As you might know if you’ve read previous posts, I went away for the weekend, which was both nice, but also stressful because of timetable mix-ups. Most of my holiday is completely irrelevant here, but one probably unsurprising result of it was, of course, new dolls. In the larger town near the village we stayed in was a toymaster shop, source of much excitement on my part, because I havent seen one in years. There used to be one in a big shopping centre near where I lived, but the shop is now home to the entertainer, and I sort of assumed they must have been bought out or something. It disappeared around the time a lot of shops were doing, with the recession and what have you, so the likely explanation was that they’d gone bankrupt. But apparently not! And whats more, it did have a distinct range of toys, with a lot of variation from the other toy shops I visit. It still had a lot of the usual stuff thats popular right now; Barbie, Ever after High, Monster High, Lalaloopsy. I also spotted Doc Mcstuffins, on the shelves aimed at younger children, though I didnt really look at those or the ‘boy’ shelves. Toys shouldnt be gendered, but I really cant think of another way to describe the different sections of the shop without it becoming very long winded, as it is doing anyway. They had those disney princess dolls with the plastic moulded tops as well, including Merida, who confused my partner by the way she looks almost nothing like the film. She often doesnt, and a sleeveless light blue glittery dress isnt really her style. There was however also the evil queen from snow white in doll form, which I dont think Ive ever seen outside the disney store. It wasnt the exact same version obviously, but still, interesting.
Its hard to put my finger on the way this shop felt slightly different to the entertainer. Smyths and toys r us feel completely different to either being so much larger, but those two are close in size. There were, I think, slightly different selections on offer. The entertainer doesnt to my knowledge sell EAH or MH, and Ive noticed that when smaller shops sell EAH they usually seem to have the same dolls, mainly lots and lots of Briar Beauty. Others too, but I dont often see Cupid, or the Hunter and Ashlynn set, outside of the big shops.
Getting off topic. The point is, this shop also had the I Love Minnie dolls that Ive seen a few people review. Although the internet claims that quite a few shops I go to sell them, Id never seen them in person before, so I was definitely interested. There were a few different sets, one with a car, one with a bike, one with a dog, a basic one, and one whose theme seemed to be glitter. And a lot of these sets seemed to come in different colour variations, for the clothes and the dolls hair. I got the basic red one, which was the only one without a short little straight cut fringe. It did look cute, but she looked cute without it too, and its easier to manage. I dont have any pictures of her as she arrived, because I didnt have a camera. My partner took one for me, but Im not going to bother chasing that down, so heres one from the internet
I thought her little sideswept thing she has going on would look really nice down, and it’d be easier to arrange it to frame her face better. She has her headband on in that photo, but if you remove the plastic holding it down it doesnt stay on very well. She looks just as cute without it though
I think Id have preferred a headband with black ears. They’d match her hair, and its what Minnie actually has. The shoes though are pretty much exactly Minnies, and they do come off. Theres also a little handbag, but Im not very excited by that. She cant hold it very well. Under her dress she has little knickers!
They arent hemmed, just raw edges, but still, for a basic, inexpensive doll like that, it was an unexpected bonus. Interestingly, despite the appearance of a side parting, her front hair is rooted symmetrically, so there is more styling potential there than I realised
This one seems in fitting with the kinda vintage tone some of the other sets had. And now just a few clothes swaps, because I always find those one of the most useful parts of reviews. First up was Chelsea
Chelsea looks really sweet in that dress, but the size of Minnies feet and hands proved a barrier. I did eventually get the sleeves over her hands, but then got stuck at the shoulders, but the trousers were going nowhere. I then had the idea to try my Ruby doll from Princess Sofias sleepover set, because for some reason her dress is much looser around the neck and shoulders than the others in the set
The shoulders were still too tight on her, although Jade also looks lovely in the Minnie dress. So, not a lot of clothes swap options really. I think that my only options are make clothes for her or buy more dolls from the line. Im not planning on buying any more, because althoug she is adorable, a lot of her attraction for me was novelty value. There are dolls in the line that Ive seen online that Id have bought instead of her if they’d been in the shop, but none that Id buy as well as. Still, shes got a nice straightforward body to make for, and I bet she’d wear crochet well with her cute little face, and shes small enough Id not get bored on skirts for her, and honestly she looks sweet sitting there in her original outfit. Id like to stand her in a shelf, but she doesnt stand alone. She’ll sit or lean, and look cute, and its all I ever asked or expected of her 🙂
My next introduction is Mackenzie, apparently from Disneys Teen Beach Movie
Title reminded me of high school musical, and after a quick google it sounds like they’re aiming at the same market; teenagers in ‘love’, big musical numbers, all that. What interested me in this doll is that she’s meant to look like one of the characters, who is a real person. Heres her close up on the back of the box
