Picture of the Week ~ Lisa Irinyi aka Alex's Doll

I will write very little in this post as I want to not only feature Lisa's photograph but also her own responses to the questions I asked her earlier.
This is the new Mini Avantguard doll, Aphrodisiac:

"I had an absolutely giddy time shooting Aphro. She seems so runway/clownish – but in a cool way. So, as soon as I took her out of the box, I teased up her wig to ridiculous proportions (kinda reminds me of the villain in the movie Zoolander, Mugatu – Will Ferrell’s character). And then the rest of the outfit just came together. It’s fun, silly and cheeky. Then I remembered the carnival cage – perfect. I swear I could hear a souped –up version of calliope music running through my head during the shoot. You know, kinda scary, kinda exciting and a bit strange, but intriguing. The bright red and brilliant sunshine really made the images pop. The angle of the evening light was almost straight on, eliminating shadows and showing every tiny detail. I love that. It’s like magic."

"Sometimes I feel like the “Weird Al” of doll photos. I see a doll and start thinking about the clothes, the scene and before you know it, some strange image is produced with influences from over-the-top couture fashion or with heavy fairytale or pop culture influences. Obviously I want to take beautiful photos, but I also like to add a wildness, a quirky flair or a humorous strangeness – kind of a reimagining. I like cuteness, to be silly and the unexpected." 

"I started my blog as a New Year’s resolution to have more fun playing with my dolls and become a better photographer. I post a new photo every day (hence the name – Every Day A Dollie) and the constant picture taking has definitely helped me learn more about photography. I try a lot of different things. Weird angles (wide and tight), different lighting situations (sun, overcast, shade, flash), I experiment with exposure, flash strength and white balance – I’ve had some neat results and some that go straight to 'delete'." 

"My advice to all the photographers out there – Have fun. Take lots of photos. Try some in early morning or late day when thee sun is at a low angle – there’s magic in that lighting. Let your personality shine through your photos. And don’t be afraid to experiment."

Mattel Loses Bratz Doll Appeals Court Ruling to MGA

Looks like the giant, scary Mattel isn't all that powerful in the courts these days.
I thought this statement by an Apellate Panel Chief Judge, Alex Kozinski, was very true and just:

“Even assuming that MGA took some ideas wrongfully, it added tremendous value by turning the ideas into products and, eventually, a popular and highly profitable brand,” the appellate panel said in an opinion written by Chief Judge Alex Kozinski. “It is not equitable to transfer this billion-dollar brand, the value of which is overwhelmingly the result of MGA’s legitimate efforts, because it may have started with two misappropriated names.” 

Read more. 

From the Flickr photostream of callme_crochet

True Blood Paper Dolls

Until we get real dolls based on the characters in True Blood, these paper ones will have to do.

True Blood Paper Dolls

Better Pictures of the New Wu Madame Alexander Dolls

If you have been hunting down images of the Wu designed Alex and Paris dolls, your search is partially over. The Matilda Company has published enlargeable images. Perhaps we can convince Matilda to take Mahogany Alex's sunglasses off.

Alex - Styled by Jason Wu

George of Angelic Dreamz was kind enough to inform me that he has posted large pictures of the dolls as well.  His pictures are excellent and less clicking is involved. I'm sure he'd take off her sunglasses but the dolls haven't shipped yet.

Alex Signature Collection Styled by Jason Wu

My Name is Talky Tina and I'm Going to Kill You.

The weirdness never ends.

Talky Tina was a character in one of the scarier Twilight Zone episodes entitled "Living Doll." She starred along with Telly Savalas. (Don't admit that you remember him if you're trying to conceal your age.) Lollipop anyone? Anyway, Telly keeps trying to get rid of his step daughter's doll but she survives his every attempt.  Apparently he didn't love this baby. This version of Tina is a bobble headed 6-1/2" resin black and white thing. She looks very innocent, doesn't she?

