Monday, March 31, 2008

Great deal on Cinderella Masquerade...

In my browsing for sales, I found a pretty good deal on a Cinderella Masquerade doll by Tonner from Doll Market. Usually she retails for about $250, she's on sale for just $75. I picked one up today--I think she will be one of Henry's wives--I'll need to do some reshuffling. I can't wait!

Sunday, March 30, 2008

Ultra Basic Tyler...

They have arrived!  I'm thrilled with the quality.  They do not include stands or shoes, but these dolls are really pretty.  I ordered the Raven and Red--almost wish I got a blonde instead.
Raven is wearing my Queen of Heart's Portrait costume, and she is Anne Boleyn.  She just needs a B necklace.  I've dedicated Angelina, who is auburn haired, as Catherine of Aragon.  She reads a little older and larger than Anne.  I also have Kathryn Howard as Elizabeth Swann, and then A blonde Club Jane doll for Jane.  Katherine Parr will be the new red-haired Ultra Basic Tyler.  As far as Anne of Cleves goes... I was going to use Eternal Love Sydney (my only other blonde doll), but I might even splurge on a new Emme doll for her.
I'll try to take some pictures later today.  Still waiting for a few more period dresses, and I have another one to try to sew.

Thursday, March 20, 2008

Splitting dolls and outfits

I’m working on a collection of Henry VIII’s wives (he had six), and I’ve found a few outfits that would be perfect on dolls I’ve selected. I recently found a site--Dreamcastle Dolls, where I purchased my wheat-blonde Jane doll--which will split a doll and an outfit, for those who are interested in either one. She requires either a credit card number or a $10 Paypal deposit to hold your spot. I emailed her a list with my requests, and she let me know which were mine (I’ve chosen the Wicked Witch of the East’s outfit, as soon as she ships), and where I was on the list. Some are not very likely to receive--as I’m fourth or fifth on the list--since she needs to sell both the doll and the outfit.
I’d really like just the outfit from the Abandoned Bride doll, due in April this year, but she’s already got four people waiting for the dress. I need to practice sewing for dolls some more--I have some patterns--and make my own gowns!

Getting stale smoke odor out of dolls

I recently got a great deal on a Tiny Kitty doll from Ebay. Imagine my surprise when the doll arrived reeking of smoke. This was my second purchase for my daughters’ doll collection, and I was disappointed. My mistake for specifically not looking for a listing that stated “from a smoke-free home.”
I tried washing the doll and clothing, stripping off the clothing with mild soap and soaking in liquid fabric softener. I also left the doll outside to dry and air out. But by the evening, the smoke odor was still obvious. I emailed The Tonner Company’s doll hospital with a request for help, and I received a response this morning.
First, Noreen suggested I throw away the box and tissue. The paper and cardboard do nothing but absorb the smell. Second, she suggested standing the doll inside of a large plastic bag and putting a box of baking soda in the bag along with her. After a few days, the baking soda will help absorb the cigarette smoke smell. Next, let the doll air out on a breezy day for the whole day. Finally, stand her up in a new plastic bag with a Bounce dryer sheet for a day.
I’m on day one with the baking soda. I’ll post updates on this blog.

Ebay woes...

This issue has bothered me enough to consider eliminating Ebay as a shopping source--I wish there were an auction just for professional merchants. It’s really a buyer-beware market. My advice: make sure your auction says “from a smoke-free home,” if the smell fo smoke bothers you.
I don’t consider myself a picky person when it comes to smoking. I understand it’s an addicting habit. I don’t specifically enjoy being around second-hand smoke. But when items smell, they smell of stale smoke, which to me smells a hundred times worse than actual cigarette or cigar smoke. Since I'm not a smoker, nor have I lived with any smokers, I didn't realize how bad this problem is.
Since I didn’t read the auction carefully, it’s my own fault. I can’t leave negative feedback if the item was as described, only stinking of smoke. But I would like other bidders to know that items can smell terribly. And I just realized I have another purchase coming that doesn't state it's from a smoke-free home.

Monday, March 17, 2008

New Jane doll...

New to me, at least. She's the wheat blonde Club Jane from 2004 (far right). She's an open edition--I wonder how many of these were made? At any rate, she was the right price, and she's gorgeous.
I think she'll be my Queen Jane Seymour. She has an accentuated oval-shaped face--it seems longer than Tyler, which gives her a different look. And depending on the angle you see her, she looks quite different. I think you can tell in the attached photo--all three of these dolls are the Jane sculpt. She is so pretty, though, and very unique. Her shoes aren't quite as nice as the picture, though.
Photo courtesy Tonner Doll Company.

Aquaman and Storm set...

Just a note for any DC Stars fans out there--I got an email from The Tonner Company this morning about a very limited edition (only 25 are available) of a set of the new Aquaman, King of Atlantis, and Storm seahorse set.
I have to say, even though I haven't started on the DC character dolls yet on my own collection, the seahorse seems like it would be very fun for a mermaid doll! Or even better... maybe a King Triton repaint. What would Aquaman fans think of me now?
Photos courtesy Tonner Doll Company.

Tiny Kitty has arrived...

I've gotten tired of coming up with excuses why my two girls can't play with my dolls. I found a great deal on a 10" Tinny Kitty on Ebay, and I thought she would be great to get them started with a collection of their own.
She arrived--new in box, just a 2003 basic redhead (like the one pictured on the right, only the one shown here is a brunette). This doll is so cute! She's a miniature, when compared to Tyler, but she has the same attention to detail, only in a sweeter, rounder face. And her shoes! So tiny, but not fake-looking, like Barbie's always are. Plus, she has a miniature stand--my girls are fascinated by the Tyler stands, for some reason. The girls adore her. So of course, I had to order another one! I can't wait for her to come.
I hope I can remember these are part of the girls' collection, not mine. I'm hoping to teach them to play gently with their dolls, and put them away to keep them looking nice. I will freak out if I find these gorgeous girls in the Barbie bin!

