Starting Off... buying a head?

Jul 17, 2010

    1. So my rich neighbors recently paid me to take care of their dogs and plants. I got $80, $60 of which I still have. Next weekend I think I'm doing the same thing for a similar amount.
      So I was thinking, maybe I could start a collection by buying a head?
      I found one that someone's selling for $60, and I think it'd be a good start, so I can see if I like the style, the feel, the size, etc.
      If I don't like it, then I can sell it.
      If I do like it (hopefully this will be the case!) then I can use it as incentive to earn money for a body.
      It comes with a faceup and eyes already on it.

      So is this a good start? I'd appreciate your advice.
      Thanks a bunch!
      -Kara.boo

      PS: Wasn't sure where to put this; I hope this is an okay forum!
       
    2. Hmm... I personally, am glad I started out with a full doll. Mainly because buying seperate pieces to the dolls at different times can be a huge pain in the butt. You need to make sure the resin matches really closely, you never know whether or not your head will even fit on the body you buy for it, etc...

      And its /really/ hard to get a feel for the style of a doll with just a head. *shrug* I hope I was somewhat helpful? Maybe?
       
    3. My first doll started as just a head because the company doesn't make bodies. ^^ I've also bought a couple other dolls' heads before getting bodies for them. I think it can be a good way to get started without having to shell out the money for an entire doll all at once. However, I do recommend doing some research on resin matches for the head you get so you will know where to look when you have money for a body. :3
       
    4. I think if you want to get the feel and size of a BJD, you should see if there are any meetups in your area that you could attend (most organizers are fine with people who don't have BJDs yet attending, but you can ask and make sure). That will give you a much better idea of what BJDs are like than just a head, and chances are there will be a variety of sizes and companies respresented.

      If you do decide to buy a head first, make sure it's a head you actually like, not JUST the cheapest you can find. Do a little research into the head to see what bodies you can put it on (you can ask in the size-specific discussion thread for that company or ask for pictures in the photo request section) since different companies use different skin colours and often have different head and neck sizes. Check out the seller to make sure they're legit, especially if you're looking on eBay- there's a thread on bootlegged dolls/dealers in the Buying & Shipping Q&A subforum and bootlegged dolls are banned on DoA, but they do pop up on eBay. Even if the price is a great deal and you can resell it for what you paid, you still lose out on what you paid for shipping, so it's good to buy something you really like in the first place! :)
       
    5. I suggest saving up until you can afford a BJD you like. Buying a floating head is all well and good but if you're just going for something that you can afford, it might not necessarily be something that you like even. I understand the excitement of wanting to get one asap but sometimes waiting helps. Also, getting a body for a head might not be that simple as you might just end up with a floating head without a body for months, even a year. I still have my floating head because whenever I do come into funds I end up purchasing whole dolls instead of a body for my floating head. It's just difficult to get hold of the perfect resin match unless you get a standard floating head that has a body that is easy to get a hold of. Even then, a body is usually quite expensive, sometimes you might as well just purchase a full doll (check out the price list at LUTS for full dolls versus just a body and you'll get what I mean) and then you'll end up with one full doll and that one floating head all over again. It'll be better to figure out what kind of BJD you want and then save up for it or check out the marketplace and try to get a layaway. And if you still do decide to get a floating head, all the best with that. Either way, good luck!
       
    6. That's a perfectly reasonable way to start...if you like the head. My first doll was a floating head that I fell in love with and absolutely had to have. I was afraid that it wouldn't be available if I waited until I could afford the whole doll, so I just bought the head first. It was less financially painful that way, and I didn't have to keep worrying that he'd be sold out. :)
       
    7. I bought my first and second dolls close together and the second doll arrived first. The second doll was just a body - an SD13 boy body with no head. It was the first BJD anything I had seen in person, first doll I got to hold and admire. Strange that it was a headless thing but I knew at that point I was going to like my hobby. I loved the look of the sculpt, I liked the feel and weight of the resin. I anticipated the arrival of my first doll even more since he was going to be a complete doll.

      I don't think it's such a bad thing to start out with just a head. Once you're in the hobby buying heads and parts and eyes for dolls you don't own yet is par for the course. If you want to get started by buying a head you like then why not? There's not really a right or wrong way to buy dolls.
       
    8. I really agree with skwerlie--try to attend a local meetup. That will give you a really good idea of the sort of doll you might like; there will be many different types that you'll at least get to see in person. Dolls can look a lot different in person than in pictures. Also, the attendees should be able to answer any other questions you might have once you see dolls. Someone might even have a doll or head for sale that you'd like to buy.

      I also think it's important to buy a doll you like. You don't want to buy something you aren't terribly fond of, just to save a bit of money, if in the end you lose money re-selling when you decide you really don't want to keep it. If you think you'll be petsitting a few more times, you could save up quite a bit~ Although if you really like that head you've found that you can afford, that's a very happy coincidence.
       
