Showing posts with label Barbie. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Barbie. Show all posts

Sunday, December 12, 2021

Sunday Surprise: Baby Born Surprise Mini Babies (and more)!

Happy Sunday!  I have officially lived in New Jersey for one year today!  And I'm so much happier than I was on this day last year.  Last year I drove seven hours from Maine in my tiny Prius packed full with all of the remaining belongings from our old house, plus four stressed-out dogs and two small cats.  It was a long journey!  But here I am sitting on my couch typing up a surprise review, which, if you'd asked me a year ago, is not something I ever thought would happen again.

I really like surprise toys, and I especially like surprise mini babies.  I don't collect baby dolls in general anymore, so I'm not sure why babies are so appealing to me in a small scale--and especially with a surprise theme.  Maybe it's because babies bring several surprises with them in real life?  Or perhaps it's just because mini babies are great little toys, either on their own as something to nurture, or as a fun new addition to a doll family.

In any case, I've reviewed a few different surprise babies over the years, including Zapf Jolly Dollies and the unrivaled Cabbage Patch Babyland Mini Kids--which are still probably my favorite surprise mini of all.  But I wanted to see what kinds of mini babies are available on the market today, so I focused on this theme during one of my Target missions.  The first surprise baby toy I found was this one, by Zapf and MGA Entertainment:

Baby Born Surprise Mini Babies, $9.99.

Sunday, November 7, 2021

Barbie Signature Looks by Mattel: Part Two

I'd like to start with a huge thank you to my very first Patrons!  I am so honored that you would pitch in and help me with my re-invented dream for this blog.  I'm enjoying the Patreon site, and think we can have some fun over there.  For anyone who doesn't know what I'm talking about, I've just launched a new Patreon page where you can pitch in a few bucks per month to help the future of the blog.  It's also a place where you can chat and even help me figure out what to review next.  Please consider joining us!

Today's post is a follow-up to my review of the Barbie Looks male characters.  Some of the background and deeper thoughts about this line can be found in that review.  I still feel regret that I didn't include Model #1 (Nina) in this review, since she's very beautiful and would have added to the fun, but the three characters I bought kept me plenty busy.  They are a delightful and diverse trio:

Barbie Signature Looks dolls from left: Model #2, Model #6, and Model #3.

Wednesday, November 3, 2021

Barbie Signature Looks by Mattel: Part One

Before I start talking about the Barbie Looks dolls, I want to mention a new development that I hope will keep the blog sustainable: I'm on Patreon!  Many of you suggested that I start a Patreon page a few years ago. I was too silly to take that advice then, but I've seen the light.  You can find my page here, and it's also linked in the right hand column.  A few dollars a month from you would make a huge difference to me. This will also add some new ways for us to connect, and you might even get a discount in my store!  I love my work, but I need to not loose huge amounts of money be more savvy about the business side of things. I'm excited to get my first patron!

With that out of the way, we can move on to the fun part of this post!  As many of you know, I was enthralled by the Barbie Made to Move dolls when they first came out.  With all of the dolls I sold or gave away during the last few years, I've kept my Made to Move girls.  They have extraordinary articulation for their price point, and I also think they're very attractive.  During the process of getting back up-to-speed with recent doll developments, I was delighted to discover that Mattel has expanded their highly-articulated offerings to include petite dolls, curvy dolls, tall dolls, and male dolls!  Dude!

Today I'll review the two highly-articulated male model dolls in the Barbie Looks collection, and then in a few days I'll showcase three of the female dolls from the same line.  I've had a lot of fun with this group!

Barbie Looks Model #5 (left) and Model #4 (right).

Friday, November 9, 2018

WWE Superstars Eva Marie by Mattel

Well, I'm back in business with a new camera, thanks to my mom and a gorgeous little Cannon she didn't need anymore.  Thank you, Mom!  I'm still experimenting with settings, so these pictures are a bit flaky.  For example, the doll I'm looking at today, WWE Superstars Eva Marie, is not quite as much of a fiery redhead as she looks in many of my pictures (it's a bit more orange-tinged in reality) but she's every bit as fierce:

WWE Superstars Eva Marie by Mattel, $14.99.

