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This North West woman loves dolls so much she opened a 'hospital' to fix broken ones

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Annette Emdin always wanted to be a doctor, now she combines her dream and hobby by ‘healing’ broken dolls (Photo: Onkgopotse Koloti)
Annette Emdin always wanted to be a doctor, now she combines her dream and hobby by ‘healing’ broken dolls (Photo: Onkgopotse Koloti)

The semi-detached house in Stilfontein in the North West looks like most of the other dwellings in this small mining town – but step through the front door and you find yourself in another world. Silent faces smile and stare at you from almost every surface of every room, their bodies bedecked in flounces, frills, ruffles and pleats.  

Annette Emdin (52) gazes proudly at her treasure trove. “I really love each and every one of these dolls,” she says proudly. “I know the names and history of all of them.”  

Annette has more than a thousand dolls in her home, some dating back to the 1920s and resembling characters from The Great Gatsby. But the crème de la crème of her collection are the porcelain dolls that are lined up floor to ceiling in their very own room. 

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