Showing posts with label Makie. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Makie. Show all posts

Thursday, March 22, 2018

The Kruselings

Thanks to Gabby and Stephanie's recommendations, I have a real treat to share with you!  Today I'm reviewing the Kruselings, a collection of nine-inch play dolls that depict a magical group of friends who fly around and use special powers to protect the world from bad dreams.

I love the charming story behind this line, and thought the promotional pictures were beautiful, so I bought two Kruseling dolls.  After I saw those two dolls in person, I bought two more!  These cuties remind me of collector dolls in many ways (probably because of the artistic inspiration of their namesake, K├Ąthe Kruse) but they're actually play dolls aimed at kids between the ages of four and seven.

The overall concept of the Kruselings was conceived by Donaji Ayala Hernandez and the dolls themselves were designed by Sonja Hartman (of Kidz 'n' Cats fame).  The dolls are easy to find overseas and just now starting to show up in some U.S. stores.  I purchased my girls from both eBay and My Doll Best Friend, a wonderful shop in London. There are six Kruseling characters (five girls and a boy) and all of the girls come in two varieties, deluxe and standard. The deluxe sets cost £35.99 and include two outfits, the standard dolls are a little cheaper (£23.99) and do not have an extra outfit.

It's taken me forever to finish this review because I got greedy with the dolls and then took tons of pictures.  This review will feature the first Kruseling I chose, deluxe Sofia, but I'll also show you some pictures of deluxe Chloe, standard Vera, and standard Joy.  Here's Sofia:

Kruselings deluxe Sofia doll, £35.99 (~$50).

Thursday, December 24, 2015

A Trio of Makies!

I have been a huge fan of the ground-breaking 3D-printed Makie dolls ever since my review of Glythia back in September of 2013.  I only had two substantial criticisms of Glythia: she was prohibitively expensive (around $180 with shipping) and her facial features are highly unusual.  The Makie Lab did a wonderful job of enhancing the appeal of the Makie faces with their 2014 "Cutie Face" release.  My Cutie-faced Makie, Effie, is one of my favorite dolls in the whole world.  Effie accompanied my family on our epic trip to Edinburgh, Scotland last year.  I could not have asked for a better doll companion.

Recently, the Makie Lab dramatically reduced the price of their dolls--effectively fixing all of my critiques of the original concept.  The price reduction came with a change in quality, though.  Makie dolls are still made with 3D printed faces, but they now have plastic bodies.  Also, the customization options for the faces are not as extensive as they were at the start.

I went to the online Makie Shop to check out this new approach and found both the ease of customization and the price...uh, a little addictive.  Ok, a lot addictive.  Over the last four months, I've managed to accumulate a new female Makie in each of the three available skin tones.  In this review, I will show off my trio and talk about what has changed (and what has stayed the same) with these delightful dolls.

Three new Makie dolls, $78.02 each (including shipping).

Wednesday, July 23, 2014

Review Fusion #2

I am delighted to have another Review Fusion today!  I wasn't sure if this idea was going to work, so I'd really like to thank all of the reviewers who have been willing to share posts with one another and contribute to these fun combinations!  I love grab bags and surprises, and I think this ever-changing blend of dolls and perspectives feeds into that passion.  I hope you enjoy the mix, too.

I am in the midst of trying to inject some order into my madness (in other words, rearrange my doll room) and so having the help of such wonderful guest reviewers is amazing.  Today, I have two reviewers, George and Amanda, and they will be talking to you about a Mattel Winx Club Bloom doll and a Disney Store singing Cinderella (eeee!).  The cover picture this week is an extraordinary photograph that I have been holding on to for months, waiting for the right moment to share it with you.  This exquisite girl is a new Cutie Face Makie (like Effie) named "Ever."  Ever is owned by Amy and was customized to Amy's specifications by Sioux.  You can see more of Amy's pictures of Ever on her gorgeous Flickr photostream.  I think Ever is magical:

Makie doll, "Ever."  Photo by Amy, used with permission.

Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Effie in Edinburgh

Many of you guessed correctly that we are vacationing in the United Kingdom, and three of you guessed it exactly.  Very well done Filip, Anna and jSarie!  We are, indeed, in Edinburgh, Scotland--a city where I lived for a while when I was a child.  I have been waiting a long time to show this special place to my family.

My new Makie doll, Effie, is a perfect companion for this journey--not just because she's charming and versatile, but because she was made in the UK, and so this gets her back a little closer to her birthplace of London, England.