 Talky Tina speaks the following phrases:
"My name is Talky Tina, and I love you very much."
"My name is Talky Tina, and I don't think I like you."
"My name is Talky Tina, and you'd better be nice to me."
"My name is Talky Tina, and you'll be sorry."
"My name is Talky Tina, and I'm going to kill you."

 Listen to this:
 Rod Serling's closing narration from Living Doll

If clicking on the above link does not work, then your computer needs some type of sound software. You can Google the narration and find it on Wikipedia.

Poppy Parker Beatnik Blues

Today was a big dolly day. When it rains it pours. I am deboxing just one at a time and taking it slowly. The first doll to be let out of her box was Beatnik Blues.

She is exactly as she looked in promo photos. Cute, innocent and smartly dressed. The quality is excellent.
I just love the outfit.

No, I haven't gone over to the dark side. She is too young-looking for my taste but I thought it would be fun to keep one.

She has a "caught in the headlights" surprised look.  Could that be because it says "New Girl in New York by Jason Wu" on the box? She thought David Buttry was in charge of her.

Picture of the Week ~ Rob Redden aka Uriah

This is Integrity's "The Red Queen" as photographed by Rob Redden. The lace reminded me of thin strands of white chocolate. She looks like a cupcake decoration - delicious and delicate. I love the intense color and the creamy softness of the focus.
Rob's been doing an exciting series of images of this doll. I normally post only one picture of the week but I wanted to add this one as well to show you a little of the variety he's working with.

Each photo has been highly manipulated in the computer and that is, IMO, Uriah's forte.

Today, two of the doll boards had as their featured image the first one above! You know when you're doing something right!

New Madame Alexander Alex & Paris Dolls Designed by Jason Wu

The pictures available at this time are of a very poor quality. They are lo res and very small. That being said, here they are anyway.
There are four dressed dolls - two Alex and two Paris. There is a set of accessories and the description is a little vague as to whether or not it comes with a basic doll or on it's own.

Here are the two new Paris dolls:
She looks a little like Cher.
Graphic Content Paris $149.95
Going Platinum Paris $149.95    

When I saw Going Platinum, I immediately thought of the older Alex as "Gigi":

Here are the two new Alex dolls:
"Virtually Stunning" Alex $149.95
Virtually Stunning reminded me of the older Little Black Dress Alex:
"Mahogany" Alex $149.95
"Luxe Finishings" Accessories $99.95
We've definitely got signature Jason here with the short skirts and fabulous shoes. I wish the faces were clearer.
I always thought MA's Alex was beautiful. It was the proportions of the body that were awful. The head and hands and feet were too large. The quality was always superior and Madame Alexander always includes the best accessories with their fashions. Has the body been redesigned as well? Will older MA fashions still fit. We will find out.

Notice that these $149.95 dolls are complete ensembles and come with handbags, jewelry, hats. They are original Jason Wu's. They are limited editions. All good things.  
Why are we paying that price for smaller dolls without accessories in higher editions and not even designed by Jason?

Dealer Information and Recommendation

Recently a newer collector posted that she didn't know who the 'good' dealers were or how to find out. I can certainly understand that. When I began collecting dolls in earnest I relied on eBay at first. It was only by joining doll chat boards that I learned there was another way to buy dolls.

Always do research before buying to determine if the price you are getting is the best.

Location is very important but sometimes you have to make an overseas purchase when buying an exclusive doll. Shipping usually costs more when importing from abroad. European collectors often must pay import/duties tax. The criteria of location should be based on your location and you need to find out if the dealer will ship to you when you are in another country. When you must have a doll and the dealer won't ship to your location, get a shipping buddy. This should be someone you trust who will accept the shipment from your dealer and then forward it to you. Of course, your postage will increase by the additional voyage your package makes. Sometimes you just have to sacrifice. ;-)

This is a work in progress. More dealers will be added as time goes on.
I cannot endorse or guarantee results from any dealer and this is by no means a complete list of doll dealers. These are the ones with whom I've had transactions in the last few years. Please feel free to email me recommendations or caveats you think are important but please include relevant facts.

