Dolls are a wonderful toy for children and a beautiful keepsake for adults. Collecting dolls, however, can be a ridiculously expensive hobby with some dolls costing thousands, even millions to procure. Whether their expense is due to the quality of the materials they are made from, their status as sought-after collectables or by the craftsmanship put into them, rare and expensive dolls never cease to fascinate and intrigue.
The very first production of Barbie was in 1959 and was sold for $3. Barbie Dolls from this era feature a black and white bathing suit and the classical golden Barbie hair. Modelled after a German doll and designed by the founders of Mattel the Barbie would come to be an incredibly popular gift for young girls. A mint condition 1959 Barbie has been known to fetch of $27,000 at auction, however, it is possible to get hold of this classic 50’s doll for $8000 U.S.
Stefano Canturi Barbie:
The original Barbie might be pricey but other iterations of Barbie are worth a fortune. The Stefano Canturi Barbie is worth over $305,000 and sports her very own diamond necklace and stunning, shapely black eveningwear. Designed by Australian designer Stefano Canturi the ludicrously expensive Barbie was sold to raise money for the Breast Cancer Association.
Original G.I. Joe:
Created by Hasbro in 1963, G.I Joe was seen by many as a boy’s version of Babie. But an original G.I. Joe will fetch a better price than the original Barbie being sold on eBay for a whopping $200,000 in 2003. The doll has 21 moveable parts and is a prototype of the later, highly popular toys that were modelled to be a more advanced toy soldier. The prototype, hidden from sight for over 50 years still has immaculately hand-stitched clothing and an army rucksack.
Less a doll and more an intricate robotic machine this creation featuring over 2,000 parts is possibly the most expensive doll in the world. It stands 4 foot tall and is a depiction of a young man with a sword. L’Oiseleur translates as “The Bird Trainer” and is fashioned from silk, satin, porcelain and polished steel. In addition to a sword, he carries a flute and is surrounded by birds. He moves independently and features specially crafted glass eyes. L’Oiseleur is worth over six million dollars and is a true work of art and ingenuity.
Madame Alexander Eloise:
Madame Alexander designed this five million dollar doll giving it not only her namesake but also a wardrobe of Christian Doir clothing. There are only five dolls of her kind and she comes with Oscar de la Renta furs and accessories that are not only designed by Katherine Baumann but fashioned from Swarovski crystals and 9-carat diamonds. She is designed to be an adorable little girl that can be dressed and undressed like Barbie.