Jilly Bing celebrates Asian American heritage with its dolls, and it started when the founder, Elenor Mak, was trying to find a doll that looked like her daughter, Jillian. She figured other Asian American kids had the same struggle, so she spent months designing dolls to fit the bill and help kids feel more confident in their Asian American culture and heritage. Plus, it could be used to support conversations about diversity and representation. Mak leaned into her community to start creating the doll of her dreams by reaching out to large toy brands and her own network and conducting research with Asian families to understand what they wanted from a doll, from their features to their story. The team took the mission of creating an Asian American doll to heart, and each detail, from the doll’s eyes and smile to the egg tarts on her dress, was meticulously crafted.

The Jilly doll, the first authentic Asian American doll, is more than just a toy. She has a sweet tooth, loves cooking with her grandma, and comes with a hat that transforms into a sunny sidekick, L’il Tart. These unique characteristics make her more than just a doll; she’s a friend, a companion, and a reflection of the multi-dimensional nature of Asian Americans. Through this doll, founder Elenor Mak hopes to inspire children to believe that they can create the products they wish they had when they were younger, and that their stories and experiences are worth celebrating.