Your kids are getting American Girl dolls because that Christmas, yet the clothes and also accessories are super expensive. Now what perform you do?

In 2016, Kohl’s and also American Girl announced your plans to sell Lea, 2016 Girl of the Year, doll accessories and also the brand-new line of Wellie Wishers. Although the dolls room only obtainable in-store, the partnership detailed a convenient method for families who don’t live close to an American Girl save to acquire easy accessibility to this products.

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A couple of years ago, my nieces Bella and also Maggie (not their real names) to be treated to a visit come the American Girl keep in Chicago where they chose their dolls. Five year old Maggie automatically zeroed in top top Rebecca, who was dressed in her favorite color. Six year old Bella to be pickier, at first enamored through Grace, briefly considering Addy, and ultimately settling on Maryellen.

Following after the girls together they explored the store, their mother, grandmother and also I were every left stunned by the price tags on clothing and accessories. Many of the outfits we experienced were $36 or more. A pets for your doll – a stuffed animal roughly the size of my fist – to be $28. A doll-sized bicycle? $115. Seriously. Ns paid less than that for mine real, in reality rideable, grown increase bike.

And for this reason the three adults sprang into action finding alternatives. Us quickly found plenty the knockoff garments lines. My mother and also I are both quite crafty, and also there are lots of doll clothes patterns out there come sew, knit and crochet. Ns dug around in my yarn stash to watch what I could whip up quickly, and both girls to be ecstatic come get new knitted hats for your babies on Christmas Day.

Neither Bella no one Maggie cared that the knitted hats didn’t come from American Girl. And also that’s a wonderfully an excellent thing. Not only does it median that outfitting these dolls will be less complicated on ours wallets, it likewise vastly broadens the possibilities for doing so.

Stick come knockoff doll clothing and accessories

American Girl isn’t the only 18-inch doll manufacturer the end there. Most significant toy retailers have actually their very own knockoff version. At Target, it’s our Generation. Walmart has actually My Life As. Amazon is a endowment trove of garments from lesser known brands favor Dollie & Me and also Sophia’s, frequently Prime eligible and cheaper than on their residence websites.

These were some of the ideal off-brand wardrobe collections we found:

All of this are lot cheaper than American Girl brand outfits and fit American Girl dolls just fine. The top quality is great and the cuteness factor is sky high.

But because that the skeptics the end there who could wonder if the knockoffs truly stand up to main American Girl merch, may we current the following challenge:

Can girlfriend Tell i beg your pardon One is from American Girl?

Most of the kids who love their American Girl dolls care an ext about the doll 보다 the brand of clothing that they wear. Remember just how thrilled Bella and also Maggie were v their handknitted baby hats? In fact, we’re betting many grown ups would certainly be tough pressed to spot the official merch. Check out these next by side comparisons to see precisely how similar outfits and also accessories from various other 18-inch doll brands can be come the real thing.

Left: Treat Seat for Dolls – $30 at American GirlRight: our Generation Clip-On Chair – $19.99 in ~ Target

When you have actually lunch at American Girl Place, your dolls space seated in ~ the table through you utilizing a distinct seat that clips on to the table, and it’s a wonderful upselling gimmick. What little girl wouldn’t desire one after that? The American Girl variation is $30, but Target sell a comparable clip-on chair because that $19.99 that also come in four different really cute patterns and includes a tray and also lunch collection complete v tiny utensils.

Our Generation dress to Twirl Outfit – $12.99 at Target

Check out this precious ballet twirl outfit, complete with small shoes and all in classic ballet pink. The American Girl version prices $15 more than a comparable outfit from our Generation at Target.

Sophia’s Plaid Pink Doll PJs with Slippers – $13.95 in ~ Amazon

Here’s another set of pink doll PJs. The set is plaid and also comes with slippers. It’s half the price the the American Doll version. Would certainly your tiny one know the difference?

Left: Badger Basket Trundle Doll Bunk Bed through Ladder – $40.99 in ~ WalmartRight: American Girl Bunk Bed & Bedding – $75 at American Girl

The doll-size bunk bed from ours Generation consists of realistic touches like a ladder and also guard rail, contrasted to American Girl’s overly simplistic four-post design. The bed from Walmart is relatively simple, but it contains a trundle bed come accommodate a 3rd doll. I beg your pardon of these choices would you choose?

P.S. You totally need to inspect out Etsy, too.

A fast look in ~ the 18-inch doll clothing accessible on Etsy proves the handmade doesn’t need to be expensive. Many of the outfits you’ll uncover here space priced top top par through the commercially-made our Generation and Journey brands from Target and also Toys R Us. Plus, the tradition nature that Etsy provides it a heck of a lot of fun to browse, not to cite that you have the right to coordinate your kid’s other interests v your doll a lot an ext easily than you have the right to elsewhere.

