Monster High at Hot Topic

There’s a large range of Monster High related clothing for kids.  Kmart, for example, has a great selection of affordable Monster High tee’s for kids.  Walmart and Sears also have a number of shirts aimed at the young Monster High fans. But what about the adult fans that want to share their love of Monster High with the world by wearing cute clothes with their favorite characters on them?

Hot Topic is a clothing store that specializes in punk rock and pop culture related items. Why am I spending time on this blog talking about a clothing shop?  Because they have two really cool Monster High shirts for sale in adult sizes!

Frankie Tank Top

Frankie Tank Top

I actually bought one of these Frankie tank tops for myself.  It’s really cute!  I love the fact that they used a doll photograph instead of just a graphic.  It’s not a fitted tank, but it’s perfect for summer!

Draculaura Tank Top

Draculaura Tank Top

For all you Draculaura fans, here’s the tank top for you!  It isn’t a doll photograph like the Frankie tank, but it’s an interesting graphic.

Hot Topic ships in and around the United States, as well as internationally (it seems, though shipping is probably an arm and a leg). Those in the States may want to call their local Hot Topic locations to see if these fun tanks are in stock for local pick up!

Are you surprised that Monster High shirts are now coming in adult sizes? What kind of shirts would you like to see Hot Topic add to their selection? Share your thoughts!

July 24, 2013. Tags: . Uncategorized. 6 comments.

Dolly Review: Ever After High Apple White

Apple White, daughter of Snow White, is one of two main characters in the Ever After High web series. Think of her as the Frankie Stein of the Ever After High line.  Mattel‘s spin off line, Ever After High, has just hit Justice stores around the States and of course, my mom and I made it a priority to hit up our local Justice!  Thankfully, they just re-opened and had a full stock of dolls on the shelves!!!  I’ve already reviewed Maddie Hatter, my favorite of the four dolls released.  Now, however, it’s time for Apple White to shine!

Apple, Raven, and Maddie

Apple, Raven, and Maddie

Back of Box

Back of Box

Maddie and Apple

Maddie and Apple

Apple White is boxed with a comb, a bookmark storybook, and a stand (hidden inside her box).  Her stand, as with Maddie’s, works well.  I haven’t had any major malfunctions with it yet, unlike the most recent Monster High stands! (Keep it up, Mattel!)

Combs

Combs

Stand

Stand

Apple White looks to be rooted with soft blonde hair.  To me, it looks warmer than what we usually see on Barbie and other blonde dolls on the market.   I don’t usually go for blonde dolls, but I like the shade Mattel chose for Apple White and it goes very well with her porcelain skin tone and color pallet.

Apple White

Apple White

Apple White

Apple White

Apple’s hair is styled so that it falls mostly on one side of her head.  It’s an adorable style and looks great on her.  Her curls are loose and the hair feels smoother than Maddie’s sea foam hair.  A red headband decorated with a bow and crown top off the hair do.

Apple White

Apple White

Similar to Maddie, Apple’s eyes are large and round.  They have a hand painted ‘look’ to them, which I love.  Some of the recent Monster High dolls have had eyes that looked *very* decal like and I’m happy that Mattel seems to have taken a bit more time on the four dolls in this Ever After High debut. For Apple in particular, I love that we can see the upper eye lid because of her light, silver make up.  It looks fresh, clean, and light.   All the Ever After High dolls have a few dots of silver on their lower lip to give them a little more shine.

Maddie and Apple

Maddie and Apple

Like Maddie’s face, Apple has a round, flat face.  Her features are placed well and sized perfectly!  Some readers have noted that while pretty, the faces of the four dolls in this line are too similar. They’re right, these four Ever After High dolls are all very similar and very well may use the same head mold (though I’m not the best judge of that sort of thing).  Personally, I don’t mind the fact that the faces are similar. I think Mattel has done well in styling each doll to still look unique, even if the face design/feature placement is similar doll to doll.  (Unlike Skipper, who I really, really wish Mattel would do something new with!)  Of course, I can see how people may not love this and I do hope that when Mattel expands the line, they give us some more character specific faces.

