New W Club Doll: Anja "Regal Solstice"

The new W Club doll, due to be delivered during the first quarter (Jan-Mar) of 2011 was announced to members today. She is the new character, Anja and is called Regal Solstice. 
I don't follow the story lines but they are saying that she is wearing the "grand finale gown" of the Von Weiss 2010 fashion show and it's one of Giselle's creations. 
The dress is put together with embroidered chartreuse organza over navy blue tulle. The shoes are hot pink with purple lining and black straps and the jewelry is black multi-strand, multi-shape beads.

Integrity Toys Photo

Integrity Toys Photo
Integrity Toys Photo
Integrity Toys Photo
My first reaction was "what happened?"  The Anja from the convention had a beautiful, sparkling face.  Upon careful inspection of the closeup one can see that the lighting on the doll's face makes her nose look elongated and beak-like.  Look at the shadow under her nose. The overhead light should have been moved about 20° to the left to create a beautiful shadow which would enhance the sculpt.  Lifting  her face and looking at her in a different light will show how gorgeous she really is.

I don't understand the fashion and I will be looking at the latest runway images to see if there is something current going on here. I love the colors and it does look like there is an abundance of detail in the organza overlay. The style doesn't make sense to me.

I would have liked black hair on a doll wearing these colors. Her eyes look stunning.  What does the back of her hair look like? Is her hair short? Could it be a cute little pageboy cut that can be opened up to frame her face in a more casual way?

I've read many mixed reviews so the jury is out until the real Anja shows up.


More Monster High Dolls and Their Stuff

Definitely among the top toys this holiday season are the Monster High character figures. Mattel is capitalizing on their popularity by releasing a third wave of dolls called Gloom Beach. The last wave was called Dawn of the Dance.  I was browsing eBay this morning and found this photo:
Mattel Promotional Photo
Atamaii. Com has a limited source of what's new in this line.  Angelic Dreamz is taking pre-orders for the entire line of Gloom Beach dolls at the SRP of $19.95. Don't bother going to eBay where you will pay twice that. George is also taking orders for the Monster High furniture, separate outfits and other related items such as plushies, fortune telling skulls, key chains, electronic fearbook journals and the  iCoffin hand held Device.

I am amazed at the number and variety of related products such as costumes, plush toys, games, jewelry, furniture, separate outfits, electronic devices, handbags, masks and more! Isn't it fun to play dead?

I gave seven Monster High dolls to my little girl cousins over Thanksgiving and they love them. I received this picture from them showing the dolls posed on the American Girl stage. So cute.

The only MH dolls currently in my possession are Holt Hyde and Ghoulia Yelps. I love their names.

They had to get in on the Chanukah action.

More to come!


Wishing You A Dolly Chanukah

 A great Rabbi once remarked that “You cannot chase away darkness with a stick, you have to turn on the light.”  The way to eliminate darkness — to rid the world of ignorance, negativity, hatred and greed — is to kindle the lights of knowledge, generosity, hope and love.
I'm quite irreverent when it comes to religion but the origin and meaning of this holiday is beautiful.

I did a photoshoot last night using some doll sized menorahs and a full sized menorah. I hope you enjoy the photographs. If you want to read a little about Chanukah, see the links at the bottom of the post.

I did a Google search for Doll Menorahs which produced mostly menorahs having nothing to do with dolls. Off the top of my head, the only company that makes a menorah specifically for one of their dolls is the American Girl. The menorah at the back of the table in the above photo is an American Girl product. It came with the items in the picture below.
American Girl  - Discontinued Set
There is another, newer menorah set for sale. It is still available at the American Girl website for $22.  Here is a picture of the product.
American Girl - Rebecca's Hanukka Set
American Girl accessories are overscaled for your Fashion Royalty dolls and Silkstones. I like them anyway and who's to say that they don't have giant menorahs?
Have fun!

 The significance of Chanukah (also spelled Hanukkah) in our modern world is profound and beautiful and it is probably the best known Jewish holiday due to it's yearly proximity to Christmas. The Sanhedrin, a council or court of elders who met to answer questions of lawand all aspects of religious and political life in biblical times. It was established in 191 B.C.E. and continued although persecuted for almost 600 years.  In 358 C.E. Roman Emperor Theodosius disbanded the Sanhedrin and confiscated their property as a reaction to previous emperor Julian's pro-Jewish stance.

