In the past couple of decades, toys have certainly come a long way in providing a greater range of diversity and representation for kids. The ability to purchase dolls, action figures and games that feature characteristics (whether it’s skin tone, hair texture, type of clothing or cultural uniqueness) is important to parents, gift givers and children. Toy companies have made efforts to broaden their brand and inventory, but the Makie Doll has definitely taken it one step further.
Just like people, no two Makies are the same.
The First 3-D Printed Doll
Although they’re not the first toy company to produce a more diverse line of dolls, the UK-based company, Makies, is the first to sell this type of safety-certified 3-D printed toy at retail…in the world. The advanced technology used by the company generates a hand-crafted face that is individually constructed. Makies embraces the beauty of individual expressiveness and offers toys that promote a healthy body shape which strays from the ultra-slender physique of Barbie.
The dolls cost $115 USD, and can be custom-designed for a young gift recipient. You’ll get to select the clothing they’ll wear, and indicate a preferred skin color, gender and hairstyle of the doll. Another hope of the company is to make dolls with facial characteristics that duplicate the appearance of a child – such as having the same birthmark.
Customers build their own Makie doll at mymakie.com, and in two weeks, a custom-made 10-inch doll is shipped to their (or a gift recipient’s) doorstep. There is also an option to purchase pre-made Makies, which customers can ‘adopt.’ Sometimes, the company produces Limited Edition Makies, as shown above.
A Line of Dolls with Disabilities
However, what is really cool about Makies is that in response to a viral Facebook campaign using the hashtag #ToyLikeMe, the company has also answered the call to further expand the level of diversity available in their doll department.
The 3-D printing process used to create a Makie Doll also allows for the production of a line of dolls representing an array of disabilities, which offers a wider scope of unique possibilities for gifting a doll.
Their newest additions to the lineup include:
- dolls with hearing aids
- those that use walking sticks and canes
- some with visible birthmarks and scars
In the future, the company hopes to launch a wheelchair-bound doll as well. And, this is just the tip of the iceberg, as the company is currently gathering suggestions for new dolls on their website.
Accessories for Makie Dolls
The company also sells accessories, such as glasses, earrings, footwear and clothing (even really attractive knitwear), which are all purchased separately. Just added to their inventory is a handful of multi-colored hearing aids for the dolls, including cochlear implants. Also, if anything should happen to the feet, legs, arms or hands of a Makie doll, the company sells ‘Bits and Parts’ in various skin tones as replacements.
Accessory packs also help shape the personality of the doll, such as the Kawaii Accessory Pack shown above, which comes with Pink Cat Ear Headband, Yellow ‘smartphone’ with ears, Pink Cupcake Handbag with cherry, and Pink Bow Dolly Shoes.
Although the company is located in the United Kingdom, Makies ship worldwide, so you can gift one of these unique dolls to anyone, anywhere.
Also, there is free shipping to the US and UK when your purchase totals over $39 USD.