Confession time, I decided (again) against taking this girls clothing off for doll comparisons.  When they come out with a second edition of Apple or a basic, I totally will.  However, I think she’s put together really well right now and don’t want to ruin it by messing with her outfit!  Apple is a similar height to traditional Monster High dolls and in general seems to have a thicker body.

Apple vs Venus

Apple vs Venus

As I mention in my video review, it seems she just has a more humanoid body, where as the Monster High doll’s have narrower frame’s. Another thing you might find interesting– Apple is actually taller than Maddie.

Notice the size difference

Notice the size difference

Apple’s joints are tight and unlike Maddie, Apple doesn’t have any right leg issues.  (Long story short, my Maddie has a wonky leg that is slightly shorter and tighter than the other!)

Apple's Dress

Apple’s Dress

Apple White’s dress is very in character with her story line and background.  It’s perfect for the daughter of Snow White.  The color scheme, as you’d expect, is gold and red with various apple and flower stenciled embellishments.  It’s a cute dress.  I like that Mattel took the effort to try to give each doll a different style dress.  Yes, they’re all pretty much the same length and have the same general idea, but each doll has their own take on style, which is clear to see!  Apple wears fishnet stockings that look fantastic on the skin tone of this doll.  They do bunch up a bit around the knee, but they haven’t yet gotten stuck in the knee.  That’s a definite plus!

Purse

Purse

Like the other dolls in the line, Apple comes with a character themed purse– in this case, it’s shaped like an apple.  I really love this purse!  It’s super cute!  I love the texture and the fact that you can actually open it, unlike some of the recent purses we’ve seen in other Mattel lines.  Regarding the purse, keep in mind it is easy to lose the top potion.  You may want to wrap an elastic around it if you plan on moving Apple around a lot.

Notice the ring.

Notice the ring.

One accessory that seems to be a staple in the Ever After line so far is the two fingered ring.  Apple’s ring is cute, but doesn’t like to stay on very well.  It’s one of the easiest to lose accessories to come out of Mattel, I think.  For those that plan on moving their doll around a lot, or plan on giving this doll to a child, you may want to use elastic on this item or take it off completely.

Apple themed shoes

Apple themed shoes

And let’s not forget the adorable shoes!  If there is one thing Mattel designers always do right– it’s the shoes!  They are apple themed.  Brought into the shoes is the golden bow that was also present in her two fingered ring.

Apple, with Twyla lurking in the shadows!

Apple, with Twyla lurking in the shadows!

So far, this Ever After High Line doesn’t disappoint me in the least.  I don’t know if my opinions are colored by my love of fairy tale adaptations (huge Once Upon a Time fan!) or just adorable dolls, but this line– from concept to execution– has won me over.

New Meets Old

New Meets Old

Want to see the video review?  Watch it here:

What do you think of Apple White?  Share your thoughts below!

July 17, 2013. Tags: , . Uncategorized. 6 comments.

Dolly Review: Ever After High Madeline (Maddie) Hatter

Ever After High have it stores!  Well, Justice, at least.  When news first spread about these being out and about, my Justice had yet to re-open from a remodel.  However, as we drove through the mall yesterday to go to Toys R Us, we noticed the once empty Justice was filled with clothing– and people!  Needless to say, we dashed in and saw them.  Literally all four dolls sat on the shelf.

Apple, Raven, and Maddie

Apple, Raven, and Maddie

Now, I wasn’t about to spend $100 on all four, but I did pick up three.  Two are mine, one was payment to my Mom, who kindly picked up a Monster High doll (or two) for me this past week.  (Yes, we pay each other back with dolls occasionally!)

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Look what I stumbled upon at Justice!

This first Ever After High review is on the doll that I most looked forward to– Madeline (Maddie) Hatter!  Seriously, she’s one of the most entertaining characters in the web series so far and her character design is fantastic.  To me, she’s a lot like the Pinkie Pie or Luna Lovegood of Ever After High.

