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 ...with Barbie and all her friends because, for the most part, it manages to balance light humor at no one's expense with slapstick and clever in-jokes. Midge as snorting, safety-obsessed introvert who talks like the 1950s also cracks me up -- and she's so cute when she appears in Smidge of Midge in greyscale!

I also really like Ken, who ultimately ends up being portrayed as just another character who happens to be Barbie's boyfriend, rather than the major plot motor and deus ex machina of the series. He's goofy and utterly devoted to Barbie ["Barbie sense...tingling..."] and supremely confident enough in his masculinity to invent a super-sophisticated closet for all his girlfriend's clothes. In other words, rather than having gay panic over activities often coded as queer, Ken does IT, back-end programming for the Super Style Squad [actually saying, "Beep boop bop," with Skipper as they hit buttons ^_^ ]. I can't tell you how happy I am to see a cartoon where all the characters, male and female, take fashion, style, clothing, etc., etc., etc., seriously, and no one shits on it for being trivially feminine. That's actually kind of revolutionary.

Life in the Dreamhouse would be even better if it ditched its racism and ableism. For example:
  • The cast needs more POC in significant speaking roles besides Nikki.
  • While we're discussing Nikki, she needs to develop a modicum of personality beyond Sassy Black Friend. For God's sake, she even does the head jerks and vocal fry so routinely associated with this stereotype. Everyone else has some interest or trait to differentiate them [Teresa's monkey, Midge's macrame, Summer's high energy, Skipper's use of gadgets, Ryan's really bad songs], but Nikki has nothing.
  • Furthermore, the show needs to stop using Afros as a visual shorthand for disastrous hairdos. When all characters have shiny, sleek, straight hair and curly, kinky, gravity-defying clouds of natural locks are depicted as the ridiculous punchlines to jokes, people with such curly, kinky hair are derided by extension.
  • The ableism needs to go too. Any use of "lame" as an adjective meaning "bad quality, boring, uninteresting, etc." should be scratched from the script pronto. Ditto for any appearance of "crazy" for "wild, unusual, strange, exciting" or "cray cray" for same. Just cut it out.
  • In terms of additions, I think that Life in the Dreamhouse would be greatly improved by the appearance of Becky, a photographer friend of Barbie who uses a wheelchair. I mean, c'mon -- if they can devote the air time to a running gag on the inadequate single elevator in the Dreamhouse, surely they can devote an episode to its upgrade and Barbie and Becky's happiness when Becky can finally get to the second floor to see her super-awesome closet, right?
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Because Zombieville needs kids, I've been piecing some together from existing spare parts and some new purchases. To fill the toddler slot, I purchased a Kelly doll -- the original design, rather than the more recent elongated one, as I find the former much cuter.

However, while the original Kelly dolls are cute, they, like most playline stuff by Mattel, have abysmal articulation. Several years ago, I used my Dremel, pipe cleaners and hot glue to add articulation. I used the same principles again this go-around, refining them a bit. Results below.
Read more... )
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...who liked the Mattel Flavas dolls? Leaving aside the bobbleheads on the girls and the lack of jointed knees [WHY?!?!], I liked them because they looked and dressed most like people I was likely to encounter everyday. Denim jackets, low-riding jeans, baggy windpants and warmup jackets, hightops, loose T-shirts, midriff-baring tops, baseball caps to wear backwards -- these appeal to me much more than the ensembles provided with Integrity Fashion Royalties.

Apropos of everyday clothes for dolls, I think it would be fucking hilarious and also awesome if some company did a series of college student outfits: 
  • "8 AM Classes." Worn, faded T-shirt with university logo, plaid pajama pants, Ugg boots or slip-on sandals, notebook, pen, coffee cup, banana [for breakfast]. Female figures have loose ponytails; male figures have hair sticking up.
  • "Go Sports Team!" Sweatshirt with university sports team logo, optional baseball cap with same, pennants and/or signs, air horn [hahahahahah!], little stuffed mascot, concession snack [hot dog or pretzel]. Facial screening includes face paint in school colors.
  • "Exam Jam." T-shirt, jeans, socks, no shoes, laptop, notebook, pen, highlighter, stack of textbooks. Facial screening includes furrowed brows, bags under eyes and worried frowns.
  • "Blind Date." Dressy clothes, flatter hair for male figures, more complicated updos and more makeup for female figures, cologne bottle for male figures, perfume bottle for female figures, wallets, smart phones and How To Ace Your First Date guidebook for both.
  • "Senioritis." Tank tops, shorts, sneakers, baseball caps, shades, bikini top options for female figures, messy hair, books and magazines for pleasure reading, Frisbee, water bottle, sunbathing towel. Headsculpts have big smiles.
  • "Now What?" Graduation gown, cap with tassel, diploma, congratulatory bouquet, yearbook, clothes and hairstyles a la "Blind Date." Headsculpts look like O_O.
I crack me up!