Saturday, June 17, 2017

The Black Label Barbie Wonder Woman Dolls

The suspense is over!  Here's my update to the Wonder Woman comparison review from earlier in the week.

To recap: Mattel offers two different Black Label Wonder Woman dolls at the moment, one from the 2016 Batman v Superman movie and another from the more recent Wonder Woman movie.  I assumed that--other than a few accessory and packaging differences--these two dolls were the same.  Acting on this assumption, I included the Batman v Superman doll in my comparison review so that I could leave the newer doll on display in her box.

But then, Rett informed me that the two dolls are not the same.  Not only is the newer doll more muscular, but she she has different arm articulation.  So, of course I had to de-box the newer doll for a quick showdown.  Here's the lovely (and strong!) Black Label Wonder Woman 2.0:

Black Label Barbie Wonder Woman from the Wonder Woman movie.

Tuesday, June 13, 2017

A Comparison Review of Three Mattel Wonder Woman Dolls

After watching the Wonder Woman preview fifteen times, I finally got a chance to go and see the real film.  It's amazing...or it has many moments of being amazing.  For example, I got choked up during all of the battle scenes--and now I see that I was not alone in having this reaction.  I mean, the battle scenes, for goodness sake!  Those are usually my least favorite part of a movie.  I actually found the love scenes in Wonder Woman tiresome and unnecessary, which is totally backwards for me.  As much as I enjoyed this movie, it didn't completely live up to all of my expectations.  In fact, my son and I critiqued the movie for the whole drive home--while cheerfully agreeing that we both loved it.  I kind-of knew something like this would happen, though, because when I'm obsessively eager to see a certain movie, my expectations get unrealistic and there's an inevitable (often temporary) let-down.  The same thing happened with Cinderella and Beauty and the Beast--except of course with those movies I enjoyed the fight scenes least and cried during all of the romantic scenes.

As a long-time fan of the Wonder Woman character, I've been thrilled to see all of the new dolls and action figures that have debuted during the past year or so.  There were a few Wonder Woman dolls released with the 2016 Batman v Superman movie (in which Wonder Woman has a cameo), and those offerings have probably tripled with the opening of the new film.

In this comparison review, I will look at a mix of dolls from Wonder Woman and Batman v Superman.  Strangely, all of these dolls are made by Mattel:

Black Label Batman v Superman Wonder Woman, Multiverse Wonder Woman, Battle Ready Wonder Woman.

Saturday, April 29, 2017

Endless Hair Kingdom Barbie by Mattel

I've been going to Toys R Us every week for the past month, trying to find something new and exciting to review.  This is often a slow time of year (after the holidays but before summer) for new doll releases.  In fact, I've been noticing absences from the shelves more than additions: Bratz dolls have been discontinued and are gradually disappearing, the Journey Girls have been replaced by American Girl, Winx Club dolls--and their Make it Pop imitators--are gone, and although Cabbage Patch Kids are still around, they look really different under the Wicked Cool Toys label.

Amidst all of these changes, evidence suggests that Mattel might be doing well--recovering from their multi-year financial slump.  I don't have a lot of data to support this, but the Toys R Us doll section in South Portland is certainly dominated by Mattel these days: there's Barbie, Ever After High, Monster High, My Mini MixieQ, DC Super Hero Girls, Loving Family...and of course the whole American Girl mini-store.  The only chink in Mattel's armor seems to be the fact that Hasbro scored the Disney Princess license.