Back of Box

Back of Box

A Bit About Maddie

A Bit About Maddie

A Bit About Maddie

A Bit About Maddie

Maddie Hatter

Maddie Hatter

What do Ever After High dolls come with?  As expected, Ever After High dolls come with a comb. The comb is kind of cool. It’s shaped like a key. Ever After High dolls also come with a stand (hidden inside the box).  I can hear you asking about the quality of said stand, seeing as Mattel doesn’t care about giving Monster High decent stands anymore.  Good news!  These stands are really good!  Much better than what we’ve seen on the MH front recently.  (Now give Mattel a few years with the Ever After gang and we’ll revisit this!)  The last ‘extra’ included is a bookmark/storybook that tells the story of the character.  Actually, the writing and storytelling within the storybook bookmark is pretty good and much longer than the MH journals, I believe.

IMG_2253 copy

Comb

Stand

Stand

Maddie is a similar size to Howleen or Twyla, which was a happy surprise!  I love that size doll and didn’t know they were incorporating it so early into the Ever After dolls!

Maddie and Twyla

Maddie and Twyla

Notice the size difference

Notice the size difference

Unlike Monster High’s long faces that usually have exaggerated noses, chins or cheek bones, the Ever After High dolls seem to all have large, round, flat faces.  Maddie is no exception.  I love her round face!  It allows for a really awesome eye design.  They have that hand painted look, instead of the eye sticker look.  They’re also very large and over exaggerated, which I love.

Notice her round face

Notice her round face

See the differences between Venus (MH) and Maddie (Ever After)

See the differences between Venus (MH) and Maddie (Ever After)

Maddie’s colors seem to be purple and sea green (think Twyla green). Her hair is styled in tight curls.  Because her hair was pushed forward in the box, I had to do a bit of restyling in the back to remove some odd looking bald spots.  I don’t recommend using the comb on her hair unless you want to undo the curls.  If the sea green is anything like Twyla’s, it will be frizzier than usual if you decide to ooak up her hair style.

Back of Maddie's head

Back of Maddie’s head

It seems to me that Maddie has a similar body to her Monster High counterparts Howleen and Twyla.  She has the same amount of joints as those dolls and the limbs seem to be the same thickness.  I decided against comparing the dolls without clothing, as I like how my Maddie looks and don’t want to do something to screw her up.  Update: The Toy Box Philosopher went over the body differences in her review.  

Outfit

Outfit

2 Finger Ring on painted hands

2 Finger Ring on glove like hands

Tea Pot Shoes

Tea Pot Shoes

Headband Hat

Headband Hat

Maddie is decked out in a fun purple and teal dress decorated with gold embellishments.  It’s perfect for a tea party!  (And for future cosplayers!) Her outfit includes plastic cuffs that hang loose on her arms.  Maddie has molded hands that are designed to look like gloves.  She wears fantastic polka dotted leggings. To complete the outfit, Maddie wears spoon earrings, a large two finger ring, teal necklace, and tea cup headband. Her shoes look a bit like a tea pot, as does her handbag. Overall, a very fitting outfit for a quirky girl from Wonderland who speaks in riddles!

Ice Cream, anyone?

Ice Cream, anyone?

The only problem I see with Maddie is that my doll seems to have a wonky knee.  Her right knee bends, but it doesn’t bend as much as much as the other.  It’s because of this, I think, that her legs are actually two different sizes.  One is just a smidgen shorter than the rest which makes it a little harder to prop her up for photo ops.

Maddie and Apple

Maddie and Apple

The only other minor issue I found was that her tiny ring likes to slide off.  That worries me a bit, as I don’t want to lose it!  I wasn’t paying attention when I opened the box to see if I accidentally cut an elastic that I shouldn’t have, but keep an eye out when opening your doll.  It might be easier to just keep it on with elastic!

