Thursday, December 31, 2015

Attempting To Join The Community

Happy Quinn got up early this morning, got out of her pajamas, took a shower, and decided she wanted to stay here.  She got dressed and decided to enlist the aid of another doll who was already a resident.
"I'm going to call you Paige.  But I can't call you Paige Dineen because you're no Katherine MacPhee.  Anyway, that may lead to the purchase of male dolls to fill the roles of Walter, Toby, Sylvester, and Cabe.  Not to mention Ralph.  We can't do that.

Let's think about this.  … You definitely appeal to my geek personality.  I love those glasses.  How about we call you Paige Turner?   Get it?  Paige Turner?"
"I think there is already a drag queen in New York City with that name.  You're going to need to figure out something better.  Maybe something a little more original and a little less corny."

"How do you know about Drag Queens in New York City?"

"I read, of course!  You don't choose to look this geeky without being able to back it up."

"Well, I have decided I want to stay here, but I need to go shopping."

"For what?  We have storage boxes full of clothing.  What could you possibly need?"

"Isn't it obvious?  I need a new body.  I mean, look at you.  You can even stand on your own."
"Well, you're right.  That is an advantage.  I can also scratch my nose and comb my own hair.  I can sit in a chair or on a sofa, too!   We looked for an appropriate body here, but there wasn't one your skin tone  Before going shopping, I think you need to see someone."

"Someone?  Who?  The owner already picked me from all the Fashionista boxes at Walmart.  And let me tell you, there were many to choose from!"
"Yes, but you have to get past Chaundra first."


"The resident Hybrid Queen.  She has to approve everyone."
"Forget your body!  I want one like hers!"
"I'm sure you do, but my body is a Jamieshow 12 inch resin body that is ball-jointed, tied together with cording, and has hand-blushing.  It's an expensive and rare body.

Anyway, before you get your hopes up, you will need to fill out the New Doll Residential Application.  And don't miss any blanks or it will be tossed away and you'll have to start the whole process over again.  There's only about 250 pages to complete."

"Now, I will finish getting ready for the party tonight.  Another new resident has invited me over to watch the fireworks from her balcony and have champagne.  If you'll excuse me…."
Across town, preparing for her guests arrival ….

"May your New Year be filled with joy, health, and happiness.  May you experience the best life has to offer in 2016."

Wednesday, December 30, 2015

Sometimes You Just Want To Have Some Fun ...

As much as I enjoy my Fashion Royalty dolls, sometimes I just want to get out one of my Barbies and go crazy redressing and playing!  I was in Walmart this week to return something and just "accidentally" wandered by the Barbie aisle.

There she was … Fashionista #10 using the Kayla/Lea mold.  And she was all of $7.95.  You know where this doll wound up, right?  As if I needed another play line doll!?   Of course I did.  Especially this one.

I knew that the dress would probably get donated to a Misaki or Poppy.  Let's face it, a $7.95 doll AND a new wardrobe item for my other dolls.  It's really a no-brainer.  I was talking to a friend about some things, and we were on the Clear Lan website at the same time.  She found a denim dress that she really loved.  Since I already had it and a new doll - voila!  (She is borrowing  a Star Dollz body for this photo.)
This doll began making me think of someone.  Was it Happy Quinn from the television series Scorpion?  Played by the actress Jadyn Wong?   Of course it was!

So for a dreary, rainy day, I had a lot of playtime!  I hope all of you are getting some fun in this season!

Tuesday, December 29, 2015

The Disqualified Doll

My very favorite doll of 2015 was not included in my countdown this year.   I decided to limit the dolls in my countdown to dolls in production form which eliminated the doll I love the most.

This doll was one of the first released in 2015.  She was an ITBE and could only be purchased if you won the opportunity through a "right to buy" lottery on the W Club.   My husband's membership came up lucky and Dark Side Anja came to live here.
She turned out to be the most sought after doll from that line of six dolls.
Unfortunately, my doll seemed to have a problem with her eye screening.   I contacted customer care at Integrity Toys and got a replacement.  Sadly, the second doll's eyes were worse than the first.  At this juncture I had to make a decision.  Did I like the doll enough to warrant paying to have her irises corrected?

I contacted my friend Veronica Hage.  We discussed what I wanted, and she executed it perfectly.  My very favorite doll of 2015 is Dark Side Anja with repainted irises.  This doll is a work of art!
Her only enhancement were her inner eyes - Veronica also created the tear ducts.  Those piercing blue eyes took her to a whole different level.

