How to Enjoy Your First American Girl Store Visit

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Our family was invited and sponsored to attend the opening of the American Girl store at our local mall, Washington Square Mall. The store is reopening for a short time, just for this holiday season, and they are celebrating the newest doll that has been added to their BeForever Collection, Nanae Mitchell.

They gifted us a complimentary Nanae doll for attending and for sharing our experience of the event. I am excited to write my honest review of our visit with you & I have a few tips so that you too can have an amazing experience at an American Girl store like we did.

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The event fell on Scarlett’s birthday weekend, which made it an extra special treat. She had never experienced an American Girl store or doll yet, so we were really looking forward to attending.

We visited the store’s event on Saturday the 9th, two days before Scarlett turned two. The new store had just opened up that morning at Washington Square Mall, which is located in Tigard, Oregon, just off the freeway. It offers a wide variety of shops, boutiques and places to eat & snack at.

Throughout the year, the mall adds additional details for the holidays, as well as seasonal shops, like the American Girl store that we visited.

Being a holiday shop made it even more of a reason to attend…it won’t be there for long!

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Once we arrived, we were greeted warmly right at the entrance of the store. The two employees then handed us a complimentary copy Lea Dives In. What a wonderful way to be greeted!

The store itself draws you in with its bright lights, red and white decor and the beautifully displayed doll collections, accessories and everything American Girl.

A few of my friends had visited the store right at opening and said it was fantastic & really busy. We couldn’t wait to go.  Due to work schedules, we had to attend later in the evening. This ended up working out in our favor. This is my first tip on shopping at an American Girl store for the first time.

TIP #1

Go later in the day. Fewer crowds allow your little one to explore & navigate a bit easier.

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American Girl was founded in 1986 and since then, has grown into a worldwide phenomenon. From storybooks to baby dolls, they offer an extensive line of dolls, accessories, and books. One of their collections, BeForever Dolls, offer dolls with coordinating books based on the time period she is in.

They have also expanded to TV movies, as well as personalized dolls to be exactly like your little one. The newest American Girl doll Nanae Mitchell is their first Native Hawaiian BeForever girl, and her story is based in Hawaii during the World War II era.

American Girl Nanea Doll

While walking around the store, you couldn’t help but look at every shelf, doll, and accessory. Scarlett was quite overwhelmed at first because there were so many fun things to look at. I have to share one of our many attempts at a photo of my mother-in-law, Scarlett and myself because it shows exactly how excited she was…there was no time for cameras!

She loved that they had a few pieces out to play with and explore. That explains my next tip.

TIP #2

Introduce new items to them in the store slowly…everything is very new!

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American Girl Reopening Washington Square Mall

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We could have browsed and been in the store all night! I love how they offer such a wide variety of additional accessories and add-on items for your doll to make it that much more special. The employees did an exceptional job of setting everything up.

I can already tell a carrying case will be a must and the additional outfits are just adorable. No need to splurge right away, just starting with your little one’s first doll will make it a special visit.

TIP #3

Make her first experience unique with a doll of her choice.

Scarlett’s birthday was just a few days away so we wanted to wait to give it to her then. The moment she saw it, we knew that Scarlett was going to adore her.

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A complimentary copy of one of the three books in Nanae’s series was included, so we purchased one more. We will have to get the other one for Christmas!

Our visit to the American Girl store at Washington Square Mall was a great time and we enjoyed our visit immensely. The details of the store and the dolls truly show when you actually visit a store in person.

American Girl Reopening Event Washington Square Shopping Tickled Scarlett Blog

I recommend visiting during non-popular hours, helping your little browse with guidance and letting them choose something simple for their first visit.

Have you visited an American Girl store? I would love to hear your experience!

Take Care,

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  • Morgan Tone

    Oh my goodness! I can’t wait to visit American Girl with my daughter. I thought I would have to wait until she is older, she will be 2 in November but it looks like your daughter had an awesome time! Thanks for sharing!

    • Hi Morgan! She had a wonderful time. They have collection of baby dolls BItty Baby that work great for this age. Scarlett actually had one tucked away, still in the package, that my MIL got her a year and a half ago, but we just didn’t think she was old enough. We took it down, along with Nanae, and she is in love with it and it is beautiful!

  • These are great tips! We love the AG store but haven’t been in so long- will have to plan a trip soon to see the AG of the year! 😍❤️

    • Thank you Jamie for the kind words. We had a fantastic time and it is well worth visiting, even just for a bit. We will probably visit again when we go see Santa this winter!

  • Meagan Emmons

    My youngest loves going to AG for her birthday every year and is still making plans for her upcoming 11th birthday. Looks like a fun day for your birthday girl!

    • That is so neat your daughter loves going! I can’t wait to do it again. Happy early birthday to your daughter 🎂

  • Nicole Kamai Couchman

    The American Girl company sure has changed since I was a little girl!! Looks like such an awesome time that you and your daughter had.

    • Thanks Nicole for reading. It was such a different experience from when I was little. We had a blast…even Dada behind the camera enjoyed it!

  • Mia Bergstrom

    We have had one of these in the past and it’s super cute. I totally agree about going later in the day! Save your sanity 🙂

    • Thanks Mia for reading. Everything will still be there, even if it is later in the day! Glad we agree on that.

  • Angie Hall Ivie

    I haven’t been to an AG doll store, but I’ve heard how much fun they are! The dolls are beautiful!

    • Thanks for reading Angie. The dolls are beautiful and so unique! Each one has their own features. I know it won’t be our last visit!

  • Sindhuja Kumar

    I haven’t been to the store. Seeing the pics and toys collection I am tempted to take my kid there. Great tips too!!!

    • Thank you for reading. It was a lot of fun and I am sure your little on would love it.

  • Ashley

    I visited an AG store for the first time last year. I don’t have kids, but I was at a Barnes & Noble with my husband and discovered there was one next door, and made him come inside and look around with me lol. It was magical lol.

    • LOVE THIS! This is amazing and made my day.It is very magical!

  • Shell

    Aww your little one is so adorable and looks so excited to be there!! How wonderful you could take her here!!

    • Thank you Shell. She had a great time and we enjoyed it thoroughly.

  • We don’t have an AG store here but I’m sure my daughter is gonna love it there!! Hope they branch here soon

    • They are a lot of fun! They do sell online and you can make your own personalized doll too…so cute!

  • Kristie Cirak

    We have similar dolls here in Australia in our Kmart! I think they are called ‘new generation ‘ dolls !

    • Oh how neat! They are a great doll and fun to accessories.

  • Laila Laurson

    You and your daughter are adorable. I have never been to one of th as stores but I have done a lot of shopping and I know it can be a stressful event if you don’t go at the right times, so I think it is great that you have included this information in your blog.

    • Thank you Laila for writing and commenting. I believe timing is everything, especially with little ones!

  • Barbara

    I hope you had fun! We don’t do much shopping with our kids

    • We had a great time. We never shop at the mall…last time had been to take a photo with Santa last Christmas 🙂 was nice to experience something different!

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