Skipper Highlight Reel- 30th Anniversary Skipper

Back in 1994, Skipper celebrated her 30th birthday.  To mark the occasion, Mattel decided to release a special, limited edition porcelain reproduction Skipper.  I received this Skipper a few years ago as a present.  She is one of the standout pieces in my collection because she is so unique among the others.

30th Anniversary Skipper

30th Anniversary Skipper

Skipper retailed, according to the Barbie Collector site, at a whopping $198.00.  This reproduction Skipper came dressed in the 1965 Happy Birthday fashion, which we recently saw on the 50th Anniversary Skipper.  As this Skipper is made of porcelain, she is slightly more fragile than the traditional vinyl dolls and isn’t a doll that poses easily.  She is very much for display only.

30th Anniversary Skipper

30th Anniversary Skipper

One thing I love about this Skipper is her cute little face!  The paint really pops on her porcelain complexion. It’s amazing how, while porcelain, she’s a fitting representation of the original 1964 release.

30th Anniversary Skipper

30th Anniversary Skipper

I don’t know much as far as specifics on this doll.  I don’t know how limited she was.  I don’t know if she was hard to find.   I’d imagine she was a catalog exclusive (being that the internet was still ‘new’ then), but honestly, I don’t know for sure.  (Feel free to fill me in if you know!)

30th Anniversary Skipper

30th Anniversary Skipper

Seeing this release, you’ll probably understand why I wasn’t over the moon about the blonde 50th anniversary release.  It seemed like (and is) a complete rehash of this 30th anniversary doll.  (Now, the brunette? I need her!)

30th Anniversary Skipper

30th Anniversary Skipper

Don’t forget to watch the video review!

Do you have any fond memories of this Skipper you’d like to share?  Do you remember her release?  Was the 30th anniversary as underplayed as this 50th has been so far?  Share your thoughts below!

April 20, 2014. Tags: . Uncategorized. 3 comments.

Bye, La Dee Da!

Sadly, another toy line bites the dust.  La Dee Da dolls are officially discontinued.  Apparently, 2013 was not a good year for new toy lines, with new comers Pinkie Cooper also being discontinued.  Now is the time to pick these guys up!  Who knows how easy they’ll be to find when they’re no longer on toy shelves.

Sad News

Sad News

I’m quite sad about this!  I loved the look of these dolls and thought they added color to the toy aisles.  What do you think of this news?  Share your thoughts below!

April 14, 2014. Uncategorized. 11 comments.

Dolly Review: Mattel’s Ever After High Cedar Wood

Before I get to this review, I just wanted to apologize for missing one or two of the weekly updates!  March and April have been tough months for me, schedule wise.  It didn’t help that the toy aisles have been empty of new stock recently!  So, starting this week, I plan on getting back to my one post a week goal.  🙂  Thanks for being awesome!

Cedar Woods

Cedar Woods

IMG_0425

Cedar with Hunter

Cedar with Hunter

And now, the regularly scheduled doll review!  I’d like to introduce you to the newest Ever After High release, Cedar Wood!  Cedar Wood is the daughter of Pinocchio and falls into the ‘rebel’ category.  She hit store shelves officially April 1st, though I found her at Justice a few days before then.

Cedar's Purse

Cedar’s Purse

Cedar's Bracelet and Ring

Cedar’s Bracelet and Ring

As per usual, Cedar comes with a stand, comb and purse. She is decked out in earrings, a bracelet and the standard two-fingered ring.

Cedars Hair

Cedars Hair

Cedar has rooted brown hair.  It’s styled in loose curls.  These curls are sprayed down, so they should keep their style well.  While simple, I think this style suits her. What I really love about her hairstyle is the braided headband (of sorts).

Cedars braided headband style

Cedars braided headband style

In the small braid, you’ll notice she has lavender highlights. My doll is very light on highlights.  If it weren’t for the strands by her part, it would be easy to miss them.  I don’t mind that the highlights are lighter than we’ve seen on some dolls.  I feel like they needed to keep her hair simple for other elements of her design to stand out.  What other elements? We’ll get to that later.

Cedars face paint

Cedars face paint

Cedar has an adorable face!  Her eye make up is very earthy, with brown eye shadow surrounding her brown eyes.  Right above the brown eye shadow, there is a nice translucent white to lighten the look up a bit. Cedar’s long eyelashes really stand out on Cedar’s lightly done up face. Cedar has very light blush, light enough that it’s hard to notice at first.  The main focal point of her face has to be her lips. Like we’ve seen on Cupid before, her lip color is comprised of a dark red center surrounded by a light tan tone.  It took a while for me to get used to this lip design, to be completely honest.  But after owning her for a few weeks, I don’t mind it any more.  It’s grown on me!

