The Christmas Dolly Haul. :D

Well as you can clearly see, I got my first full size Blythe! She is a Nicky Lad, and I am so very pleased with her. I love the stock outfit she comes with, and wow, the quality of these dolls are amazing compared to Pullips and Dals. Blythe really lacks any of those fragile feelings you have about Pullip and co. Of course Blythe lacks the pose-ability that Pullip and Dal have, so I guess it is kind of a trade off. One of the things that surprised me the most though about Blythe is that she really looks downward compared to Pullip and co. Sometimes I think it can add some challenge to photographing her, but it’s not nearly as challenging as her super glossy face! Haha, yeah, as soon as warmer weather hits here, I intend to spray matte her ASAP!

The rest of the dolly related goods I got were for the dollhouse. My wonderful cousin got me a bunch of the Office Lady re-ment sets so I could start accessorizing my desk and bathroom areas. Above are some of the things from one of the sets. The mini clips, stapler, paperclip holder, organization box, and pink calculator are all re-ment mixed in with random barbie and Liv items….ah, though the coconut juice is re-ment as well. The Office Lady sets also have a lot of nice mini coffees too. One latte cup has a nice heart swirl in it, just like you see in adverts and there was one set that even came with a tiny creamer and sugar stick. This is probably my comic geek showing through, but these sets each came with these lovely little illustrated foldouts featuring a different girl using the items in her set. I think I got as much of a kick out of those illustrations as I did the items! XD

Last but not least I finally acquired a toilet for my dollhouse bathroom (no pic yet). It is part of the Babysitter Barbie set and you can actually flush it and it makes a flushing noise. It is really too funny…..HOWEVER….it also make a noise, presumably of the baby sister doll humming while she uses the toilet, and this little flap in the toilet flips over from the blue water scene to a doody scene….yes seriously. That part is a little annoying since you can accidentally set it off by bumping into it, but flushing resets it of course. I’ll have to get some pictures of it when I have time.

Barbie Chair Repaint

I was finally able to finish my Barbie chair repaint project after the humidity and storms broke a little bit yesterday. I’m not sure what set this chair came from, but it was imprinted with the date 1992. I was surprised to receive this chair in the bag of Barbie goods I got from my aunt, because I have never seen a Napoleon backed Barbie chairs before. I consider this one of my most successful repaints so far, and I think it will be a nice addition to the living room of the dollhouse.

After having a success with repainting, I’ve been considering repainting the sweet roses fridge I have since all of my “whitening” experiments have failed. I started by soaking the fridge in bleach, and after several hours with no change I decided to give up. Next I thought I would try the hydrogen peroxide and oxi-clean bath, but after soaking all day and night with no change in color I gave up and used the solution to clean the bathtub, lol. So after chemical lightening failed me I thought I would test sanding a small corner of the back side of the fridge, which actually lightened the fridge slightly. I decided against sanding to lighten the plastic however, because the amount of work that would be required to sand and buff the entire fridge was out of proportion with the results. I’ve figured out how to remove the pink shelves inside, but I still haven’t figured out how to remove the pink inside door shelves from the door. This presents a problem for repainting, thought I imagine I could just tape over the inside of the doors and not paint them. Anyway I’ll stop my rambling for now and just leave you with my before shot of the barbie chair before the repaint.

Delays and Dalliances

I haven’t been able to make any more progress on refurbishing my barbie fridge or any of the other furniture I have received because of the stinking weather. :p Every day it has been hot, humid, stormy and mostly overcast. So right now I have half of a old barbie chair painted with the other half waiting for a drop in the humidity. I’m also still waiting for sun to try a second type of bleaching experiment on the sweet roses fridge which involves sunlight, but I’ll get more into that later.

I imagine I should just work on Cookie some more, but a migraine has kept me in bed most of the day, and I’m just feeling too yucky to motivate much. XP So basically I’ve been spending this down time with my laptop in bed and looking at other dolly sites and such to satisfy my dolly obsessing. I managed to find a couple interesting dolly blogs that have a good deal of 1:6 scale diorama info or eye candy, which I thought I would share.

The first one is Corsetkitten’s Workshop:
This blog is heavy into 1:6 scale dioramas and fashion dolls, but she does have some Blythe and Momoko. She has some “making of” tutorial type bits on making 1:6 scale dioramas and also makes some of her own miniatures. Lots of informative dolly posts as well as just random doll blabber which is fun to read too!

The second site is Nerea Pozo:
This blog is pretty much Lati tinies and Blythe exclusive, though occasionally I see some postings on minis. The big thing here though is the eye candy! She makes these incredible little dioramas for Lati tinies or Blythe dolls that she sometimes sells. There is less so much tutorial information here, but looking at all the eye candy is sure to give you ideas, and they are just too gorgeous not to look at. Also if you visit her domain, you can also see some of her custom Blythe and Blythe artwork.

I would absolutely love to hear of any other sites other people may have found, because it’s always nice to have new sites to visit, especially when you are ill in bed. Feel free to comment and share any other dolly links, but do keep in mind that if you post more than two links my spam filter is going to flag it for me to check before it can appear.

Barbie Sweet Roses Fridge – Refurbishment

One of my aunts is an antique dealer and knowing I was trying to put together a playscale dollhouse, she kept an eye out for old dollhouse furniture for me and found some of the Barbie Sweet Roses furniture from 1987. She actually found more than the fridge for me, there is also a kitchen set, a cabinet, sofa, chairs and a few other things, most of which are from the Sweet Roses collection. Anyway I decided to tackle the fridge first as I have been wanting a new fridge since I kinda mucked up the repaint of the hot pink barbie fridge I had.

