For inner child and inner plutocrat, ‘dollfies’ that appreciate in valueWhen “dollfie” enthusiasts buy one of these doll-like figures (thus, dollfie), they say, “I adopted a kid.”
Adults buying dolls is not uncommon; usually the purchase is made as a gift for a child. But at Anime Studio, whose owner, Kim Hyoung-woo, calls her business a “hobby and entertainment shop,” the adult buying the dollfie is making the purchase for the child within.
Anime Studio is full of toys -- model kits of various types, including model cars, action figures and dollfies.
The common thread binding the toys together is that most of them are animation or game characters. And customers buy to collect, not for play. Or at least that’s what they say.
According to Mr. Kim, toy maniacs consider the toys as akin to portfolio holdings. “The value of some dolls gets higher as time passes, because they are expensive and not mass-produced,” Mr. Kim says. The most expensive is the “super dollfie.” Prices range from 800,000 won ($680) to over one million won. Super dollfies are about 60 centimeters (24 inches) tall, and are ball-jointed so that their arms and legs move freely.
Anime Studio sells not only ready-made dollfies but also parts so that customers can build their own “kids.” You can buy their bodies, heads, wigs, eyeballs and clothes.
Mr. Kim says the clothes for the dollfies are kept seasonal: “Dollfie maniacs cannot stand looking at their ‘kids’ wearing a coat in the summer.”
Action figures are also popular, such as Neo and Trinity of the “Matrix” film series, pictured at left, which cost between 250,000 won and 300,000 won.
Not everything is expensive. Figures without moveable joints cost about 30,000 won. Trading figures go for less than 10,000 won.
If you’re looking for new collector’s items or a hobby ― or mania ― check out Anime Studio.
Theme: Dolls for adults
Telephone: (02) 363-2572
Hours: 11 a.m. 10:30 p.m.
Location: Songam B/D, 90-85,
Daehyeon-dong, Seodaemun-gu, Seoul
by Park Sung-ha