Bella has actually been really into Paris lately.

Paris Sparkle / Eiffel Tower / Ooh La La by JillRodgersDesigns – $15.95

Their auntie might be a bit an ext into Star Wars.

Left: Star battles Darth Vader Doll dress by JustaTad4Dolls – $20Right: Star Wars design template Outfit by sewcutebymary – $15

Basically, everything you or your youngsters are into, Etsy’s probably gained you spanned with one outfit for her American Girl doll.

Make your own adorable doll clothes

My mother can sew. Once upon a time, she made an entire Barbie wardrobe for my sister and also I because that Christmas and it to be glorious.

Looking approximately for sewing patterns, there are plenty native McCall’s and also Simplicity (found in abundance at JoAnn and, but my favorite patterns come indigenous Etsy, wherein the designs seem to be a lot an ext on-trend:

Left: Doll Hoodie dress Pattern by MyChildhoodTreasures – $4.99Middle: Wind chilled Coat sample by ManySmallFriends – $6.03Right: JANES Doll shoe Pattern through PixieFairePatterns – $3.99

Personally, I’m a knitter. Together I listed in the intro, i whipped out a pair doll hats simply in time because that Christmas using a totally free pattern I uncovered on Ravelry.

I’ll it is in honest, a the majority of the knitting and crocheting I’ve watched for dolls can look homemade in a well-meaning but not particularly appealing way, and I host my knitting to a quite high standard these days. However with a great eye for color and the appropriate pattern, the results deserve to be nothing short of spectacular. The top quality on these caught my eye and maybe, maybe made it right into my Ravelry queue:

Left: Love mine Doll pullover by Jodi Lewanda – complimentary patternMiddle: Olive Cardigan through Steph Wylie – $5 patternRight: Whidbey through Deb Denair – $3.65 pattern

And Don’t Forget corresponding Girl & Doll Outfits

Both Bella and also Maggie love dressing your dolls up in clothes that match their own. American Girl has an ext than a few, that course, but Kohl’s, Amazon and Target come v on this request fairly well in ~ a much much better price. Kohl’s can be pricey, but the discounts are great when outfits go on sale and the usual Kohl’s coupons codes deserve to reduce the price also more.

Check out the Dollie & Me collection at Amazon right now. Beyond that, you can uncover Our Generation Me and You outfits in ~ Target.

Making your very own is additionally an option. If you’re a knitter, examine out the pattern because that these adorable corresponding Dolly Bloom dresses, draft by Georgie Hallam. Does the get any kind of cuter?

If girlfriend absolutely must have actually American Girl brand stuff, however…

Shop the Sales

Our sources tell us that black color Friday and also Cyber Monday always have several of the ideal deals checked out all year at American Girl. In fact, in the past, we’ve watched an American Girl promo code extending the entire weekend, taking 20% off complete priced items, consisting of the dolls themselves.

We’ve additionally heard the Cyber Monday sale is THE revenue of the season, and we’ve seen up come 50% off there. And that is usually complied with by a complete week of day-to-day deals.

There are additionally some wonderful sales after Christmas, despite they tend to be in-store only.

Check Craigslist and also eBay because that secondhand clothing and also accessories

It have the right to be challenging to uncover bargains top top auction sites and the like. Many buyers and sellers in these industries are collectors, therefore you’re often going to be looking at collector prices. Translation: Hardly anyone is divesting themselves of this stuff for cheap.

On the other hand, there’s a ton that secondhand AG because that sale online and there’s bound to be a gem or two out there for those with the patience come sift v it.

Buy a offered doll and send she to the Doll Hospital

While poking approximately on Chicago’s Craigslist, ns spotted someone marketing American Girl’s Julie doll for $50. She might be sold without her clothes, however that’s still $65 off the price if friend bought she new.

Assuming she’s in reasonably great condition however could use a bit of touching up, include in $28 for a well-being Visit at the American Girl Doll Hospital for cleaning and also hair restoration, and also you’ve invested $78, still $37 much less than you’d pay for a new Julie doll. The Doll Hospital’s services selection from cleaning all the means up to reattaching and replacing parts and are priced from $28-$44, to add shipping and also processing.

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Look because that discounted American Girl gift cards at Costco

In past years, we’ve seen $100 American Girl gift cards being offered for $79.99 in ~ Costco, and rumor has it this is a transaction that comes earlier periodically. So if you’re a constant Costco shopper, keep an eye ~ above the gift cards in ~ your local store to perhaps score a 20% discount.

Follow American Girl on Facebook

Several collectors us spoke to noted that discounts and totally free shipping promos are normally announced on American Girl’s main Facebook web page the same morning they start. You’ll need to relocate fast!

Will your children be getting American Girl merch because that Christmas this year? allow us understand in the comments!

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