The fascination with collecting dolls has a long history. It’s not just about recapturing something perhaps lost from childhood as you grow up. It’s also about admiring the incredible workmanship that goes into some dolls, and the history behind where these designs came from.

We take a look at some of the most expensive dolls ever created, sold and bought. We’re talking the kind of money that could cover a car or a substantial down payment on a great house. From the sublime to the ridiculous, there’s no telling how far an avid collector might go to get the doll of their dreams.

German Kämmer & Reinhardt Character Doll

In 2014, the record for the most expensive doll was broken when a Kämmer & Reinhardt Character Doll went for $395 750 in auction. Bonhams in Knightsbridge, London, was the prestigious auctioneer that wielded the hammer on this particular sale, and it was for an incredibly rare character doll. There is no other recorded or known example of this style of doll, with its lifelike features, white dress and blue sash, auburn hair in pigtails and little straw hat.

It is thought that this doll was an experiment and never actually mass produced, adding to its allure for the avid collector. This would explain the very mature, almost haunted look on the doll’s face – quite different to the usual facial expression for a doll meant for children. The doll also features pierced ears, which is unique for the time period.

Madame Alexander Eloise

Since the sale of the above antique doll, many new and crazy dolls have been made and far outranked that delicate specimen in sale price. The Madame Alexander Eloise, for example, is a very new doll that was created by the designer of the same name. She only handmade five of these little girls. However, the low number in circulation is not the only thing that contributes to the price tag of $5 million.

The fact that the doll is dripping in designer names certainly helps. She is wearing an Oscar de la Renta fur coat, Christian Dior clothes, Katherine Baumann accessories and covered in Swarovski crystals and nine-carat diamonds.

Stefani Canturi Barbie

No list of expensive dolls would be complete without mentioning Barbie. She has been part of lives for so long that for many, a Barbie is what immediately pops into our heads when we think of the word doll. Now the most expensive version of this icon ever made was released back in 2010 and would have taken a chunk of your winnings.

She featured the classic long blond hair and many other traditional features – including very glamorous red lips and perfectly lined eyes with thick, luscious lashes. This doll got her name from the jewelry designer Stefano Canturi who created the incredible necklace and earrings she wears. The necklace features rare pink diamonds from Australia that are a carat each. All of this must have contributed to the hefty $302 500 that the doll went for at auction when she was released.

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