Mattel may have released a Lara Croft Barbie doll to celebrate the release of the 2018 film but Tomb Raider fans have been collecting and creating custom clothing for their Tonner Doll Lara Croft dolls long before Alicia Vikander stepped into the intrepid adventurer’s boots.
One of these devoted fans is Christophe Croft, who has kindly shared photos of his Shadow of the Tomb Raider doll collection with Tomb Raider Horizons. I asked Christophe about his growing collection of Tonner Dolls and what inspired him to recreate his favourite looks and scenes from the bestselling 2018 game.
Cristophe has been a fan of the Tonner Doll Company’s Lara Croft dolls ever since they first appeared on the market in 2008 and he has been collecting and customising them for years. His Tonner Doll costumes were handcrafted and sewn by his friend Florence based on the specifications and reference photos he provided her with. When asked what materials were used to create these custom outfits, Christophe replied that Florence normally uses store-bought fabrics or re-purposes old clothes of hers while he uses 3D printing to recreate Lara’s weapons and other accessories.
Once a new outfit is ready for use, Christophe moves onto the next part of his project: finding the perfect spot for his photo-shoot. He explained that he always tries to recreate the look and feel of the scene each outfit is worn in, using nearby forests, gardens, and structures to stand in for the exotic locales seen in the Tomb Raider games and films.
And when the dolls aren’t zip-lining across fields or striking athletic poses in the great outdoors, they can be found hanging out in one of Christophe’s archaeology-themed dioramas.
Sadly, the Tonner Doll Company ceased operations in December 2018 and is no longer producing its immensely popular Lara Croft dolls. If you’re lucky, you might be able to track down one of these increasingly elusive dolls on Ebay or Amazon but be prepared to pay several hundred euro/dollars/pounds for one. Sadly, this is one hobby that is well beyond my budget but if you’d like to see more of Christophe Croft’s creative photo-shoots and amazing doll collection, you can find him over on Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram.
You can also find an extensive collection of Lara Croft Tonner Dolls and costumes over on Custom Dolls by Laragwen, the premier site for Lara Croft Tonner Doll collectors and enthusiasts.
All of the images featured in this article are property of Christophe Croft and have been published here with his permission.