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My Shopping While Constipated Raquelle [and friends] arrived today! Here's the first thing Raquelle did upon deboxing:Read more... )


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  1. Béatrice's faceup, especially her mouth, is rubbing off. [Maybe I forgot to seal it?] She needs redoing. She also needs her ridiculously large chandelier earrings...and maybe a hat. Her blindingly white skull makes her difficult to photograph.
  2. Theophany's faceup is also wearing away, about which I'm very sad, since I bought her in part for the delicate default Soom faceup. I don't do this light, layered type of look, so I suppose I'll have to commission someone on DOA to replicate the same style.
  3. I really, really, REALLY want a Life in the Dream House Raquelle. All the dolls in the Dream House series have a high level of articulation and, more excitingly, as far as I'm concerned, expressive, slightly cartoony headsculpts that reflect their computer-animated inspirations. The Dream House Raquelle first came to my attention when someone on Figurvore characterized her as the "Shopping While Constipated Raquelle." I immediately loved her smirk, wrinkled eyebrows and asymmetrical features. Picture below the cut.
Read more... )
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This is Megan Meehan, Zombieville resident and Dr. Z.'s assistant.

She is a Sterling Silver Rose Hispanic Barbie. Here's the concept art by Bob Mackie on her box.Read more... )

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Here's my mockup of Hispanic Sterling Silver Rose with Groovy 60s' outfit. Fabulous! Read more... )

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...was issued in 2000. I remember seeing her in FAO Schwartz in Boston [back when I still lived there and FAO Schwartz had a store there!] and wanting her, but not being able to justify the ~$60.00 sticker price. I wanted to stick her head on a CG body, but I didn't know if her nifty outfit would fit.

Anyway, I was poking around on Ebay this evening and came across several sales for the doll at or under $30.00 shipped.

I just got the best idea...you know what would look really cool? Hispanic Sterling Silver Rose with this outfit!

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I recently scored the Jonathan Adler Barbie couch, shown below in two photos I took at doll club over two years ago.
Read more... )

Even though I coveted it back then, I swore up and down that I would not get it. Guess what? I did! This piece commands ridiculous prices on Ebay. Lucky people can find it for ~$40.00, but the standard price seems to be between $50.00 and $75.00. For a couch. Anyway, mine was just over $36.00, shipping included, which is a veritable steal.

As much as I love the deep, rich magenta of the couch [not as light and horrible as the trademarked Barbie Pink Retchfest], it definitely needs rehab before it's acceptable for use. The silly throw pillows and the fringed blanket have to go. I'm thinking that it needs a hefty does of black, possibly black velvet throw pillows and a matching drape over the back. Or some black with white accents, just to tie into the white trim. I might also have to detach and recover the pink bolster pillows. I never thought I'd say this, but anything to stop it from being so PINK!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

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She's the one with a purple hair cone in this Flickr picture. Very LHFy! Official pics here. She looks great in that Mod dress; it complements her faceup and updo really well. Hmmm, I feel lust coming on.
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Elizabeth Jr. just directed me to Barbie Styled By Me, where you choose from a limited number of sculpts and incredibly tacky outfits, as well as a T-shirt with a user-selected nine-letter message, and assemble your own custom styled Barbie. Here's mine, rockin' the signature bold, mismatching, heavily patterned style of all my dolls. In case you can't read the minuscule letters on her eye-bleedingly pink T-shirt, it says DRAGQUEEN.
Read more... )
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You can see the shop on Etsy. These wonderfully expressive, lively heads look too large for the scrawny Mattel Barbie Fashionista bodies they are given. I wonder if she would consider putting one of the heads on an action figure body?

