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Rude to Ask to Touch Other's Dolls?

Jul 3, 2009

    1. I read around a lot of comments about doll-owners being 'terrified' of others touching their dolls, some owners even admitting to just being curt and rude to those who ask so they 'get the message' and don't bother them about it. Grabby strangers who try to take/handle a doll without asking can be rude, I understand, but that's not what I'm talking about.

      I'm new to dolls, and have mostly seen them in pictures or, a few times, during cons or such (but only glances) . I plan to go to Otakon, and maybe try and check out a nearby doll meet or two. I want to see dolls close up, now that I'm really interested in them, and I was especially hoping to get a chance to touch and handle a few dolls a little before I committed to buying anything. But now I feel like maybe asking doll-owners to touch or handle their dolls would be rude, and I should just look without saying anything. Is this the general attitude for doll-owners, or is it OK to ask without being considered offensive/rude/careless?

      If asking doll-owners isn't the best option, what other way is there to get a hands-on experience with BJD?

      Thank you,
    2. providing your hards are clean and you can be seen to handle them correctly i dont think its rude at all.

      if people dont want to be asked they shouldn't bring their dolls to meets. if they just want people to look they could bring a picture instead.
    3. I think it simply depends on the person. I know some people who are incredibly eager to explain their doll, to let others look, to touch, who are very open to the idea. Others are more shy. They want to go to meet-ups, and share their dolls with others, but in a more personal way. They may want to share in the experience of owning dolls, but you have to keep in mind these things are very sentimental and personal to some people, so there might be hesitation. In my experience though, most people are rather friendly.

      Personally, it also depends on the person asking, whether they seem very polite, very careful - or if they're just asking offhand, with a relatively careless air.
    4. I agree, too! ^__^

      I'd think that if I were to ask, I'd just make sure my hands were clean, and I didn't look like I'd dirty their doll. Also, at a con you'll be likely to be carrying lots of things or wearing a costume- make sure your hands are free so you won't drop it (even if you know you can handle a bag and a doll or something, the person would probably want your hands completely free ^_^) and nothing on your costume that could scratch or color the resin.

      After all that, just make sure your calm (I've seen hyperactive people at cons, even the meet if it's part of the larger con). People get really excited at the conventions, you don't want to look like you're insane or otherwise waaay too hyper to handle the person's important possessions that cost them more than $100. There are a lot of people at the con, you need to make sure you distinguish yourself as one of the sane (or at least calm XD) ones before they'll consider giving you their doll to hold.

      Now, that should be enough for a lot of the owners to allow you to look at their doll a little closer, it's just important to keep that trust. Stay beside the owner, in their sight, ect. If you take the doll and run off to another corner of the meet or even dash behind a group to sit down or show a friend, this will make the owner panic. I would, like when you go to the store and your child runs off, I guess.

      And just deal with the ruder people kindly. Chances are they're just trying to indeed 'get their point across', or maybe they've had a bad experience with letting someone hold their dolls. So, just say something like, "Oh, thanks anyway," and maybe stick around to look. If you ask them a few polite questions and aren't invasive, then who knows, maybe they'll reconsider.

      :3 I've been to one meet at a con, and I didn't have my dolls so I just got a spectator view. I was too nervous to ask somebody to hold a doll, but looking back- most of those people would've most likely gladly let me! ^___^ You won't know until you ask, and I'd say that it is NOT rude. The worst they could say is "No," or a ruder version of "No." XDDD
    5. Much better to ask than not to ask, that's for sure! :)
    6. I have found most people are willing to let others reasonably handle their dolls (I am) if asked before hand. Though that's not to say everyone is. What Shadow Jam said above about clean hands and handling them gently and with more care than if it was your own pretty much outline most people's main concerns.

      I don't consider it rude to ask and frankly don't see why it would be it's just a request and a show of interest in the doll. However some people are more protective than others which is why they may decline you, if they are outright mean about it though I would consider them rude. I'd say if you want to get some experience handling them then I'd say go for it and ask. I think there are likely just as many people out there who are willing to let you then there are who aren't.

