Believable babies grow in popularity - FOX Carolina 21

Believable babies grow in popularity

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One of Michelle Fagan's original dolls. (File/FOX Carolina) One of Michelle Fagan's original dolls. (File/FOX Carolina)
Michelle Fagan original doll (Courtesy Michelle Fagan) Michelle Fagan original doll (Courtesy Michelle Fagan)
Michelle Fagan original doll (Courtesy Michelle Fagan) Michelle Fagan original doll (Courtesy Michelle Fagan)
LANDRUM, SC (FOX Carolina) -

There is a growing trend among doll collectors around the world.  Reborn babies and one-of-a-kind babies are being sold on-line at a growing rate. 

The people who buy them want a realistic looking doll.  These days, there are hundreds of artists who sell them on-line.

FOX Carolina recently visited an Upstate artist.  She lives in Spartanburg County and started creating baby dolls from scratch several years ago. 

Michelle Fagan was a collector before deciding to try her hand at making dolls.  She learned from another artist and through trial-and-error realized she could mold and shape dolls that people wanted to buy.  They contact her every day from around the world and are willing to pay about $1500 for each one.

We asked Michelle Fagan why so many people are interested in the dolls.  She said it could be that they lost a child, are empty-nesters, want to create a look-alike of their children who have grown, or simply like to collect dolls. 

Fagan's dolls start as clay, but can be reproduced in silicone and other materials to make them more life-like and more durable.  She can personalize the skin color, eye color, amount of hair, and facial expression. 

The dolls are filled with materials to make them soft and to weigh the same as a typical newborn baby.  They are dressed in handmade outfits that Michelle only adds to the overall quality of the doll.

It takes about a month to create one of the dolls, but Michelle is normally working on several at one time.   

She typically sells about forty of them in a year.  She admits the economy has slowed sales a bit, but tells us the holidays are always busy with collectors looking to add to their collection of realistic baby dolls.

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