I originally noted these in 2009, and now, years later, I still want one. Specifically, I want a Kate [link to an example of the headsculpt]. She's the best!
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Carrie Becker did a series of 1:6 dioramas entitled "Barbie Trashes Her Dream House," in which 1:6 scenes were made to look as if taken over by messy hoarders. While some miniatures she used were Rement, others she made by hand. Check out the whole detailed set on Flickr!
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Look at all those little cupcakes! I'm impressed, and I don't even care for Katie Perry.
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I found large pics of the other 4 in the Stardoll/Mattel collaboration Barbies. They are below. I can't really tell because of the paint jobs, but there seem to be some new headsculpts there!
Read more... )
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Now with 23 gauge brass wire in her arms, Jamisia poses much more effectively. In the second picture, she shows off Lucian's blouse and vest, nabbed from a Mattel Pirates of the Caribbean Jack Sparrow Ken doll.
Read more... )
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I just ordered an outfit from a Mattel Jack Sparrow [pirate] Ken doll for Lucian. The vest separates from the blouse, but the blouse and pants are sewn together, so I have to remove the blouse and hem it, which I think I can handle with my limited sewing skills.
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I picked up a Hallmark ornament of Silken Flame Barbie and her travel case to be a doll for Ellery to play with. Today I got the mini doll and the mini case in the mail and checked them out against Jareth and Frank...just the right size to be a doll's doll! The doll can be put in and taken out of the left side of the carrier, and the bottom drawer opens. The clothes on the right, however, are molded into the sculpture of the carrier.

To find similar items on Ebay, search for "barbie traveling case ornament" or similar. Barbie ornaments of dolls without traveling cases are not in correct scale.

Read more... )
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Ellery plays with dolls, so, naturally, I need to get her some dolls. I would like the dolls to be around 1:36 scale, that is, 1:6 scale for 1:6 scale people, but I can go with slightly larger or smaller. Anyway, I bought Ellery an awesome little replica of Silken Flame Barbie and her carrying case. It is a Hallmark ornament with two pieces, one the doll, the other the carrying case, which actually has an opening drawer. It's either 1:36 scale or a little smaller. Pictures when I get mine! No, I won't tell you how much I paid for it.

EDIT: I also got her a set of 3 1:36 GI Joe ornaments, including a GI Joe, an ATV and a mummy's sarcophagus. Yay, now she will have truly scaled dolls! No, I won't tell you what I paid for those either.

EDIT 2: I also got her a set of 12 Homies figures, which are 1.75 to 2 inches tall, just right for 1:36 scale. It was only $6.00 for 12!
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Here are most of my 1:6 toys. Can you find the [not all are listed] Barbie [starting from top left and working toward bottom], warrior woman, zombie, American Maid, princess, woman with stole, blond girl, 1:144 dollhouse furniture, doll of Jareth, happy family, angel, baseball glove and baseball, basketball, soccer ball, mushroom mat, ray gun, pink squirt gun, [now moving up the right side] cars, VW bus, school bus, backhoe, stuffed pigs, stuffed bears, stuffed bunnies, puzzle mat, helicopter, duck pull toy, dog, penguin, caterpillar, lunchbox, swan training potty and toy shelf with black-haired girl, bunny, devil girl, horse, bird and art supplies?Read more... )
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News from D7ana. Apparently Stardolls, a pixel fashion dolls Web site, and Mattel are collaborating to bring out some dolls based on fashions from the Web site. From this collage created by a fan, it appears that the new Stardolls Barbies may have new headsculpts. Look, for example, at the redheaded doll in lower left. I swear I've never seen that headsculpt before. Trying to find some larger pictures of these dolls...

Here are larger pictures of two of the Stardoll dolls. Even the one on the right looks unfamiliar sculpt-wise. It could just be her paint job, though...Read more... )
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Thinking ahead to future dolls and sets for Me and My Muses, Mazzy needs some high femme accoutrements for his set. One definite item is a vanity. I looked around on Ebay for one, seeking, in particularly, a vanity with lily-shaped lights. I found one.

As you can see, this 2004 piece from the Barbie Silkstone collection is exactly what I was looking for, although, actually, I would have liked a nice violent pink color on this particular set. However...Read more... )
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So the 2010 Harley Barbie and Ken giftset is on sale at barbiecollector.com for ~$40.00. This brings me the thought that I could get the set for the Ken doll and make him into one of Ellery's girlfriends as a trans character.
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"I don't have any Momoko outfits, but I've heard they fit (small bust).
Also most Barbie clothes can fit except those made for the new Basic
line which is very slender (Liv dolls clothing, Pullip, and some action
figure female clothing fit too!). The Barbie Basic line male clothes
look like they might be a good fit for the slim Lumedoll body (Liv dolls
have a new boy out that looks slim enough as well...and he can be found
at places like Target!)."
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I think it should be easy to find a French maid outfit to fit a 27cm fashion doll, without having to resort to the ridiculously expensive and unattractive French Maid Barbie Doll. Silkstones are so unappealing, and they're not even articulated well! This complaint is in reference to Jessica Jamisia, Ellery's third muse, who should be dressed in a French maid outfit.Read more... )
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Ever since seeing the denim-wearing Barbie Basic with the Louboutin sculpt at doll club in March [she's the brown-haired one], I've wanted one for my own, but have had no excuse to get one because I'm not really actively in 1:6 scale any more. Read more... )
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Other people had some really striking dolls at doll club today, and Breck showed me how to improve the quality of my close-ups, so here are some detailed pics.
Read more... )
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Went to doll club today. Brought Araminthe and her doll Petula. Araminthe went over very well, especially the contrast between her frothy outfit and her snarling expression.Read more... )

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It's Toy Fair time again, folks. Time for all 3 of you to listen to me hold forth on Mattel's upcoming offerings.

