Wild, wild times :)

Today I was feeling kinda blah. Thats not unusual, because my depression is always waiting to creep back in it sometimes seems, and especially in winter. Plus, uni gets me down most days. I love the subject Im doing, and Im heading for a career Im going to love, but first I have to get the degree, and that I do not love. The idea I guess is that as well as learning the things we need to know and proving we know them well enough, doing an academic degree with essays and stuff is going to teach us skills about other things. Im not sure what, except how to write essays, but they reckon its so we can be academic researchers. I shouldnt moan, its a decision that was made by people in the know, but I find the lectures and essays grind to be a bit of a downer at times. So after I finished for the day this afternoon, I decided I wanted to do something a bit fun, a bit out of the normal. I didnt want to go home and do work and chores etc. Now Im twenty-whatever person, moved to a big (ish) city to go to uni, have independence and making up the rules and learning life! I feel I should be getting drunk and throwing up in pot plants, wild partying, ill-advised hook ups. Spoiler alert: I did no such thing 🙂 what little of that malarkey I have done I did last year, when I lived in student accomodation and was excited to finally have my freedom. And honestly even then, most of the getting drunk and throwing up that went on wasnt at wild parties, I was just very very unhappy. Then I quit my degree, moved into a house far away from noisy students, and started a whole other career path.
Therefore my exciting adventure of the day was….. Food shopping! In a totally different supermarket! Wow, the adrenaline. I bet Ive got you on the edge of your seats now 🙂 there is a bit coming about dolls, honest. Maybe I should write less rambly reviews, but this is just me, really. Im always off on some tangent, if I had to not do that this wouldnt be much fun.
Instead of one of my usual supermarkets (or much smaller, nearer shops if Im feeling lazy) I got the bus out to a sainsburys thats part of a shopping centre a bit out of town. To me its a small shopping centre, but I think I might be a bit skewed because I used to have to pass through a very large one quite a lot. And because this sainsburys was a decent size it didnt just have food, it had toys! It had a decent looking section that I actually didnt bother looking through, Im going to have to bear it in mind, but it also had a few discounted things one aisle over from the veg that I did stop by. They had doll outfits down to £2 a pack, and since they looked like an ok size, I decided to take the risk

This is the first one. It doesnt fit anyone exactly right, I think they were meant for baby dolls, who tend to be chubbier, but its really close on my disney animators collection doll. I could take it in a tiny bit, or just wait it out, for future doll excitements. For that price its not a big deal.

This one, fits lots of people. Its perfect on the animators collection except the hood wont go up, and because it has the belt, and its meant to be loose, it looks ok on the Sydney and Sienna, the designafriend little sisters, as well as Emily and BFC ink noelle, though with slightly half mast sleeves. But I dont mind that if its pjs. I wear anything to bed, I dont care if its not the pefect fit. When I look at these outfits I reckon they arent out of the range of what I could do myself, but I still think they were worth the buy. My sewing machine is not the most reliable creature (what you get for buying cheap) and the stitching on these, though basic, is better than I could do by hand for sure.
I really recommend keeping an eye out for clothes for baby dolls, or teddy bears, because if you like the larger dolls they might not be far off a fit. Obviously not all the styles will work, but some will translate ok into an older doll, and its easier to take a finished garment and take it in a bit than start from scratch. And it can also work out cheaper. The top and trousers, for instance, had three different fabrics, a neck trim and a bow. If Id bought enough of those and spare, to make myself, plus probably a pattern because even though I like to make stuff up Im not good at it, thats looking at more than £2. Choose wisely and you will do well, young ones 🙂
Thats not really the exciting bit though. This sainsburys, as I mentioned, is attached to a shopping centre, which has a disney store and a build-a-bear workshop. I only looked in the disney store today, Im liking the mini animator dolls but Im waiting for them to hopefully bring out some of the ones I like best. I dont like Ariel and Jasmines jaw line very much on those dolls, and the other three currently available, Cinderella, Anna and Elsa, all have fringes that look like they might be difficult. Cindy in particular is already looking rather fluffy in her box.
In case any ody is not acquainted with the build a bear shop, they have some mini bears that you can buy, as well as big ones, and the mini ones have a small range of teensy little outfit sets. Whilst I think the large ones would drown any of my dolls, and need a lot of taking in at the moment because the largest are all slim bodied, the little ones looked a good size for Jolina. The scale isnt quite right, but she looks cute. Im not sure what this first outfit is supposed to be

But Im saying its pyjamas because the fabric is kinda silky. Id wear those to bed, though only if someone gave them to me, Id not bother buying them for myself. The second set is my favourite

