Dolly Review: Groove Make It Own Kit

2014 has been a very Pullip filled year so far for me.  Recently, I discovered two super awesome Pullip related products.  The first was the My Select line, which helped me put together my Emma Swan custom.  The second was this Make It Own kit.  This Make It Own kit is pretty neat.  It is an affordable option for people who may like the aesthetics of the Pullip, Taeyang, Dal or Isul face, but would prefer it to be 100% customizable from the get go.

Box

Box

Box

Box

From the outside of the box, this kit could look a little scary.  The directions in back are limited and the large amount of Japanese writing could be daunting.  But don’t worry!  You can do it.

So what is this Make It Own kit?  Here’s a quick run down.  Make It Own kits are essentially a do it yourself Pullip!  Inside the kit, you get all the pieces necessary to create your own blank doll, from head to toe.

Inside the Box

Inside the Box

Pieces

Pieces

The kit contains a stock body, a blank head and everything you need to put together the eye mech that makes Pullip dolls unique.

Head

Head

Eye Mech-- already assembled

Eye Mech– already assembled in box

Eye Lids and Winking Nobs

Eye Lids and Winking Rods

Clear eye chips and black eyelashes are included, so you can choose the eye color of your doll, too.  This set does not include an outfit or wig.  Also, as this is a blank head, you’ll need to do your own face up.

Clear Eye Chips

Clear Eye Chips

Lashes and screws

Lashes and screws

These sets are under $40, which makes customizing a much cheaper endeavor than before!  I know my Pullip collection would be much larger had these cheaper options been available years ago.

Now, your next question– how did it go together? Full disclosure, I ended up giving this set to my mom to work on.  She has the Wizard of Oz Pullip set, but nothing that is ‘basic’.  I thought this would be a fun project for her.  Plus, I didn’t have a ton of time to dedicate to making this Isul awesome.  My mom, however, did!

Make It Own Isul-- all done!

Make It Own Isul– all done!

She made this blank Isul into Alaric.  The only problem she had putting this set together came when inserting the winking rods.  Our kit was packaged with two right winking rods.  Because the left and right rods are shaped differently, we had to contact PullipStyle to get a left rod before this guy could be finished.

Make It Own Isul-- all done

Make It Own Isul– all done

PullipStyle sent the replacement out quickly and in three days time, we had the proper winking rod and could finally call this guy done!

What do you think of these Make It Own kits? Share your thoughts below!

May 27, 2014. Tags: . Uncategorized. 6 comments.

American Girl Announces More Retirements

American Girl announced recently that not one, but four dolls are soon moving into the American Girl vaults.  Kit’s friend Ruthie (1934), who I always thought was one of the prettiest companion dolls, as well as Marie-Grace and Cecile (1863) and Julie’s friend Ivy (1974) are all set to be discontinued “soon”.  According to the announcement post on Facebook, supplies are “extremely limited”.

Good Bye!

Good Bye!

“Soon, we’ll say farewell to Marie-Grace, Cécile, Ruthie, and Ivy: http://bit.ly/1nkMb9w Complete your collection while supplies last—quantities are extremely limited. This fall, the rest of the historical characters become BeForever, a fresh approach to these American Girl favorites that we’ll reveal in the coming months!

To be 100% honest, the only doll of the four that I will miss is Ruthie.  What will Kit do without her friend?  What is a bit surprising to me is that Marie-Grace and Cecile, who debuted in 2011, are part of the four dolls going away. They are relatively new additions to the Historical collection.

BeForever Samantha

BeForever Samantha

Speaking of the term ‘historical’, it looks like the historical dolls are being re-branded to ‘BeForever‘.  Books and leaked packaging are already being seen with this branding.  Regarding the book series and the new names and volumes featuring this re-branding, American Custom Dollhouse did some research and got some straight answers from Customer Service on what was ‘new’ and ‘classic’ in the re-branding of the book line.

American Girl even posted this video on their YouTube channel.

