Social media is just crazy, I love how it makes the world a smaller place and how I’ve been able to connect with so many other adoptive moms. It helps to know that I’m not alone on this journey as a heart mama. I recently spotted Cocoa Cherry on Instagram and ‘met’ Liz who makes the most gorgeous range of fabric dolls and animals. I was so excited to learn that she is also an adoptive mom and this is the story behind the Knysna brand Cocoa Cherry:

“In 2010, my daughter asked me for a doll that “looked like her”. I couldn’t find a dark-skinned ragdoll for my adopted daughter, a beautiful African girl, so I decided to make her a “Cocoa” doll. She loved it! And hence “Cocoa Cherry” was born. The Cocoa Cherry range has expanded over the years to include “Cocoa” and “Nilla” dolls, as well as the smaller “Nandi” and “Rosalie” dolls. African animals are also part of the range – I revel in my African heritage! Cocoa Cherry has expanded its range to include African dolls (which represent all children of Africa), African animal toys, and baby rattles too. Each creation embodies the bright, bold and colourful spirit that is Africa. Our chameleon, sea horse and elephant toys are especially special. These creatures, endemic to Knysna, inspired the ‘Knysna range’.”

“The dolls and toys are made using 100% cotton Shwe Shwe fabrics which are made in South Africa. The bright colours and beautiful, bold, eye catching designs are perfect for our dolls and animals!”

“To make the Cocoa Cherry dream a reality, I work side by side with delightful and joyous local seamstresses from the Knysna community who are passionate about toy making. The work provides the ladies with an income and they have expanded their skill set somewhat.”

“Through the Cocoa Cherry brand, I make dolls that girls can identify with. I want to raise awareness of adoption and educate people about the blessing of each and every child. I want children to play with the dolls and toys and have fun and enjoy the beauty of African heritage – the people and animals that make Africa the most incredible place. At Cocoa Cherry, toy making is our passion and we take both pride and joy in creating each and every doll and animal. Our toys are of the highest quality and are durable for little hands to play with. They’re soft and cuddly and are bursting with endless imagination and adventures to be had by all who play with them!”

Liz, your dolls are so beautiful and Kira just loves snuggling with her baby Cocoa and her pink bow puff balls. Thank you!

Meet Cocoa.
Meet Nandi, Cocoa’s younger sister and Rosalie her light-skinned friend.
Kira and Cocoa. They look so sweet and innocent in this photo, but these two really get up to a lot of nonsense together.
If you think your child needs a Cocoa in his/her life, email your order directly to with the code ‘heartmama’ to redeem the special price of R350 for Cocoa and R230 for the smaller doll, Nandi. Price inclusive of door-to-door courier delivery.

*This is not a sponsored post, but Cocoa Cherry sent Kira a gorgeous Cocoa doll as a gift.


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