Mattel's dominance doesn't bother me the way it used to.  I think this company is starting to make a lot of great changes.  While I've all but lost interest in Monster High and Ever After High, I'm very excited about some of American Girl's new releases: the WellieWishers, Melody, Gabriella, Logan, Z and Nanea.  The Barbie aisle is more exciting to me now than it's ever been, too, with the brilliantly-articulated Made to Move characters and the diversity of body types and skin tones in the Fashionista line.  In fact, the most interesting doll I found at Toys R Us last week is a Barbie doll.  This doll is from Mattel's Endless Hair Kingdom collection.  She caught my eye because of her size (about 17 inches), her great articulation, and her very long hair:

Endless Hair Kingdom Barbie, $24.99.

Sunday, April 16, 2017

Sunday Surprise: Happy Easter!

For more than a decade, Easter has started (bright and early!) in my house with an egg hunt and an epic treasure hunt.  I used to spend all Saturday making clues for the hunt...clues that my dynamic treasure hunting duo would solve in under an hour (baskets of candy are powerful motivators, I guess).  This year, with one kid off at college and the other with a new-found love for sleeping in on Sunday mornings...well, Easter is off to a quieter start.

I overcompensated for this change by trying to pack way too many things into today's Sunday Surprise.  I have an odd mix of surprise-themed things to share with you: some Li'l Woodzeez blind bag bobblehead figures, a Matryoshka nesting doll (with a mystery number of smaller dolls inside!) and some vintage Holly Jolly baby-filled eggs by Zapf Creation.

Matryoshka doll by Yankelus.

Thursday, April 6, 2017

Beauty and the Beast Dolls by Hasbro and the Disney Store: Belle

Last year, when I was re-thinking this blog and figuring out how to keep it in my life, I made a few resolutions.  One of them was that I would never feel obligated to buy another Disney Store doll.  Why? Well, when I first started collecting these dolls (back in 2012), I was blown-away by the high-quality product that Disney could offer for under $13. Over the years, though, the dolls have suffered a lapse in quality and an increase in price…to the point where I started feeling bad every time I made a Disney Store purchase.

So why am I reviewing a Disney Store doll now?  Well, frankly, it’s because I’m a total sucker for Disney movies, and I get a little obsessed when a new one comes out. When the live-action Beauty and the Beast movie was announced, I eagerly waited for the release of the associated dolls…and then bought all of them. I can’t say that this was a wise decision, but at least I’ll get to share what I learned with all of you.  In a short series of (not necessarily sequential) posts, I'll look at both the Disney Store and Hasbro’s versions of Beauty and the Beast's main characters.  I’ll start things off today with each company’s yellow-gowned Belle doll:

Beauty and the Beast's Belle from the Disney Store, $34.95.
(Shown on a Barbie Made to Move body)

Sunday, December 25, 2016

Sunday Surprise: Dolls Bearing Gifts!

When I was a little kid--maybe six or seven years old-- I had a good friend who really liked mice.  She and I would pretend that we actually were mice, and we'd play through imaginary scenarios where evil cats (our older sisters) were chasing us or we had to go on an epic journey to find cheese (chocolate).  We had a lot of fun together.  One year, this friend came for a sleepover at my house the week before Christmas.  My family had all of our Christmas decorations out, including a cute little mini tree that came with colorful lights attached to the branches.  My friend thought that this was a perfect mouse-sized tree--and it was.  We became obsessed with the tree and played with it all afternoon.  As our game developed, we began to convince ourselves that mice had their own version of Christmas...which just happened to be the next day.  This idea was beyond thrilling.  By evening, we were dancing around the mini tree, chanting little songs and declaring that it was Mouse Christmas Eve: the night Santa Mouse would come bearing gifts for all of the well-behaved mouse children.  We were so excited, and we were so sure that Santa Mouse would come.

The thing is, Santa Mouse did come that night.  When my friend and I woke up the next morning and rushed into the living room to look at the tree, there were a handful of miniature wrapped presents underneath!  We were beside ourselves.  Each of the tiny packages had an even tinier gift inside--perfect for a pair of mouse friends.