This Sweet Roses fridge had been in an attic and it has yellowed with age and heat. I know that originally the fridge was white, and inside there is some light pink detailing. The great thing about this Barbie fridge is that it’s quite a bit deeper than the current barbie fridges on the market, which means it can hold more cute re-ment food! But more importantly this Barbie Fridge from the 80s is more to scale than the newer fridges, meaning when Pullip goes to open the top freezer, she will actually be looking into the freezer and not looking at the top of the fridge. This old fridge is also much better put together as well, for example the shelves inside are nice and level and don’t sag like the latest fridge does. XP

So the first stage of refurbishment was to scrub down the fridge which was a little dirty, and to get the old yellowed and torn decals off of it. It took some effort to get the decals off, because the glue was really holding them on there. With the newer fridges, just a 15-30 minute soak in hot and soapy water will pretty much remove the cecals easy, but this one required more elbow grease. In the end after a soak in warm soapy water wasn’t doing the trick, I broke out the isopropyl alcohol and rubbed it down, finally removing the decals.

After removing the decals I noticed that the plastic underneath wasn’t as yellowed as the rest of the plastic, which is unfortunate. You can see it just barely in the pic above. Now this leads to me to decide what to do next. I’ve heard that putting yellowed plastics in a bleach or hydrogen peroxide bath can help remove yellowing, but I’ve also heard that it can make the plastics more brittle. I have also considered a repaint, but after my last failure, I’m not too keen in wrecking yet another fridge. There is also the fact that the way this fridge it put together means I can’t separate parts nearly as easily for repainting either. Whatever I decide to do, I’ll probably continue to post the results here.

For now though I have placed it in my dollhouse kitchen and been messing around with furniture arrangement. My kitchen is really coming along now, especially since my mother found me the brown re-ment china cabinet when she was shopping in Pittsburgh. The dimensions of the Sweet Roses fridge works really well for my kitchen, it fits neatly in the space between the two windows, but I would need to make some sort of cabinet to go in the space between the red re-ment kitchen and the fridge. I would also eventually like to make some red wall cabinets to match and pull the room together more. Still a lot of work to do, but little by little I am getting there. 🙂

Mature Body 20cm BJD, Doll Values and Other Musings.

Recently I’ve been kind of…er…”pre-shopping” for a new doll. I know I want one, and money-wise I’ve saved and I am close to being able to get a new BJD, or if I wanted, I could already get any Pullip, Dal, Taeyang or Blythe I wanted….well maybe not so much “any” Blythe. Anyhow I’ve been leaning towards just getting another BJD because Pullip and Dal offerings as of late haven’t interested me, plus I have to admit I am a little disenchanted with Pullip since I’ve been having so much body troubles with her. I ended up taking her off of her 25cm SBH because despite all of my efforts her neck was still flopping and since her new wig it became even worse. In the end, I am far more pleased with my Dal, and would probably buy another Dal again in the future, but as of right now, not another Pullip unless a to die for design came out.

Anyhow I digress on my Pullip misgivings…..So I’ve been looking at the possibility of getting a new BJD, and I know that I no longer want anything beyond MSD size. With all of the mature bodied MSDs out there, why would I possibly need a giant 60cm+ doll just to get a more mature body shape? Besides that, I prefer smaller dolls as they are just easier to handle and you have more miniature options available to you, especially since the advent of the American Girl Dolls, and now those larger size Dora dolls. Anyway I am interested now in the even smaller BJD, especially any size that would be a nice fit for my current Pullip house or I would even go so tiny as to get a doll that would work in my 1:12 scale dollhouse that my grandfather built for me. As I got to thinking about it even more, I thought to myself, “I wonder if there are any mature bodied 20cm dolls out there” so I searched and lo and behold there were!

20061211124945_mLimhwa makes a barbie size BJD called ToYou. For a while though they stopped making them, but recently a new ToYou was offered called Sara, and she is quite a beauty. However Limhwa dolls only have certain ordering periods and seem a little difficult to get in that regard, but I will still keep them in mind. I also came across Soom’s Mini Gem series, which again are mature bodied 20cm dolls. I absolutely love their doll called Aren, which you can see in the pic I posted. So I’ve started seriously considering a “barbie sized” BJD because they would work my my new dollhouse and would be easy to clothe. I need to figure out though how easy it is to find tiny wigs and eyes though before I jump into that, and I also have to wonder how difficult doing a face-up on a tiny doll would be….there are these type of factors to consider. Plus I love all those itty bitty tinies out there too. Heh, I know I probably mull over things way too much but when you don’t have a lot of disposable income you tend to really ponder large purchases more. In the end though I probably have a bit of dolly overload from looking at waaaaay too many dolls.

Anyway after looking around for BJDs I also decided to see what people were selling secondhand on DoA and eBay and such and I seem to be noticing a trend in doll values, and that is that they seem to devalue as soon as you buy them. I saw a few people for example selling brand new dollies that were still mostly boxed that they just couldn’t “bond with”. These dollies were being offered at a lower price than what you could buy new at the maker and were seriously comparable in newness. If you have an older dollie before double jointing became commonplace, there is no way you could get full value for your dollie again…or so it seems. You see, as of late I’ve been considering selling my DIM Danbi as I have fallen out of love with the larger dolls and he spends a good deal of time in his box. However I have been reluctant to sell him because he was my first BJD, that and the fact that it looks like perhaps at best I could sell him for $125 less than his purchase price.

Of course dolls like Unoa and such seem to retain their value well, but I find it really funny that Pullip dolls can double or triple in price in 5 years whereas a BJD will most likely devalue. Blythe is another dollie that seems to keep her value too, as dolls that are only a couple years old may already be double their original value or more depending on edition.

Well, I think I’ve probably rambled on enough about dolls, so I think I shall sign off for now….and keep on musing over the possibility of purchasing another doll.