I have a feeling this is just the beginning of Mattel’s re-branding of American Girl.  Myself, I need time to really process the changes.  I know, it seems silly, but I literally grew up with this doll line and have become attached to certain aspects of it.  What do you think of the recent changes and announcements coming from American Girl?  Share your thoughts below.

May 22, 2014. Tags: . Uncategorized. 5 comments.

Collector Spotlight: Grace aka Pixie Blossom

One of the things I really love to do here on Confessions of a Doll Collectors Daughter is to spotlight other collectors.  This months Collector Spotlight is on a collector you may have seen before.  She has a number of doll related social media sites, including a popular YouTube channel.

I’d like to introduce you to Grace aka Pixie Blossom.  She was awesome enough to fill out these questions regarding who she is as a collector. Grace not only answered my questions here for the post, but she also edited her own video spotlight!  You’ll find that at the bottom of the post. Enjoy!

Collector Spotlight Badge

Collector Spotlight Badge

Q: Tell us a bit about yourself.

A: I am 25 years old from BC Canada. I am an artist and a vlogger and run a channel on YouTube where I review various TV shows and movies, and am an all around fangirl for a large number of things.

Q: How long have you collected? How did you catch the collecting bug?
A: I am a pretty new collector! I have been collecting for about 10 months now…just under a year!

My collection started with my interest in the new My Little Pony show Friendship is Magic. As a fangirl I wanted to collect the toys from the show and so I started collected the new My Little Pony toys. This collection however quickly expanded from just the characters one the show to a wider variety of pony toys until eventually I found myself drooling over…Dolls.

Ponies started my collecting habits, but dolls cemented it. My first doll to kick me off was a La Dee Da, after which I started buying Monster Highs

Q:What do you collect? Describe your collection.
A: The biggest features in my collection now are Ever After High and Equestria Girls. I also continue to collect Monster High, Disney Store, Kurhn, and even Funko POP! figures. I don’t have a focus on a specific brand so much though, as much as I have a focus on dolls that I personally find very pretty to look at, and characters I know and love from my favourite TV shows and movies.

Q: What made you latch on to (what you collect)?
A: As far as a specific brand, my biggest love is Ever After High, and what drew me to EAH is also what draws me to most of my doll purchases. I love the long and fanciful hairstyles, the feminine girly looks, and most importantly the medieval fantasy outfits that looks like they are straight out of a fairytale. One day I’d love to collect BJDs (if only they weren’t so expensive!) which is another great example. I love lolita fashion and anything ludicrously cute and girly.

Raven Queen

Raven Queen

Q: Do you share this hobby with anyone? Did anyone inspire you to to collect? (ie: I share this hobby with my mom…) Who would you like to share this hobby with?
A: I don’t know anyone else who collects dolls! However, many of my friends do collect figures, and I know a few fellow bronies who collect the My Little Ponies figures and memorabilia. They view me as a bit of an oddity for having branched out into dolls, but they don’t think it is all that strange.

Q: What are your ‘grail’ items? Have you found any of them yet? Why are they your ‘grail’ items?
A: Junko Mizuno, one of my favourite manga artists of all time, designed a G3 My Little Pony in 2008, and one day I would absolutely love to have it in my collection. As far as dolls though, as unlikely as my obtaining one is, I would love so much one day to own one of the now banned and discontinued Django Unchained dolls. Mostly I would like Broomhilda, but Id love any of them.
As I mentioned earlier as well, I’d love to some day own a BJD.

Q: Spotlight a few of your favorite pieces in your collection. What are they? When did you find them? What makes them your favorites? Tell us their story.
A: I think my favourite doll ATM is the Ever After High Raven Queen. She is incredibly beautiful, I think it’s the gothic elegance about her that makes me like her so much. She doesn’t look like a really typical doll, which tend to be blond and with a mainsteam ideal of beauty. She’s dark and mysterious, and I love that about her.

My other big favourite is my Orchids Girl Kurhn doll. I love Kurhns for the anime aesthetic. They remind me of Studio Ghibli films! She’s so simply and yet so perfect in her simplicity.

