RDP: Market Finds

Confessions of a Doll Hunter

Naomi and I love going to markets. You never know what you may find . Although we have bought many things on eBay nothing really compares to going out to a trash and treasure market or a niche market if you are a collector and laying eyes on something you always wanted or something that you immediately know you must have.

Evandale Market near Launceston

In my early doll collecting days a lot of my dolls came from markets. I didn’t have any then so a 90s Barbie in a pretty dress for a couple of dollars was a good find. I generally pass over these now as I have so many but once in a while I’ll have a good find.

It was actually a market find that started me off collecting Sindy dolls. Up to that time I just had my remaining childhood dolls, some baby dolls and some fashion dolls. Not really a collection. David and I were in Tasmania for the first time together on holiday and we were driving from Hobart to Launceston. We liked to stop in the little towns along the Midland Highway and as it was Sunday there were markets on in local halls. We stopped at a tiny hall for a look and amongst all the odds and ends I came across a Sindy doll with such a pretty face and hair that I wanted her even though her legs were stained and her arms were covered in white paint where her former owner had painted on “gloves”. I asked the stallholder the price and was told “Four dollars”. Of course I bought her. Once we got home I cleaned off the white paint. The stains on her legs wouldn’t shift so I put her in a pair of jeans from my original Sindy and she was fine. Now I had two Sindys and I started to want Sindy’s little sister Patch. I’d had one as a child and her neck split so I threw her out which I later regretted. I found another one at a market, this time in Adelaide. This was in the 1990s or early 2000s, before eBay made people aware what this sort of thing sold for. I got Patch for $8. I could not believe I’d got such a bargain.

The type of markets I like best are the “Trash & Treasure” type markets where people can rent a stall and bring their unwanted possessions along to sell. Yes, you will see a lot of junk and these days finding vintage dolls like I did is a lot rarer but the thrill of the hunt is all part of the fun.



I was born in England in 1957 and lived there until our family came to Australia in 1966. I grew up in Adelaide, South Australia, where I met and married my husband, David. We came together over a mutual love of trains. Both of us worked for the railways for many years, his job was with Australian National Railways, while I spent 12 years working for the STA, later TransAdelaide the Adelaide city transit system. After leaving that job I worked in hospitality until 2008. We moved to Tasmania in 2002 to live in the beautiful Huon Valley. In 2015 David became ill and passed away in October of that year. I currently co-write two blogs on WordPress.com with my sister Naomi. Our doll blog "Dolls, Dolls, Dolls", and "Our Other Blog" which is about everything else but with a focus on photographs and places in Tasmania. In November 2019 I began a new life in the house that Naomi and I intend to make our retirement home at Sisters Beach in Tasmania's northwest. Currently we have five pets between us. Naomi's two dogs Toby and Teddy and cats, Tigerwoods and Panther and my cat Polly. My dog Cindy passed away aged 16 in April 2022.

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