 

Cedar's Dress

Cedar’s Dress

Cedar is dressed in a cute purple dress with some pink and gold elements on the skirt.  It’s put together nicely and it seems to fit her character well.  I like the bodice and the peter pan neckline.  The thing I don’t love about this outfit?  It’s kind of blah.  There’s nothing super special about it.

Uneven Nylons

Uneven Tights

Cedar wears knee high tights.  My doll’s knee high’s are way off.  The right knee high is much longer than the left one.  I can’t say I paid enough attention to the socks while buying her, so I don’t know if this is just mine or if it’s a styling choice made by Mattel, but the uneven tights are a bit annoying.

Cedar's Shoes

Cedar’s Shoes

As usual, I adore Cedar’s shoes!  They’re cute.  They’re not as elaborate as Ever After High or Monster High have been in the past, but I love the simplistic nature to them. They are a dark brown, bark like heel with pink straps holding them on.  I love these shoes!

Cedar in Pizza Hut playset

Cedar in Pizza Hut playset

Cedar Wood

Cedar Wood

The coolest thing about Cedar for me is her body mold.  Cedar is Pinocchio’s daughter, so the wood carving theme was taken to a max while designing her arms, legs, torso and even her head mold.  Her body is decked out in ‘bark like’ carvings.

Notice the carvings on her arms

Notice the carvings on her arms

Cedar's legs.  Notice the carvings!

Cedar’s legs. Notice the carvings!

This was even brought into her face mold, from her neck to just around her lips and on the sides of her hair line.  Kudo’s to Mattel for going all the way and for keeping to her character’s aesthetic.

Those lines on are face are NOT shadows!

Those lines on are face are NOT shadows!

Cedar with Venus

Cedar with Venus

The limbs creaked a bit when I first moved them, which did frighten me at first, but now that they’ve been worked in, I’m less worried about them!  She has the traditional jointing–  shoulder, elbow, wrist, thigh, and knee.  Her head rotates as it should.

Cedar with Hunter

Cedar with Hunter

For me, Cedar is a great addition to the Ever After High line.  She’s not 100% perfect, but she’s near perfect!  I wish her outfit was a little different from the cookie cutter styles we’ve seen so far and I really wish her tights weren’t so drastically uneven.  Of course, I think Mattel worked wonders with the tree like elements put into her body and head mold.

Cedar with Hunter

Cedar with Hunter (and look at the lines on the top of her hairline– those are NOT shadows!)

The video review is below:

What do you think of Cedar? Share your thoughts below!

April 13, 2014. Tags: , . Uncategorized. 5 comments.

Bye, Pinkie Cooper!

Fans of Pinkie Cooper will want to complete their collection soon!  Sadly, the adorable anthro is discontinued as of this spring.  I confirmed this late March when a reader asked me to look into it, but completely forgot to post it here on the blog.  Sorry about that!

Confirmation

Confirmation

 

This is a such a shame!  I think Pinkie Cooper added a bit of pizzazz to the toy aisles.  What do you think?  Share your thoughts below!

April 13, 2014. Uncategorized. 9 comments.

Collection Close Up: Hard Plastic Madame Alexander’s

Many readers have asked for a closer look inside my collection.  Here’s the first spotlight on one of my sub-collections- Hard Plastic Madame Alexander dolls.  I didn’t set out to collect Madame Alexander’s.  In fact, the 14″ to 17″ hard plastic dolls stand out amongst the many fashion dolls in my collection. My passion for hard plastic Madame Alexanders was very much fueled by attending the Doll and Toy Show at the Kane County Fairgrounds.  While beautiful on the computer screen, some of these vintage dolls are just magnificent looking in person.  After seeing so many fantastic examples of hard plastic Madame Alexanders while walking the show floor, it was only a matter of time before I decided to take the plunge and buy one.

Before we go into my collection, here’s a brief history on Madame Alexander.  Madame Alexander was founded in 1923 by 28 year old Madame Beatrice Alexander Behrman.  Working in the doll industry was in her blood, as her father ran the first doll hospital recorded in the United States in New York City.

Part of my Collection

Part of my Collection

Still going strong in 2014, Madame Alexander was the first company to create dolls based on licensed literary and movie characters, the first to use ‘sleep eyes’, the first to create dolls based on living people and the first to create a line of US Armed Forces dolls during World War II.

