It looks like this in the box:
|"Plaid to Meet You" accessory set.|
I picked this set up because of that plaid schoolbag. I thought the set included a bag, a notebook and a pen. I was thinking to myself, Hm, if that pen really works and you can write in that notebook, this might be the best $7 set ever.
Then, I read the small print at the bottom of the box:
|Not a notebook!|
That red thing is not a notebook...it's a laptop. A laptop! I love laptops! I have a very close relationship with my own laptop. Even if the pen doesn't work, it still might be the best $7 accessory set ever. The other thing is, I hadn't seen Char's review of this set yet, so I had no idea what the inside of the laptop looks like, and that's exactly the type of secret that's irresistible to me. I had to buy the set and bring it home to see that laptop. What's on the screen? Is it blank? Painted? A sticker? Ahhh! I needed to know.
I wanted to rip the box open in the car, but I managed to distract myself with a big bag of (kinda disgusting) gummy fruits so that I could carefully de-box the set at home.
The box is cardboard and has a plastic lid that is taped on all four sides. Underneath the lid, there is a molded plastic shell to keep all of the pieces in place:
If you want to preserve the box, you can open it at the bottom and then un-tape the tabs that hold the plastic shell to the cardboard:
There's even an extra piece of plastic to keep the pen in place. The set is over-packaged, but the display is really attractive. All of the little accessory sets look soooo tempting in the store with their bright boxes and affordable prices.
So, the first surprise is that the school bag has a little Scotty dog silhouette on it! I didn't even notice this in the store. It's adorable. Also, it's clear right away that the pen doesn't work. It totally could have worked. I've seen pens that small.
The pen is still cute. It's made out of red plastic and has silver painted details:
My American Girl, Keira, is excited about the pen. I guess it's a little big for her, but the chunky size fits well with her proportions. I think that in the end, I'm glad this pen doesn't have real ink. I can just picture the ink leaking out and getting on one of my dolls. That'd be bad.
The schoolbag is really nicely made. It has a plaid fabric flap and a black faux leather body. The little Scotty is also made out of imitation leather and is securely stitched to the plaid:
The plastic clasps seem very sturdy, and they really open and close:
The inside of the bag is fully lined and spacious:
Ok...here's the moment of truth! What does that laptop have inside? Well, before I opened it, I paused to admire the beautiful cover on the outside:
I like fancy laptop covers--here's my computer with the Our Generation laptop:
|Reminds me of Minecraft...|
The little Our Generation laptop is made out of hollow plastic. It's lighter than I'd like--I wish it was made out of solid plastic. However, details like the miniature molded ports on one side help compensate for the weight:
Ok, here it is:
The keyboard is molded with painted lettering. It's not a sticker, which was a nice surprise:
The screen is a sticker, but it's the Our Generation website home page! That's pretty clever:
Here's the actual web page for comparison:
The resolution is really low, but all of the details are there, including the cute girl in a swing:
The Free The Children ad:
And all of the details of the tree:
Some of the tiny text is even readable!
The laptop is too small for Keira. It's more the size of a Nintendo DS large or something like that, but she seems to enjoy using it anyway:
Everything fits nicely into the school bag:
Bottom line? I love that Our Generation has affordable accessory sets that offer this level of fun and quality. The school bag is very well-made and has a great design. The laptop might be too small for most 18" dolls, but the pretty red cover and detailed keyboard and screen make up for that. If the pen had actually worked, my mind would have been blown. As it is, I can see the wisdom in keeping real ink away from a set like this. Our Generation seems to have it all this season--large impressive sets like the kitchen and the camper (and, apparently a stable!), and smaller, more accessible sets like this one. I highly recommend Plaid to Meet You--it's a great back-to-school treat and a wonderful little addition to the fall Our Generation lineup.