Saturday, September 17, 2011

Fashion Royalty Revised ...

Integrity Toys introduced "The New Close-Ups Collection" in their 2011 line.  It was a surprise and shock.  I know that IT must continuously move forward and revamp the line to keep collectors interested, but they may have done some damage.

There are seven doll in this line.  In the original Close Ups line we had Veronique and Adele.  They are here again; Adele with her revised mold from 2004 and a newly redone Veronique.  Although many collectors who are fans of the original Vero were outraged, this doll is really quite stunning. 

The Adele was intended to pay tribute to Miss Royaltini but is a cross between that doll and Something Sexy.   She's nice, but not that great.  I sold the head, kept the outfit and used the hand speak body for Bodacious.  I also sold the head from Kesenia, the second doll produced in that character.  I did not purchase the Eugenia because I couldn't get past the face up and severe hair cut.  I did purchase the outfit, however.

IT introduced a new character, Korinne, who is supposed to be Mediterannean.  She is quite unique and interesting.  Some collectors have voiced their opinion that the dolls looks very masculine.  She does have strong features, but I believe her mold adds some variety to the "melting of looks" lately.

We also saw the reappearance of Isha, although she seems to have lost her ethnicity and looks like a tan Luchia.  Here is a picture of her in her coat.  The outfit is quite nice.  And the accessories are beginning to look "canned" between the seven dolls in the line

She is obviously quite confident in her appearance, choosing to wear a see-through blouse and no foundation garment!  I doubt if any woman that well endowed would go nude under such a sheer piece of fabric.

When I turned her around ... "OH NO!! The dreaded 'worm hair'!"  Sometimes when Integrity produces dolls with long curls, their hair looks like those worms dried up on a sidewalk in the summer time.   I hate worm hair.  Other dolls that often suffer from this condition are Ginza Kyori and Runway Right Away Vanessa.  

Some of the Isha dolls shipped with nice hair.  Since this one did not, I had to take care of it myself.   I had two choices:  1)  Boil perm it straight or 2) Try to condition the curls.   The picture below shows some hair products that are must-have items for my doll collecting.   The spiking glue I use to hold hair in place like glue (used for Flame Blue Vanessa).   For fixing these curls I washed the hair in warm water.   While the hair was wet, I used the hair pick to pick out the curls.   Then I used the Bed Head Manipulator to calm any frizzies (just a little bit in the palms massaged into the hair).   I have been told the Bed Head can cause platinum hair to "yellow" over time, so I purchased the Got2be Playful for light haired dolls.

After massaging in the Bed Head, I use the pick again.  Then I let the hair dry naturally.   This is how it looks from behind now.  The hair wasn't darkened ... the lighting just changed.

And this is from the front.

I may wind up boil perming the hair straight.  I have trouble "loving" curly hair on dolls.   Fly-aways drive me crazy.

Here is a photo of both my Isha dolls for you to see the difference with the change in skin tone.

The last doll in "The New Close-Ups" line was a re-imagined Vanessa.  Many call her Fauxnessa.  I didn't order this doll because she reminds me of Shirred Not Shaken (red hair with a front hair bump).  Her faceup though is quite gorgeous.  The old Vanessa is one of the most sought-after doll molds ever.  People LOVE this doll.  I'm not sure why IT would change the mold without warning. 

I guess my overall review would be that I LOVE the seven outfits and the fact that they merge into one collection with so many mix n match possibilities.   I'm not crazy about the dolls.   There is nothing spectacular here; nothing unexpected or dramatic; nothing I can't live without.  The re-imagined Vero and Vanessa are nice, but are so different from their predecessors it is hard to relate them to the original character.   Each doll retailed for $110.  I purchased five of the dolls ... two have moved on to other homes ... I'm not sure what to do with the remaining three.   The next blog will continue this dilemma.