Orchards Kurhn (Kewpie83's note: this doll is so pretty!)

Orchards Girl Kurhn (Kewpie83’s note: this doll is so pretty!)

Q: Do you collect in box or out of box? Why?
A: I am an out of box collector, for the most part. I don’t see the point of keeping items in boxes when the entire reason I want them is because I like how they look, and I find they just look so much nicer out of box on display decorating my shelves. I will make an exception however if I were ever to obtain any very expensive, rare or valuable collection items. For instance, I certainly would never unbox a Django Unchained doll!

Q: What is the most fun aspect of collecting?
A: The best moment I have found in collecting is the experience of buying a new toy/doll. Finding it at the store, getting it home, ripping it out of the package, and taking a bunch of pictures of it. This is the single biggest thrill in collecting…. I do enjoy looking at dolls I want to get in the future online, and I do enjoy having them on my shelves to turn to and admire from time to time, but by and far the most fun is had when you first break a new item out of its package.

Q: Do you have any personal stories you’d like to share that deal with your doll collecting? (ie: Do you have a convention story? A touching backstory on one of your pieces? Share whatever you feel comfortable sharing, anything dolly related!)
A: The most special doll in my collection is my oldest toy. I was given D as a baby and have had him my entire life. I don’t have any interest in collecting baby dolls, but D has a lot of sentimental value.

Dee

D

He is an Uneeda doll, though he’s had his body remade at least once during my life. When I started doll collecting, he was in very rough shape as I had scribbled all over his face with markers as a kid! I got him cleaned up and bought him new clothes and now he looks more presentable.

Porcelain Doll

Porcelain Doll

The other doll in my collection that doesn’t necessarily “fit” is an older porcelain doll that came from my grandmother. She’s not worth anything (I checked!) but she was left to me in my grandmothers will after she died. She had a small collection of porcelain dolls, and left one to each of her granddaughters.

Porcelain Doll

Porcelain Doll (Kewpie83’s note:  Again, so pretty! What a great gift to be left with!)

Q: What advice would you give new collectors out there that feel they need to ‘hide’ their hobby?
A: There’s no point in hiding it! Anyone who might care (ie casual acquaintances, co workers, etc) probably will never see your home, and anyone who will be seeing your home (friends and family) probably won’t care! Even so, if you are about to invite someone into your home who you worry won’t react favorably to seeing your collection, a gentle warning ahead of time might be nice. But if someone really cares all that much about what your hobbies are or laughs at you for it, I would question whether you really need that person in your life or not?

Q: Give me 3 tips (in general) on how to cultivate a great doll collection.
A: Hmmm… I’ve  just started, but here are the general rules I use in approaching it.
1) Pace yourself! When I started, I instantly wanted anything and everything I saw. It was very hard to curb the impulse to buy everything in sight right away. Instead, let yourself really get to know and enjoy a new doll before you buy another one. That way not only will you avoid going broke, but you’ll appreciate each one more!
2) Pick a focus, or a theme. As an example, when I started in on Funko POP! figures, I knew I would be doomed to become lost down a rabbit hole if I didn’t pick a theme, because there are SO MANY awesome POP! figures. So I decided my POP! collection would ONLY include Princess characters. This can apply to any collection. Don’t feel obligated to buy absolutely everything in a line, stick to the ones you REALLY want.
3) Budget. I’ve quickly learned this can easily be an expensive hobby. Shoot for sales. Make careful purchase decisions.

Basically the gist of all three of these is: don’t rush it. Don’t feel like you need it ALL, NOW. Start slow, and only buy dolls you know you’ll really enjoy looking at all the time months from now.

Q: Are you a doll customizer? Talk to us about what you do!
A: I’d like to be, but I only have so much time. I like the idea of customizing, but I also like the idea of a specific collectors item! I think it largely depends on the doll, too. A BJD for instance is specifically designed to be made your own, so I think I’d customize something like that.