This list will be accessible by link in the right hand column of my blog and will be updated when appropriate.

-Huge amount of doll lines and gift items including but not limited to an extensive Barbie collection, Integrity Toys, Tonner Doll, Madame Alexander, Goodreau, Ashton Drake, Sideshow Toys, Exclusive BJD lines such as JamieShow and so much more. This is the super-shop for dolls and related goods.

George maintains a fantastic website which is a great source of information and a lot of fun to browse. His doll photography is excellent so you can actually see the dolls in real life. He answers inquiries very fast. Prices are sometimes higher for items like Fashion Royalty dolls. Shipping is lightning fast.

-All things Barbie.
This is the website of Mattel for it's Barbie Fan Club. From here one can access the bulletin board to chat and see sneak peeks.
Pretty much everything sold directly from this site can be purchased for less money except for club exclusives. However, when runs a sale, the prices are very good. BC.Com usually has dolls for sale before the dealers get them. Inquiries are answered within 24 hours. Shipping is reasonably priced and average speed. Does not ship outside of the USA.

Bearzabout Washington (USA)
-Tonner, Domuya, Goodreau, Iacono, Creedy, Ashton Drake, Integrity Toys, Gund, Kish and more.
Website is easy to navigate. Communication is excellent. Prices for all but sale items are MSRP. Shipping is very good.

-Dollystyle, Integrity Toys, Barbie, Azone, IxTee and Japanese Exclusives.
Excellent website in English and in Japanese. Kazue, the owner, responds within 24 hours to email inquiries. She is a delightful person who attends conventions and enjoys meeting collectors. Prices for Fashion Royalty and Azone items are MSRP. Shipping is excellent via EMS.

Bella! Studios California, USA
-This company carries their own doll line, Clea Bella, Room With A View background system and props.
The website has nice pictures but can often be confusing as there are a few links that don't go anywhere. Communication is irregular. Their shipping has improved as far as packaging but can take a while to arrive even when an item is in stock. The RWV items and they are well made and very useful.

-Integrity Toys, Doug James BJD, Joe Tai, Tonner, Barbie, Ashton Drake, Madame Alexander, Ginny, Berdine Creedy, Momoko, Effanbee and more.
There are two stores which are basically divided into fashion dolls and 'little girl' type dolls.
Website is excellent and easy to navigate. Communication is excellent. Prices are discounted off MSRP. Sales are excellent. Shipping is lightning fast.

-Barbie Collectibles, Exclusives, Dressmaker Details, Integrity Toys, Magazines, Randall Craig and more.
Website is excellent and easy to navigate. Communication is very good. Prices are listed in Australian dollars so a currency exchange chart is necessary. Prices are often reduced below MSRP. On the two separate occasions this year that I ordered items, they were shipped within a reasonable amount of time.

Denver Doll Emporium Colorado, USA
-Large assortment of imported BJD dolls, clothes and accessories as well as Ashton Drake, Creedy, Ginny, Kish, Madame Alexander, Tonner, Plusczok, Zwergnase and more.
Excellent website. Excellent communication. Standard prices. Excellent shipping.

Dreamcastle Dolls Texas, USA
-Tonner Fashion Line, Character Line, At the Movies Line, Doll and Outfit Splits. Fantastic Tonner Reference page. Easy to navigate website. Fast and friendly communication. Prices below retail. Fast shipping.

Doll Market (The) North Carolina, USA
-Madame Alexander, Tonner, Kish, Adora, American Girl, Bears, Furniture, Clothing, Carriages, Effanbee and so much more.  This place has tons of stuff organized by category and manufacturer. Website is easy to navigate although pictures are often small. Prices on some items are good but you have to do research in order to find out if you're getting a good deal. Communication is slow and often curt. Shipping is average to slow.

