Imagine a place of stunning beauty and make-believe, where your dreams come to life and play is actively encouraged. This place is called Malaville. Not quite a physical destination, but rather a doll collection that aims to inspire young and old to journey into the world of the creative imagination. The Malaville Debut Collection is a range of dolls with a variety of brown skin tones and hair curls, coils and textures, introducing a more diverse representation to the doll market.
Malaville Toys was founded by international model, businesswoman and doll collector, Mala Bryan, because she had identified the need for more-curly haired black and brown dolls at an affordable price. “I looked to expand my own doll collection as they all started looking the same to me, but realized they are not as easy to come by,” says Bryan. “We live in a world where diversity in culture, race and colour is celebrated, so why not translate that to children through playtime from an early age?”
The way children engage with their toys is a good reflection of how they will interact with their friends in the real world. Bryan feels strongly that kids relate to their dolls and therefore showcasing diverse ethnicity through toys will not only help children form a well-rounded and realistic worldview, but will also serve to develop a healthier self-image overall.
Bryan’s range of dolls was inspired by her own playful nature and the debut collection has just launched with four dolls of varied brown hues, each with their own career and natural beauty. Bryan felt the need to introduce careers in the creative fields as most of the dolls out there tend to gear towards conventional job titles such as doctors and vets.
The Malaville dolls also embrace a more natural look, with little to no make-up, to move away from the world’s skewed and unrealistic portrayal of beauty. Having gained significant traction and attention from around the globe, including international publications such as The Huffington Post, we can now welcome Maisha, Mala, Malina and Mhina to South African shores. The four dolls in the range each sport individual outfits that match their personality and respective creative career.
Bryan’s aim is for the dolls to have an impact on the citizens of the world and for the debut collection to make it into all doll collections, both young and old. “I would love for adults to play with the dolls and connect with their inner child,” Bryan concludes.
Exciting projects and additional dolls are in the pipeline, with an accessories line soon to be available online. The Malaville dolls can be purchased online from www.malavilletoys.com. They are also sold at the pop up shop at 90 Kloof Street, Gardens, Cape Town, which runs until end February 2016, or at Carne opposite the road (153 Kloof Street).
Follow Mala Bryan and her Malaville Doll Collection on Instagram: @malavilledolls @malaville_ @Malabryan.