What is the American Girl Doll of the Year?

American Girl of the Year Isabelle Movie Viewing
American Girl

Have you been wondering what the difference is between the American Girl Doll of the Year and other American Girl dolls?

American Girl dolls are beautiful 18-inch dolls, that are collected and played with by girls ages 6 and up.   They are a popular toy request during the holidays and for special birthdays. These dolls are expensive and cost about $120 per doll. However, they are collected and passed on from one generation to the next.

 These special dolls can be bought online through the American Girl website, or by visiting one of the American Girl Place retail stores throughout the nation.

There are 3 main collections of American Girl dolls, the Girl of the Year dolls, the Truly Me dolls and the BeForever historical dolls. For girls who prefer baby dolls, there is also the Bitty Baby Doll Collection

Every year, beginning January 1st, the American Girl doll company releases a "Girl of the Year" doll. Like all other American Girl dolls, these dolls also arrive with a paperback chapter book, highlighting the doll's personal story and talents. 

While the Beforever dolls include girls that lived in another historical era, the Girl of the Year dolls have interests and experiences that young girls of today can identify with in their current day-to-day lives.

Girl of the Year dolls are only available for the year they are released until they sell out.

In addition to the dolls, there are live-action movies, apps and special, paid, in-store events at American Girl Place locations. There are special games, wallpaper, quizzes, crafts and e-cards for fans on the American Girl website. 

American Girl Dolls of the Year have included: Lea Clark (2016), Grace Thomas (2015), Isabelle (2014), Saige Copeland (2013), McKenna (2012), Kanani (2011), Lanie (2010), Chrissa (2009) and Mia (2008).

Lea Clark loves to take photographs, in the rainforest of Brazil, at the tropical beaches and in the ocean. Except Lea has a fear of swimming in the ocean which isolates her from her family. Girls are also encouraged to support the World Wildlife Fund. 

Aside from playing with dolls, girls who like to build may also enjoy playing with the American Girl doll construction toys. Featuring the Dolls of the Year, children can build Grace's 2-in-1 Dollhouse, Isabelle's dance studio, Saige's art studio, and McKenna's gymnastics routine step-by-step using small construction bricks.

The American Girl Doll brand, owned by Mattel, is very supportive of young girls. The company's mission is to teach children about diversity, instill values, promote creativity and encourage girls to be leaders who take action and solve problems.  

More than just playing with a toy doll and collecting outfits, American Girl stories provide inspiration to little girls, motivating them to dream big and make a difference in their lives, as well as other.

Here are some special tips when considering buying an American Girl Doll:

  • They are expensive, but most of my friends with daughters have shared the dolls they have often received have been special gifts from a grandparent.

Disclosure: Review samples were provided by the manufacturer. For more information, please see our Ethics Policy.