Monday, December 28, 2015

Best of 2015 - Number 1

First, I want to express my heartfelt appreciation to my friends who have been on this journey with me this holiday season.  It has been written that I have been blessed with a beautiful collection of dolls.  I know that is very true, but I don't have children and my husband and I rarely go out.  I drive an older car and don't purchase designer items.  My dolls are my only luxury purchases, and I do sacrifice for them.  Personally, I believe I am more blessed by friends and those who participate in the blog and my flickr account.  You are priceless to me.

I'm sure some of you have figured this out.  For anyone who hasn't been following, let's review the Top 10 so far.

  1. Evening Blossom Dominique Makeda
  2. Fine Jewel Rayna
  3. Feminine Perspective Agnes Von Weiss
  4. Up All Night Lillith
  5. Out of Sight Nadja Rhymes
  6. Reigning Grace Eugenia Perrin Frost
  7. Timeless Adele Makeda (mold 3.0)
  8. Fine Print Elyse Jolie
  9. Love Roulette Vanessa Perrin (mold 2.0)
If I had to list the runners up, it would include Midas Touch Poppy Parker, Star Power Vanessa Perrin (mold 3.0), Sneak Peek Eden, and Moschino Barbie.

When I wrote about my Number 2 choice, I noted that my Number 1 and Number 2 were polar opposites.  Evening Blossom Dominique is modern, hip, and trendy.  Her short red hair and gorgeous green eyes make her so sassy and irresistible.  

My Number 1 is refined, classic, and elegant.  Even though Idol Worship Kyori Sato was supposed to represent a nod to icon Elizabeth Taylor, Rare Appearance Dania Zarr exudes the very essence of this unforgettable mega-star.  

In my opinion, this doll is one of the very best FR2 dolls ever produced.  I put her right up there with After Tonight Eugenia, Engaging and Intrigue Elyse Jolie, and even Intimate Reveal Agnes Von Weiss.
This is the very first time the Dania Zarr mold has appeared at the Number 1 spot.  To me, she is just total perfection and I love putting her in front of the camera.  She fought hard for this spot against some younger candidates, but she emerged victorious.   Number 1 of 2015 is Rare Appearance Dania Zarr.

… So who could it be?

Before announcing the Number 1 Spot in my 2015 collection, let's consider the possibilities.

I have usually been able to find a Mattel product to include in my Top 10.   This year I missed every opportunity to add the more exclusive dolls to my collection.  There were some amazing choices this year!  It seems the Barbie Collector website was either down, overloaded, or was putting dolls up at the wrong time.   That doesn't mean there were a few choice candidates:  TokiDoki, Karl Lagerfeld, Moschino, and Andy Warhol to name but a few.  Unfortunately, I refuse to pay the secondary market prices on these dolls, so they will be admired in photographs on the internet.

Could it be one of the other four ITBE lingerie dolls living here?  Dark Side Anja? Entice Kesenia? My Desire Isha? Or maybe Buxom Veronique?
What about  ITBE Flawless Impact Dania Zarr?
Maybe it's one of the newer ITBE girls from the Santa Grab Bag program that showed up here for Christmas this year?  The extremely popular Ayumi whose name hasn't been revealed?  Immaculate Finley Prince with that latin complexion and dark hair - a Brazilian Beauty?  The collector's favorite Wondrous Tatyana/Jordan?  Or even the saucy Cloudscape Josephine who is lovingly referred to as Gaga?
There were a few mainline FR girls left out who had hurt feelings. Could it be Fame Fable Kyori? Decorum Eugenia?  What about Style Notes Isha?  Perfect Reign Tatyana?  Or Refinement Vanessa (mold 3.0)?
And how did Poppy Parker get overlooked this year?   Lavender Mood Changers, Brunette Mood Changers, or Redhead Mood Changers?  Spring Song?  Out of this World? or Midas Touch?  I added Angel in Blue, Wild Thing, and Dark Moon from the prior year's convention and That Holiday Feeling, so I was "Poppied-out" by the time the Cinematic collection came around.  I missed Lash Out, Paper Doll, and Traveling Incognito altogether but love each of these!  Midas Touch, Redhead Mood Changers, and Traveling Incognito all warrant a Top 10 Spot, don't you agree?
And what other Cinematic Convention dolls found their way here?  With Integrity Toys producing such high edition sizes, it was fairly easy to add dolls purchased directly from IT this year.  I even won the chance to purchase a couple in the lottery.   Several are even still in the on-line store!  There's the homage to Marilyn Monroe Star Power Vanessa Perrin (mold 3.0), the new character Making An Entrance Karolin Stone, maybe the ingenue Sneak Peek Eden, or Idol Worship Kyori Sato (mold 2.0) channeling Elizabeth Taylor?
So many beautiful dolls to choose from.  Could it possibly be a W Club Exclusive?  What about Ombres Poetique Mme Jolie?  Even though she was the last W Club Exclusive of 2014, she wasn't received until 2015.
Maybe it's the W Club Membership upgrade doll Aristocratic Agnes Von Weiss.  I know she is expecting the Number 1 slot!
Could it be the shunned Royal Treatment Veronique Perrin (mold 2.0) that I found so endearing and beautiful?
Have you figured it out yet?  Many of these are extraordinary and deserving of the title.

