Imagine my delight when I heard that a new doll shared its name with a member of the ParentDish team. Yes, the infinitely fragrant Katie has been reborn in doll form.
The resemblance between Katie Doll and Katie Lee really is uncanny - both have shiny locks that Cheryl Cole would be proud of. Both are heavily into crochet and like to accessorise with a beanie hat and scarf. Both like geek chic Converse trainers, hoodies and laptop bags. The only thing the doll lacks is a nice pregnant bump. Though she does have a spare wig and a special website. Hang on, KL's got a special website too. This is getting confusing...
This Katie is part of the new range of Liv Dolls, just released on 1st November by Spinmaster. The nice thing about these dolls is that they're not too girlie or unnaturally pneumatic. The emphasis is on friendship, as Katie also has chums Daniela, Sophie and Alexis to play with. Each of the dolls comes with a unique access code for www.livworld.com, opening up an online world where girls can become best friends with the Liv dolls as they interact with daily diaries, games, virtual wardrobes and much more. They retail at £19.99 and are widely available from major toyshops now.
Another new group of dolls making their debut this year from MGA Entertainment are the Best Friends Club, BFC Ink. The emphasis with these dolls is also on friendship, and being part of a supportive network. They have a fashion range, and interactive online journals and clubs. BFC, Ink™. is anchored by a literary program through Parragon Publishing. The program consists of a series of tween targeted fiction books, written in a journal format by each character and featuring topics for girls aged 7-12 years old.
The BFC, Ink™ range is widely available nationwide, with prices starting around £14.99. Find out more from the BFCink website.
Also new on the toy catwalk this year are the range of Moxie Girlz dolls.
These dolls claim to encourage creativity through music, fashion and hair art. The four characters (Lexa, Avery, Sasha and Sophina) are available in different themes for interactive play: Art-titude™ (where you can personalise their clothes), Magic Hair (create unique hair styles) and Jammaz™ (express yourself through music).
I would imagine a lot of grumpy pedants like me would be put off this range by all the creative spelling, but since it's usually things that parents don't like that children like the most, maybe that's the point. I might buy one for my daughter, but also chuck in a Scrabble set and decent dictionary as well. And Magic Hair does sound GREAT.
Moxie Girlz are widely available now, prices start at £9.99. Find out more from their website.
But if it's something more traditional you're after - maybe a first doll for a very little girl, or a baby doll for a child who's expecting a new sibling - take a look at the fantastic Dollymania site. Their latest offerings are these cute rag dolls from Pomme-Pidou, and they have also expanded their range of the quality French brand of adorable dolls, Corolle.