Here she is, the anti-Barbie, fresh from
the rainforests of Northern New South Wales, Australia.
This 34 cm vinyl doll runs barefoot, dreadlocks
her hair with coloured braids and beads, wears simple rainbow
clothes, has piercings and a range of tattoos, and even a bit
of natural body hair.
Feral Cheryl is modelled on the green extremists,
known as ‘ferals’ from Australia. (For more on the
background to Feral Cheryl, see ‘behind
In contrast to the ‘fashion doll’
mentality, Feral Cheryl does not have an extensive wardrobe, or
high heels, or swimsuit, or gym gear, or wedding dress or cheerleader
outfit. She needs no sports car or hairdressing salon, no disco
stage or shopping mall.
Her motto is "Live Simply, Run Wild".
Her only accessories: a bag of home grown herbs*,
a sense of humour and a social conscience.
Each Feral Cheryl doll is individually crafted with a variety
of coloured beads, bindis and a range of tattoos, so there are
no two exactly the same.
* the doll comes with
a small stash of dried basil.
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|Ethics of Production
Feral Cheryl is made entirely in Australia.
There is no cheap third world toy factory labour used in the production
of this doll.
The plastic body, with sewn in hair, is produced
in a small family-owned doll factory in South Australia. The Feral
Cheryl doll mould was specifically designed to have a natural
body shape. The doll is blow-moulded, which unfortunately means
small details, such as nipples and clearly defined fingers are
not possible. The original doll had brown eyes, but sometimes,
because of a problem with sourcing the glass brown eyes, there
have been dolls made with blue eyes.
The raw bodies are then shipped to The Channon
where they are transformed into Feral Cheryl
tattoos, body piercings, dreadlocked hair, beading, braiding and
hand-dyed, handmade clothes.
They are then packaged in recycled cardboard boxes, ready for
The only other packaging is reused plastic bag around the doll,
and reused or recycled packing material ( usually pages out of
the old yellow pages). There is also a poster with details of
Feral Cheryls lifestyle.
For more details on who makes the dolls, see
behind the scenes. For details on the
conditions in the factories where most OTHER toys are made, see
Where you'll find Feral Cheryl
You may find Feral Cheryl at a local market,
her dreadlocks tied back, belly button bared, dancing to the
drummers in her bare feet.
protesting against the expansion of uranium
protesting against logging at a threatened
working to regenerate rainforest
volunteering at the local environment centre
working at a vegetarian cafe.
at school, college, university,
studying Celtic mysticism
lobbying on human rights issues
helping her sisters disregard the fashion
industry's warped images of women..
skinny dipping at the creek
growing organic veges and herbs,
making her own incense and herbal potions
painting childrens faces at the kindergarten
making clothes out of recycled fabric...
baking bread or unusual cookies
doing whatever she wants to do...but always
living simply, running wild.