The secondary market is tricky: you can make a lot of money on it, get burned by it or discover something wonderful. I'm talking about the latter today. You might not want to commit to paying a lot of money for something you are unsure of quality-wise. Buying a marked down s.m. item can be a less scary way to experience an artist/manufacturer/seamstress you've had your eye on. And sometimes you'll find an item you didn't know existed. Such was my case with Jigamaree's Dae Jang Geum Fashion BJD.
I'm the first to admit my experience with FBJDs is limited. I'm familiar with the more popular advertised ones of course but I know there are a lot out there that I haven't seen. I had tried the larger sized BJDs years ago and learned the 16" fashion size was as much as I could handle so I was pleasantly intrigued when I saw a new (to me) doll available for sale on the secondary market earlier this year. I needed another doll like a hole in the head but her sweet face called me to her post and I started looking into her background.
She is the retailer Jigamaree's interpretation of Dae Jang Geum, reportedly Korea's first and only Royal Physician. What immediately set her apart from my other FBJDs is that she's not a typical glamour girl. Her facial screening is fairly plain with little pink lips and a lash line. She is also definitely Korean which is wonderful. Some companies will either allude to ethnicity but not go all the way or stylize it but she is a natural Korean beauty. She's made of French resin which I had been wary of since it yellows but the color looks really good on her. The fact that she was based on a smart powerful woman didn't hurt. The seller was someone I knew and trusted and she was selling the doll way below cost. Add to that the ability to pay in installments and Dae Jang Geum was mine.
I was very impressed upon her arrival! The body was even more beautiful in person. The sculpting is divine. She has an almost fluid quality. Her lower torso is all one piece like the Numina, her joints are basic and she doesn't sit as well as I'd like. What she lacks in pose ability though she more than makes up for in aesthetics. It's nice to be able to dress her in a bikini and not see jointing. I also appreciate the proportions and details. Her head is perfectly scaled and has a painted sculpted hairline and the most gorgeous ears I've ever seen. The hands are perfect. Either could have been too big or two small. And I like that she has a smaller bust and isn't anatomically correct. Sometimes you just need a break.
She came with two head caps, one normal and one with inlaid velcro for keeping on wigs, which is brilliant as it doesn't add extra bulk. She also had both high heeled and flat feet. Her kimono (I got the Japanese Styled version) was stunning, colorful, intricate and very well made. I received mine with both a very long and shorter wig although only the long one was from the factory. She can share clothes and wigs with most other 16" fashion dolls. The company really put a lot of thought into every detail and the quality showed. All in all, one of the best dolls I own. I have thought about giving her a face up but I think she's perfect right now.
At a price point of $699, there is no way I would have made the leap on a doll I'd never heard of. If it weren't for the secondary market I still wouldn't know about her, let alone have one of the true gems in my collection. I really wish Jigamaree had made a basic lower priced doll to make her more accessible. I know if more people were able to hold her, they would have fallen in love along with me. I wrote the company to ask if a basic doll is in the works or if layaway is an option. If I hear anything I'll be sure to update you. Here's the link so you can check her out: Jigamaree