      Another tip I could give you is if you do go to a meet you can always scope out who likely is willing to let you touch their doll by waiting a bit as seeing if they let others hand them.
    7. I'll more then likely just ask if I could shake their doll by the hand so I can feel what the resin feels like..I'd be too nervous to hold their doll completely ^^;

      [Though would that make them think I was mad? xD]
    8. Oh god i love the way this topic title cuts off on the main page xD

      For me it's rather a case of the doll itself. I don't mind people touching, posing or playing with my dolls. But with my Delphine i'm more likely to just let them have a quick hold the take her back.
    9. Picking up a doll without asking: Rude. And an owner of a doll has every right to be rude in return.

      Asking to hold a doll: Polite, and the owner, whether or not they say yes or no, should in turn be polite and grateful that the person asked first. If they think it's rude, they need to take the stick out of their ass.

      I'm also going to Otakon and I'd let you hold my dolly if you'd like. ^_^
    10. I think it's more rude to grab than to ask. At least if you have asked, the owner has the option of allowing you or saying no. It's nice to have a choice when it comes to your own possessions :p
    11. Just adding to what Emmychu said:

      Also, if at all possible try and be sitting down on the ground when handling someone else's doll for the first time. A friend of mine who has an MSD (a friend, mind you, not even a stranger, who will probably be more frightful of drops since they don't know you) insisted I be sitting on the floor before handing me hers to hold for the first time. :sweat And I'm glad she did for many reasons.

      1. They can be alot heavier then you'd think at first.
      2. If you have them standing on the ground already and are just handling them a bit the owner will most likely be more comfortable with it since there is such little space to fall, unlike if you were standing which for most is a 4+ foot drop.
      3. It makes you realize just how careful you should be when handling someone else's posession regardless, specially with the price. Doing so shows you are serious about being responsible with their doll and are doing everything in your power to absolutely not hurt their doll.

      Really, people just want to know you'll be calm, responsible and respectful of their dolls. Just think about what ways you could do that and do it!;) Very few people in the doll world would turn down someone the chance to hold their dolls if they see them acting in such a responsible manner. Although keep in mind some still will.

      (That being said, I still have yet to hold an SD and hope I will get the chance in the next few months when I go to some conventions and meet-ups. :))

      Oh! And anothing thing that may help: If you're planning to go to a meet-up you've seen a thread for or something which is in the area, it'd be only polite to ask in the thread if anyone who is attending the meet would mind allowing you to hold one of their dolls when you attend. You'll most likely have a few people who would be more then happy to let you and even mentor you a bit beforehand.:)

      Really, I don't find it rude to ask to hold someone's doll. I consider it rude to just snatch away someone's doll, however. It's a pretty natural reaction for someone who is clearly already interested in the hobby to want to hold one.
    12. If you ask first, then I don't see how it could be conceived as rude. Personally, as a doll owner, I don't mind letting people see and handle my dolls. As long as I'm there supervising, there's no issue. Most of the meetups I go to are pretty laid back as well. Providing the individual isn't being rough (and if I'm right there I can prevent that), then they're unlikely to get damaged--after all, it isn't like they don't get handled all the time anyway. The two things I warn people about that have never handled a bjd before is that they are heavy, and to just avoid touching their faceup :) When it comes to fellow doll people, I really don't worry about it. Of all the meetups I've been to in various places, there has only ever been one person that has ever made me nervous.
    13. I agree, if you ask, it cannot really be described as rude. It's not like touching a doll is a major taboo in our society.

      I took my MSD to a con last year, with a friend who had another doll with her. There was also a stand of dolls on display there. They had notices saying "Please don't touch these dolls!" on them, but during the doll meet session of the con (and at other doll meets I've been to with the same people) the dolls were passed around and everyone got to 'play' with each others. While we were at the Con, some people asked about the dolls, and I actually offered mine to lots of people to hold. Most declined because they'd "heard how expensive they are". In my opinion, it's never rude to ask, of course people might want to hold a doll if they're curious and as long as they're careful (no stickyness or dirt or sharp things or hyperness or shiftiness*gasp* i'll stop listing now, it's been said before) I'd always let them.