The first thing we did when we arrived in Edinburgh was to climb the hill (mountain!) in the middle of the city.  It's called Arthur's Seat--perhaps named after the legendary King Arthur, and it offers spectacular, panoramic views of the city.

New Makie doll, Effie, on Arthur's Seat, Edinburgh.

Sunday, April 20, 2014

The Cute New Makie Face from MakieWorld!

I have been waiting for just the right moment to introduce you to my second Makie doll, Effie.  Effie has the new Makie face that was introduced last November.  The new dolls still have customizable faces, just like my first Makie, Glythia, it's just that the basic face shape has been changed.  Ever since I got my first peek at this fabulous new face shape, I have wanted to buy another Makie doll.  I figured that this wish would have to go to the bottom of a very long waiting list...but I was wrong.

Several months ago, I got an unexpected email.  Stephanie, a fellow fan of the Makies, wrote to say that she had a coupon worth an entire new doll...and she wanted to give it to me (!).  I was surprised by the fact that MakieWorld would have coupons worth so much, and completely stunned by the generosity of this offer.  All that Stephanie asked for in return was that I share a few pictures of my new doll here on the blog.  Well.  I can do better than a few pictures, I hope.

I have big plans for Effie this week, but before I tell you more about that, I would like to offer a huge, heartfelt thank you to Stephanie for making a wish come true:

My new "Cutie" face Makie doll from MakieWorld.

Thursday, November 21, 2013

Disney's "Little Princess Cinderella" by Zapf Creation

While I was waiting for my 18" Annie doll to arrive, Connor gave me a tip to go check out some wonderful flickr pictures of a highly-articulated 14" Disney Ariel doll made by Zapf Creation.  As Connor noted, I am a big fan of articulated dolls, Disney Princesses and redheads, so the tip was perfect for me (thank you, Connor!).  I also like the Zapf company quite a lot and tend to be impressed with the quality of their dolls.  Given all of this, it should come as no surprise that I went directly from the flickr pictures to the online shops, trying to find one of these Zapf dolls to review.

The dolls are not easy to find.  I don't think they've ever been for sale in the United States and it seems like they are now discontinued.  Limited quantities remain for sale online--often at dramatically marked-up prices.  I believe these dolls were first made in 2010 and retailed for around £25.  If you live in Europe, you can probably still find a doll at a reasonable price: Amazon UK currently has Ariel for £15 and Puppen Toys in Spain has several of the dolls at retail.  Here in the United States, it seems to cost $50-100 to bring home one of these princesses.  Fishpond.com has the best deals that I could find, and they are willing to ship internationally, but they don't have many dolls left.

Zapf made five princesses: Belle, Sleeping Beauty, Ariel, Snow White and Cinderella.  The current prices and availability are linked to popularity.  Belle is the hardest to find and costs the most--often well over $100.  Fortunately, my favorite fairy tale princess, Cinderella, was the easiest to find and the least expensive:

"Little Princess Cinderella," by Zapf.

Sunday, September 8, 2013

My Makie Doll, "Glythia," from the Makie Lab!

Makies are large-headed, highly articulated 10" dolls that are made in London.  These dolls are special because each one is custom made from a unique digital design created by the customer.  How does that work?  Well, there's an easy-to-use customization tool on the Makie website that allows you to play around with various facial features, skin tones, wigs and clothes until you have a doll that looks good to you.  It's a lot like designing a character on the Stardoll site--or in Skyrim, for any Dovahkiin readers out there.  Once you have perfected your character, the Makie Lab uses a 3D printer to turn your digital design into an actual doll.  It's a pretty incredible idea.

Molly first told me about Makies way back in August of last year.  After her tip, I immediately went and checked out the Makie Lab website.  This is an extremely fun site because you don't have to buy anything or have any special skills to have fun designing a Makie.  You can have as many virtual dolls as you want, change their features, write stories about them, plan outfits, and share your creations on social networks...all for free.  If you want, you can also have the character you designed made into a real doll.

I have been enjoying the Makie website immensely, and have designed and re-designed about 8 virtual dolls. However, it has taken me a whole year to actually place an order for the real thing.  It took me this long partly because I couldn't decide which of my virtual Makies to make real.  I also couldn't stop making little changes to my designs.  Another obstacle is that having a doll made and shipped to the United States costs about $180, which is a hefty sum to spend on one doll.

As in so many situations, curiosity eventually trumped reason, and I bought a doll.  I was simply too eager to see how my creation would translate into three dimensions, and too curious about how a 3D printed doll would look and feel.  Now that my doll has arrived, I am excited to share the whole experience with you.

Custom Makie, "Glythia," by The Makie Lab.