Momiji PoppetI’m a little unbalanced when it comes to “Japanese cute” (kawaii!) like Momiji Friendship Dolls, the uber-trendy little resin dolls from London’s Artforum, which are a modern and more affordable spin on the traditional Japanese wooden Kokeshi dolls.

Like the Kokeshi, Momiji dolls display an amazing attention to detail and expression that have both me and my eight-year-old daughter unable to decide which one is our favorite. At under $20, these heavyweight dolls are meant to be handled, not displayed–a good thing since I know my girls would have one in their pocket to take on their adventures. Before they head out, though, write them a little note and tuck it into the special “secret message” slot under the doll. Or insert a  sweet dreams message and leave it on the pillow to find at bedtime.

Tweens apparently like to pass the dolls back and forth in school to share secrets with their friends. Thankfully, the slit is so small, they’re limited to CU L8R or CALL ME. But you may want to insist the doll stays out of the school backpack, just in case you have a tiny note writer. –Christina

Congratulations to Liz M., lucky winner of the Momiji of her choice!