be nervous, alot of us hesitated with going through with it, at least, I did.

      Somewhat like you, I'd never been to a meet, couldn't get a membership here, and I only saw one bjd in person for a total of 30 seconds [I was at an anime convention]. But I really wanted the doll, and it had nothing to do with being submerged into this hobby. If the hobby's not for you, you can always sell back what you bought, nothing is final, except for that which requires money and death.

      Don't worry about anything else, all that matters is how much you truly like this doll. That and just making sure it has a wig and possibly some clothes to wear when it comes home! But that all comes down to you, if this doll is truly what you want, everything else will follow.
    16. I didn't get a chance to hold a doll in real life either, until I bought my own. My advice: don't settle for a doll. Buy the one you really like, even if it is more expensive. I was never a huge doll fan until I had a BJD, but I knew I was hooked when I was on DoA all the time and planning which ones I would like to own. Your doll tastes may change over time, so I recommend starting with the doll you've been interested in for the longest. However, it seems like you have that part figured out, so the next challenge is finding the courage to make the plunge :)
    17. It's not unusual to feel a little nervous about your first doll purchase, because it is a lot of money. However, if it's something you really feel that you could enjoy then going ahead and trying it out could open up lots of fun opportunities for you. I never saw a bjd in real life before my first doll arrived, and I ordered before finding DoA -- I had seen a picture of a Happy Doll on an art site and began looking at as many company sites as I could find. I knew I wanted one pretty well straight off, and got into that obsessive thing that I do when I'm really fascinated and excited by something. I joined DoA shortly after ordering and spent the next money reading like crazy while I waited for him to arrive.

      There were a lot fewer companies then, so choosing a first doll wasn't quite so difficult. I was nervous and excited when I ordered him from Angel Region. I still have him too -- he'll turn 7 this summer :) Look at lots of different dolls, and check out owner pics in the galleries and databases of any sculpts your seriously considering -- it will give you a better idea of what the doll will look like.
    18. It fit me so perfectly it is hard to describe how excited I was when I found this group of people. I was already doing this type of stuff with
      My model horses but that was a much harder because They aren't pose-able and I didn't have any nice dolls to use as my characters so it all had to be in my imagination.

      Also, when I was younger I used to do the exact same thing with
      My sister and our barbies. We had elaborate worlds and would sew amazing outfits for them so it was similar enough that I knew this hobbie would be a good fit!
    19. I also bought a bjd before I had ever seen one. I am a little bit of a perfectionist and I am actually not so good at art, so I was nervous.

      My first bjd was a Volks Myu msd, which needs to be assembled, face up and all. When I got her, I fell in love, even though I was scared about doing her make up. However, no matter how bad at drawing I am, I found that I am actually good at doing face ups. This hobby showed me what I am good at, and I would never have known about any of this if I hadn't started.

      As for which doll and being nervous about the price, the most I can say is that you shouldn't buy a doll unless you are totally in love with it from the pictures. The one you obsess about while you're going to sleep at night should be the one you get. Don't settle for one that is cheaper or smaller just because you're not sure how a big one is going to be like and vice versa. If you follow what you love, then you'll be happy.

      And if you aren't happy with the one you thought you loved so much, even then you aren't stuck. You can sell it and get another one you might like. So don't worry about it! You'll be fine, and I think you'll love your doll when you get it even though you may feel apprehensive now.

      Good luck and I can't wait to see pictures of your new doll when it comes :)
    20. I had my first SD and an MSD on order, along with a hoard of off topics, before I went to my first meet. If you can go to one and get an idea of sizes great, if not don't worry. Had I known how big a 60 was I might not have got my first but then we wouldn't have all the memories we have. There is nothing like your 'first doll'.

      The only time it was vitally helpful to see a certain size was with my first Yo-SD. By then I had from 12 to 70cm but needed to be reassured the big sister I wanted was bigger than her baby brother.