Doll Peddlar (The) Arkansas, USA
-BJDs and pretty much everything else under the sun including Integrity Toys and items that no one else has from the past at higher prices. Be prepared to spend a lot of time browsing this website and bring a magnifying glass. You can find good stuff. The type is small as are most of the photos. I have never had to email them so I can't comment on their communication. Shipping is good.

etc. again Maryland, USA
-Sydney Shure is well known and recently became an authorized Integrity Toys dealer. She carries only the Integrity Toys line. I have met this fun lady but I've not had any transactions. I've been told that communication and shipping is "great."

Facets By Marcia New Jersey, USA
-Rhinestone jewelry, belts, pins; shoes; wigs
Website easy to navigate and understand. Excellent photos. You will find items here that are not available anywhere. Excellent communication. Fast shipping.

-FDA dolls and clothes
Nice website with clear photos. Excellent, friendly communication. Free, fast shipping.

Integrity Toys Direct Maryland, USA
-Limited Integrity products such as past season dolls and convention exclusives. Basically the items offered here are the overflow from events and other unsold products. Prices usually stay at retail for a year or more. When there is a sale, prices are excellent. Communication is good. Shipping charges are average. Shipping speed is irregular and unpredictable.

John Robert Collectibles (eBay Store)Will ship Internationally.
-Effanbee, Kish, Madame Alexander, Barbie, Ginny, Tonner, Ashton-Drake, Bradford Exchange, Kruse.
One of my readers recommended this dealer but in my experience his prices are usually the highest around. That could be the reason he has stuff no one else does. So, if you are desperate for something, JR will probably have it for sale.
My other problem with them is that they are in New York as I am, and they charge sales tax. Not good for me.
Neat, organized website with big pictures. Response time to queries is very good.

Maddie's Dolls & More Canada Ships Internationally
-Integrity Toys, Mattel, Ashton-Drake, Magazines
Excellent website, prompt response to query. Occasional good sales. Fair prices.

Manika  Ohio, USA
-Joe Tai, Dolly Style, Randall Craig, Masaki, Annz, Azone, Re-ment, Susie and more.
Easy to navigate website with good photography and information. Standard prices. Excellent and friendly communication. Standard shipping.

Marl and B Florida, USA
-Large vintage Barbie collection, Integrity, Tonner, Randall Craig, Dressmaker Details, Effanbee, Modern Barbie, Convention items (Secondary Market) and more.
Good website, easy to navigate, Excellent and friendly response time for inquiries, Standard prices. Standard shipping.

Marsha's Dollhouse Kansas, USA
-Barbie, Tonner, Integrity, Randall Craig, Gene. Prices appear to be retail and I did not see anything on sale.
Another collector said, "She works full time so, probably due to time constraints, her site isn't always up-to-date. She is, however, quick to answer emails."

Mary T's Doll House Pennsylvania, USA
-Fashion Royalty & other Integrity dolls; Randall Craig, Dressmaker Details .
Easy to navigate website. Owner is well known and friendly. Standard shipping.

-Tonner, Integrity Toys, Effanbee, Ashton Drake, Elf Dolls, Kio, Gene, Wigs and more. 
Good website, easy to navigate.  Prices listed at retail or 10 to 15% off, depending on the doll line. Sales on older merchandise are often 50% off. Excellent and friendly response from Marg Matsui, well known doll collector/dealer. Good shipping.

Pat's Potpourri (eBayStore)  Pennsylvania, USA  Ships Internationally 
-Integrity Toys Dolls, Ashton-Drake, Tonner Dolls
On eBay Pat goes as kaydee3 dolls, and dolls4emma
Good prices on many items but you should do research. Lots of merchandise. If you order directly via email, you get a 7% discount on Tonner or CED dolls that are listed on eBay. Web links take you to the auctions.

Pink Ponytail  Oregon, USA  Ships Internationally 
-Barbie, Randall Craig, Dressmaker Details, Re-Ment
Great website, fast response to query, average shipping time.  Do research to determine if you are getting the best price. 