Q: What kind of future do you see for this hobby?
A: I don’t think it will die out, but I don’t think it will be the same as it used to be. There will always be collectors around, for everything, and there will always be those who want to track down rare and valuable items, and there will always be those who want the latest characters out from Disney and Mattel.

But I don’t think that modern dolls will ever age into the same kind of value as antique dolls did. With mass production as huge as it is now, I think most people will find that modern doll collections will never be worth anything. Because of this, new doll collectors shouldn’t get into for the idea that “someday my collection will be valuable!” Only get into it if you REALLY LOVE looking at these dolls all the time.  (Kewpie83’s note: Totally agree!)

Q: Links to your blog, flickr, etc.
Blog: http://pixiecollections.wordpress.com/
YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/user/PixieBlossom2012
Twitter: https://twitter.com/PixieBlossom
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/PixieBlossom2012

Don’t forget to watch the video spotlight, edited by Grace herself!

What a great look into a fantastic, enthusiastic collector.  Thank you, Grace, for sharing your stories with us!  Grace, feel free to grab this badge for your blog and link to this post, so it is easy for your followers to find!

Blog Badge

Blog Badge

Do you have a question for Grace?  Leave your kudo’s below in the comment area!  If you want to be the next spotlight post, click here for more info.

May 22, 2014. Tags: . Uncategorized. 3 comments.

World Doll Day- June 14th, 2014

The second Saturday of June each year is World Doll Day.  Started in 1986 by doll collector, artist, and author Mildred Seeley, World Doll Day is celebrating its 28th year in existence.  This year, 2014, World Doll Day will be on June 14th.

World Doll Day Logo

World Doll Day Logo- share this!!!

World Doll Day started with a simple letter sent to Mildred’s friends and colleagues that read:

“Since you have not heard of World Doll Day? This is not surprising as of an hour ago, I hadn’t conceived the idea. Give a doll to a grown up, a child, or family friend.

Think of it this way and ship a doll to another country. I have always felt that the common doll could be an instrument of world understanding. From the first time I started writing books on doll making, I had the hope that dolls would help make friends all over the world and develop a little love among all.

World Doll Day will also be a day for doll exhibits. It is my hope that all libraries will have a special doll exhibit. Museums will publicize their doll exhibits and have special doll exhibits at this time. Magazines will put out special editions. Doll stores will put on campaigns weeks ahead. Doll Makers will make special dolls for World Doll Day. There will be doll competitions with World Doll Day awards, plaques and trophies.

The logo is made from artist Boots Tyner’s doll representing a child. The child carries a German bisque doll to represent this doll collectors gift. Feel free to copy the logo or have one made.

Everyone can enjoy the fun as there are no fees, no permission needed, no obligations, nobody owns the day, no club, no company. It’s a free- for- all, take up the day, its ideas and fly with it. Lets do it now. World Doll Day.

If you think World Doll Day is a good idea, then appoint yourself a committee of one to do something about it–only then can it become a reality. Would you tell five people, ask them to tell five people, and each of them tell five people and so on. World Doll Day’s birthday is June 14, 1986.

Sincerely,
Mil and Vernon Seeley”

To tell you the truth, I had no idea there was a World Doll Day until last year, when I stumbled upon an informational page on the day.  I love the idea of having a day to celebrate doll collecting and hope that one day, this ‘day’ truly takes off.  I’d love to see all the things Mildred speculated for the day come true.

I’m not quite sure what I’ll be doing for World Doll Day.  I don’t know of any shows that weekend (Puddle, the Pullip convention, is the Saturday before) and while I know a lot more collectors through the internet than ever before, I still can’t say I know anymore than four collectors within driving distance. To top it off, I know our local doll store won’t be doing anything special to celebrate.

But regardless of what I’m doing, I hope you, reader, do something.  You could buy a small child their first doll or donate a doll to those who might not be as fortunate as others.  Or why not buy a collector friend a doll for their collection?  If there’s lots of you, do a dolly grab bag.  Don’t want to spend money?  Have a small party at home and have everyone bring their favorite doll to do a ‘show and tell’.

