Once upon a time, boys and girls utilized very scripted (and very limited) play when it came to dolls. The world had Mommy and Daddy dolls, “career doll” sets, baby, toddler and even tween or tween dolls, each with its own backstory crafted by the manufacturer, not by the kid.
This idea of one-job-only has been especially true of queen and princess dolls, who until recently were designed to look pretty or debonair, go to balls, find a royal spouse du jour, then get tossed into the closet for a rainy day.
The take-home was that royal dolls didn’t really do much, leaving kids to wonder:
A Princess for the New Millennium
The landscape of fantasy dolls is changing as kids seek toys that encourage exploration, new ideas and lots of action. In other words, children want dolls that are just like them.
Princess Dolls Prove Beauty Isn’t Everything (But It’s an Option)
In the modern world, queen and princess dolls are designed to be grab-and-go and beautiful. The backstories tend to be open-ended, allowing kids to create their own adventures.
That means kids can envision their queen dolls as strong, sassy or silly; different nationalities and cultures; book worms, ballerinas, even astronauts. There’s no limit to what the doll can do, which of course translates to your child having no limits, either.
Princess Dolls Empower Kids
In the 20th century, most of the riding and rescuing in fairy tales was performed by princesses or kings. That’s fine and makes for a fun story, but why limit things?
Dolls like Queen of the Castle Lottie are less about gigantic taffeta dresses and more about mobility. It’s fine to have a princess doll look every inch the part. But doll manufacturers today are mindful of the fact that kids want their dolls to run, jump, swim and more.
Because real royalty has the reputation of making the rules, queen dolls give kids the confidence to take charge of their own play. That means kids create play stories that are less about being saved from a tower and more about exploring their own abilities and strengths.
They Encourage Compassion
If you were queen for a day, what would you do? How would you treat your subjects? What would you come up with in order to make sure everyone in the kingdom is fed, happy, has a job?
Power doesn’t just mean ordering subjects around. A princess or queen doll is the perfect opportunity for helping a child to learn that there’s responsibility involved, too. In fact, many kids love opportunities to think of ways to help others.
Being a hero could mean feeding a hungry family, reuniting lost loved ones, tending to the sick, or exploring new lands to live in. And yes, it can mean riding that noble steed, too!
Today’s dolls need to be geared toward today’s kids. Dolls that look like real children rather than adults help kids really get into the adventure. So do fun accessories. After that, all it takes is a child’s unique personality and creativity to make playtime epic.
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