Young babies will use a doll to cuddle, to love and find comfort in, much as so many do with soft toys. They will probably suck and chew on it too and therefore the doll must to be well made and safe. At Petalina we have a small range of what we would call comforters, which are like blanket squares made from soft velour or similar, usually with a little head. We also stock lots of other soft dolls which have human shaped cuddly bodies with lovely friendly faces to look at.
So how do you start to choose which doll to purchase for your little one? What size should it be and which make is best?
The most important thing to consider is safety. Always make sure that the doll has been safety tested, has a CE mark on it and that it is suitable for 0-3. Anything that isn’t suitable will have a warning to that effect on it (eg. not safe for 0-3 due to small parts/risk of suffocation). There shouldn’t be any loose parts that may come off or small parts that could be swallowed. It’s also best to avoid fur, lengths of wool and doll hair as a baby could breathe fibres in. Some of the products we sell just have a CE mark on it and therefore the manufacturers consider them to be safe for 0-3 but if they have long or fluffy hair we do not recommend them for a baby under 12 months old.
Size also needs to be considered as babies have tiny hands and therefore the doll needs to be small and lightweight. Cotton fabrics are preferable because it is easier to breathe through cotton than synthetic fibres. Finally, the doll will need to be washable to keep it hygienic and clean.
Which brands would I recommend that meet these requirements?
Corolle have a range called Mon Doudou which used to be known as BabiCorolle, a range of soft dolls in various sizes, some with pretty painted vinyl faces while some are entirely fabric. The vinyl used by Corolle is very soft, free from phthalates and is scented with vanilla (the real thing and not a chemical). Corolle dolls are designed in France and made in China to a very high standard as the quality and safety of their products is very important to Corolle. To see all the Mon Doudou dolls in stock at the moment click here.
Corolle BabiBear Nightlight and Melodies
Kathe Kruse manufacture many different types of baby comforters and dolls, all of which are designed and made with love in Europe to an incredibly high standard. I particularly love Puppa Milena a 36cm doll made from soft velour with the most beautiful hand painted phthalate free vinyl face. Other dolls in the Puppa range are now available wearing different outfits.
Puppa Milena by Kathe Kruse
Bonikka by Imajo are a range of rag dolls that are Fair Trade products that have been made in Sri Lanka. They are made using good quality fabrics to an excellent standard. Many of the dolls are suitable for children from birth.
Bonikka Baby Boy and Girl