A birthday post on time! Oh man all I’m doing a birthday post ON a birthday and it’s extra incredible because this has been a bonkers week with a super sick kid. The weather has also not been great. But last Sunday we had a few hours of decent weather before it got cold and rainy and, knowing Kirsten’s birthday was coming up, I took Kirsten and Addy out for some photos.
Kirsten was one of the dolls that got me back into collecting as an adult. I loved pioneers and the Oregon Trail as a kid and my godmother had given me all Kirsten’s books, but I never got the doll, so when I found out they were retired, I ran to eBay to buy Kirsten and Felicity. Of course, since I didn’t do ANY research beforehand, I wound up with two Mattel dolls and just didn’t quite click with them, though sometimes I regret getting rid of my Kirsten. She didn’t look like book Kirsten to me, but she was a pretty doll.
Did I get rid of this brown dress? I didn’t remember making it and don’t remember seeing it in her clothing box… maybe I put it in the “for kids to play with someday” box? Hm…
Anyway, the hunt was on for the perfect Kirsten and one day she popped up on eBay, a white body Kirsten with the sweetest little face. Unfortunately, she was dirty, had cut hair, and her fingers on one hand had been chewed off… But I bought her anyway, scraped the paint off her face, and eventually hunted down donor arms.
The wig was a harder fine. I tried several blonde wigs but they all just looked too modern next to Kirsten’s. Finally I took a chance on some Engelpuppen wigs from Germany and the curly banged blond wig was perfect! Makes sense since that company made the original WB wigs. Maybe book Kirsten didn’t have pretty soft curls but I think she’s lovely and am happy with how she’s turned out, even with my kind of terrible face paint refresh.
Poor Kirsten gets overlooked a lot. Her time period isn’t my favorite to sew for since there isn’t a ton of variety, and her things on the second-hand market are soooo pricy. Someday I do hope to track down pretty much her entire collection, because I just love all the wood and painting of her pieces.
Ugh, now I’m feeling guilty. Maybe I’ll make another dress for her next. 🙂 I apreciate that she’s such a sweet girl, and I do really like her character in the books a lot too. I even like that simply by existing, Kirsten’s presence in the American Girl line-up helps reiterate that being born in the country is not what makes you an American, and that this country is made up of people born all over the place who found their way here (in both good and bad ways).
So Happy Birthday, Kirsten! I promise to make you a new dress soon.