Read more... )
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Not a lot of people attended doll club this afternoon, but some interesting dolls were there that I photoed.Read more... )




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We had lots of different kinds of dolls at doll club today! Everyone wanted to know about Sarah and thought that her doll, Precious Little, was cute. Read more... )

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We had a small group today, but quite a few interesting dolls. I got some pictures.
Read more... )





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An informal timeline of recent doll developments shows a plethora of increasingly articulated fashion or playline dolls available in your average department store or toy store.

Read more... )
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I went to doll club today and took some pictures of Maria and Ashley's Barbie Basics, poorly articulated Barbies in little black dresses. The variety of headmolds represents common and rare ones. Below, a sampling.Read more... )
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The 2010 Harley Barbie and Ken giftset, $70.00, features a fully articulated Ken doll with wrist and ankle joints. He also has the headsculpt first introduced with Mattel's Edward [from Twilight] doll. Since I really like the headsculpt and the increased articulation, I look favorably on Ken. However, apparently the Barbie in this set does not have the same level of articulation. Why not? 1 step forward, 1 step back for Mattel.Read more... )
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Using Ann Laurie's photo studio in a box, I caught some crisp pictures of various dolls yesterday at doll club in Burlington. Read more... )
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Michaela started off in an earlier incarnation as a CG head on a CG 1.0 body, but, when I redid her, I put her CG head on an articulated Barbie body with Obitsu hands, then painted the arms and neck to match her head's color. [Linked entry shows her before skintone matching.]

Michaela's Barbie body, while being appropriately small and slight for a girl that was killed and vamped at 13, does not pose very well. But Michaela is a key player in the next few seasons [in the Anneka and Will vs. Thomas plotline], so she needs to pose well! That's why she's getting a Volks Dollfie Plus body. Though I have eschewed these bodies in the past because of their fragile floppiness, I choose one now because, unlike an Obitsu, the neck width of a Volks will make Michaela's head look in proportion. Hooray!

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Target is carrying an exclusive series of Kelly dolls, Merry Monsters, including an all-green one, who happens to have the best outfit, as Frankenstein's monster. Also on the shelves are Barbie Fashionistas, which are your standard articulated Barbies with an under-bust and wrist joints. Unfortunately, 4 of the 5 Fashionistas are white, with no good representation of brown, black, green or any other color. MSRP for the Fashionistas is <$20.00. I need to get me to a Target to see if the Merry Monsters and Fashionistas are available!
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These five dolls have names, but no designated characters. They obviously have personalities, but no assigned role in my fictional universe. Therefore they have the distinction of being dolls with no point besides looking nice.

Uh oh. Five pointless dolls is five too many! What shall I do?

Clearly they need to be incorporated into LHF!

Back row, L to R: Shaniqua, N'Yenya Clippee, Malgorzata Dawiskiba.
Front row, L to R: Dini, Dasu.

Shaniqua is a lovely Alvin Ailey Barbie. N'Yenya is a Fashion Royalty Monsieur Z doll repainted and with a new haircut by Andrea. Malgorzata is a Tao ninja head repainted by Andrea, haircut by me, on a ballerina Barbie body. Both Dini and Dasu are Jakks Pacific Juku Couture Girls.

As for personalities, in case you couldn't tell, Shaniqua is shy, sweet-tempered and retiring, while N'Yenya is fun-loving and a bit sly. Malgorzata, called Gory, is blunt, straightforward and delighting in sick, twisted things. Dini is a rather skeptical smart-ass, while Dasu is intelligent, highly anxious and very picky about language. All of them dress as if they belong to the LHF universe, even if they don't [yet].

Of the dolls shown, N'Yenya is my favorite and therefore most likely to appear in a main or side plot of LHF, if only because she, with her smirk and her stripey, starry tights, so clearly embodies the tacky snarkiness that many LHF characters possess.
Read more... )

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 My Alvin Ailey Barbie arrived today. As you can see in the first picture, she was allowed to keep her leotard top, but Absinthe claimed her full, fluffy skirt. Absinthe always makes me think of flowers and lace, which is odd, given that she's much more of an anise and wormwood girl.