But I've not shown all the new dolls I've added to my collection this year. What?  That's right.  My Number 1 is not even pictured above.

Sunday, December 27, 2015

Best of 2015 - Number 2

From the top 2 dolls in my countdown, I was still uncertain which to place where as I started this entry. They represent two completely opposite places in my collection.   When I first saw this doll's photo, I totally flipped out.  She immediately became my first "must have" from the Cinematic Convention.
What an amazing likeness to the pop star and fashion icon Rihanna.  It cannot be denied where the inspiration was lifted for this Dominique.
The unexpected thing about this doll is that she redresses so well.  She can get by with so many different looks!  One would think the flame red hair would inhibit such versatility, but it doesn't.
How about a serious business look?  Yep!
Maybe an élégant faux fur?  No problem!
Let's try something funky and mod!
Such a strange addition to my NuFace collection, but such a welcome change!  She is total perfection for a young, modern vibe with a face that refuses to take a bad photo.  It surprises me that this doll can still be purchased for retail price at the Integrity Toys website (80 still available as of this blog entry).   I give you Number 2 of 2015 - Evening Blossom Dominique Makeda.

Saturday, December 26, 2015

Best of 2015 - Number 3

It's hard to believe we are finally at the top 3.  I hope everyone who is following has enjoyed the entries.  The top 3 have flipped around several times as I have considered their exact positions.  The more photos I took, the more they changed.

The next doll is one that has been a favorite ever since I added her to my collection this year.  She was  reviewed earlier this year and has received many photo shoots, including the one where she was the subject of my Christmas Card on flickr this year.
She represents one of my favorite molds and was released in a very small edition size of 315.  She originally cost $99, but her secondary market price has continued to climb due to her popularity.  I was unlucky in the lottery, but with patience, found her nude on secondary market for an attractive price.  She represents what Integrity Toys can achieve when they think outside the box.

Number 3 of the Best of 2015 list is Rare Jewel Rayna.  This doll is just amazing.

Friday, December 25, 2015

Best of 2015 - Number 4

This next doll is one that is on my list more for the concept than anything else.  Originally, I had no intention of adding this doll to my collection.  She reminded me of another doll I already own and the clothing was similar to what I had in my collection for the regular FR body.

She came available to me quite by accident, and I couldn't resist.  She is so "Old Hollywood",  being modeled with Marlene Dietrich in mind.  She is Feminine Perspective Agnes Von Weiss.
This gift set reminds of the Josephine Baker FAO Exclusive "The Jazz Age".   However, this one includes the first Integrity Toys (IT)  offering of white lingerie for the FR2 body.  I really like it a lot.  (Photo property of Integrity Toys.)
IT missed the mark by not making this gift set the Convention Souvenir Doll instead of Making an Entrance Karolin Stone.  It would've been so dramatic, especially after the Welcome Package included an ensemble called "On The Set" which is inspired by another Marlene Dietrich ensemble.  (Photo property of Integrity Toys.)
The doll has gorgeous strawberry blonde hair and a lovely face up.  Agnes is often in my top 10 list, so her absence would seem an obvious oversight.  Number 4 of 2015 is Feminine Perspective Agnes Von Weiss.

