Up until two years ago, I was a casual collector of Integrity dolls. Since I broke up with Barbie 12 years ago, I’d only been seeing the 16” girls. But the occasional Fashion Royalty model did catch my eye, especially the younger NU Face girls. I eventually broke down and purchased Pretty Calculated Erin, followed by her partner in crime, Urban Outfitting Nadja. A number of factors attracted me to these dolls, including their hilarious back stories (no one weaves a soap opera like Integrity does), many non-Caucasian sculpts, and, of course, those clothes. The detail, fit, and accessories remain, IMHO, unsurpassed. And the price for what you get is very good. In time, Colette and Ayumi joined the crowd, and I fell for a few Vanessas and her sister, Veronique. But I kept the group to around a dozen.
And then I joined the W Club.
The W Club (Named for the prodigy doll-designer turned human-designer Jason Wu) is open each year to the public, and it is the best deal in Dolldom. For a modest membership fee, collectors are privy to a host of perks and exclusive dolls. Members may choose a variety of price levels, ranging from $50 for basic membership, perks, and coupons, to more expensive packages that include exclusive club dolls. This brochure will give you all the details. (And read them thoroughly before purchasing. It can get complicated distinguishing among the many options available to you.) A video brochure is available here.
Membership in the W Club made me a full-fledged Integrity collector. There are many exclusives to choose from throughout the year, and if I don’t like one, I usually fall for the next one. I hear the online community (available only to members) is very entertaining and informative (although I generally don’t participate due to other demands on my time). Members also get first dibs on attending the Integrity Convention, which I’ve now been to twice. There is a members-only event at the convention, which generally features kick-ass dolls (an industry term).
So even for the mildly curious, I highly recommend trying out the W Club for a year. For only $50, you are entitled to some cool perks, including $20 toward a club doll. So even if nothing tickles your fancy, you won’t be out too much.
Below is a peek at this year’s first (of many) club dolls, available for purchase with club membership until Feb. 16, when the open membership period ends. I will likely pass on Poppy and the dude, although I admit that he would be a hilarious addition to my group. I will definitely get Agnes, as I have a newfound appreciation for Fashion Royalty’s “bitchy” girls. For the longest time, I couldn’t understand what collectors saw in these sour faces. But now they make me laugh, and they are typically dressed in the sharpest outfits. (Although I will admit that this Agnes’ dress doesn’t do too much for me. Still, cool accessories.)
So there’s my testimonial. If you decide to join, welcome to the club!