Maddie and Apple

Maddie and Apple

That being said, in the long run of possible problems, Maddie Hatter scores well!  If all the Ever After High dolls are as well made and creative as Maddie, then Mattel has a fantastic line on their hands!

New Meets Old

New Meets Old

Maddie Hatter

Maddie Hatter

Update: Here’s the video review!!!!

For all your YouTuber’s, the video review isn’t up yet, but will be soon!!!!   What do YOU think of Maddie Hatter? Share your thoughts below!

July 10, 2013. Tags: , . Uncategorized. 30 comments.

So Long, Molly!

Update: Molly’s end date is 12/31/13.  If you are looking to buy Molly merchandise, now is the time!

As long suspected, American Girl is retiring yet another classic historical doll. Being discontinued is none other than my personal favorite, Molly McIntire and her friend Emily.  Molly will be joining Samantha, Kirsten, and Felicity in the American Girl vault.

Molly

Molly

Molly’s story begins in 1944.  Living under the umbrella of World War II, Molly goes through a lot of things that girls today can still relate to.  Molly’s father enlists as an Army medic, her family is strapped for cash and common day items that used to be easy to find are suddenly in short supply.  American Girl put together a pretty nice introduction to Molly for their YouTube channel. You can watch it below.

I love Molly as a character.  In fact, she’s my favorite American Girl doll, hands down.  While I realize that Molly was released way back in 1986 with the Samantha and Kirsten at her side and has been available since then to doll collectors and kids alike, I don’t think Molly should be retired.  I’m not saying that only because she’s my favorite, but also because Molly’s stories take place in 1944, which is a time period that really does mirror a lot of what we in the States (and I’m sure abroad) have had to go through in the past few years.

Not only that and maybe most importantly, many of us still know people who grew up in or around World War II, so Molly’s story gives us a little more insight into what those who are still part of our lives had to to go through back in the 40’s.  My grandparents were born in the 1930’s and grew up in a world very similar to Molly.

Something important to note is that the books will still be available to the general public. Thankfully, Mattel doesn’t take away the book series attached to the dolls they reitre.  Still, I feel sorry for the girl who picks these books up this time next year when there is no dolly counterpart.

Emily

Emily

It occurred to me that once Molly is retired, I won’t actually have many ties left to American Girl.  I still would like to add a Kit or Ruthie to my collection, but I don’t actually like many of the other historical dolls, nor do I want a Just Like Me doll. If you would like to get your hands on a Molly before they are officially retired, check out the American Girl website and order yours now.  I waited and waited until it was too late to get Kirsten and still kick myself!

Molly

Molly

With that, I’ll ask you: what do you think of Mattel retiring Molly and Emily?  Do you have any memories of Molly and Emily that you’d like to share?  Write you thoughts below and share them with the world!

July 4, 2013. Uncategorized. 16 comments.

Dolly Review: Monster High 13 Wishes Lagoona

I was on the fence about adding Mattel’s 13 Wishes Lagoona to my collection.  Why?  Because she looked so different from the other versions of her that I just didn’t know what to think.  Instead of the muted colors we usually get on our Lagoona’s, this 13 Wishes Lagoona is bright.  With bright blue skin and highlighter yellow hair, Lagoona definitely stands out in this 13 Wishes line.

13 Wishes Howleen, Lagoona, and Twyla

13 Wishes Howleen, Lagoona, and Twyla

In the end, I did buy her and while I don’t love her look just yet, she’s growing on me!  Let’s start off with the question on everyone’s minds– why is she so different looking? Read her journal and it becomes clear.  (I’ll admit it– I don’t always pay attention to every journal that comes with these, but this one totally explains the reasoning behind the massive changes to Lagoona in her 13 Wishes release!)  The short version of the story is that Lagoona makes a wish and slowly starts changing from her sea monster self into a  freshwater fish (like Gil).  Not only does this affect her coloring, but it also seems to influence her actions and thoughts.  I’m sure there is more to it than what we see in the journal, but until Mattel releases the movie, we will just have to speculate!