The Matilda Company Connecticut, USA
-Madame Alexander, Tonner, Kish, Marie Osmond
Easy to navigate website. Prices stay at retail. Has many discontinued items from the Gene line.

R and D Fashion Dolls Taiwan, Republic of China
-Barbie, Integrity Toys, Momoko, Susie, Annz, Jenny, Volks, Blythe, Pullip, Rune and more.
Easy to navigate website. Excellent communication and shipping. Ships worldwide.

Susan's Shop of Dolls Maryland, USA
-Barbie, Limited Tonner Lines, Fashion Royalty, Gene Marshall, Randall Craig. Many discontinued items. Prices vary with regards to discounts but tend to stay at retail. I've been informed by another collector that they do not accept foreign credit cards.
Fast shipping.

The Toy Shoppe Virginia, USA
-High quality and high priced toys, teddy bears. Many fine and limited edition dolls. Website is a joy to browse. Cissy, Riley, Kish. Limited Tonner items. Lots of other goodies.
Excellent response. Excellent shipping.

Tonner Direct Ships from Pennsylvania, USA. Company is actually located in New York.
-All Tonner Lines. Prices stay at retail for a long time. After special events and conventions, they are the source for left over dolls and souvenirs.
Excellent all around service and shipping.

Two Daydreamers California, USA
-Broad selection. Madame Alexander, Tonner, Effanbee, Kish, John Wright, Gunzel, Zawieruskynski. Always has a clearance section but rarely as low as you can get elsewhere. Robert Tonner's Ashleigh sculpt is their exclusive.

Wilde Imagination New Jersey, USA
- A branch of the Tonner Doll Company and the only place to buy Ellowyne Wilde and Evangeline. They also have three re-imagined Wizard of Oz dolls on the site.
Excellent eye-candy photographs and easy to navigate. Beware! This website makes you want everything.
Sales happen every so often along with occasional free shipping. Service is excellent. Shipping is lightning fast. 

Autumn 2010 Issue of FDQ

The Autumn 2010 issue of FDQ has hit the newsstands and subscribers are receiving their mailed issues now. My latest piece is an interview I did with the doll fashion designer, OVAZ.  You can see 8 glorious pages of stunning fashions photographed by me with lots of background information about Osvaldo. 

Ovaz has been designing and creating beautiful fashions for 12" dolls for a while but I think he truly stepped up his game with his new collection called "The Cocktail Hour." This collection contains 9 different complete outfits. You get shoes, earrings, a tiny cocktail menu and a purse or other accessory. The packaging is very attractive. This is all hand-crafted for the fantastic price of only $45. - $50.  for each ensemble! 
There are only 30 of each design and they are sure to sell out quickly.

Click on this link to go to Ovaz' website and you will see the fashions and much more:  OVAZ Designs

 You can purchase an issue of FDQ at many doll retailers and directly from FDQ Media

Go forth and read!

Haute Doll Confirms: Ceasing Publication

Here is the full text of an email I just received from Haute Doll:

Dear Valued Partner:

We wanted you to be among the first to know that after many wonderful years of publishing Haute Doll, we have decided to turn the publication over to Madavor Media/Doll Reader. Our last issue will be July/August, 2010.

We have decided to retire and go on to new adventures.

We know that Doll Reader will provide a great home for Haute Doll and will continue publishing Haute Doll within the pages of Doll Reader as a special supplement. Doll Reader has a strong reputation and following within the world of dolls and has the largest circulation of any doll publication. Their editorial content is written by world-renowned experts, and they keep the doll enthusiast up-to-date with the latest happenings.

The first issue will be included in the October issue of Doll Reader. Madavor is committed to serving all current subscribers and will provide you with additional audience of passionate, enthusiastic and loyal doll subscribers within their Doll Reader to expand your reach.