They dont even have the same hairstyle, which isnt a good start, or outfit. It tends to pique my curiousity when dolls are supposed to look like a real person, Im fascinated by the line between the two. As a child I wasnt a fan, because being accustomed to Barbie I thought the more realistic faces werent as pretty, and didnt look consistent with my other dolls. I was pretty keen on consistency then. Though my imagination was well up to creating wild scenarios for my dolls to live through, usually influenced by whatever Id been reading, I dont have a very visual imagination, so I found things like that more of an impediment. Recently though, doll realism has become a bit more of a hot button topic, and Ive developed an interest. Mackenzie isnt sold as a realistic doll per say, but she is supposed to look at least a little like an actual human. I quite like her body proportions
She is quite thin, as always, but her waist seems softer. Her torso, if seen on its own, could be the torso of a more usual teenage girl, with a few things that are saggy and squishy as she goes through puberty, though her long legs and big head ruin that illusion. Her feet are proportionately a bit bigger too, and I really like her shoes
They stay on quite well unless she gets bumped or shaken a lot, and look like something a real human would wear. I decided to redo her hair completely, because each tail was just one big ringlet, and once those had got unwound I could tell it was going to be very poofy hair. While brushing it I took a look at her roots
Her scapl is painted, which helps, but thered be a lot of bald spot problems with this girl if you try to get clever with styling. All she has is a line around the hairline, and her parting. The rest is all empty. Thats her confined to a life of hairstyles based around two bunches then. I quite fancied plaits on her anyway though, and she does suit them.
As a disney doll, I wanted to try her in a few different outfits from my other disney girls, although her body does look different just at a glance. First, I tried a disney store doll dress on her
They dont look that different in actual dimensions, but they do have a different overall shape to them. I didnt bother trying Mackenzies outfit on Rapunzel because even if it does fit her, she’s not likely to wear it. I also tried her in a dress from one of the dolls that is disney, but sells in different shops, I think that one was just from a supermarket
Those are great sets in my opinion, you get two outfits that are either worn by, or at least inspired by, a disney princess, usually an ordinary one and a fancier one. So Belles set has her blue dress she wears at the beginning, and a pink one she wears while shes living with the beast. Aurora however has the blue dress Mackenzies wearing, which looks like the one she wears at the end of the film, but the other dress is not her brown one from the beginning. For some reason its a purple one, and has a different shape too
It could be from something Ive missed though. Various princesses have had sequels and prequels and holiday specials, which werent as well known as the original films. Anyway, all the disney dresses fitted Mackenzie pretty well, with a few looser or tighter bits here and there, though they dont look like something shed normally wear. Then I tried her in some more casual clothes, from all sorts of doll brands
I think they both have different bits of them that are more and less realistic. Skippers hips are tiny, but her legs look better without the really big gap Mackenzie has. Theres less curve to Skippers waist, and I think that both are fairly likely variations, but most of the rest of Mackenzies body is quite small in proportion to that, and of course her head is too big. The girls swapped clothes
While they can wear each others stuff, Skipper doesnt particularly want to wear a frilly orange bikini. Like a lot of teenagers she’s a bit self conscious, and very specific about which clothes she will and wont wear. Mackenzie likes Skippers outfit more, but she isnt really into the pastel colours thing, and the skirt only closes if it sits quite far up on her hips, making it a bit short. Despite the too-loose fit of Freyas dress, a pair of trousers from the same set is a bit tight on Mackenzies, which fits in with my impression of her wider hips
In case anyones wondering what Freya thinks of all this borrowing, she is one of the dolls who recently moved on to a charity shop. I bought the set because I adored all the cutesy, gothic styled dresses in with her, but I never quite got along with her, she had a strangely pointy face, and awfully bland makeup for the style she reckoned to be. I reckon some kids gonna love her though.
So theres Mackenzie. I really like her, I think she looks really open and friendly. I dont know much at all about the actress or film character, except what wikipedia yielded, but she’s made a firm impression of a personality on me with her cheerful grin and plaits. Kind of like the nerdy anti hero characters you get in teen books, who triumph in the end by being generally a better person than the bullies who torment them.
Ive just realised I forgot to do her articulation. Thats cos its pretty unremarkable, just the shoulders and hips, not even a bend and snap knee. Whatever, shes sweet, and I could see her making a good doll for girls with who dont quite relate to Barbie. Her hair is bushy instead of sleek, and with her darker colouring someone of a non-white ethnicity could find they look quite a bit like her. Im not gonna start listing ethnicities, but i can think of a few minorities not often represented