If you don’t know any collectors, but have a blog or YouTube channel, why not celebrate there by posting your own World Doll Day post? Photographers, post celebratory photos on flickr, facebook and other photo sites! The options are endless.

So rally the troops! Let’s get the word out that this day exists!  Doll collecting is just as important a hobby as any other, so why not celebrate it!

What are your World Doll Day plans?  How do you plan on celebrating?  How do you think this blog should celebrate? Share your thoughts below!!!

May 16, 2014. Tags: . Uncategorized. 27 comments.

Dolly Review: 7th Anniversary Kurhn

This Easter, my Kurhn collection grew by one.  I received the 7th Anniversary Kurhn (1122, Shining Blue).  It seems every year Kurhn releases a Kurhn doll with a short brown bob to commemorate another year on toy shelves.

7th Anniversary Kuhrn

7th Anniversary Kurhn

I believe some of these anniversary dolls are limited to 1000, if I’m understanding the listings properly.  The 7th Anniversary Kurhn was made in 2011.

7th Anniversary Kurhn

7th Anniversary Kurhn

This Kurhn features the traditional rooted brown bob hairstyle.  It’s more chocolate brown than the 8th Anniversary doll, who has much darker hair.  She wears a white hat with a soft blue ball.  Like other Kurhn’s, this 7th Anniversary Kurhn has large brown eyes with long painted lashes.  Right above the lashes is a hint of lime green eye shadow.

7th Anniversary Kuhrn

7th Anniversary Kurhn

7th Anniversary Kuhrn

7th Anniversary Kurhn

While some Kurhns come on jointed bodies, this Kurhn is on a basic body with a porcelain skin tone.  Her shoulders and hips have movement, but her knees and ankles don’t.  It seems these jointed bodies are a bit elusive, at least for me.  All three of my dolls have this basic body.

Kuhrn Trio

Kurhn Trio

I have a Kurhn on the way that, while her promo shots show joints, is still just on this basic body.  There’s a lot to be said about this kind of body, though.  It has a nice feel to it.  It has weight to it.  And on top of that, it is pretty easy to make these guys stand on their own.

Pink skin (left) vs Porcelain skin (right)

Pink skin (left) vs Porcelain skin (right)

This porcelain skin tone seems to have a different feel than the pink skin tone.  It’s hard to describe the difference between the two, but they do feel different from each other somehow.

Kuhrn and the Doctor

Kurhn and the Doctor

This 7th Anniversary Kurhn is wearing an adorable white baby doll dress with a bold, blue pattern on the bottom.  This dress is actually two layers, which is great, seeing how white fabrics could easily come off as see-through.

Notice the seed bead details

Notice the seed bead details

Kuhrn and the Doctor

Kurhn and the Doctor

This Kurhn wears blue heels.  They hinder her ability to stand on her own, but are rather cute, I think!

7th Anniversary Kuhrn

7th Anniversary Kurhn

Kurhn doesn’t come with a comb or stand, but does come with a blue purse.

7th Anniversary Kuhrn

7th Anniversary Kurhn

I find Kurhn’s so adorable.  Their simple faces, especially their big eyes, are fantastic and come off as both innocent and mature at the same time.  Here are a few more shots of Kurhn, guest starring the Big Chief 11th Doctor and K-9.

7th Anniversary Kuhrn and K-9

7th Anniversary Kurhn and K-9

7th Anniversary Kuhrn and the Doctor

7th Anniversary Kurhn and the Doctor

8th Anniversary Kuhrn and 7th Anniversary Kuhrn

8th Anniversary Kurhn and 7th Anniversary Kurhn

Kuhrn and the Doctor

Kurhn and the Doctor

7th Anniversary Kuhrn

7th Anniversary Kurhn

Here’s the video review!

What Kurhn is on your wish list?  Share your thoughts below!

May 11, 2014. Tags: . Uncategorized. 5 comments.

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