Spanish company BabyClon makes super lifelike silicon dolls that often act as replacements for real children. Intrigued, we asked founder Cristina Iglesias … why?
Could you tell us a little about how you started in this business?
For many years I have been dedicated to the special effects of films making replicas of people and other works. A familiar person who knew about my work told me about the reborn baby world and that they were starting to make it in silicone. I researched and started to do but with better materials and techniques to the existing until then.
Where is BabyClon based, and what is the process of making a doll?
BabyClon is based in Spain. We have the central factory in Bilbao and a recently opened delegation in the province of Tarragona. A sculpture is made with a special plasticine of complete body. Once the sculpture is done a mold is made of it. The molds have different characteristics depending on the model and we normally manufacture one hundred units of each model in our collection. The silicone is injected into the mold. It is then extracted from the mold and the imperfections of the mold are repaired. The next step is the department of painting and hair, and finally it is sent to the branch of Tarragona for the quality control, last touches and sending to the client.
BabyClon makes realistic dolls from silicone, we can see, but … why? It seems very esoteric. And perhaps a little odd.
The collections of dolls have been searching throughout the history the maximum realism to their products. Currently the material that offers the most realism in terms of touch, elasticity, …, is the silicone. This is what collectors like, which can sometimes confuse reality with fiction.
How much do your dolls cost?
Our babies are priced starting at 1590USD. We also have the star model, which is the “Animatronic”, which is priced at 5000USD. Our babies can have extras with different prices, such as “Drink & Wet”, “Eat & Poo”, “Definitive hair”, etc. And we also have prices for people who ask us for replicas of their babies or children, to keep a memory of when they were baby. Prices start at 4000USD.
Do you ever make one-offs, or replicas?
Many people ask us for a price to make a replica of their son, grandson, nephew, etc. We ask for the measurements, weight, photo and if you want some special feature like a birthmark. From there we make a budget. We have to say that the price is from 4000USD but there are people who can afford it and have a memory forever with a very high level of realism.
How many of them are you making every year?
We do not have an exact number. We can say that about 500 units, but we are growing and we hope this year to exceed this number widely. We must emphasize that all manufacturing processes are done by hand.
Who buys your dolls? Is there a typical BabyClon customer?
The main buyer is the typical collector of old dolls, although lately it is beginning to sell for children.
Does anyone ever tell you that this all seems a little creepy?
Yes, the truth is that we have been told many times. It comes mostly from people who do not know this world and, until they begin to study and understand it, they do not understand what it means, the possibilities that exist, the true collectors of the reborn world, etc.