Friday, November 27, 2015

Vertically Challenged

Two blog posts ago I listed the 12 dolls that reside in my collection that were produced without eyelashes (See  "We Don't Need No Stinkin' Eyelashes").  All of them were produced in 2006 or earlier.

In 2005 Integrity Toys started experimenting with applied eyelashes and provided collectors with some of the best dolls ever produced.   All of these dolls were still on the shorter body (the tall body didn't come out until 2006).  These dolls are considered "Holy Grails" by the fashion doll community and most of them were produced in very limited quantities.   Mine have been upgraded to tall handspeak bodies.

First we have the IFDC doll Born To Gamble Kyori Sato (Edition size 600).  The gift set included a bottle of "Karen Walker" whiskey and a deck of 1/6 scale playing cards.  She was supposed to be a nod to the character on the television comedy Will & Grace.
Her extravagant hairstyle set the stage for two more amazing dolls. The first was an FAO Schwartz exclusive gift set.  This doll sold out immediately and was priced at $249.  She was A Fashionable Life Vanessa Perrin - Raven (Edition size 300)
Integrity Toys also produced A Fashionable Life Platinum version in a limited edition of 200 dolls.
Integrity Toys was really trying to launch the Vanessa Perrin mold and these dolls, combined with Poesie Sans Couleur (Edition Size 500), solidified Vanessa Perrin as a favorite IT mold among collectors.
This was also at a time that IT was promoting the new Adele Makeda mold 2.0 (released the previous year).  One of my personal favorites of mold 2.0 is Bodacious.  
As beautiful as these dolls are, it was another IT doll from this time that established herself firmly as my favorite doll ever produced.  She is Ginza Kyori Sato - Blonde.
These six dolls represent the "hay day" of Fashion Royalty collecting.  Collectors have never seen so many perfect gift sets produced in one year before or since 2005.  The gift sets included luggage, lingerie, evening gowns, multiple pairs of shoes. handbags, day wear and evening ensembles. I remember the experience of opening AFL and Ginza.  Everything was exquisite.  I had never seen dolls gift sets of this quality.  I hope someday IT will be able to provide such an experience for their new generation of collectors.

Monday, November 23, 2015

The Most Controversial IT Doll of 2015

Before the Cinematic Convention there was a lot of speculation about who the featured convention doll would be.   Because this was an Anniversary Year, many collectors were expecting a Veronique/Adele gift set.  That seemed unlikely since there have already been two such gift sets (Sound Advice from 2006) and Style Counsel from (2011).

I went on-record with a guess of a new character.  Integrity Toys has a history of releasing new characters at a convention:
2004: Cosmetic Takeover Natalia
2006: Concerto in M Agnes Von Weiss
2007: Raw Appeal Lukas Maverick
2008: Fete Acompli Tatyana Alexandrova, Mission Moscow Takeo Mizutani, and Elements of Surprise Eden/Lillith
2009: Blue Blood Elyse Jolie and Evening Glow Dominique Makeda
2010: Hourglass Kesenia,  Provactarice Anja, Night Vision Adrian Von Lamberg, and Always Polished Dasha
2011: Faubourg St. Honore Victoire
2012: High Point Vanessa Perrin mold 3.0
2014: Evening Siren Ayumi Nakamura mold 3.0

For the first time in a very long while, Integrity Toys presented a collection with no "repeated characters".   On the night of the banquet, it was a given that Elyse Jolie would be making an appearance.  Veronique and Adele had both already shown up, Eugenia was a special convention W Club exclusive, Agnes was a gift set.  When attendees entered the dining hall to find Elyse as the centerpiece, there was a lot of speculation about who was yet to come:  the names Rayna, Colette, Dasha, and Tatyana were being tossed around.

When the moment arrived, it has been reported that a silence fell over the banquet room.  Making An Entrance Karolin Stone was unveiled.
Attendees who remembered Intimate Reveal Agnes from 2014 and Midnight Star Elyse Jolie from 2013 had high expectations.  Karolin Stone has a very severe presentation as were collectors' reactions.   Her platinum hair is pulled tightly to her head.  Her square jawline and high forehead were jarring.
Convention attendees starting trying to sell this doll before they even got back to their rooms.  Prices were the lowest some collectors have ever seen for a featured convention doll.  I was able to pick one up NRFB for $100.  (No, that isn't a typo!)  She is a NuFace character.

I immediately spotted a resemblance to The Dark One "Dark Swan Emma" from the television show Once Upon A Time.  Using odd pieces from different dolls, I was able to coordinate an ensemble to capture this character.
I think there is a lot of potential with this doll.  Once collectors calm down, some of them just may regret selling her so low.  I'm very pleased with my purchase!
And of course you can't have Dark Swan without The Savior Emma Swan …
I was able to pick up this gown and shoes for $45.  What a steal!