The second picture shows how different two instances of the same headsculpt can look on different people. On the left, Shaniqua, a kind, cheerful, rather shy person who doesn't really like talking about how thin she is because she's naturally that way and she doesn't think it looks that good. On the right, Velvette, the sterner, more cynical person who can wither bullshit in its tracks and who comes across as tough and self-deprecating rather than just nice.

I love the Mbili headsculpt.  Read more... )

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Here's Waverley's studio, perfectly customized for her 14cm frame. Since Waverley is not here yet, my Dollmore Banji, which has no character as of yet, provides an idea of scale.

Yellow end table with lamp is from Rement. Bed/seat is an Orientdoll box topped with 1:6 pillows made by a friend. The end tables are made from carpentry scraps thatI hot-glued together. The plants are bits of fake greenery glued into wooden spools. TV stand is a ring box. TV is from Rement's Merry Strawberry set. Books are 1:6. The penguin is an Iwako eraser. The stuffed bear is a modified Only Hearts Club Little Pet. The briefcase is probably something from Barbie, and the mini computer is a Playmates Uhura communicator.

Read more... )
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It is an Orient Doll Ye. At 12cm high, it's about as tall as a Kelly doll, but cuter. Its smile looks pleased, rather than the default toothy Kelly smile, which looks kinda vapid. I got a great deal on one with a partial trade. No character designated for it yet, but I'm looking forward to its cuteness.
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I admire Tabloach's repainted Kellys, but I'm even more impressed with the made-over Mini Living Dead Dolls. Here's an example of one. I'll try to find more, but I wanted to bookmark this one before I lost it again. Here's another example, this time of a reroot and repaint.
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Now she has red and purple paint blood in her hair! Even better! Read more... )
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She started off as an innocent, perkily smiling Colonial Barbie head and turned into a shambling disaster! I was going to do a simple repaint on her, since I found her face cute in a somewhat manic way.

To reduce the appearance of derangement, I wanted to cut out her teeth and glue her mouth shut. I did not make a clean cut, however, and she seemed to have fangs or broken teeth worthy of some sort of undead creature.

The unhinged lower jaw, head wound, anxious look and bloody garments followed from there. What an improvement! Read more... )
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Absinthe has two new dresses! One is a burgundy velvet gown with a horrendously large lace collar. It is from the Sentimental Valentine Barbie. I scored the outfit alone for ~$12.00 including shipping.

The other outfit is a blue dress with white collar and underskirt and wretched red bow detailing. It is from the Colonial Barbie. It was not one of my first choices, but it is simple, conservative and appropriate for Absinthe. I couldn't resist the price either: $8.60 including shipping.

I think the Pioneer Barbie outfit would be best for Absinthe, but the prices are currently a little steep. I'd like to get the whole package or just the outfit for <$15.00.

In other news, I have had no luck finding shoes for Junior, a Kelly-based doll. Kelly/Tommy shoes are difficult to find and to keep track of, which makes them disgustingly expensive on Ebay and also impossible to procure from my usual fellow doll-loving sources. I don't feel like spending a lot of money on a minor character, no matter how charming he looks.

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I keep encountering problems when searching for clothes for Absinthe. I imagine that she wears clothes from the Victorian era, but all the Tonner Victorianish clothes that I want are expensive. I am left with 3 options:

Absinthe's white shift, which she came with. Good for a nightgown or running around in the house, but not formal wear.
Leonora's burgundy velvet dress, from Victorian Lady Barbie. Good for winter and formal portraits, but not spring/summer.
Justine's purple walking suit, from P.F. Albee Barbie. Good for spring/summer, but has been stretched to boobular proportions by Justine.

However, it is possible to find other Barbie-based Victorian fashions. For example, Barbie with Cedric Bear, a dressing gown and nightgown combo, can be purchased for ~$20.00, if one knows where to look on Ebay. Victorian Tea Barbie [the plastic one], a white summer outfit, can be purchased for between $20.00 and $30.00.  Same for Gibson Girl Barbie, a 1910s working woman's outfit. The Disney Mary Poppins Barbie, a very stylized white 1910s outing dress, can go for <$20.00. Sentimental Valentine Barbie, a dress for winter formals, has an outfit from the 1830s, more properly the period of Absinthe's adulthood, and she goes for well <$20.00. No one wants her.
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...Absinthe always rebelled with her tendencies both bluestocking and tomboyish.

In my search for appropriate clothing for Absinthe, I pillaged the Victorian Lady Barbie dress that originally was destined for Leonora. Even though it doesn't close all the way in the back, Absinthe wears it better, I think, though clearly with an unladylike air. Read more... )

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