Saran Wrap & Bamboo Leaves Are Great for Project Runway.

Spell avant-garde properly, please! It is a French expression "originally used to describe the foremost part of an army advancing into battle (also called the vanguard) and now applied to any group, particularly of artists, that considers itself innovative and ahead of the majority." (From Wikipedia)

All three "AvantGuard" dolls arrived in Woodstock this week: LiveWire, Eclectic and Lush. I was disappointed. I'm not even going to go into the overcharges on the shipping or question why the four AGs that shipped to me from Integrity, two at a time, one day after the other couldn't have been shipped together....let's let that go.

Eclectic is gorgeous. Her wig and her facial screening are winners. LiveWire's screening is beautiful and her skin color is wonderful. The screening on Lush is over the top. Her lips are straight out of the surgeon's office and her eyeshadow color is disconcerting. I'll admit that I don't care for ultra pale dolls but this combination of pale and neon gets boring after a few hours. What might be great for the runway of a haute couture Paris show is not working on this doll.

LiveWire's and Lush's outfits are on the flimsy side but that is intentional and a result of the fine fabrics used. Lush's minidress is finished and embellished by hand. The packaging was nice and all the externals are good. So what is the problem? The doll is shapeless. She has no waist or hips. She does have breasts, however.

The worst part is the feeling of a lack of solid construction. They are floppy jointed. Their feet flop around as do their hips and their legs. The head has limited range of movement. They do not have strung joints. One can remove their hands and feet by pulling them straight out to either replace them or to aid in dressing the doll. That's definitely a plus. There is an extra set of hands with articulation and feet with articulated toes.

There is pretty much just one circumstance during which a woman's toes curl and I don't think many will be posing their dolls for that.

I think Jason was certainly on the right track with these dolls but has forgotten that we like to play with and redress our gals. I tried many Tonner and Gene outfits on her and they are huge from the waist down. What is the point of having a doll with only one outfit? Saran wrap and bamboo leaves are great for Project Runway. I like to open my doll clothes stash and have lots of choices. I refuse to start another wardrobe for another 16" + doll.

Click on the image above to see the source (but come back to read the rest of the post.)

I really wanted to love these dolls! I collect 16" dolls and it would have been wonderful to have a very fashionable, very articulated bunch of gals from Jason mixed in with my others. But it's not to be.

Oh wait...did you want to see pictures of the AvantGuard dolls?

Parting words...you might like them. Lush (the blonde) is particularly easy to get at retail which was $220 each doll.
CDCMHS (Compulsive Doll Collector Must Have Scale) = 4


  1. Thanks for the review. I don't normally like 16' dolls because they seem so big. However, your review has me rethinking if I might want one of these since they are more slight than comparable sized dolls.

  2. You do know the spelling is not a mistake, but a play on words? As in they "guard" the unorthodox and radical.

    That being said, I agree with you on many of your points. I didn't buy one because I was concerned about clothes sharing and construction, and my fears have been met by the reviews of you and others. while I really like Eclectic's screening, I do not feel that these dolls are worth the prices. Their construction, sculpt, and accessories seem sub-par. I would rather have Integrity enlarge the FR or better yet, the Model Behavior body, and use that than this shapeless thing.

  3. Excellent review Terri. I am still scratching my head over their introduction with a lack of clothing. But really, what are we to expect? When was the last time Integrity released a solo outfit for their big selling FR line? Pickings have been slim for a long time now on individual outfits. It reminds me of a comment I once read on a board about Dress Me Luchia. A poster responded, "IN WHAT??" LOL!:D

  4. Hi, I also agreed on the shipping policy/ procedure of Integrity. I really dislike the way they handle their shipping after having bought the "Elements of Surprise" set from the Integrity website. I had made a typo on the address and immediately wrote to them stating the correct address but all they could do is tell me that there's nothing I can do...

    It turned out that from the time I wrote to them and the time that USPS picked up the package was 3 days and it was really hard for me to understand why they could not have done anything to correct the address within that 3 day time. Luckily the post man figured there was no 33rd floor on my 10th storey building and delivered it correctly. But the best part is - the address on the package was HAND WRITTEN. Now I really doubt their shipping department is really working or just hanging about giving generic replies to customers.

  5. Louos:
    That's a pretty funny story about the 33rd floor in a 10 story building. Hmmm....I wonder what happened to the other 23 floors.
    Glad you got your stuff in spite of the carelessness of the person who wrote the address.

  6. Just generally
    Thank you Terri it so easy to get swept away with the hype of a doll it's nice to have a reality check. I like Livewire because she looks like a Megan Fox doll! it is disheartening to hear about her faults & shapelessness!
    And she is overpriced as are all of Jason Wu's dolls let's face it.
    And I hate to say it but there is an air of arrogance that seems to halo this whole company I've felt this for a longtime now it's somewhere in the pay per membership FR website (don't the dolls cost enough) & what I am hearing about customer service the posts here seem to confirm this!
    It's kind of sad because I think the idea behind at least Integrity Toys was basically just the opposite which was fine with me! and yes an improvement here and there is fine also as well as complete makeovers but this underlying snobbery is just not cool I don't care if it is derivative of the real fashion world Jason needs to tone down his prices and tone up his customer service. Yeah I said it!

  7. To Anonymous who posted on 1/11/10:
    You may have said it but you said it anonymously.