Madavor Media publishes other titles and manages trade shows including IDEX – the premiere trade show for dolls, bears and other fine gifts. These publications and shows are No. 1 in their respective fields in the collectible, sports, music and enthusiast markets. Through its print and digital magazines, trade shows, Web sites, e-mail newsletters and other partnerships across the publishing industry, Madavor offers unique ways to communicate with passionate consumers who are eager to learn more about products and events that support their interests.

We thank you for your support of Haute Doll over the years and have enjoyed working with you. We are excited that through Doll Reader, Haute Doll will be able to continue to provide excellent content and beautiful photos of the most fashionable dolls in the industry. If you have any questions about your subscription, please contact Madavor Media’s subscription department at 1-800-437-5828 or 617-706-9110.

Warm Regards,
Marlene Mura and Karen Caviale
Publishers, Haute Doll

Integrity Toys' Red Queen ~ Nu.Fantasy Doll

 She's here and she's ready to cut off their heads.

The flamingo is from a Mattel Queen of Hearts doll. 

Lost Amnia, text #25


June se réveilla en sursaut et en nage, complètement retournée par ce cauchemar atroce qui venait de hanter sa nuit. Elle s'empressa de palper son dos pour s'assurer qu'elle n'était nullement blessée avant de constater que Ténébos n'était plus à ses côtés. Et bien que tout ceci n'avait été qu'une suggestion horrible de son esprit, elle pouvait presque sentir la douleur de ses muscles déchirés entre ses omoplates. Elle massa rapidement sa peau pour essayer de faire disparaître cette sensation de douleur irréelle et enfila une tenue légère mais rien n'y fit.

- Est ce que tu as mal quelque part ?

Elle recula soudainement en arrière, découvrant brusquement qu'elle n'était pas seule. Une petite blonde surgissant du fond de la pièce, s'avança vers elle. Son visage cerné d'anglaises paraîssait jeune presqu'encore adolescent et son corps flottait au milieu d'une magnifique robe de velours indigo.

- Moi on m'a laissé mourir de faim et vidé de mon sang et je peux te dire que cela fait très mal.

La silhouette vint s'assoir timidement sur le bord du lit, questionnant Junaled du regard, qui soupsonnant quelque chose d'étrange et d'inexplicable mais non dangereux, essaya doucement d'atteindre la main de la très jeune femme ; celle-ci ne se stoppa pas au contact de sa peau et passa littéralement au travers comme si tout cela n'était qu'une fois de plus le fruit de son imagination.

- Qui es tu ?

- Je m'appelle Amélia. Je vivais ici il y a bien longtemps. Je dormais là où tu dors, précisément, aux côtés du même homme.

- Tu connaîs donc Ténébos ?

Le fantôme, subitement très à l'aise, se laissa crouler sur le lit, les bras derrière la tête, le regard perdu dans le vague...

- Je l'ai bien connu à une époque. Mon coeur avait rapidement succombé à son charme et...

...puis se retourna, s'allongeant de tout son long dans la direction de June, posant son menton sur ses mains et balançant ses jambes dans le vide telle une gamine.

-...nous étions amants. Tu as beaucoup de chance d'être ainsi autant aimée. Tu sais j'aurais tout donné pour vivre ce que tu vis.

June attendrie, voulut lui caresser les cheveux mais une fois de plus sa main passa à travers la silhouette vaporeuse d'Amélia.

- Racontes moi s'il te plaît ?

- J'ai tout gâché. répondit-elle en faisant la moue.

- Comment ça tout gâché ?

- A vrai dire je ne sais pas, au début il semblait très amoureux, il n'avait de cesse de me dire à quel point je comptais pour lui mais le temps passant il s'est éloigné de moi. Pourtant je t'assure que j'ai toujours fait ce qu'il me demandait, et Dieu sait qu'il y a des choses que je n'aimais vraiment pas. Est ce qu'il t'a déjà demandé...

Amélia se redressa et s'approcha si près de June qu'un frisson glissa le long de son dos. Elle susurra au creux de l'oreille la fin de sa question. Junaled en resta perplexe, ne sachant que répondre ; sa façon de parler très franche était déroutante et lui rappelait qu'au delà de son apparence juvénile elle n'en démeurait pas moins une femme, non une jeune fille malgré sa petite taille.

