21 answers

American Girl Dolls - Pittsburgh,PA

My daughter is 3 1/2 and one of her favorite toys is her baby doll. She does the whole mommy pretend play thing with all the accessories. I've noticed that she keeps pointing out dolls that look like L. girls instead of "baby" dolls, which she has. When I was growing up the big thing was the Cabbage Patch dolls so I thought about getting her a special doll.The first one that always pops into my head is the American Girl doll. So, here are my questions: What is the appeal? I have trouble spending so much money on a doll when I can get her one that looks so similar for a lot less. I think the accessories and clothing is just asinine! I saw a bed on the site for $129! My daughters crib was $200!!! I just don't get it, but if they are worth it and I can understand the appeal I would consider it given that my daughter LOVES dolls. Please fill me! Thanks for the help!

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So What Happened?™

Thanks for all the advice so far. I think I will look at the Target dolls as so many suggested. I have seen them and those were actually the ones my daughter was pointing out. MAYBE when she is older I will think about getting her an AG doll. She does take very good care of her dolls, but she is still just 3 1/2. Thanks again!!

Featured Answers

It depends on the child but I wouldn't buy my 9 yr old a 129$ doll.
Thats just too much , there are a line of dolls at Target that look very similar to the american girl dolls, with the AG you are paying for the name, that's about it.
The ones at Target aren't nearly the price. Also you can still buy cabbage patch dolls, why not get her one of those , they stil have the soft bodies so she could sleep with it if she wanted to.

2 moms found this helpful

3 1/2 is way too young. My 8 and 10 yr old daughters LOVE their AG dolls, but really, it's only been in the last YEAR that they really had any interest in them. Now they're like part of the family (yeah, I sometimes have to babysit my "granddaughters" when my girls have to go do something that doesn't include their dolls). They're referred to by name, get tucked into bed every night, etc. So I'm glad we got them the dolls (for VERY special occasions like Christmas or B'day), but I'm also glad we waited until the girls were much older.

Also, if you do eventually get her an AG doll, spend the $$ on the doll, but get the clothes, accessories and EVERYTHING else on eBay or at Target, NOT through the AG store (waaaaay too expensive!).

1 mom found this helpful

More Answers

Lots of moms will say that any doll is the same - but that's not true. An American Girl Doll is quite special (kind of like getting that first Tiffany's box.... if you've never opened one, then any jewelry is OK. But once you've opened it... you know there is no substitute).

The appeal is an almost cult-like love!!!! I think the biggest draw is that it looks like them and they have outfits that match for your kid. My daughter got one for her 4th b'day (we did the dinner at the American Girl store and it was absolutely the most fabulous experience - I can give you more details if you want).

Anyway - my daughter is 11 and STILL pulls hers out from time to time (also we did NOT get the bitty baby, at 4 my daughter was done with babies too and wanted the big girl doll). She had a couple other dolls (A Laura Ashley doll as well as a Target knock-off) and she always preferred the American Girl doll.

Also - when she gets older there are TONS of books and movies that are absolutely PHENOMENAL! Stuff about your body and peer pressure. They give great advice and the movies are VERY appropriate and always have a lesson and way to 'fix' your problem that is good advice.

UPDATED TO ADD: As I said, my daughter got hers at 4 and NEVER wrote on or harmed her doll. But, my daughter didn't write on ANY of her toys.... so I guess if you have a destructive kid or one who doesn't understand not to use marker on her toys... then yes you probably don't want to spend money on toys.
The bitty babies are for ages 3+ and they are the same construction etc as the "My American Girl" dolls, so really it just depends on the girl. The older ones say 8+ only because the clothing starts at a size 6 and I would say most girls are into baby dolls until they are older. However, if you want your daughter and doll to be matched in the same clothes there are separates that you can get a 4 - my daughter got jeans and the American Girl sweatshirt (just like the doll) and I think a swimsuit.

Plus - shopping for the doll and stuff is an "event" something that you can make a day and go together. My daughter and I still go in there an look around the store and it's just a lovely experience. They've moved into Water Tower and have several floors and you can spend time just browsing and talking with your daughter.

