Uncanny Wastebusters find leaves Wānaka woman laughing

by Kim Bowden - Apr 23, 2024

Kim Nicol is a regular rummager at Wastebusters in Wānaka, but on her most recent trip staff at the second-hand store had squirrelled something special away for her.

It was a rag doll, and one that bears an uncanny resemblance to the colourful Ms Nicol.

"They went out the back and they brought this doll out with red hair and I laughed and laughed and laughed."

Ms Nicol says she returned home and felt inspired to share the giggles with a few family and friends who have been having a rough time of late.

"I was like, 'Righty-ho, I'm going to make them laugh'.

"I'm a colourful person, obviously, anyway, but I dug around and I got my necklace to match and my fascinator for my hair and everything, and then I proceeded to either visit people or ring them and tell them the story and them show them the doll and me together.

"It has created so many laughs - it's been gorgeous."

Now, Ms Nicol is on the search for the crafter who created the doll, which she has christened 'Stella-Rosé'.

"We just wanted a fancy name - and we were either 'Pearl' or 'Stella'.

"At first I called her 'Rose', I was like 'Stella-Rose' (like the flower), but then my hubby was, like, 'Oh no, like the wine darling'."

She says someone has already pointed her in the direction of Artisans, a former co-operative shop in Wānaka that sold handmade arts and crafts, which they recall stocking similar dolls, but so far the creator remains a mystery.

"I would love to find out where she comes from," Ms Nicol says.

The pair have grand plans to keep entertaining and spreading joy, and a Facebook profile for Stella-Rosé is planned.

Ms Nicol says her own bright red hair, which appears a perfect match for Stella-Rosé's, was something of an accident after a miscommunication with a hairdresser many moons ago.

"I promptly flew out to Hawaii (on holiday after receiving the new hairdo) and got in the water and looked like I'd been mauled by a shark, but ever since then it's just stuck.

"I'm called 'Red' quite regularly. I work at Guthrie Bowron in Wānaka, and all the painters, they call me 'Red', so I can't change it now."

If Ms Nicol's larger than life personality feels familiar it may be because of her world famous in Wānaka mother.

"She's called 'Crazy Carol', and she's the mountain ambassador up on Cardrona, so her hair is all beaded and braided and she dresses up like a fairy up there. She is 75 and she just loves it."

Recognise Stella-Rosé? Get in touch on [email protected].

Main images (Supplied): Kim Nicol is searching for the crafter behind her look-alike rag doll, which was discovered at Wastebusters in Wānaka.

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