CUT THE RIBBON, XAVIER ROBERTS

Posted on March 20, 2014 by Editorial Staff

The Cabbage Patch Kids frenzy of 1983 was to be the first of many holiday-season, toy frenzies in the years to come. In 1976, Xavier Roberts invented ‘Little Person’ dolls, the first Cabbage Patch Kids. Roberts and five friends started the Original Appalachian Artworks company to produce the dolls. The Coleco toy company liked Roberts’ ideas and began mass-marketing the dolls in 1983, under the new name of ‘Cabbage Patch Kids.’ By the end of the year, approximately three million Cabbage Patch Kids dolls had been “adopted.” In 1983, a Cabbage Patch Kids doll was a 16-inch doll, usually with a plastic head, a fabric body, and yarn hair. What made them so desirable, besides the fact that they were huggable, was both their supposed uniqueness and their adoptability. It was claimed that each Cabbage Patch Kids doll was unique. This plus the fact that inside each Cabbage Patch Kids box came a “birth certificate,” with that particular kid’s first and middle name on it, made the dolls as individual as the kids who wanted to adopt them. The dolls were a hit and Roberts really cut a ribbon!