3 moms found this helpful

It depends on the child but I wouldn't buy my 9 yr old a 129$ doll.
Thats just too much , there are a line of dolls at Target that look very similar to the american girl dolls, with the AG you are paying for the name, that's about it.
The ones at Target aren't nearly the price. Also you can still buy cabbage patch dolls, why not get her one of those , they stil have the soft bodies so she could sleep with it if she wanted to.

2 moms found this helpful

It seems like the majority opininon is that she is too young and sorry to say I agree. My daughter's ages 5 and 7 want one especially the seven year old. I told her when she is 10 if she still wants it I will get it for her this year I am getting the knock off from Target and we will work with that. Last year my seven year old had to had to had to have a monster hight clawdeen wolf doll for christmas. Well this doll was sold out everywhere, so I went on e-bay and purchased it for $35.00 the doll retails anywhere from $12-$15 bucks. All of January/Feb/March she carried this doll around with her and her opening the gift was priceless but today that doll is naked in her doll storage bin along with Barbie, Frankie-stein, Bratz dolls, etc. $35.00 I could deal with that $100.00 plus I can't deal so until she is older and understands the value I just can't do it. I would urge you to get the knock off and see how she does. Good luck.

2 moms found this helpful

I am obviously in the minority here when I say that I think that American Girl Dolls are FABULOUS! They are well made, beautiful collectibles and come with amazing stories about morals, values, ethics and kindness. The books, videos and magazine are added bonus. The address real life issues like bullying, disabilities and environmental topics. They are expensive, however when your daughter is ready for them, they can be one of the best purchases.

That being said, 3 is WAY too young for one. We got my daughter her first one on her fifth birthday. We bought her Emily, who is a L. girl who comes from London to live in the US while WWII is going on. We bought it because a month later we were moving to London, Emily came with amazing stories about England. My daughter is now 6 and has taken wonderful care of her AG doll. She changes her into pj's every night and puts her to bed. She even puts her in my bedroom when a lot of kids are coming over so no one will ruin her.

If you want to invest in the AG doll I say go for it, but wait a bit for your daughter to show you true interest in them.

2 moms found this helpful

They aren't worth it, unless you want to get into spending TONS of money on a doll and her clothes and accessories. You can buy really nice dolls at Target that look like L. girls (I forget the brand) but they are adorable and about a fourth the price. They also have way cheaper accessories...beds, chairs, horses, etc...for this size doll. You're paying for a trend and a name...what does a young child care about that? Nothing. Don't start a materialistic trend in your toddler...go to Target and get her one of those dolls. My daughter has one.

2 moms found this helpful

Makes no sense at all. If the stuff were worth that kind of money, you wouldn't be able to let her play with it for fear of it losing it's resale value.

1 mom found this helpful

My girls are 3.5 and 6.5. My MIL bought each of them a Bitty Baby for their 3rd b-day and she buys them the "Big Girl" American Girl Doll when they turn 6. So, my older daughter has the big girl and my youngest doesn't. This causes a problem because of course L. sis wants to play with the doll. I think the dolls are very nice and very well made, but I wouldn't have paid that much for a doll if they hadn't been gifts. The My Generation dolls at Target look very similar. I buy clothes for ours at craft shows because the AG clothes are SO pricey (more than I spend on my kids clothes!) So, for your daughter, I'd go with the knock off at this point. She can always get a real AG when she's older if she's still into it!

1 mom found this helpful

3 1/2 is way too young. My 8 and 10 yr old daughters LOVE their AG dolls, but really, it's only been in the last YEAR that they really had any interest in them. Now they're like part of the family (yeah, I sometimes have to babysit my "granddaughters" when my girls have to go do something that doesn't include their dolls). They're referred to by name, get tucked into bed every night, etc. So I'm glad we got them the dolls (for VERY special occasions like Christmas or B'day), but I'm also glad we waited until the girls were much older.

Also, if you do eventually get her an AG doll, spend the $$ on the doll, but get the clothes, accessories and EVERYTHING else on eBay or at Target, NOT through the AG store (waaaaay too expensive!).

1 mom found this helpful

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