Ken Doll Updates

Mattel announced today that Ken was getting a little makeover. Joining the female Fashionista dolls, who were given unique body types over the past few years, as well as new and exciting hairstyles and skin tones, is Ken, who was just given two new body types! Ken is now available in three different body types: Original, Broad and Slim.

New Ken (Mattel Promo Photos)

There will also be more variety in hairstyles, faces and skin tones, as you can see in the promo pic above.

New Ken (Mattel Promo Photos)

New Ken (Mattel Promo Photos)

New Ken (Mattel Promo Photos)

In total, we’ll be seeing 15 new Ken dolls. 10 are apparently available now, with five more coming later. While I’m glad they are expanding on the Ken brand, I am a little disappointed that they have yet to release a Made to Move Ken. I want some articulation in my Ken dolls. (Or some bodies for some Taeyangs, assuming they would be as interchangeable as the Made to Move Barbie bodies are with Pullips!)

According to the GQ article linked in the first paragraph, the Ken packaging won’t be marked Broad, Slim or Original, so you’ll have to guess when browsing the toy aisles. Hopefully, the differences of each are more visible in person. I personally don’t see much difference (based on the photos) between Original or Broad. Online, you’ll see dolls listed by their body type.

For more details on how to pre-order the new Ken, check out the Barbie website! What do you think of the update to Ken? Leave your thoughts below!

June 20, 2017. Tags: . Uncategorized. 10 comments.

World Doll Day Toy Drive Update and Thanks

World Doll Day has come and gone, but there’s still a few weeks left to donate a doll or toy for our toy drive! (Yes, this isn’t my toy drive, it’s all of ours!) You can read more about it here. At PUDDLE this year, one of the activities I coordinated was the World Doll Day Doll and Toy Drive, with donations going to the Marillac St. Vincent Family Services Christmas Store. PUDDLE attendees came prepared to give, adding over 30 toys to the 20 or so we received during the drive through reader donations, pushing our total donations to over 50 dolls!

World Doll Day Donations

I’m incredibly pleased with the enthusiasm you all showed me during this doll/toy drive. I went into it a bit leery, not sure how it would work or if we’d get anything, but your donations helped us ensure that 50 children will feel some holiday cheer come December. Thank you SO much for your donations. If you’d like to send in a last minute doll/toy/gift card, feel free. I won’t be dropping these off till early July, so you have until the end of this month. Details on the PO Box are in the announcement post.

I suppose I should end this with a question, because that’s proper blog etiquette. How did you celebrate World Doll Day? Share your thoughts in the comment area.

June 18, 2017. Tags: . Uncategorized. 2 comments.

PUDDLE 2017 Recap

2017 marks our fourth year attending the Pullip and Dal Doll Lovers Event, also known simply as PUDDLE. PUDDLE is a large fan gathering held in Elk Grove Village. This year marked its 10th anniversary. With record attendance numbers, PUDDLE’s demographics are very diverse. Unlike past years (or maybe just more so this year), PUDDLE had a vast age range attend. There were solo collectors, mother/daughter duo’s and even full family units in attendance. It was amazing to see the interactions between long time collectors and younger collectors, just starting out on their Pullip adventure.

PUDDLE 2017

PUDDLE is more of a fan gathering than a convention. Everything from the vendors table, to the contest area, to attendee seating takes place in one big room. This year, there were many great vendors selling their goods, including: doll vendors Shifty Lizard and Denise’s Dolls, Etsy sellers Quaint Quintessence, Mota de Algodón, EmmerzApparel, Darling Clover, KaleidoscopeBJDWear, KuddlePussKustoms, The Little Iron Bed, Pullip Party, Doll Angel Exclusives, and web store Sakura’s Blossoms.

There are no panels at PUDDLE, but besides socializing (which makes up much of the day), there are some exciting events  for attendees to participate in. The day started off with the Dress Like Your Doll contest. Had I remembered I could have used any doll as my inspiration (not just Pullip and friends), I totally would have entered. However, I know I wouldn’t have won! There were so many amazing costumes on the stage that I’m surprised the judges could choose a winner.

PUDDLE 2017

One of the cool parts about PUDDLE is that Pullips are on display everywhere! Attendee tables have spots for people to display their favorite dolls of all shapes and sizes. After the mid-day break, the competition tables were cleared for all the customization contest entries, which made for even more Pullips on display.

PUDDLE 2017

My mom and I entered a few of the custom contests, as well as the Best in Theme diorama contest. My mom, Barbe0913 on YouTube, ended up winning 2nd place for her ‘Curiouser and Curiouser’ Mini entry. Congrats, mom!

PUDDLE 2017

PUDDLE 2017

PUDDLE 2017

PUDDLE 2017

PUDDLE 2017

PUDDLE 2017

PUDDLE 2017

PUDDLE 2017

PUDDLE 2017

PUDDLE 2017

PUDDLE 2017

PUDDLE 2017

PUDDLE 2017

PUDDLE 2017

To see more of the Pullips on display at PUDDLE this year, check out the flickr album! Each year, PUDDLE has a craft corner. This year’s craft corner was really fun. We made Kate Middleton inspired hats out of felt, tulle and other accessories. The basic hat shape was super easy, too! Joan, who ran the table, was kind enough to have pre-made some felt flowers, which I used on the hat below.

PUDDLE 2017

Shopping is a huge reason we go to PUDDLE, besides seeing all the awesome collectors, of course. My goal this time around was to outfit my newest Make It Own Taeyang. He arrived at PUDDLE looking super dorky. He was also bald. He left PUDDLE looking like a stud in a Kaleidoscope jacket, long sleeve shirt and jeans (shirt/jeans from Mota). I nearly left without a wig, but at the last minute, I found a (slightly too big) ginger male cut wig that seemed to match him perfectly. Eventually, he even found himself with shoes, thanks to our consolation prize in the Best in Theme contest.