Hanukah, The Holiday of Lights  
Matisyahu: Light A Fire For Chanukah Music


Do You Lurk?

Having done so much traveling this past week without my laptop, I often turned to the web on my phone  for the latest happenings in the doll world. I got to thinking how doll boards have changed my collecting experience.
When I was collecting Bratz dolls I found a Yahoo board that specialized in Bratz. That was my first. It was so much fun. I created my first doll story and had a very positive experience sharing my photos and looking at the photos other collectors posted.  I was already a collector of Tonner's Tiny Kitty, Tyler and Sydney dolls but looking back, I don't know how I survived without a network of collectors at my fingertips! The Tonner site, eBay and dealers' websites were all I had.
Sometime in 2004, I purchased my first Fashion Royalty doll on eBay and after that from other collectors. As I look back through my database, I see names of sellers that I could only have met on the boards.  Many have moved on to other pursuits or are collecting other types of dolls. One is running his own doll forum. Several have gone out of business.
One amazing experience was reading someone's post about a BIC exclusive Kyori coming out soon.  I wrote to BIC and that got me on the pre-order list to get the Ginza Kyori Gift Set. I had no idea what I was doing as I wasn't familiar with the big scramble for Fashion Royalty dolls. I think Ginza was the first FR doll I got at retail and that was no mean feat for a beginning FR collector back then. It was also the first year I attended a Fashion Royalty convention. That was in Toronto. If I hadn't been a board member, I wouldn't have known anyone in advance.

Like so many other collectors I became addicted to FR and the rest is pretty much history but I wanted to give a plug to the public doll boards I frequent most often.

The board which I have been a member of for the longest time is the Pink Parlor. The management has changed and the board is getting back to it's former lively self again. The (unstated) focus of the board is 1/6 scale dolls such as Fashion Royalty, Barbie and similar but many of the collectors have dolls that run the gamut. Registration is necessary and is free.

Logo Property of Pink Parlor. Click on it to go to the Pink Parlor.
Prego is the doll board I go to for the larger dolls like Tonner's Tyler, Sydney, Character Figures, Antoinette and similar 1/4 scale dolls. Again, the collectors there have eclectic collections and enjoy seeing pictures of other dolls. For a long time I thought that I couldn't post anything but repaints because many of the members have the most gorgeous collections of dolls that have been repainted.
I have learned that Prego is a safe board and that "factory" dolls are welcome as well as OOAK.  Many post pictures of Sybarite, Deva and Asian BJD dolls as well. If I post a question about something Tonner related, someone is bound to come up with the answer in minutes.  Registration is necessary and is free.
Here is the link to register to post at Prego:
Logo Property of Prego. Click on it to go to Prego.
If you collect Gene Marshall dolls and love fashions from that era, check out The Studio Commissary.
Every day the board posts a different vintage image in the header of either models or movie stars.
The Studio Commissary also hosts a link to the Fashion Sleuth which is a collection of images of real fashions which have been inspirations for doll fashions. For example, Azalea Ice Zita's gown was inspired by a Valentino. Board owner,  Mike Basala, has a great Flickr collection to which many sleuths have contributed. The board is open to all.

Zita "Azalea Ice"

Dolly Daily is a forum as opposed to a message board. One big difference is that on an active message board, a topic can scroll off quickly. On a forum, there are tools to see the latest posts in a threaded or hierarchical structure. Here is a link to Wikipedia's explanation of the different types of on-line discussion sites.
Dolly Daily has areas for all different types of dolls, general questions, birthdays and introductions, selling and buying, member blogs and more. Contributors get access to a game arcade and a steam room.
Posts do not scroll off and are searchable by topic and poster's name.
Although I am a member there, I mostly lurk, but I do recommend this forum for it's huge resource of collectors and information. Registration is required and general membership is free.

Logo Property of Dolly Daily. Click on it to go to Dolly Daily

For ball jointed dolls I go to the Den of Angels. This is a very closely moderated forum containing more information than most collectors will ever need. There are many specific sub-forums so it's easy to navigate and find what you are looking for.  They have a huge membership from all over the world. Right now as I type this there are 541 users online. There are 30,852 members of which 10,319 are active members.
Membership is by invitation and free.

Logo Property of DoA. Click on it to go to Den of Angels

These are by no means all the doll boards out there. There are scores of Yahoo groups and other hosted boards in a multitude of formats. One or more is certainly right for you!

Are you still lurking?