When selecting a doll to make clothes for, Kruselings were my first choice. I was looking for a poseable doll that resembled a little girl of between five and eight years old, and one that was under twelve inches tall.
It took a while web-surfing my way through the maze of available dolls to eventually settle on a Kruseling doll, only to find that its popularity is mainly outside of the UK.
When looking online for UK sellers of Kruselings, there were only three retailers (plus Amazon ) showing up in searches and not a huge choice in stock. So far I’ve purchased three Kruselings, one from each retailer; Vera from My Doll Best Friend, Sofia from Liliana Dolls, Joy from KR Bears and Dolls.
Sonja Hartmann is the designer of Kruselings and she has a website that showcases the dolls, with links to eBay for purchasing them. (I would have thought it in the manufacturer’s best interest (Kathe Kruse (Germany), to actively promote Kruseling dolls in the UK, but my online searches don’t reveal much of that is going on; they must have their reasons for not doing so.)
Having spent countless hours web-searching for information about dolls, I’d discovered that Paola Reina have a Mini Amigas doll range. Being just 2cm smaller than Kruslings and with similar proportions, my Kruselings’ clothes also fit Mini Amigas. So, it was a perfect excuse for me to add a doll to my collection, for research purposes of course! For this little beauty I found the best price on Amazon.
Vera is also available on Amazon.
Here’s a close up of Mini Amiga Elena (left) and Kruseling Vera (right).
Here they are below, side by side. I think Vera looks more athletic and older than Elena, who has a different torso shape. But what about those knickers? The ones on Elena look like old-fashioned school knickers, but they are easier to get on an off than Vera’s, which are a snug fit and barely go over her bottom.
Here are their feet. Mini Amiga Elena has teeny tiny feet with chubby ankles (my Kruseling slider sandals are way too big for her). Kruselings have quite large feet with slim ankles but then those feet are probably designed to give stability for posing.
Here are their hands. Elena’s look quite dainty and bigger than Vera’s. But of course, Vera’s are movable.
Both brands claim their dolls are made of “high quality vinyl” but now I’m able to compare them, I much prefer the softer vinyl of the Paola Reina Mini Amigas to the hard vinyl of the Kruselings. Also, in places, the Kruseling feels as if it has a textured surface; not rough, but definitely not smooth. My ideal doll would be a hybrid of the two. Both are pretty but I’d like the posability of a Kruseling and the texture of a Paola Reina combined.
Here they both are wearing the same size crop top. It gives you an idea of the difference in size between them both.
There is no competition between them though for being able to pose. Poor Elena can’t bend her knees to sit down and so her legs go very wide; not ladylike at all.
Whereas Vera can sit better, although not completely upright with her legs extended.
Oh yes, Elena will definitely have to stand at tea parties!
Meanwhile, Kruselings’ popularity is growing. There is a public group on Facebook for sharing photos called Kruseling Adventures Group and then there’s Instagram hashtags #Kruselings and #KruselingsDolls with daily photos being posted.