Review: Henri the Blabla Doll

Breaking Gender Stereotypes with Toys

Henri the Blabla doll breaks through toy gender stereotype. (Photo credit: Sienna Wildfield)

This spring I became a Great Aunt … twice!  That’s twice the fun of discovering and giving gifts to new mothers that I would have loved to receive when my daughter was little.  Over the next several weeks we will be reviewing several products for families with little ones made by local mamapreneurs from Western Massachusetts.  Our reviews will showcase local toys, clothes and practical products made here in the Hilltowns.

Along with locally made toys, there are companies making great toys outside of the area too. One such company is, owned by 70-year-old German toy company, HABA.  With a slogan, Buy once. Play forever., offers many high-quality European and American wooden and PVC-free plastic toys and games. This is one store I might have registered with had it been around when we were expecting!

I discovered recently when they sent us a sample of their BLABLA baby doll, Henri. What a sweet doll it is. Designed by Florence Wetterwald, Henri is hand-knitted from natural fibers by Peruvian artisans. Being soft and snuggly, little ones will love them, and their heirloom quality will make friends and family feel good about giving them.

What I appreciate most about this doll is that it’s a boy, breaking away from gender stereotypes often found in toys. Learn some tips that are helpful in avoiding gender stereotypes over at  And find out more about Henri at

2 Comments on “Review: Henri the Blabla Doll

  1. Great comment, Leigh! A snail’s pace indeed!

    I do appreciate the offerings of a couple of brown skinned dolls by Maukilo and think it would be great for you to offer your feedback to Florence to find brown skinned dolls with brown eyes to add to her inventory too! My daughter has such a doll that we found at a tag sale years ago. It’s one of her favorites!



  2. I’m also happy at the gender bending, but wanted to see if there were any non blonde, non caucasian looking baby dolls also. (Ever seen the doll aisles in Walmart, rows of blonde / blue…. very damaging, I think, still, to many little kids’ sense of self). They have baby charlie & a girl with brown skin too, I was so happy! Then I looked up closer. WHY people need to make brown skinned dolls with green or blue eyes constantly I FAIL to understand. Am I one of the only ones who actually thinks brown eyes ARE beautiful? And kids would want to play with dolls with brown eyes too? I would never spend my money, let alone $43 on a brown skinned baby with green eyes. Yes, some people have that, and it’s beautiful – but I’d like to see th stats, I think most of the world is brown skinned, brown eyes, brown haired, AND beautiful! Dolls reflect the opposite of that. I like the progress, but it seems at a snail’s pace. Thanks for posting! I DO love this style and if I get a chance might write to the company as well…

    – Leigh, teacher & mom of two biracial children and owner of many multi-ethnic dolls ;-)

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