The question is often asked as to whether Ginger Brook Hollow is for children or adults. Our dolls and their accessories are made for those old enough to appreciate collectible dolls, who are past the age of childhood. As defined by US lawmakers, all humans under 13 years of age are to be considered children, and should be restricted to toys and other items designed specifically for children. We do not specialize in or sell toys or other children’s items. The quality and price of our products exceeds that which most people would consider for children. Our marketing and market communication is directed to women. There are plenty of dolls designed specifically for children at prices more conducive to regular play, so we do not direct efforts in development or sales to that market. Instead, we aim to sell products designed especially for women young and old, who enjoy the hobby of dolls and the innocence of a day gone by.
At a time when the collectible doll world is turning to a style that is not family friendly and would not be considered by most people as child appropriate, the creator of Ginger Brook Hollow wanted to maintain a product that celebrates traditional values and the gentle lifestyle of the Victorian era. She did not feel that color, illustration, gentleness, and sweetness should be limited to children. Many women use the dolls they collect in display, and are not drawn to dolls that they would not want the children in their lives to emulate. For that reason, we have made the look and feel of our dolls “family friendly”. However, we do not feel that the simple sweetness of our line of dolls makes it a children’s play line.
Although our dolls are made on a collectible level, our stories were made to be shared, so that they would be tools to bridge the gap between grandmothers and grandchildren, mothers, and children, sisters, and friends. Stories of short length with illustrations are much easier to read together and talk about. Because of this, they create a theme that unites. They also enable an appreciation of a mother’s or grandmother’s collection. The stories are written to be read aloud, or to be enjoyed by those of collector age (13 and up). They are not written on an easy reading level, in word usage or style. Although our core story is in picture book format, it surpasses a regular children’s story in detail and length. It was created as a picture book because we wanted to add the richness of fine art to the world that we created in Ginger Brook Hollow and keep it short enough that it would be easily readable in one sitting. The stories allow sharing an interest or hobby with family and friends.
So often the world we live in would lead us to believe that only children can enjoy sweet stories, rich color, and the softness of something like a doll. Women are often valued for their “sex appeal” rather than their ability to nurture, their knowledge, or their many skills. Through Ginger Brook Hollow, we celebrate the time honored rolls of women, and we believe that each and every women can and should be extraordinary as she strives to be all that she can be. We believe that the gentle world of dolls and stories we have created invites women to retreat to a world where kindness, sensitivity, creativity, imagination, and refinement are all celebrated rather than many of the alternatives that are being promoted today.
We started with a special, peaceful place. The little valley of Ginger Brook Hollow is named for the brook lined with wild ginger that runs through the middle of the hollow. (You can always find Grandma Sunday’s special gingersnap recipe by visiting her pantry included in “The Town”. Although we don’t use wild ginger in this recipe, it is yummy.)Next we added the characters. The stories and dolls are from the life of the person you will first meet as Grandma Sunday. Her simple wisdom and ability to share love with others grow from her life in Ginger Brook Hollow. As her stories unfold, one at a time, you will meet the people she knows and grow to love them as she does, beginning with the seven orphan girls from the town just above the valley. Over time, you will be able to see how several generations grow and fit together.
How could there be a more charming time period than the late 1800’s when life, despite its challenges, was beautiful, gentle, and sweet. We chose this period of time so that we could step out of the fast pace and noise of today into a time when simple joys often came from time and things shared together. We hope that you will enjoy the style of this period as well as some of the activities that can still be done today. You may want to use some of the patterns from Harold’s General Store to create fashions of your own for your dolls from “The Hollow”, copy the orphans’ activities, or plan a special tea with friends .Cheri Maude is the designer and creator of Ginger Brook Hollow. However, she says that it has taken a whole team to make it what it is. Our sculptor, Erasmo; our artists, Joy Anne, Jackie, Julianne, and Jan, and our manufacturers and friends around the world have all shared their talents in hopes that you enjoy what we offer at Ginger Brook Hollow.