To this day, I still have no idea how my parents pulled off Santa Mouse's late night, last-minute visit.  What I do know is that the wonder of that morning gave me an enduring respect for the magic of Christmas--and a passion for tiny presents.  Every time I see a small package that might contain a mystery gift, I remember my childhood friend and our Santa Mouse.  In today's post, I'll de-box a couple of dolls (mostly Barbies) that come with little gift boxes.  Some of these gift boxes might have a secret present inside...some might be empty props.  But never fear!  If any of the boxes yield disappointment, Santa Mouse will come to the rescue and make sure there's a good surprise for all of you to see.

2000 Holiday Surprise Barbie (with gift).

Sunday, December 11, 2016

Sunday Surprise: Mommy-to-be Judith Dolls!

I realized yesterday that there are only two Sundays left until Christmas.  Two.  Can you believe that?  It took me totally by surprise.  It's much more typical that I'm waiting and waiting for Christmas, moping around the house because I feel like the big day will never come.  Things seem to be happening faster than usual this year for some reason.  Anyway, this realization threw me into a panic because I have a bunch of different Sunday Surprise toys that I wanted to chat about before the holidays, and now I can only look at two of them!

Today I want to show you something called the Mommy-to-be Judith doll.  This doll was developed in Europe (I think?) and introduced into the United States in 1991 (back when I was a kid).  There's not much information about these dolls on the internet, but there's a Chicago Tribune article from 1992 that's been archived online.  This article states that Judith is believed to be the first pregnant play doll distributed in the United States.  That's pretty cool!  Of course Mattel came along a decade later with their pregnant Midge doll, but the Judith Corporation was apparently first on the scene.

So why is Judith a good doll for the Sunday Surprise?  Well, because the gender and appearance of her little baby is a mystery!  And, what makes this doll unusually fun is that the company put boy babies in half of their dolls and girls in the other half (according to the Tribune article).  So I have an actual 50:50 chance of getting a little boy today!  Better yet, I'm going to de-box two Judith dolls, and while this won't change the odds of either baby being a boy...at least I have two chances.

Mommy-to-be Judith doll (1991).

Friday, August 12, 2016

Curvy Barbie Meets The New Lammily

I'm so happy that my project idea sounds fun to some of you!  I'm certainly having a great time with the Twinns.  The big girls have their wigs and the smaller girls have new eyes (for better or worse!). They should be ready for a quick update in a few days. In the meantime, there's a fun pair of fashion dolls that I'd love to talk about.

In addition to the new line of DC Super Hero Girls, Mattel has recently premiered a wider range of body types for the Fashionista Barbies.  There are now Petite, Tall and Curvy characters.  I was especially interested in the Curvy dolls because of my fascination with Lammily--the first fashion doll that attempted to represent realistic body proportions.  The original Lammily doll made huge waves when she entered the market in late 2014, and I feel pretty certain that Mattel introduced their new Barbie bodies as a direct result of the popularity of Lammily.  And there's nothing wrong with that--in fact, the more inclusive the fashion doll market becomes, the better.

The Lammily company has also been super-busy lately.  They've introduced a wonderful line of fashions (including Olympic gear and some exclusive handmade dresses).  There's even a bee keeper outfit!  Their second female character, Photographer, was introduced for pre-order about a year ago and started shipping in early June.  The first male Lammily doll (a young man who spends his time helping animals in need) is expected to arrive this November.

Since I've been away from the blog for so long, I figured I would try to catch up a bit by looking at Curvy Barbie and the Lammily Photographer in the same post.  This might not be wise, but here it goes.

"So Sporty" Barbie, $19.99 (left), and Lammily "Photographer," $25.00 (right).