Had I known this back story, I might have not been so slow to decide on buying Lagoona.  She is essentially a different Lagoona than we’ve seen before, which is kind of awesome!  Now that we’ve covered that little bit of info, let’s get on to the review.

IMG_2022 copy

13 Wishes Lagoona

Right off the bat, you’ll notice two things– her bold blue skin and her highlighter yellow hair.  Separately, those are strange choices, but together they actually look pretty good!  I don’t know much about fish, but I’m assuming the bright colors mean freshwater fish are brighter than fish found deep in the sea?  That would account for this trip back to the 80’s color pallet.

IMG_2020 copy

13 Wishes Lagoona

Lagoona’s lips are done with teal and her eyes are brightly highlighted with pink, which with the blue skin tone, looks a bit purpley.  I’m not a huge fan of the color’s used on this freshwater Lagoona.  However, I do love her freckles!  (Which is usual for me and dolls!)  One strange thing about her face around the eyes is that it is textured. It’s almost as if they meant to put glitter on her and missed most of the forehead.  Honestly, I’m not sure what was going on there!

13 Wishes Lagoona

13 Wishes Lagoona

Once I got over the color of Lagoona’s hair, which I like quite a bit now, I decided the styling wasn’t too bad, either!  Lagoona’s hair is in a twirled ponytail that is heavily sprayed down and looped at the bottom.  It’s that reason why I find the fact that we get a comb with Lagoona so funny.  This is not hair you’ll find it easy (or necessary) to comb.

As far as Lagoona’s body, she is the first doll I’ve purchased in a long time that doesn’t have a loose limb.  Unlike the first set of dolls where it was expected that the majority of their limbs would be loose, the new releases haven’t had many problems on that front other than a loose wrist or elbow here and there.  Lagoona, however, is tightly put together all around.   The only major change they did on this freshwater Lagoona is to her fins.  They are different than the usual fins we see on her.

13 Wishes Lagoona

13 Wishes Lagoona

13 Wishes Lagoona

13 Wishes Lagoona

While I am a fan of Lagoona (the character), I am not always a fan of her clothes. 13 Wishes, however, has a very cute outfit!  Also included are some stylish turtle accessories (necklace, bracelet) and super cute earrings.  As usual, Lagoona is wearing stylish shoes that match her outfit well.

Neptuna

Neptuna

And we can’t forget Neptuna.  These 13 Wishes dolls all seem to come with their pets.  Neptuna has transformed a bit, as well, in this release with a new color scheme.

Don’t trust Lagoona’s stand to hold her whatsoever.  It just won’t happen.  (And if it does, count yourself very lucky!)  Be prepared to be super-gluing Lagoona’s stand together!  If you watch my video review, you’ll notice my Lagoona quickly loses the stand!

As far as cons go, I don’t have many.  I don’t think I’ll ever love her make up.  I wish they’d chosen a different color for her eye make up, in particular.   Besides her stand being useless, the biggest gripe I have is that I don’t think Mattel prepared us for this ‘new’ Lagoona.  And that might not work out her benefit.  Because the movie hasn’t been released yet, people might just look at her (like me) and think ‘wow, that’s a strange Lagoona’ and pass her by.  But, if they only knew it was a ‘new’ Lagoona from the get go, they might give her a second, well deserved look.

Sea Monster vs Freshwater

Sea Monster vs Freshwater

In the end, 13 Wishes Lagoona is growing on me.  I’m super happy to have her because she is, essentially, a new character.  A retelling, so to speak, of the first Monster High character I ever purchased.  That being said, I do hope that this is a one time event.  One freshwater Lagoona is enough for me!

13 Wishes Lagoona

13 Wishes Lagoona

As usual, I put together a video review on 13 Wishes Lagoona.

What do you think of 13 Wishes Lagoona?  Share your thoughts below!

July 2, 2013. Tags: , . Uncategorized. 3 comments.

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