Well! It’s been awhile since I rambled here, so let’s have at it. I’ve been thinking about how so many aspects of the life I lead center Whiteness. Most of the TV and movies I watch, many of the books I read, most of the news I see/read/hear, most of my colleagues, most of my profession, most of the people I know, even: they’re White and/or White people are at the center. This isn’t reflective of the world in general and yet it’s one of the ways in which I experience the world. This is something I think about a lot as I do my work – it’s a current topic of discussion for many librarians as we realize the many ways in which our collections and spaces are promoting a White-centered (and able- and cis- and male-centered, and on and on) worldview.
Thinking about this has led me to another area in my life that centers Whiteness, which is Blythe. Not getting into the collectors (most of those I personally know in the hobby are White, but I’ve not done the research to know generally in the hobby. I know there are many folks in Japan in the hobby, but that’s a generalization and I don’t have any numbers to back it up), the Blythes themselves made by Takara are mostly White. There are a few with skin tones that are slightly darker and maybe designed to be Asian? (I’ve never seen this specifically called out in a doll description – if it has and I missed it, please say so in the comments!), but no stock dolls are Black or overtly non-White. This has been weighing on my mind for awhile and I’ve been searching ebay and etsy and Dolly adoption looking for customs but there are so very few available and many are (rightfully, because they’re amazing) out of my price range. I would love to buy one of the gorgeous custom art dolls from My Delicious Bliss, but they are way out of the price range that I could convince myself to be in. So for now I’m monitoring the custom dolls that I could afford, most of which are going to be customs made from fake/TBL/factory Blythes (or a factory doll actually made with Black skin tone). I’m a little conflicted on that angle as well, as I generally don’t feel great about the factory girls, but if it’s the only way I can add a Black Blythe to my collection, then I it’s a compromise I’m probably willing to make. The knitting patterns I write and publish for Blythe all feature my own dolls as models – and right now, they’re all White. This needs to change, so I’m making a commitment to change it. If any of you spot any dolls available, please let me know! In the meantime I’ll continue to haunt the online sales places and set aside some knitting pattern money for this specific purpose.
It’s another hat! This time named for Hepzibah Smith, who was a Hufflepuff (yay!) but allowed herself to be charmed by Tom Riddle (boo!). It’s got a rib pattern going from brim to crown, and you can add a bobble or not, depending on your taste.
Sometimes you want a relatively simple hat that just fits really well. This is that hat for Blythe! It’s a good fit, but not a tight one – it works really well for traveling because it keeps Blythe’s hair in place without leaving hat head when you take it off. It’s also stylish and ready for winter activities!
I designed this sweater as a crop top perfect for layering or showing off a lovely skirt. It has short sleeves and is just the right length to hit Blythe just at the waist. It’s also quite easy to make!
The Halloween Blythe Swap was a lot of fun again this year! My partner has now had the chance to post her photos of her received package, so I, in turn, was able to upload my video of what I sent to her.
What I sent:
And what I received:
Thanks to both my partners, Jane and Jenna, for such an awesome swap!
Petite Blythe, like Daisy pictured here, is a great doll for taking along around town or while traveling. She’s small and fits easily in a pocket or purse, and she’s much less likely to suffer damage to her face than a Middie or Neo Blythe. One thing I’ve noticed, though, is that her hair can get a bit static-y and disheveled, and having a hat on helps to keep that from happening. This hat is very easy to knit! It’s all in one piece and takes only a few minutes to complete.
This month I participated in a swap – as usual, for Blythe, but this time specifically for a 12×12″ quilt. This swap originated in an online group for Blythe sewing enthusiasts and I was super geeked to see it. I’ve been thinking of making a Blythe-sized quilt for some time and this was the perfect excuse!
My partner and I have swapped before so we kind of know each other’s tastes a bit, which made this so much fun. Here’s a video of me unwrapping the quilt she sent me (also includes pics of the one I sent to her).
It’s not that easy to find clothes for Petite Blythe, and I’m always looking for separates that I can switch up, so I made this cute little wrap skirt pattern. It’s super easy and knits up in just a few minutes – make one in every color!