Friday, November 20, 2015

Made to Move Barbie by Mattel

There have been rumors about Mattel's new highly-articulated Barbie doll for a while now.  I'm not a Barbie expert, but I do pay attention when someone says "highly articulated," so I've been keeping my eye out.  When the new Style Barbies were released earlier this year, I figured that's what the rumors must have been about.  These Style dolls have articulated ankles, but they come at the price of the torso joint...so it's hardly an improvement.  It's like one step forward, one step back.  There are so many other interesting dolls to review, I basically dismissed the new Style dolls and the Barbie articulation rumors and went on with my life.  However (and many thanks to those of you who alerted me to this) the rumors were not about the Style dolls at all, but rather the Made to Move series, which has just recently been made available.  These dolls are still not on the shelves in Maine, but they're offered online...often for a premium.  I found my doll on Amazon for around $30.  The actual retail price for these dolls is $14.99.  Which, I can tell you already, is a huge bargain.

It's unfortunate that I confused the new Style dolls and the Made to Move dolls in my head, because my reaction to these two collections could not be more different.  While I'm underwhelmed and uninterested in the re-designed Style series, the Made to Move dolls are pretty much a dream come true: an affordable, attractive, well-articulated play doll.

Meet the lovely Made to Move Teresa:

Made to Move Barbie (Teresa), $14.99.

Sunday, August 16, 2015

Barbie Becky "I'm the School Photographer" and Fin Fun Mermaid Tails--A Joint Review!

I think this is surely the most unusual combination of reviews that I have ever posted together, but there's a neat connection--you'll see.  First, I'm delighted to welcome my friend Feerie B. Wolfie from France who offered to review a rare wheelchair doll for the blog: Barbie's Becky, "I'm the School Photographer" (from 1998).  Feerie is a blogger, toy collector and doll customization artist.  Her site (with the awesome name Dollzenstein) reviews old toys from her childhood.  The blog is posted in both French and English, which is really helpful.

I was thrilled to get Feerie's review offer for several reasons.  First, I love working with doll enthusiasts from other parts of the world.  In my opinion, these collaborations are one of the best things about the internet.  Also, it's nice to see a character with a disability incorporated into the Barbie empire.  The other neat thing about Feerie's review is that it's quite rare to see a wheelchair in this scale.  From what I've read, most collectors looking for an accurate 1:6 wheelchair use one of Becky's chairs, the chair from Drastic Plastic's Franklin D. Roosevelt figure...or simply make their own.  I'm particularly fond of this version of Becky's wheelchair because it isn't pink and it's quite realistic:


Barbie Becky "I'm the School Photographer," 1998.

Wednesday, May 20, 2015

Chelly Wood's Epic Stop-Action "Romeo and Juliet" Film--A Guest Interview!

About a month ago I got an email from a lovely fellow blogger, Chelly Wood, who is working on a special project with her two daughters.  Chelly explained that she and her girls are using a collection of dolls to make a stop-action version of Shakespeare's classic, Romeo and Juliet.  How cool is that?

I was immediately in love with this idea--and not just because I like doll-related things.  I also have a special fondness for stop-action movies.  When I was a kid, my friend and I used to make these elaborate stop-action sagas with my Playmobil figures.  And that was way before laptops and stop-action technology--we just turned the Betamax (yes, Betamax...) camera on and off as we captured our shots.  It was so much fun.  The other thing that I like about Chelly's work is the amount of care and research that is going into her production.  Chelly and her daughters give attention to every little detail--from costumes and hair to scenery and props.  My limited experience with making movie clips for the blog has given me a great amount of respect for the time and effort required to complete this kind of project.  I am not the only one who is impressed: Chelly's endeavor is already getting media attention, with a story in the Chicago Tribune and a doll-craft article in Designer Dolls Magazine.

I thought it would be fun to showcase Chelly's project here on the blog while the film itself is still in production.  I am always interested to learn about the details behind a creative venture like this one.  Knowing the backstory often adds to my anticipation for--and enjoyment of--the final work of art.  In the upcoming months, you can find updates and news about Romeo and Juliet on Chelly's own website.  I hope you guys are as enchanted by this special project as I am!

