In the past, there have been times when I was a serious “complainer”. I’m older, so I often resist change. I play with my dolls, so I don’t like five different sizes of feet or four different arm and leg lengths. I like my dolls to share their wardrobes and closets.
When previous convention collections were unveiled, I usually voiced a strong opinion about repeated hairstyles or embellishments or fashion designs that came up over and over. This was my first doll convention, and I wanted to see a big variety of clothing, face-ups, and hairstyles. I mentioned that I was disappointed to see so many dolls with crimped hair. (Crimped hair is a fashion “don’t” here in the south - we spend quite a bit of money on hair product to tame those frizzies we get from the humidity down here! We can’t imagine anyone would actually want to exaggerate them!) I was also concerned about those “silhouette-like cutouts” in so many ensembles.
Then it all got explained to me in a way my thick head could understand. I was looking at everything from the standpoint of a doll collector who was looking to add diversity to my collection. I was looking at everything all wrong. This is a “fashion collection”, and I am definitely illiterate when it comes to fashion. I was looking at it from the perspective of someone who plays with their dolls – redresses their dolls – de-constructs their dolls.
Jason Wu is a designer. His vision is a fashion line. There have to be elements that tie the line together. There is a unifying theme, but the models (I no longer use the term “dolls”) have to be cohesive in appearance and there are style elements that repeat. I have watched enough Project Runway to understand this concept. It all makes sense now.
Although the models include NuFace, FR, FR2 characters, they work together. The theme this year wasn’t so much tropical as it was Resort Wear. It included items that were appropriate for younger models as well as more mature models. It included casual, business, and formal wear. I can actually imagine this collection walking on a catwalk fashion show. (BTW, it was mentioned at the convention we’ll be seeing those silhouette cut-outs as a fashion trend in the future. I often forget that Jason plans collections seasons ahead of actual production. So these ensembles are mini-representations of what will be coming up in fashion for real women.)
I appreciate the whole process more now. Although there isn’t room in my collection for all of these models, those who join my collection will fit in beautifully. They will be individual representatives from this special creative vision of a team of individuals who work beautifully together. I respect and admire the individuals behind Integrity Toys much more than I did when I left here five days ago - and that was a lot even then!