The shorts I admit are sort of an odd fit, but the t shirt is fantastic even with being a bit short. And of course I can put it with something other than the shorts

I really like that Im getting most of my larger dolls into outfits that look more casual, like they’re just hanging around in my room. I think it works better than leaving it how they came, where you’d have one in her winter coat, one dressed for a ball, someone else ready to do ballet etc, and all just congregated together on top of my chest of drawers.
The two sets I picked up were the ones I thought would scale up the nicest, as well as liking them. The shorts are meant to be trousers on the bears, so I decided against anything with a skirt or dress, it would just not fit at all. Plus, there was a sale, so an outfit was down to £2, which is awesome. I also grabbed one large teddy item

Its a little bit big for Jolina, but it works for Emily and Noelle, and I think the detail is quite nice. Although the fastenings are all velcro, it is lined

And has a smaller front pocket, and one side of the strap comes off

I dont think it would hold up brilliantly to vigorous play, the velcro is alreasy starting to come away in places, but it looks alright in photos.
What with all this excitement I was quite happy to continue adventuring, so instead of going home sensibly, I hopped on a random bus I was fairly sure went to the right place to see what would happen. I must have added at least half an hour onto my journey by doing that, but I got to see some new parts of the city. Also, its not really an adventure for me if nothing backfires on me, and Ive had much worse incidents than this.
And now, tales of adventure over, I come to my biggest excitement. Ive said that Im looking into larger dolls a bit, like Noelle, and I have one more doll coming in the post, though she’s taking her time because she’s from america. She’s a hearts for hearts dell that i got for a fantastic price, i think because she wasnt very well labelled, the description didnt actually say who she was. I only found her by accident, and then I did hesitate a bit because in some of the photos she does look a little bit different and isnt specifically named. But I dont care, its worth a risk sometimes.
All the other dolls I want are somewhere a bit up the price range, like carpatina and a girl for all time. And american girl. I fell for these girls much more gradually than a lot of other doll lines, at first I really wasnt sure. They can look a bit odd

I mean, those eyes

IMG_2216and some of the hair looks like hard work too

I come across american girls a lot online though, I think its inevitable when Im always looking at doll crafts, because the AG gang seem to be a crafty lot. Eventually, I fell. Seeing some good photography helped, as did reading different perspectives on them than the most prevalent ones. Young girls and christian mums werent really selling the doll to me, but american girl outsider and proper thought out blogs and reviews from serious collectors gave me a reason to pause, and I started looking at what was available. I started on the official website, and took a particular liking to my american girl number 57

She might not look that exciting to a lot of people, but somehow looking through dolls I was always drawn to her. However, buying a doll from american girl will cost me £75 plus an entirely unspecified shipping cost. I wasnt prepared to order a doll without knowing what i was actually going to end up paying. There is a website I know that sells the dolls, from a uk base, which means no postage, but it does mean paying around £150 for a basic doll. Next stop, ebay. I had a feeling thats where Id end up. Ive been looking through whats available for a few weeks, trying to find something thats really a good deal, when shipping comes into it. Some people suggest getting a used doll and fixing her up, but I couldnt find any that I felt up to taking the risk on, for my first ever attempt at doing anything like that, and some would have needed whole new limbs or wigs, which of course is more money, and more pricey shipping.
I came across some more characters I would have gone for, some of the old girls of the year like Marisol, or retired historicals like Nellie, but being retired, they cost more. In the end, Ive just been sitting it out, watching the dolls come and go, getting bid out of my reach and waiting for my moment. And today, it came. I dont know for sure I got the best deal I ever could, but you never can know that. I found a doll that I managed to get for around £90, including shipping and import charge, which I can be certain is less than Id have payed straight from american girl. The doll I got is one who’s slowly been emdearing herself to me. Initially I ruled her out because she’s blonde, and I wanted a brunette, and she’s also a historical character, and I want to stary from scratch with who she is. But she does have the short hair style I like on 57, and some sweet little freckles. Have you guessed yet? Im getting Kit!

I think Im paying about $150 for her, in american terms, which is more than she’d cost direct from the store. But its probably about the best Im going to get, with the shipping issues. Uk sellers can charge higher, and so they do. But Im thrilled. Im also a little bit in shock, never in my life have I payed that much for a doll. I dont think Ive payed that much in one go for anything except my laptop, which I bought out of money gifted by family for that exact purpose. I think that might have to come out of the savings, Ill see where we are at the end of the month. Still, I cant even wait to see her properly. I hope some of the clothes I have will fot her, but if not Ill just get sewing


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