Thursday, January 21, 2016

18" My Imagination doll by Tonner

This Tonner Doll Company girl just came out recently.  There aren't a huge number of owner photos floating around on the internet yet, so I thought I'd show off mine.  She's the 18"/46cm tall "My Imagination" doll.  She fits perfectly into American Girl clothes and shoes, so there's no end of clothing for her.  I made the dress in the pictures.

Although her elbows and knees aren't jointed, she does NOT have typical play doll joints.  They're a bit better.  Her head, arms and legs are all on ball joints, so you can swing them around in all directions and they'll stay in place.  When she sits, she sits straight-legged, BUT you can sit her down either with her legs close together OR far apart.  You can raise her arm up and to the side, and it'll stay in place.  There is a more expensive version that does have bending knees that'll be coming out later in 2016. 

The body is all-vinyl, not cloth.  The eyes do not open and close.  The wig is not as soft as an American Girl wig, but I do think it lays nicely, and looks natural and lovely. 

This one is the 2016 "Starter Brunette."  I had to get her, because she has the exact same coloring as my daughter.

I'll just give you a few random pictures so you can see her face from all angles, plus her cute hand sculpt.  (I didn't photograph the feet.  Sorry.)  Please click on the pictures to make them larger.

Tuesday, January 12, 2016

Some Mattel news


Mattel collaborated with DC Comics to do a series of comic book heroine and villain dolls called the DC Super Hero Girls. They'll be 12 inches tall and have bending elbows and knees, and possibly bending wrists, too.
I like that they aren't hyper-sexualized. The faces are beautiful. The costumes look good without being skimpy. I looked on their website, and it looks like a later series will include the villains Cheetah and Catwoman (yay for both!), as well as the characters Star Sapphire, Hawk Girl and Hal Jordan. Wait a minute ... Hal Jordan? *Looks around.* I guess they aren't just limiting themselves to girls in this line. Will he be called a "Super Hero Boy?" Because if the ladies are called "girls," but the males are called "men" instead of "boys," I'll be a tad upset. 
The line's background story is the now-predictable Mattel staple that all these characters are attending the same high school together. Hmmm. ... Where have we seen THAT theme before? But the dolls are delightful, though. And since I've been a Wonder Woman fan since I was a kid, I can't wait to get their Wonder Woman character. SHE WILL BE MINE!!!
There will also be a 6-inch series of action figures with molded plastic hair, and bending elbows and knees.

Monday, January 4, 2016

Star Darlings showing up in Target, Toys R Us stores

Star Darlings dolls are now showing up at Target and Toys R Us stores.  These are the new line produced by Jakks Pacific in collaboration with Disney.  Previously, they were Disney Store exclusives.   There is a "basic" line with simpler outfits and a cheaper price (shown above) and a more expensive line with elaborate costumes. 

I adore these.  They're such a refreshing change from the usual bland, vacant-eyed toy shelf offerings.  I'll definitely keep my eye on this line. 

MakieLab moving to the U.S.

Wow.  This is a complete coincidence, but exactly one day after I made that last post about my new Makie, I found out that MakieLab, the London company who makes the Makie dolls, is relocating to the United States!  I have no idea what this means for the company, but I'll be interested to see what changes, if any, happen because of the move.  I hope they don't change too much, but I wish them the best of luck.

Sunday, January 3, 2016

My Makie doll arrived!

A Makie doll by MakieLab.

The Makie doll that I'd first posted about here arrived.  She actually showed up before Christmas, but I've spent the past week with my mom in another city, so couldn't post before now. She's so cute! I have to admit, when she first arrived, I wasn't *quite* in love with her. I'd ordered the medium ("caramel") skintone and black eyes, and the results weren't quite what I'd expected. For one, the skintone ended up being darker than I thought it would be. That's fine. ... It's gorgeous, like a sun-kissed tan. For another, the black eyes turned out more alienesque than I was expecting. They didn't look at all alien in their make-a-doll program. I had a Greek grandfather who had eyes that were so dark brown they were almost black, and I guess I expected them to look a bit like that. Nope. 

Here's what she looked like when she first arrived. It didn't help that I gave her almond-shaped eyes, which managed to intensify the alien look.

I turned the eyes so they were side-glancing, and it looked much better. They have heads like Asian ball-jointed dolls, which means they have a headcap that opens and a hollow head, so you can change their eyes and wigs. They aren't actually ball-jointed, though. Here she is next to her make-a-doll picture. The shape of the face, eyes and mouth are fairly close, although the face looks a little thinner in the cartoon portrait.  I love her lips!

I thought I'd try her in some other eyes. I had some 16mms already, so I tried those first. Here she is in 16mm Masterpiece Polymer eyes.

She looks very alert, here.

I noticed Makies' original eyes seem to be 18mms, so I ordered some 18mm Secrist Real eyes in a few different colors. Once I switched her to the 18mm "Victorian Blue" eyes (below), her personality popped out and I was smitten. By the time I took this photo, I'd also added some watercolor pencil to her eyelids, so this is her default face paint, but enhanced slightly.

And here she is in 18mm Secrist eyes in "Brown-Green." This is an absolutely great color! I might leave her in these for a while. They look beautiful with this skin tone.

By the way, all the wigs she wears in these pictures are all MakieLab wigs.  (They wear a size 7-8".)  Right after I ordered, they put all their wigs and clothes on sale for half price, so I ended up getting a whole bunch of these wigs for roughly $6 apiece as a separate order. You can't even get wigs that cheap on eBay! The quality was surprisingly nice for the price, too. They lay nicely, with few flyaway hairs, and look great on the doll. Very pleased with them.

My girl has the new injection-moulded (IM) plastic body. Its posing is quite good. It *is* a bit shinier than the 3D-printed head, though, which might drive some people crazy. I've heard you can use a Mr. Clean Magic Eraser (sold in the cleaning supplies aisle in grocery stores) to buff the body a bit to reduce shine. I haven't tried it yet. I saw a picture of the results online, and it seemed to work great.

The color match between head and body is pretty good. Apparently when they first started using the new bodies, there were some initial problems with color matching, but they seem to have worked out the kinks. I don't have any complaints about mine.

So here's my awesome little Makie doll. Hope you like her. :)