On top of all that, they were, also, the first to use DuPont hard plastic on their products, which was a very smart decision, because their hard plastic dolls are quite possibly the most sought after dolls to come out of Madame Alexander.  During the hard plastic years, Madame Alexander was the recipient of the Fashion Academy Gold Medal Award four years in a row, 1951-1954.  For more information on the Fashion Academy Gold Medal Award and Madame Alexander, I highly recommend watching this video on the elusive Portrait dolls created by Madame Alexander at that time.  It’s a little long, but the dolls are gorgeous!

14" Cinderella

14″ Cinderella

My first Madame Alexander was this adorable early 1950’s 14″ Margaret face Cinderella. She’s the only Madame Alexander I purchased online. My first foray into this kind of doll, I didn’t feel the need to buy a really expensive, pristine looking doll.

14" Cinderella

14″ Cinderella

14" Cinderella

14″ Cinderella

Cinderella isn’t in the best shape, but she was a great starter doll.  Her face paint is a little light and her wig has seen better days, but I don’t regret purchasing her at all!  Her dress is a tagged original Madame Alexander garment.

17" Lucy Bride

17″ Lucy Bride

In 2011, I picked up a 1953 17″ Lucy Bride from the Kane County show. She was a total ‘love at first sight’ doll.  As this was the October show, my mom helped me out a bit for her. We called it part of my birthday gifts that year! Dressed in her original tagged wedding dress, this Lucy Bride is near perfect.  A collector herself was selling these dolls, which helped me a lot.  It seemed she wanted her dolls to go to a good home, rather than to go for a lot of money.  As a new collector, I was eternally grateful for that!

17" Lucy Bride

17″ Lucy Bride

This Lucy Bride was my first 17″ hard plastic doll and she pretty much sold me on that size.  While I like 14″ dolls, I love 17″ dolls!  This Lucy Bride is the first of two brides I currently own.

17" Unkown Bride Doll

17″ Unknown Bride Doll

October of 2012, again at the Doll and Toy Show, brought me another Madame Alexander bride with a Margaret face.  This 17″ hard plastic doll is still a bit of a mystery to me.  She is clearly a Margaret face Madame Alexander and is wearing a tagged outfit, but for the life of me, I can’t place her as any specific doll.  Her dress can sometimes be seen on a Wendy Bride doll, but I have yet to find one that looks like my doll.

17" unknown bride

17″ unknown bride

17" unknown bride

17″ unknown bride

This bride has an adorable blonde mohair wig.  I love the mohair wigs on Madame Alexanders.  They seem to be much rarer than the floss or dynel hair wigs, though!  Her face paint is great for being over 50 years old!

17" Maggie Walker

17″ Maggie Walker

One of my favorite Madame Alexander face types is the Maggie face.  I just love the wide eyed expression she has.  It took a few years (and three Margaret faces) for me to get a Maggie face doll.  That doll is this adorable 17″ Maggie Walker.  Now, this doll isn’t as prestigious as some other Maggie’s out there, but I love her!  She came out sometime in the early 50’s.

17" Maggie Walker

17″ Maggie Walker

She is different from all my other Madame Alexanders in many ways.  First, she’s an adorable brunette with brown eyes.  Her face paint leaves a little to be desired, but for her age, I think it’s fine.  Second, this Maggie Walker still works!  If you move her legs, her arms go up and down and her head turns left and right.

17" Maggie Walker

17″ Maggie Walker

My Maggie Walker was purchased (again) at the Doll and Toy show.  She must have been a well loved doll, as she came with her own handmade wardrobe, complete with matching shoes and props, as well as a bright red travel trunk.  I always wonder about her previous owner– who she was, what the rest of her collection looked like, how she came about this doll…

14" Little Women Amy

14″ Little Women Amy

My most recent addition to my little collection is this 14″ Margaret face.  I purchased her under the assumption she was an Alice in Wonderland.  However, it turns out she’s a Little Women Amy, from the early 50’s.  Her outfit is a Madame Alexander outfit, but wasn’t meant for this particular doll.  (In fact, it’s a bit too small!)  However, it looks fine on her for now.

14" Little Women Amy

14″ Little Women Amy

Amy apparently had two different hairstyles that make it possible to ‘date’ the doll.  It depends on how the wig is styled.  Dolls made before 1951 have loop curls.  I don’t know what my doll’s curls looked like, since they are no longer in their original style.

14" Little Women Amy

14″ Little Women Amy

There you have it. Needless to say, I’ll most likely be adding another hard plastic Madame Alexander to my collection in 2014.  As always, I created a video to go with this post!  Check it out below.

My Collection

My Collection

Do you have a favorite Madame Alexander?  Why do you think these dolls are so sought after?  Share your thoughts below!

April 3, 2014. Tags: . Uncategorized. 16 comments.

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