Juliet relaxing on one of the beautiful handmade sets of Romeo and Juliet.

Saturday, April 4, 2015

Prettie Girls! by The One World Doll Project

It's been fun to compare some of the Cinderella movie dolls over on Facebook this past week.  I really enjoyed hearing everyone's opinions about these dolls and about the movie itself.  I don't want to flood the blog with Cinderella-themed reviews, but I am a little obsessed it seems like there's interest in another comparison.  I thought maybe I'd run a quick poll (mostly because they're fun and I haven't done one in a while...) to see which character everyone is most curious about.

In the meantime, I have a fairly new brand of doll to review today.  I have been eyeing these dolls for almost a year, but didn't take the plunge and purchase one until October, when Holly Marie alerted me to an excellent sale over at Zulily.  Not only did I purchase two dolls through this sale, but I am now a regular Zulily lurker and have found several more really amazing doll deals there.  Anyway...what dolls did I buy from Zulily in October?  Two 12-inch fashion dolls from The One World Doll Project.

The One World Doll Project was founded in 2010 with the intention of using dolls to help promote positive self image in young girls all over the world.  The first dolls released by this company are the "Prettie Girls!" (the official title includes that exclamation point...I'll probably leave it out).  "Prettie" is spelled in this unconventional way because it is an acronym for, "Pretty, Respectful, Enthusiastic, Talented, Truthful, Inspiring, and Excellent."  This fashion doll collection includes five characters so far, each with a different personality and cultural background.  The company also has a Signature Celebrity series of Prettie Girls, the first of which is a tribute to fashion model and actress Cynthia Bailey.  I purchased the Cynthia Bailey doll (regular retail $69.95, on sale for $39.99) and one of the mainline Prettie Girls named Dahlia ($24.95 on sale for $16.99).  I will do an extensive review of the Cynthia Bailey doll and include a short look at Dahlia.

Cynthia Bailey Prettie Girls! doll
The Cynthia Bailey Signature Celebrity Prettie Gilrs! doll by The One World Doll Project.

Sunday, February 22, 2015

"Cinderella and the Prince" from the Disney Store and Mattel's "Cinderella Wedding Day"

I'm back!  For those of you not on Facebook, I'll fill you in: I was in a bad car accident right after the Phicen review, and I broke my leg.  Everything is going really well, but I am about the slowest person on the planet right now, so it's just taken a really long time to get back on track.  The other thing is, this review is super-long and involves three dolls, so it would have taken me a while to create even with two fully-functioning legs.  I could have just chosen to review a simpler doll, I suppose, but this review involves Cinderella, and when Cinderella is on the scene, I find it difficult to think rationally.

Have I mentioned that I'm ridiculously excited about Disney's Cinderella live action movie that is coming out in 18 days on March 13th??  I've read comments around the internet suggesting that Disney really blew it by making another Cinderella movie, and that everyone has seen the story enough times already.  I respectfully disagree.  For me, this movie is (in true Disney fashion) a dream come true.  I never dared to even hope that there would be another Cinderella movie...but here it comes.  Premiering in less than a month.  I have watched the trailer for Cinderella about thirty times now (no exaggeration...) and it makes me weep every time--especially the part when Ella's mother says, Where there is kindness, there is goodness, and where there is goodness...there is magic!  Ahh!  Goosebumps!  It's going to be an amazing movie.  It has to be.

Of course I have also been anticipating the new Cinderella doll lines with significant enthusiasm.  Both the Disney Store and Mattel have produced versions of the main characters, and I thought it would be fun to do a comparison of the first pair of dolls I was able to get my hands on: "Cinderella and the Prince" ($69.95 from the Disney Store) and "Cinderella Wedding Day" ($29.99 from Mattel).

Cinderella and the Prince dolls set
Cinderella from the Disney Store's "Cinderella and the Prince" set.

