I love the dolls in my “gang”, just the sight of them each day brings a smile to my face, all those cute little characters gazing up at me, so sweet. Not all the dolls I own have that effect, however, and I suppose given I have written such positive reviews about each doll up to now, its time to look at the ones that gain a rather less enamoured response.
So, here is Piper, she is a Sigikid doll from their Die Puppe range, introduced in 2011. I’m familiar with Sigikid from their weird but wonderful Beasts range, and the stuffed horse I got for my Katy doll to ride a few years ago. Piper was a cheer-up present from my parents in Spring 2012 when I was ill in hospital and feeling very fed up with the world: the doll was on my wishlist and I picked her as a gift from my doll wishlist because she was cheaper than the Kidz n Cats etc dolls. At the time she was very welcome – picking her out, getting excited about her arrival, having her turn up in hospital re-dressed in the purple outfit they also treated me to, getting to hold her.. Yes, she was much adored.
Its rather a shame then that she’s spent much of the ensuing months tucked up in a box in the cupboard. I just don’t like her that much.
The Die Puppe range (the name means “the doll” in German) consists of 6 cloth bodied dolls with vinyl heads, arms and legs, rooted hair and painted eyes. They have a variety of hair and eye colours and all are dressed in extremely bright outfits – too bright for my tastes, hence the quick change into the purple clothes shown in the photos. The one I chose had brown eyes and what looked on the image to be rich auburn hair, though in reality its more brown than red. Rather oddly, the dolls haven’t been given names, merely code numbers, so Piper here is officially Sigikid Die Puppe nr-26031. Her original outfit consisted of a red tunic with yellow swirl print over a red and yellow striped top, with red shorts and yellow slippers (with red dots).
My first issue once I was home and thinking a bit more clearly, and the “ooh doll, let’s cuddle” stage had worn off (she is wonderfully cuddly, I do admit..) was that she doesn’t look that much like the product photo. Her face is less rounded, and I’d love to know how they got the dolls to stand so straight and tall because she don’t stand up. She is a floppy doll.
All the dolls thus far have been photographed standing against this background, but I only just managed to lean Piper up long enough for a couple of shots before she toppled over. The reason for this is clear when she is undressed – rather than the standard cloth body with full length vinyl arms and legs jointed at the shoulders that we see with American Girl, Design-a-Friend, Gali Girls etc her limbs begin past the expected joints, giving her very floppy flexible shoulders and hips, which are oddly flat:
She has quite a chunky body also – although she is 18″ tall like the Gotz and Kidz dolls, she is much broader in the shoulders and cannot share clothes with them. She’s too big for even American Girl clothes, but not quite the right size to wear newborn baby clothes either. And her feet are too small to wear Gotz etc shoes, strangely enough. I had great fun today double checking all of this, as I’d hoped the loose AG dresses I have might work, but no.
Luckily, Trisha at KR Bears & Dolls was well aware of this and recommends on the Die Puppe page the outfits designed for another Sigikid doll, named Quendy – I’m beginning to see why they stuck to numbers with naming ideas like that! The purple outfit shown, which consists of beige corduroy trousers, a long-sleeved purple top, the beige and purple loose jacket and purple slippers is from that range and fits perfectly, and there are several more outfits along similar lines. The clothes are of quite simple design, and very easy to put on and remove – Piper’s floppy limbs help with this also, suggesting the thinking behind this body shape.
She has a mass of long brown hair, coming down in waves, which looks great and feels soft to the touch, and is easily styled. It needs a lot of styling mind you, I ended up brushing her hair between almost every shot here, which isn’t something I normally need to do, but it was getting so messy and flyaway with just moving her around.
The doll and clothing are very well made, good quality fabric and material, nicely sculpted arms and legs. She does sit down well, at least. And she is very cuddly indeed. The soft body, floppy limbs, easily changed clothes and bright colours in the original outfits are definitely all designed with a younger owner in mind, in fact I think she’d be a very good choice as a first doll for a youngster, bearing in mind the clothes issue of course. She’s more substantial than the Design-a-Friend dolls which are about the closest comparable doll at a reasonable price, and having been made aware of some of the issues faced by children with limited hand/eye co-ordination in my post about the Dolls for Downs dolls, would be an excellent alternative for someone needing simpler fastenings and fabrics.
Its just the face I’m not keen on. And those eyes. I do tend to prefer glass (plastic) eyes but my Zwergnase doll Jessie has painted eyes which are lively and engaging. Piper’s are just dull.
Jessie’s eyes and then Piper’s. The Zwergnase Junior dolls are more than twice the price so clearly that plays a part but its a disappointing result all the same.
Its rather a plain face and the eyes lack life, this is a doll rather than a little sculpted character – I’ve been spoilt by the other dolls in the “gang” thus far, and have higher expectations. She’s sweet, she’s just not as special as, well, name any of my dolls really!
I finally came up with a solution for the dull eyes, and Piper now wears purple shades, which obscure her eyes somewhat. I really don’t think its a good sign that a doll only looks attractive with its features hidden, mind, but they do at least add the character she was sorely lacking.
She was ideal for me at the time, company and a cheering thing to distract me whilst in hospital, and gave good cuddles when I needed them but overall Piper is destined to go back in her box once more. She deserved this outing though, and hopefully the Die Puppe dolls are delighting a younger (and less picky) audience than myself.
Official doll product image ©Sigikid