Thursday, March 13, 2008

New DC Stars available from Tonner Direct

I got an email this afternoon regarding a new release Aquaman, King of Atlantis, available from Tonner Direct. He has a new face sculpt (he doesn't look very happy) and outfit (I love the mini sequins scales) and is looking pretty interesting at $159.99. He's a limited edition of 1000. I was actually considering using the Aquaman doll (the original sculpt) as my Henry VIII doll. This new sculpt actually looks crabbier, which maybe would suit old Hal a little bit better!
Plus, if you're a DC Stars fan, there are a limited number of 12 artist's proof Harley Quinn dolls available online as well. The price is listed at $219.99, and I bet they won't last long. I wasn't sure what artist proof dolls are, so I looked it up. According to PR Collect, "artist's proofs are a special subset of the regular limited edition, which usually sell for 10-30% more than the regular edition." This apparently adds to their collectibility, according to this website.
Photos courtesy Tonner Doll Company.

Cool doll storage case

In my search for a better way to store my dolls, I came across a cool storage idea by Just-4-Dolls. It's geared towards children as a great alternative to doll storage and play.
After spending about four hours on fixing my girls' Barbie dolls' hair, I have to say, this storage case looks very interesting!

Wednesday, March 12, 2008

New Ultra Basic Tyler shipping soon at Tonner Direct!

Check out the new Ultra Basic Tyler models in stock at Tonner Direct! These are the new Tyler sculpt--it's also supposed to be an affordable Tyler. And listed at just $49.95, it's not a bad price. Stands are extra (about $10), but available separately. The expected ship date is March 28, 2008. Three dolls are being offered:
  • Raven with blue eyes
  • Red with hazel eyes
  • Blonde with brown eyes
I have to say, I love the raven-haired doll. I think she will be my new Anne Boleyn! Maybe I can justify buying a few extras for my daughters' own Tylers!
Also, an additional note: through April 1, you can take $5 off with a special coupon code, just on Ultra Basic purchases. Use promo code: TCS03
To get more coupons and newsletters from Tonner, sign up for their newsletter here.
Photo courtesy Tonner Doll Company.

Monday, March 10, 2008

Opera Gala Tyler

Another sister-in-law has arrived. This is Michelle. I plan to restyle three dolls for my sister and sisters-in-law for Christmas gifts this year. I've found each a doll that resembles them in coloring, and I have actually found a seamstress who is willing to create at least the first wedding gown. I still need to come up with shoes, but I think they will make great gifts.
My only problem: I hope I will be able to give them away. I might like to keep them. This one is awfully cute. She is actually prettier in person than in the attached photo, I have to say!
Photos courtesy Tonner Doll Company.

Saturday, March 8, 2008

New additions

I've added a few more dolls to my collection. I recently discovered Still Plays With Dolls, which has a club available to members who spend at least $100. You get a really great deal on some of their other items, plus their sale items are phenomenal.
My latest additions are a New York City Ballet Rehearsal Brunette, High Style Grand Finale Tyler, and Raven Saucy Career. I ordered the NYCB doll because I thought she'd make a great gift for my sister-in-law. She looks a lot like her, and for Christmas, I'll be getting a wedding dress made for this doll also. That should be fun. That being said, I have to say that this doll is really, really pretty. Her face is just amazing. She's even prettier than she is in the photo. And she looks exactly like my sister-in-law. I hope I can give her away!
High Style Grand Finale Tyler is another Still Plays purchase. She was made in 2006. She was a great deal--I paid $80 (instead of the $200 MSRP). I'm not crazy about her outfit at all--I'll probably put her into another one--but I adore her real applied eyelashes. She's very pretty.
Saucy Career Raven is fun doll, also. I think she will be a gift for my sister, since she shares the same look. I love her side-glancing eyes--they give her character--and also her short hair is adorable. She is from 2004, and I found this doll brand new on Ebay.
My husband saw my collection the other day, and commented on its growth. He asked me if I'd like to maybe take up music as my next hobby. Like playing the keyboard. Since we have one, and it's free to play it. I had to laugh.
Photos courtesy Tonner Doll Company.

Saturday, March 1, 2008

2008 Honors...

Listed on the What's New page, five dolls have received awards/nominations this year from IDEX & ToyFair.

Dolls Awards of Excellence nominations go to White Hot Ava and Sunshine & Smiles (Effanbee).

IDEX Dolls of the Year go to Manhattan Grand Sydney Chase, Captain Jack Sparrow, and the American Model Winter Solstice.

I'm curious to know how these awards are chosen. I like Ava, but it seems to me that her jaw is a little large or square. I wish I could find more pictures of her online--or better, see her in person.

Wishlist update...

I've discovered another doll I'd like to add to my collection. Her name is Blushing Queen from the 2007 Alice in Wonderland collection. She's wearing a strapless silk shantung gown in pale pink and a wrap. I love, love, love her hair. She has a pink strand woven into her up-do, according to the Tonner Doll Company's website description.
I haven't seen any of these listed for sale on Ebay; in fact, as I've been searching for her, I've only found a single store that claims to carry this doll, listed at retail price. She was a limited edition of 300, so perhaps she's sold out. Wow, I love her hair!
Photos courtesy Tonner Doll Company.


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