Monroe is one of two dolls currently on display in the powder pink nursery where Eldred shoots her videos (she now has some misgivings about the color choice; “It doesn’t always film too well,” she admits). There’s a rocking chair and a crib, a changing table and a dresser. Scallop-collared ensembles by the French children’s clothier Jacadi hang on tiny hangers. When I timidly ask about a baby bottle –white with what appears to be formula – perched alongside a tube of diaper ointment and talc, I’m assured that they’re all just props. “There are collectors that love to role-play,” she says. “I’m not that collector.”
Deeply entrenched as she is in the online spaces, this is a hobby she keeps mostly to herself offline. She doesn’t take the dolls out in public, like some collectors do. And, though she says her two adult daughters aren’t fussed by her collecting – she’s been into the hobby for most of their lives – her husband will occasionally let slip a derisive remark during disagreements.
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