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2014 DOLLS Awards of Excellence Rules

The DOLLS Awards of Excellence (DAE), also known as the Diamond Awards, recognizes and encourages excellence in the design and creation of dolls. Photos of all the entries are reviewed by an esteemed panel of judges, who evaluate each submission on overall aesthetic appeal, excellence in concept, design, and execution, and quality of material and workmanship; the highest-scoring creations in each category receive the DAE Industry’s Choice Awards and become the nominees for that year’s DAE Public’s Choice Awards. DOLLS readers then vote for their favorite nominee in each category to determine the Public’s Choice winners. Show the doll world your talent — enter this year's DAE competition!


How to Enter

1. Now through April 30, 2014, go to and click on the DAE 2014 link to enter online.

2. Be sure to read all the rules before entering, and make sure the online form is complete and accurate before submitting your entry. The information submitted will be used in the magazine and in promotional materials for nominated and winning entries. Any entry form that is not accompanied by photos and an entry fee will be invalid and not viewed by the judges. A separate online form must be filled out for each piece entered.

3. The entry fee must be included. The first entry is $95. Additional entries are $45 each. Payment must be made by credit card. These fees are nonrefundable. Fees are applied to the contest’s administrative and publicity costs. Each entry must be accompanied by a paid entry fee or it will be disqualified.

4. Include two photos. See the full contest rules below.

5. Everyone who enters the 2014 DAE Awards will receive a discount coupon good toward the purchase of your next ad in DOLLS as well as a free one-year subscription (or renewal) to DOLLS (print edition for addesses in the United States; digital-only for foreign addresses). Limit one coupon and subscription per artist or company.

6. Entries must be received by April 30, 2014.


Key Dates

January 2014           DAE 2014 entries open

April 30, 2014        Deadline for entries

June 11-16, 2014     Industry’s Choice winners announced at International Doll Show

July 9, 2014             Public’s Choice nominees & ballot appear in DOLLS’ August 2014 issue

Sept. 15, 2014         Deadline for Public’s Choice voting

Nov. 12, 2014         Public’s Choice winners announced in DOLLS’ Dec 2014 issue



Entries that do not conform to the following rules will not be processed or seen by judges. If you have questions not addressed here, please contact Joyce Greenholdt at This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it or 715-445-5000 ext. 150.


Definitions of terms and categories

For the purposes of this contest, the following definitions apply:

1. Dolls are jointed or unjointed playthings or collectibles, produced from any materials, in a human image.

2. Artist: An artist is defined as someone who makes fewer than 1,000 dolls annually. Submissions in the artist categories must be designed by the submitting artist and at least 50% of each doll, including the head, must be constructed by the artist. Collaborations are allowed, but all contributing artists must be acknowledged.

3. Manufacturer: A manufacturer is defined as producing a total of 1,000 or more dolls per year. Manufacturer entries must be produced by the manufacturer and not the designing artist.

4. One of a Kind: A doll entered in any of the One-of-a-Kind categories must have an original sculpt; a limited-edition sculpt with a unique face-up and/or costume should be entered in the appropriate Artist Doll category (categories 7 through 12).



5. All entries for the 2014 DAEs must have been first introduced on or after January 1, 2013, and made available for sale during 2013 or 2014, provided they were not entered in past DOTY or DAE competitions. Dolls introduced and made available for sale in 2013 or 2014 which have already been sold are eligible.

6. The entry must be a new, original design and not a variation or re-costuming of a previous design.

7. Artists may submit entries which were created as collaborations. All participating artists must be identified, but it is not necessary to detail the contributions of each artist.

8. Entrants may submit as many entries as desired in each category, but each doll can only be entered once.

9. Any substantial changes made in costume, materials, or retail price from the original entry are grounds for disqualification of the entry.

10. For your protection, please do not submit entries in the image of or with the name of trademarked characters unless you hold a license to create the characters.


Entry Requirements

11. Each entry must be accompanies by a paid fee; a fully completed entry form, and two photographs as detailed in rules 15 and 16. Forms that are incomplete, missing photographs, or not accompanied by the entry fee will be ruled invalid.

12. You must submit a separate entry form and photos for each doll you enter.

13. All one-of-a-kind doll sculpts must be entered in one of the one-of-a-kind categories. Entries in the remaining artist categories must have an edition size for the sculpt of at least two. Entries in the manufacturer categories must have an edition size of at least 50.

14. If a submission entered into a category is deemed inappropriate by the staff of DOLLS, the magazine has the right to disqualify the entry or move it to a different category.



15. Each entry must be accompanied by two clear color photographs (one full body and one close-up of the face), sized at least 900 by 1,200 pixels (3 inches x 4 inches at 300 dots per inch). No prints, disks, transparencies or slides will be accepted. These photographs become the property of Jones Publishing, Inc., and may be used for promotional purposes or in DOLLS. If nominated, your photo will be used in DOLLS.

16. Entries must be photographed against a plain, flat, solid-color background. Each entry must be photographed separately. Only props or accessories sold with the doll are permitted in the photograph.



17. The above instructions must be followed to be considered for nomination. Entries must be received by April 30, 2014, to be considered.

18. Judges will rate dolls based on the following criteria:

• Overall aesthetic appeal

• Excellence in concept, design and execution

• Quality of material and workmanship

• Value represented by the price and quality

19. When preparing to enter online, have the following information ready:

• Name of doll

• Height (in inches)

• Edition size (if limited)

• Retail price (in U.S. currency)

• Body material

• Eyes and color

• Costume materials and description

• Special features

• List both the sculpt designer and costume designer, if different.

• One full-length and one close-up photo (at least 1,200 by 900 pixels)


2014 DAE Categories

Manufacturer Categories

A doll created for sale by a manufacturing or importing company, not by the designing artist. The minimum edition size produced and offered for sale worldwide for dolls entered in any manufacturer category must equal or exceed 50.

1. Children’s Play Doll (Primarily marketed to children 12 and under. Suggested Retail Price must be $150 or less)

2. Collectible Baby Doll

3. Collectible Child Doll

4. Collectible Fashion Doll (Additional outfits for the doll should be offered separately)

5. Collectible Ball-Jointed Doll

6. Collectible Licensed/Pop Culture Doll


Artist Categories

For categories 8 through 12, entries must have a minimum edition size of 2.

7. Artist Baby Doll

8. Artist Child Doll

9. Artist Ball-Jointed Doll

10. Artist Fantasy-Themed Doll

11. Artist Doll, Less than $1,250

12. Artist Doll, More than $1,250

13. One of a Kind Baby Doll

14. One of a Kind Child Doll

15. One of a Kind Fantasy-Themed Doll

16. One of a Kind Doll, Less than $1,250

17. One of a Kind Doll, More than $1,250


Special Categories

18. Reborn Doll (Dolls made from kits are eligible. The reborn artist must include the name of the sculptor and kit used to make the reborn in the Special Features portion of the entry form.)

19. Artist Face-up (Dolls made from kits or repaints of dolls from other artists or manufacturers are eligible. The face-up artist must include the name of the artist/manufacturer and original doll used in the Special Features portion of the entry form. For this category only, both photos submitted should be close-ups of the doll’s face.

20. Artist Original Fashion Design (This category is for artists who have created an original doll outfit, not the doll itself.) For this category only, both photos submitted should be full-length photos focusing on the outfit.



If there are insufficient entries in a category, DOLLS reserves the right to eliminate the category from this year’s DAE competition and move entries for that category into another appropriate category.

In order to ensure that the awards reflect the diversity of the field and to encourage new artists, we reserve the right to restrict the number of awards an artist may win in a single category.

Enter Now!