- C'est quelque chose qu'il apprécie beaucoup.

- Pourquoi dis tu qu'il s'est éloigné de toi ?

- Il venait me retrouver à chaque tombé de nuit, pas une fois il ne m'a fait défaut et j'étais si heureuse de le voir franchir le pas de cette porte mais par la suite, il ne venait plus aussi souvent. Je lui ai demandé ce que j'avais fait de mal mais il m'a remit à ma place prétextant que je n'étais pas le centre de son monde. Tu sais toi où j'ai failli ? T'a t il jamais parlé de moi ?

- suis désolée...

- Les autres non plus n'ont jamais pu me répondre.

- Les autres ?

- Oui toutes celles qui m'ont suivi. Je crois qu'il n'a même jamais évoqué une seule fois mon nom en leur présence...ajouta-t-elle tristement.

- Sont elles nombreuses ?

- Oh oui mais elles ne veulent pas venir te parler, je crois qu'elles sont un peu jalouses. Tu sais moi je n'ai rien contre toi. Tu n'y es pour rien si nous avons échoué mais elles sont très méfiantes maintenant, il faut les comprendre.

June était profondément émue par les paroles d'Amélia, tant de candeur et de naiveté...elle se demanda un court instant comment Ténébos avait pu ainsi la rejetter, elle qui semblait lui être aveuglement dévouée et faire preuve d'une grande douceur. Mais elle s'était promis de l'accepter tel qu'il était dorénavant avec cette part de lui qu'elle détestait viscéralement. Malgré tout elle était contente de pouvoir converser avec le fantôme. Elle était la seule ici qui n'ai pas eut d'office d'intentions destructrices à son égard et bien qu'elle n'avait surtout jamais voulu savoir jusqu'ici ce qu'avait enduré celles qui l'avait précédé, c'était peut être pour elle l'occasion ou jamais de comprendre un peu plus les obsessions de son amant et elle était bien plus forte mentalement dorénavant.

- Racontes moi encore. J'aimerais en savoir plus.

- Hum...que te plairait-il de savoir ?

Elle hésita quelques secondes jugeant qu'il était peut être inconvenant d'en parler ainsi aussi directement mais la curiosité fut plus forte.

- Oserais-je te demander de quelle manière es tu morte ?

- Tu sais je n'ai pas vraiment envie d'en parler.

- Je comprends mais je crois que j'ai besoin de savoir. Ténebos ne m'a jamais parlé d'aucune d'entre vous, il s'y est toujours refusé mais toi tu peux le faire, tu peux te confier, me raconter tout ce que tu veux...j'ai réellement besoin de savoir.

Amélia lui sourit touchée par l'affection mêlée de malaise dont June semblait faire part à son égard.

- tu le veux vraiment...

- Oui.

- Une nuit il m'a simplement dit qu'il s'était lassé de moi et que je l'ennuyais, il n'est jamais revenu. Je l'ai supplié plusieurs jours, je voulais qu'il me donne encore une chance, qu'il me dise ce que j'avais mal fait mais il a juste claqué la porte et je ne l'ai jamais revu. J'ai eu beau lutter de toutes mes forces, priant à chaque instant pour qu'il me revienne ce ne fut pas le cas et je ne pouvais pas quitter cette pièce, je ne savais pas précisément ce qu'il y avait là bas mais Ténébos m'avait si souvent mise en garde que je ne pouvais que craindre le pire. Quelques jours plus tard, à bout de force et affamée, c'est l'un d'entre eux qui est venu mettre un terme à mon calvaire en vidant mes veines de toute trace de sang.

June s'en voulut d'avoir fait rejaillir de pareils souvenirs. Le visage d'Amélia semblait soudainement se déconfir, son teint était plus livide encore. Elle serra fort les poings et se releva.

- Il faut que je parte.