Thursday, December 24, 2015

Best of 2015 - Number 5

I am not a fan of bangs (fringe) on dolls.  Usually it's too thick, too thin, or not straight.  Although there are several very popular dolls made by Integrity Toys (IT) with fringe, very few have remained in my collection.  I have owned and sold Flawless Elyse Jolie, Luxe Life Vanessa Perrin, and even Red Riding Hood Yuri because of those bangs.  (Hard to believe, huh?)

I've even steered clear of dolls simply because they were produced with bangs; sometimes to my own chagrin.  I had the opportunity to purchase Center of Attention Poppy at retail - Big Mistake!   Snow White Kumi and Red Rose Yuri actually went on sale and I passed on both of them.

So, I am very surprised to have a doll this high on my Top 10 of 2015 that has bangs.  Somehow with this doll, it seems to work.  I couldn't believe that Up All Night Lillith was a convention workshop doll.  It's unusual for a workshop doll to be dressed, come with extra hands and jewelry, and look this good in stock production!
Her skirt is made from a sheer material and is pleated like Reigning Grace Eugenia's.  Either the individual who designed the pattern or the cutters completely messed up the hem on this skirt also.  (Quality control people!  Quality control!)

I love the hair color, makeup palette, and skin tone.  This is one beautiful doll!  Had she not had the fringe, she would've given some serious competition for the top spot this year.  Even with bangs, Number 5 of 2015 is Up All Night Lillith.

Wednesday, December 23, 2015

Best of 2015 - Number 6

If you are someone who enjoys collecting NuFace dolls, this was a fantastic year for you.  (For the sake of making this as simple as possible, I am including dolls released on the Monogram body with the NuFace dolls.)

This spring there were two NuFace dolls released as part of the ITBE lineup, five mainline NuFace dolls, the three IFDC dolls were NuFace, 11 NuFace (or Monogram body) dolls were offered at the IT Convention, and 8 ITBE Christmas Grab Bag dolls were characters on the NuFace (or Monogram) body.

If you are someone who also enjoys collecting dolls of color, you were even happier as many of these dolls were produced on tan, latin, or black skin tones.  One of my favorites was a gift doll at the IT Convention.  She is Out of Sight Nadja Rhymes (mold 2.0).

Even though the ensemble is simple, the doll is incredibly dramatic.  She has cute little ankle length boots, an extra pair of hands, and long necklace.  She is in the darker A-Tone skin tone.  IT collectors have only received two other female dolls with completely flocked hair:  the holy grail The Muse Adele Makeda and the much sought after Urban Outfitting Nadja Rhymes.

This doll holds her own with both of these earlier dolls.  She photographs so well that I can't wait to receive the Nadja from the mainline release.  Until then, this version definitely merits a place in my top 10:  Number 6 of 2015 is Out of Sight Nadja Rhymes.

Best of 2015 - Number 7

For the very first time, Integrity Toys gave all W Club members the opportunity to purchase a convention doll.  It didn't matter whether you were attending or not; however, attendees got a $25 price break on the cost.

W Club members were shown a sketch of the doll with a brief description.  Even with so little information, 1325 dolls were sold!   Unfortunately, this edition size hasn't fared well for collectors who were hoping to make a quick secondary market mark-up.  She can still be picked up on e-bay for $139 which is a great price for such a beautiful doll.

When she arrived, it was obvious that Reigning Grace Eugenia Frost lived up to the movie connection of Grace Kelly.  
Unfortunately, I don't believe the hem of the dress was executed properly.  (Another quality control issue which collectors seem to be oblivious to anymore.)   The dress is a nod to the movie Rear Window.
The doll is classic Eugenia Frost, so it was a no-brainer decision to purchase a doll with such an elegant hairstyle and face up.
Out of the box, she is radiant.  Easily a top doll of 2015 and a personal favorite.  My Number 7 of 2015 - Reigning Grace Eugenia Frost.

Tuesday, December 22, 2015

Best of 2015 - Number 8

The next doll has already been reviewed.  Here is the link:  Timeless Adele Makeda Review

She has received quite a bit of redress time in front of the camera.  Here is a favorite photo, wearing the vest from the Beast ensemble.

I thought I would give her something to wear to a New Year Eve's party.  Here she is in Cosmetic Takeover Natalia Fatale's ensemble.    What an amazing doll.  Number 8 is Timeless Adele Makeda (mold 3.0).