    9. Thanks for all the advice, everyone! The thing is, not being able to drive yet, it would be difficult for me to attend a doll meetup in my area, though I will check to see if there are any.
      I do like the head. I'm not in love with it, but at this point most of the heads look similar to me anyway. It's not like I don't like it, either.
      As for resin matches, that's a good point. I'd definitely have to look into that a bit more. Maybe I should put a poll up... :- )
       
    10. i do think getting just a head is a good way to see if the hobby is for you, without a major investment. i do, however, think you should at least, "want/like" the head you are getting. i made the mistake of getting some of the least expensive heads i could find at first... to practice face ups... and see if i liked them.... but, i didn't really care about the particular sculpts i bought. so, in the end, i felt disappointed with my work, and with the heads in general. i find a lot of emotional attachment can develop between a buyer, and a certain sculpt..... some just tug at your heart, or haunt you... or amuse you..... i think, with no personal attachment to your "head" of choice.... you may not get the feeling of what this hobby can be... or lead to. you may feel you have wasted your hard earned money. try to find a head, or doll, that speaks to your heart...... :)
       
    11. I bought my first as a floating head, and I have never regretted it. I got her secondhand for a great deal, and she's been my little princess ever since. <3 But I knew that she was a doll that I wanted, because I looked at as many owner photos as I could before making my decision to jump in and get her. Do as much research as possible before you buy, so you don't end up regretting the purchase later. It can be more difficult than you'd think to sell off a head afterward, especially in this economy.

      (Aside: I also do not drive and live in MA, and that has never stopped me from going to meet-ups. ^_- Feel free to send me a PM if you'd like to discuss meets!)
       
    12. Hi, Kara.Boo!
      The first piece of resin I ever got my hands on was just a floating head too... I was saving for a full doll, then found the modded head for sale on the artist's dA. To be honest, it was an impulsive buy, but it was definitely a good choice, since I knew from the moment I saw it that I wanted it way more than the full doll I was saving for.
      All I can say is be sure you like it and really want it before buying. Never buy something just because it's there and you have the money.
      If you wanna get a feel for BJDs in general, I don't think just a head is enough. It would be better to wait a little and get a whole doll, or find someone else with a doll that you're able to see in person. I've joked with myself that I've personally owned part of a BJD and for that I feel more experienced already, but when you look at the big picture I've never handled the namesake joints or seen a fully customized BJD in person :sweat
      Floating heads are a little harder to bond with, too, since you can't really do much with them. Just getting a floating head to begin with raises the chance of being disappointed and/or selling it later...
      I also would not suggest attempting a hybrid right away. It can be risky, and buying pieces seperately gets quite costly when you factor in shipping and individual price differences.
      So like I previously said, there's no problem getting a solo head as your first doll-related buy, but look before you leap, and if you're looking to get the "Style, feel, and size" of a BJD, then a head probably isn't gonna cut it and it would be better to do so with an actual BJD...
       
    13. I started with a head. I actually I didn't buy a full doll until my third. Personally before you buy the head, check for resin comparisons, depending on the company you might have a hard time finding a body. My first dolls, his head was a popular sculpt, so it was easy to find a body that would work, but for my second, I had to go through bucketloads of comparisons and even then I just had to use my best judgement. Though their are excellent advantages to buying a head, it's a bummer if you can't buy a body right away and you just have a head lying around.
       
    14. Okay. I think I might wait, from what people have been saying. I'll wait through my birthday and probably Christmas and see how much money I've accumulated by then. I'll also check out the meet-up forum.
      Thank you to everyone who's commented... if anyone has anything different to say, I'd appreciate your opinion.
       
    15. You might not have to wait that long, since it sounds like you'll have around $140 after you house sit again. There are plenty of tinies and minis for sale at around $200 or some even for less. If you can get some babysitting/lawnmowing work you should be able to get a good doll by the end of the summer.

      Some sites I would look at are:
      http://mintoncardinc.com/dolls/
      http://denverdoll.com/
      http://junkyspot.com/obindex.html
      http://www.dollpeddlar.com/
       
    16. I bought a Lishe head on ebay a few years back before I really knew about BJDs, she was just beautiful and cheap for a BJD head at the time. It's where it all started and I don't regret a thing. Just be prepared for all the heartache and frustration that potentially comes with buying mismatched items, resin matching, proportions being all wrong. You can do all the research but there's still an element of hit and miss. It's all educational though :)
       
    17. That's how I started. I actually bought two heads at the same time because the company didn't offer bodies when I ordered them. The only reason I bought these heads as opposed to one whole doll was because I absolutely fell in love with the heads themselves. Don't rush into it and buy a head just for the sake of owning one. Do some research and find a head you love and buy that one, even if it's more expensive, it will be worth it.

      I'm in the same boat as you, not being old enough to drive or get a job, so I know how it feels, but that doesn't mean you have to settle for a doll you have lukewarm feelings for.
       
    18. Thank you for the sites! I'm not interested in getting a tiny or a mini though.
      I've actually come across all those sites except the last, so it'll be another thing to add to my folder of doll sites. Hopefully I can also persuade my parents into giving me money for my grades once school starts. I guess it isn't quite a lost cause... my birthday's in August, so that'll be good.
       
    19. from the way you're describing your income, it sounds like you don't have anything steady.
      And it doesn't sound like you'll be getting the body for the head anytime soon, thus it can be extremely discouraging.

      I'd really suggest saving up till you can afford a head and a body, either buying a head and body separately or buying a full doll.

      you also have to consider all the things that you need for the head.
      You're going to at least need eyes, then a wig, and if it's not painted you'll need to either pay someone to do a face up or buy the supplies to do it yourself.
      Those costs add up quick.

      I'd vote that you definitely save up some more did you can afford a full doll.
       
    20. I had a few dolls, sometimes I just got the head first, but to be honest. I got very bored with it, because I had to wait for the body. Right now I'm saving up for my shushu, I do have money enough to buy the head + clothes, but if I know myself, I will get bored of her, because I cannot do anything with her until she have a body.

      Everyone is different, but that's just me. But I hope you find out what to do!