More information about the dolls and accessories:
- Super Micro Ohina-sama: this set of dolls from JBox will fit in the palm of your hand. JBox also sells hina arare, a snack associated with this holiday: tiny pastel rice crackers.
- Antique Hinamatsuri doll: At this writing, this eBay auction has nearly two weeks to go. It has some nice close-up photos of a beautiful old doll's costume and construction.
- The same seller also carries several miniature hina doll sets. This ohina-sama has dolls that are less than an inch tall; another set is similarly tiny. The hina dolls in this set are about 1 to 1.5 inches tall. These are meant to be small and inexpensive, and do not come with courtiers, just a basic platform and golden backdrop. It seems like any of these small sets would be pretty easy to make, if you put some thought into the materials.
- Rinkya, a service that will help you with Yahoo! Japan Auctions, has several interesting articles: one discusses the historical accessories you can purchase for Hinamatsuri dolls, while the other is a more generalized article about the dolls themselves, with some lower-cost suggestions. Valuable for people who would like to collect these dolls.
- Japan Etcetera has a similar list of terms associated with the dolls and their accessories, which includes photos.
- Doll maker John Marshall describes how any two appropriate objects (including stones of the right sizes and colors) can be seen as a complete set of Hinamatsuri dolls. He also describes how most traditional-looking dolls on the market are currently made.
- Sara Harvey's article at Clothesline Journal describes the Juni-hito, the style of historic and ceremonial dress used for the female dolls. Heian-period women sometimes wore up to 40 layers of clothing, many of them visible. Certain color combinations were tied to certain seasons, and there were a number of dress rules related to rank. You should see a few major differences between the clothes of your "empress," her "ladies in waiting," and any other female dolls on a hina-dan.
Up next: some projects you can do!