      At doll meets I always ask before handling the dolls of someone I don't know, but they've never said 'no'.
    14. Although I never been to a doll meeting.
      I would think if the owner is kind enough to let you hold their doll, never touch the face up! It would be most polite, I think.
    15. I'd start out talking to them, asking questions or commenting on the doll, showing your interested in buying one and would like a chance to be hands on, as you said. I think that will give you a higher chance of a yes then just "pretty doll can i hold?" XD I got handed the first doll i held without even realizing what was going on. I now own said doll, and am glad i got to hold him and play with him a bit so i already knew some things about him when i got him. Personally i think as long as you are polite and respectful no one should be rude to you because then they are just being rude. But yeah, talk to them, then ask, and you should be just fine!
    16. Handling someone's dolls is just like handling any other expensive item belonging to someone else -- with care and respect, for both object and owner. Definitely ask before you touch a doll, it's common courtesy :) And it's worth letting the owner know it's your first time holding/posing them. If ever nervous, give the doll back or put it down -- at a recent meet-up when I held other owners' dolls for the first time, I was comfortable holding the MSDs and SDs, but was nervous of posing a 70cm doll on the table, so I let the owner stand him up even though she allowed me to. I think it's a good idea to sit down to be extra careful. And if you have any questions at all, doesn't hurt to ask :) After all, you're amongst experts.
    17. In my experience, it's always been an ask-before-touch policy. There seem to be plenty of "unspoken" rules that alot of doll collectors seem to take as common sense. The ones I follow, and prefer if others follow concerning my dolls are:

      -Talk first! This applies to pretty much anything, but make sure you're not the random grabby person in the crowd! Ask questions, get a feel for the owner. Some folks will NOT want their dolls touched, and you'll get pretty quick at spotting them with just a bit of conversation.

      -Make sure your hands are clean. I don't want grubby hands on my dolls, and I'm sure nobody else does, either.

      -Ask before touching. You would do the same to, say, meeting a new dog, or touching anything that someone might consider precious.

      -NEVER touch the faceup. Try to avoid touching fingernails as well if they're manicured.

      -Handle with care and caution. Think about how much money has gone into the doll, and whether or not you'd be willing to pay to replace or repair. Remember that a doll isn't just a monetary investment--it's also an emotional one! You certainly wouldn't want someone to flail about with an infant all willy-nilly... and those are a bit more resilient than some dolls! XD

      -*grin* This one's one of my own personal rules... please don't drop trou/look under skirts/grope the dolls.

      -Remember to return the doll, if you've been holding it. (It can be easy to forget you're holding something while deep in conversation!)

      -Say "Thank you!" A little manners go along way.

      Some owners are very comfortable with passing their dolls around and letting others handle them. Some aren't. Just be respectful of both the doll and the owner, and I guarantee you'll make a friend for life!

      (Also, we're pretty liberal about wanting to spread our addictions, aren't we?)
    18. Most people think it's rude when you pick a doll up and you didn't ask, but if you ask there's no problem.
      I like it when people play with my dolls, but I like to be asked first so I know where my doll is and I can point out I'd rather not have anyone touch it's face (because of the face-up).
    19. I only have two rules about it.

      Ask before touching

      don't touch the face.

      Thats the only rule I have about people touching my doll, I dont mind it people don't muss her wig or touch her face :)
    20. Pretty much anyone I'd be willing to talk to in the first place can hold my doll. So, like, if you're a normal person, sure. If you're wearing cat ears and a poorly fitting corset and I can't even understand what you're blathering about (I'm sure you know the kind of person I'm talking about), then no and I'm probably not going to be terribly polite about it xD Also, if you're a doll owner too and your dolls are looking pretty gnarly, I'm not going to let you touch either. This mostly goes for conventions, because that's the only time I really see people who would want to hold him in the first place.