Photo by Emily Chanel
One thing I have noticed in all the Nanea and poppet friends photos I have seen online is how much Nanea's eyes pop in comparison to older dolls. Nanea's face is lively and Disney-esque with her huge saucer eyes while her friends seem a bit sleepy and dated in direct comparison.
In the photo above Nanea looks like she just downed three shots of espresso and is about to bust out in song (with full orchestra accompaniment) vs Kanani's quite serene expression.
Until recently, Kanani has been the ultimate rare and sought after doll bringing the highest prices on the secondary market (other than super rare white body Pleasant Company dolls). At one time Kanani could command $300 - $500, but since the announcement and photo leaks of Nanea in February, Kanani has cooled into the $150 range.
Is Nanea the ultimate"Kanani Killer?" Certainly the Hawaiian themes are the same. Or is there a bigger issue looming--will Nanea have the effect of making all of AG dolls from the past 30 years suddenly appear old and dated?
The Nanea mold is not simply just a new face mold--it has been designed significantly different as to be a break from the prior molds. Her bigger eyes are in part a result from her face mold being a bit more flat in profile and thus her eyes be less in shadow. More of the whites of the eyes are left visible and she also has extra painted lashes for added pop. Her prominent forehead also sets her eyes out and gives her a much younger appearance.
The Nanea mold is very similar to the WellieWishers mold--also cute--but also featuring the extra large eyes.
We know from looking to the world of consumer goods, fashion, cars, electronics--the way to get people to buy anew is to tweak the design to make last year's (or last month's!) model look super dated. Is this the new marketing strategy for AG?
Will we see more Nanea-like molds in the line ups to come? Or other bold changes intended to make pre-2017 dolls seem old and dated? Is AG specifically hoping to drive consumers toward snapping up AG's newest doll offerings vs shopping on the secondary market for AG dolls of the past?