What makes the Birthday Doll special for a Birthday?

A Birthday Doll is all about celebrating!  Celebrating life and celebrating who a child or parent is in a particular moment in time.  And of course - celebrating birthdays!  

Each Birthday Doll comes with a set of eighteen (18) individually numbered iron-on patches.  On a child’s birthday we encourage parents to establish a tradition where together with their child; they add a patch to their Birthday Doll to commemorate the child’s new age.  Perhaps this will happen first thing in the morning, or after the cake is served, or during some other special time the parent and child decide on; but together you and your child should apply the newest patch.  

By the time your child is eighteen-years of age, their Birthday Doll will have transformed many times over, similar to the way your child has changed throughout the years.   When you and the family look back on your child’s Birthday Doll you will possess a collection of memories - of playtimes, adventures, comforts; and birthday mornings spent cuddling and collaborating together to determine the newest patch location. 

Why do the dolls have ‘Fray’ at the end of their names (i.e.  Elephant Fray, Giraffe Fray, etc.)?

Birthday Dolls have designated portions of their body that have been intentionally designed to unravel (aka ‘fray’).    The process of fraying is an interesting one in that it does not happen immediately, but rather a thread will loosen with a playtime here, a group of threads will loosen with a washing there.   In the same way that your child at two-weeks-old is quite different from how they are at three-years-old, your child’s doll will be different at two-weeks, versus year-three, versus year-fourteen.   The dolls have been designed this way to gently remind parents to live in the moment, appreciate, and be patient with their child (and themselves!), as opposed to wishing away and longing for the next phase of life.  It may take some time for your child’s doll to reach its full fray capacity-- we encourage you not to rush the process; just like your child, his or her doll will get to where it needs to be in its own time.

How long will it take for my doll to arrive?

All Birthday Dolls are special and are made to order.  Please allow up to four (4) weeks for delivery.

My child’s birthday is really soon!  Can I get a doll ASAP? 

We will do our very best to make sure that your Birthday Doll is ready when you need it!  Just let us know your child’s birthday in the comments section of your order and the date you need it.  In general it’s best to order as early as possible though.

Can I include a gift note with my doll?

Of course!  When you order your Birthday Doll there is a section to include a note.   Just type in what you’d like to say and we’ll handwrite and include it with your package (Don’t worry, we’ll leave out the receipt!).

How are Birthday Dolls made?

All Birthday Dolls are proudly handcrafted in St. Petersburg, Florida, utilizing high quality linen, cotton, leather and wood materials.  Dolls are stuffed with a hypoallergenic polyfill fiber.  They are made to last a lifetime.  

How do I apply the birthday patches?

We include instructions in each envelope.   However, in case you’ve lost them, please see below.     NOTE:  We will also soon post a visual guide to adding the patches, so stay tuned!

  1. Preheat iron to medium heat, no steam
  2. Remove desired patch and gently peel off paper backing.  **You should see a shiny adhesive on the back of the patch**
  3. Together, parent and child select a location on your Birthday Doll where you would like to add this year’s patch.  Place patch with the number facing up and the adhesive side down
  4. To bond, press and hold the iron on the patch for 4-10 seconds
  5. Allow to cool.  Test to ensure the patch has been affixed to your Birthday Doll.  If patch is peeling up, re-iron for another 4-10 seconds
  6. Give a hug and enjoy this new stage of your journey!

 ** If the back of your patch is not shiny then the adhesive is likely still on the paper.  This occasionally happens—no need to worry!   If this occurs, carefully re-place paper onto the patch (shiny side of paper should face back side of the patch).   Iron 4-10 seconds; this will re-transfer the adhesive to the patch.  Then just follow steps two through six (2-6).

How do I care for my Birthday Doll?

Your Birthday Doll has been designed and crafted to endure.   With that, we expect that your child’s doll will get dirty and be washed many times over, so encourage your child to play! 

However, your Birthday Doll will require a bit of special care.  When it is time for a cleaning…

  1.  Fill a sink or tub with warm water
  2. Next, add a mild detergent and hand-wash and rinse (wash and rinse the doll and clothing separately)
  3. Lay flat to dry

*Note:  if your doll has leather straps, these should NOT be washed, as the washing process will cause them to dry out.

 Your Birthday Doll has come with an envelope of birthday patches to be used over eighteen (18) years.  We suggest that you keep your patches inside the envelope and then store the envelope in a safe, dry location – in a place that you’ll remember!  Then just take the envelope out once each year on your child’s birthday when it’s time to add the newest patch.

Have you always been The Birthday Doll Company?

Sort of!  Our concept of appreciation and commemoration has always been the same; however, we officially changed our name from Ieva Fray to The Birthday Doll Company in 2017.