Here’s a quick guide to getting started with buying stuff for your first (custom) Dollfie Dream. Wrote this up for a friend, might polish it up later if there’s interest.
Arcueid obviously did some shopping last Christmas…
This is arguably the most important part since it defines the shape of your character’s face. For pricing, you are best off going with standard head models. For anime style characters, the DDH07 or DDH09 heads are my recommendation. Note that they come unpainted. Buy from Volks store or second hand store or YAJ. Usually your second biggest cost next to the body. $50 for a standard model. Special model heads can easily be $200+. Custom pre-painted is up to the artist, usually found on YAJ or other user sale websites. See the DollfieDream forums for examples of what each head mold looks like and how people have customized theirs.
This is the character defining part. Doing faceups isn’t really the same as standard painting/makeup since the process is quite different (apply specific kinds of paints, chemical treat it, apply sealant, etc.). You are best to find someone experienced and commission them. Commission costs could be anywhere between $30-$100. Re-doing faceups is hard (because the removal process is destructive and damages the vinyl material) so I would suggest finding a good person with a good gallery of previous works. Start with the DollfieDream forums for user commissions. The Den of Angels forums also has a marketplace, but you need an invitation and reputation there to deal with anything. I had an invitation previously, but my account has probably been deactivated due to inactivity.
Lots of options and customization options since they’re quite easy to make (if you have the setup). Some places sell sample lens where you can just swap in printer-printed circles just to test things out, then actually have someone professionally make them. Volks has a limited selection, but they mostly all suck in my opinion. If you’ve browsed a lot and still can’t find what you want but can photoshop a design yourself, there’s people on the DollfieDream forums who can probably make them for you. Note that if you see 20mm/22mm/24mm/etc., its referring to the eye’s diameter. I recommend 22mm since 24mm is a bit big in my opinion. The way Dollfie eyes work is that they are held in place by putty (yes, even sticky tack works), so they are quite easy to swap (and also quite easy to get loose), see ArcheAngeli’s guide.
Lot and lot of choices. Note that some wigs do stain, so you may want to buy a “wig cap” if you plan on doing swappings between dark and light hair. You will also want to pick up some maintenance items such as wig oil for keeping the wig hair smooth and wig mist to keep the hair stylized. Note that doll wigs are different material than human and cosplay hair, so normal products wont work (and will probably damage). For combing, a toothbrush actually works plenty fine :P
You probably want to start off with a DDII or DDIII base body. DDIII offers a better range of flexibility than the DDII body and is recommended. The skin colour also varies between white, semi-white or normal.
Pick your poison: SS/S/M/L/L-shapely/L-flat/DDdy. There even exist an unofficial XXXL bust that you can find on YAJ, they’re kinda ridiculously funny (good luck finding clothing for it). There’s also Peach Pai soft silicon busts if you like that kind of stuff.
Lots of posing options. I personally use the large-type hands as they show better in photos, but you might not like them cause of proportions. Only the official Volks hands are compatible with Dollfie bodies, do not use unofficial ones for other kinds of dolls (unless they explicitly say DD compatible).
Assuming you go for a standard DDII/DDIII body, look for Dollfie Dream/DD or Super Dollfie/SD parts only. For tops, also make sure the bust size is right: S/M/L/DDdy will almost always be specified. Do not try to get an S or M outfit for a L bust or vice versa as the clothes just won’t fit. MSD = Mini Super Dollfie and DDS = Dollfie Dream Sister and will usually be too small. SD13/SD15/SD17 are Super Dollfies sizes, so they may not fit. Note that some outfits aren’t properly colour-treated and so the clothing dye will stain on the absorbent Dollfie vinyl skin. If you are worried about staining, I recommend getting a body suit to protect – note that it will look a bit ugly if there’s exposed skin. I recommend the CoolCat ones though Volks also has an official one as well. Shoes should only be for DD size; do not try to use non-DD shoes, they will likely not fit.
Dollfies are ~60cm tall and 1/3 scale, so anything miniature around that scale will probably work fine. You can try to use baby toys, but they will probably actually be a bit too big. I tend to buy most of my stuff from Taobao in batch orders since they’re cheap.
Lot of choices here. There’s metal stands with wood/metal base, and there’s plastic flexible figma-like ones. There’s also some decent third party ones from CoolCat and Dollfie World. I originally got the Volks figma-like one, but it broke very easily, even after I crazy-clue fixed it a couple of times. Ended up getting a metal saddle stand and don’t regret.
I like the official Volks SD bag as its big enough for Arc + Lily or Arc + lots of clothes, but the CoolCat one is a cheaper option. Of course, you can always wrap in a blanket and stuff in a backpack if you want.
* Official Volks website
* Links to places for eyes
* Links to places for various stuff
* Dollfie Dream forums user shops
* Figure.fm user sales
* CoolCats webstore
* Nine9style webstore
* DollHouse/SEN Taobao store
* Tata’s Paradise Taobao store
* Air Castle Taobao store
* General search for Dollfie clothes on Taobao
* General search for Dollfie clothes on Yahoo Auctions Japan
Your own custom Dollfie Dream like Arcueid =w=