PUDDLE 2017

The outfit below is sized for Pullip, but since my Pullips are all in permanent outfits, it ended up on my Dal. I think the colors in the shorts match my girls face up really well. And the headband is so cute! This is from Mota.

PUDDLE 2017

My mom ended up getting a doll at PUDDLE. Not a Pullip, but a Tangkou. Emily, a vendor who makes super cute outfits, did the face up. Tangkou’s are kind of a Pullip/Blythe hybrid. They have an eye mech similar to a Blythe, which allows their eyes to change color. Prior to seeing this one, I hadn’t thought much about Tangkou’s. This pretty one makes me think I may have misjudged them!

PUDDLE 2017

For more PUDDLE coverage, check out the video below. My mom and I talk about the show and show off a few other items we picked up.

For more information on PUDDLE, keep an eye on their website and Facebook page. To everyone who said hello to us during the show, it was great meeting you! Hope to see you again next year! Did you attend PUDDLE or another doll show recently? Share your thoughts below!

June 17, 2017. Tags: . Uncategorized. 1 comment.

A Girl for All Time’s New Indiegogo Campaign

They’re at it again! A Girl for All Time started a new crowdfunding campaign this week to bring to life two brand new dolls. Already over 70% funded in only two days, I wouldn’t be surprised if the company reached their $20,000 goal within well within the month. Up for pre-order is new contemporary girl, Bex, who you learned about earlier here on the blog, and new historical girl, Elinor. Elinor, sixth in the historical doll line, was inspired by the Elizabethan era, 1558–1603. I’m no expert on British history, so through Google, I learned that the Elizabethan era was dubbed so in honor of the reign of Queen Elizabeth I. A renaissance of sorts, the Elizabethan era saw the arts, like poetry, music and theater, grow and flourish.

Photo Credit: A Girl For All Time

Both dolls being introduced through this crowdfunding effort are 16″ tall and have nine points of articulation. They’re made of quality vinyl and wear high quality (and well designed) outfits. The dolls are priced a little lower than they will be later, when they eventually make their way to the A Girl for All Time website. So, if you’re looking to save a few bucks and help out this fantastic company at the same time, consider ordering through this crowdfunding campaign.

Will you be picking up Bex or Elinor (or both)? Share your thoughts in the comment area!

May 12, 2017. Uncategorized. 7 comments.

Collection Close Up: Sasha Dolls

I received my first two Sasha dolls a few years ago for Christmas: Caleb, a dark skinned boy, and Gregor, a tan brunette boy. Since then, I’ve gathered five more (two babies, two girls, and a bald Gregor). Seven Sasha’s sounds like a lot, until you see my mother’s collection. She has, at least, double the amount of dolls I have. Sasha dolls have been a favorite of hers since she was young and found her first one, a Gregor, for under $20.00, at a store that was going out of business.  Both collections together make for quite a few Sasha dolls!

Sasha Dolls

Sasha dolls, produced from the 1940’s through 1986 (with a re-launch in the mid 1990’s) are unique looking when compared to other doll lines. Most noticeable are their unique faces. It was important to creator Sasha Morgenthaler that her dolls have a neutral expression. According to reference book “Sasha Dolls: A History“, Sasha, who lived in Switzerland during World War II, Sasha thought that “No grotesque caricature can awaken a child’s true feelings. A piece of wood, barely carved, is far superior to a conventional doll with an exaggerated smile.” It makes sense in the context of the times. Children going through Switzerland during the war may not have wanted a doll that was always smiling, always happy.

Sasha Dolls

Interesting, as well, are that Sasha dolls are asymmetric. Arms and legs are not one uniformed length. Their eyes are also not completely even. She designed her dolls this way, because we ourselves are not symmetrical. This asymmetry also helps the dolls do something not all doll lines can– stand on their head! If strung properly, these boys and girls should be able to stand on their heads without falling. It’s neat to see.

Sasha Dolls

Sasha Morgenthaler, as a person, was kind of incredible. While reading about her in “Sasha Dolls: A History”, it’s clear that she was powerful in spirit. I’m not going to go into her entire history in his post, but I encourage you to read the book mentioned above. Sasha wore many different hats in life, including wife, mother, midwife and artist. At one point during World War II, she even started a woman’s auxiliary group that taught woman how to help the men coming back from the war.

Sasha Dolls

One of Sasha’s dreams was to create an affordable, durable doll. It took many experiments with different materials before she found one that fit her criteria. For that reason, you may see Sasha dolls made of various materials. The early dolls are harder to find, because the material Sasha used was more fragile than the vinyl she eventually created and used for the doll line.

Sasha Dolls

Many different companies made Sasha dolls, including Gotz and Trendon. The history of Sasha doll production is complicated and filled with legal drama. The book, “Sasha Dolls: A History” goes through all of this. The dolls in this post are all from the England base company, Trendon.

Sasha Dolls

Sasha dolls can vary in size. They started at 15″ and grew as the molds outstretched to be 16″ or 17″ tall towards the end of the run. You can see that in the picture below, where Caleb (right) looks smaller than Gregor (left).

Sasha Dolls

For those who like video presentations, below is a video Barbee0913 and I shot talking about Sasha dolls. In the video, my mom shares a few other facts about Sasha and her dolls. There’s also a bunch of great links in the video description to books and websites that will help you learn more about this unique line.

Sasha Dolls

Sasha Dolls

Sasha Dolls

Sasha Dolls
Do you have any Sasha dolls? What do you think of them? Let me know in the comment area!

May 9, 2017. Tags: . Uncategorized. 19 comments.

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