Sunday, December 7, 2014

The Lammily Doll

Lammily is a unique new fashion doll who was released at the end of December.  The mainstream media is very interested in this doll, and has been since her conception in early 2013.  In fact, I didn't learn about Lammily through the usual doll collecting channels, but rather from my brother-in-law, who saw an article about her in The Atlantic last May.

Lammily was designed by graphic artist Nickolay Lamm, and the reason that she has captured such widespread attention is that she was designed to have the body proportions of a typical American teenager.  Unlike Barbie (and most other 12-inch fashion dolls) Lammily does not have an impossibly tiny waist, large chest, oversized head or spindly legs.  Mr. Lamm used body measurements published by the Center for Disease Control to ensure that his doll would not only be realistic...but would be average.  The word "average" does not tend to conjure visions of loveliness, but Mr. Lamm challenged this preconception and branded his doll with the inspiring logo, "Average is Beautiful."

I pre-ordered two Lammily dolls immediately after reading the article in The Atlantic (the dolls are $25 each).  This is exactly the kind of crowd-funded, vision-driven project that I love to see in the doll world.  I was inherently enthusiastic about the Lammily concept, but an email I received from Nickolay Lamm last May added to my excitement.  Mr. Lamm wrote seeking some advice about the doll's articulation--and you guys can probably guess that I, uh, had a fair amount to say on that subject.  Conversations back and forth with Mr. Lamm over the past few months have given me a fascinating glimpse into the creative process behind this unique new doll.  I have been on pins and needles to see how all of Mr. Lamm's ideas came together in the debut doll, and am beyond excited to share my initial impressions with all of you:

The Lammily Doll
The Lammily doll makes her entrance.

Tuesday, November 11, 2014

Kate and Tara by Wildflower Dolls

Today's post will not be a traditional review, but more of a showcase for a special kind of doll that I learned about recently: Wildflower Dolls.  These dolls have handmade, limited edition heads mounted on highly articulated brand name 1/6 scale bodies.  As you know, I am a huge fan of highly articulated doll bodies, but it is the extraordinary faces of the Wildflower Dolls that have enchanted me.

I first heard about Wildflower Dolls from my friend Séverine (the same friend who took the Avengers Black Widow picture).  Séverine was showing me some pictures of her doll collection, and one particular photo of spunky redheaded sisters immediately grabbed my attention.  These sisters caught my eye because they have my favorite kind of unruly red hair, but also because they have facial expressions that brilliantly capture two very different, very playful emotions.  When Séverine told me that her dolls were custom-made, I assumed that their prices would be out of reach.  However, when I visited the Wildflower Dolls Etsy store, I was amazed to learn that these charismatic creations can be custom ordered for under $200.  Better yet, some of the pre-made dolls can be purchased for under $100.  This realization marked the beginning of my own Wildflower Dolls adventure--a process that brought these two beautiful, happy sisters into my home:

Kate #45 (left) and Tara #32 (right) by Wildflower Dolls.

Thursday, September 18, 2014

Princess Malucia from "Barbie and the Secret Door"

Like my previous reviews of the Kitty Surprise toys, this is a post that I didn't plan on writing.  During one of my "research" outings a few days ago, I saw a doll in the Barbie section that stopped me in my tracks.  I'd never seen this particular doll before, and she intrigued me to the point that I put everything else on hold so that I could take a closer look at her.  Judging by other pictures that are cropping up on places like Flickr, I am not alone in my reaction to this character.

Let me back up, though.  The doll I'm talking about is "Princess Malucia," the antagonist in the recently-released Barbie movie, Barbie and the Secret Door.  Why is this doll so interesting?  Well, she's a relatively new Barbie character with a new face, which is newsworthy enough, but the reason I had to buy her is that her face bears a striking resemblance to the Ever After High characters:

Barbie's "Princess Malucia" flanked by Madeline Hatter (left) and Poppy O'Hair (right).