- Attends...reviendras-tu me voir ? J'aimerais beaucoup qu'on puisse à nouveau discuter toutes les deux.

- Peut être. Je vais y réfléchir...mais s'il te plaît ne lui dit pas que je suis venue, il serait furieux s'il savait.

- De qui parles-tu ? De Téné...

Et avant que June n'eut pu terminer sa question, Amélia s'était totalemet dissipée dans les airs. Alors Arguès tapis dans l'obscurité d'un coin de la pièce sourit pleinement satisfait avant de disparaître à son tour et de la laisser seule. Elle n'avait pas sentie sa présence. Comment l'aurait-elle pu ?

"Ce n'est que le début." murmura il à lui même.

Speak the truth, but leave immediately after. ~Slovenian Proverb

I never did give them hell. I just told the truth, and they thought it was hell - Harry S Truman

Once I posted a cartoon to which a gay person objected because there was a reference in there that he felt slighted the gay community. I had choices. I could have explained how the cartoon was a joke, blah, blah and that I didn't mean to hurt anyone. I could have ignored him and dismissed his feelings. I could have removed the cartoon.

People of little understanding are most apt to be angry when their sense is called into question.  - Samuel Richardson

After some thought, I decided to remove the cartoon because it was not related to the theme of my blog in the first place and it wasn't worth it to hang on to my "rights" to post what I saw fit. This is a blog whose theme is dolls and doll collecting. If you log in here one day and find, for example, stories about abortion or women's rights or intermarriage or global warming or weight loss, you would certainly have reason to express concern about the content. I want you to come and read my blog as often as you can!

A word to the wise ain't necessary, it's the stupid ones who need the advice.   - Bill Cosby

 If you logged on to a doll board that you've been an active member of for many years only to find a slew of pictures some unknown jerk secretly took at a Walmart store of unknown people in various states of undress, bad clothing, huge bodies hanging out all over and looking like the most downtrodden, slovenly group imaginable, what would you think? What would you do? 

Honesty is never seen sitting astride the fence.  ~Lemuel K. Washburn

Revenge has no more quenching effect on emotions than salt water has on thirst.   - Walter Weckler

Picture of the Week ~ Veronica Hage

This week's featured photo was taken by Veronica Hage who posts on Doll Divas and the W Club. The doll was originally an Aerodynamic Vanessa Fashion Royalty. She is dressed in the fashion from Bewitching Luchia.

Click on the picture to see it full-sized.
The re-root and styling is by Marina. Veronica enhanced the eyes and eyebrows and repainted the lips.

I asked Veronica how she set up the photo and about the camera she uses. This is her reply:

"I used a black velvet background made from an old skirt. I have to keep props to a minimum for quick cleanup as I don't have a lot of time with three young kids. I use two lights for my setup. One at each side. My camera is a Canon Rebel XSi. This is my first SLR and I took a short evening class on the basics at my local community college. I've been using it for about six months now and love it."

Her suggestions for other collectors regarding doll photography:

Look at the doll carefully before shooting. Look for stray hairs, little bits of fuzz, hand position, hair position. Look from the level at which you're going to take the photo. If you see something distracting remove it or fix it. Look again to double-check. Most of one's time taking pictures is setting up.

You can see more of Veronica's collection and photography on Flickr  and on her website.

Rumor: The Magazine "Haute Doll" May Be Closing Down Production

If you go to the Haute Doll site and try to order a subscription or renew an existing one you will get the message "no products found."
Yesterday the unconfirmed statement that they were shutting down erupted on one of the doll boards and spread like wild fire. Later in the day, HD sent the message that they would be issuing a statement. They did not say when.
I'm rather surprised as I thought the last issue of Haute Doll was one of their best!
I know something went wrong recently with their ordering system during a big event and shortly after that they went on leave for a while.
In spite of the fact that I write for FDQ, I enjoyed most of what HD had to offer. The main focus of each publication is different.
Perhaps they were overextended with the amount of exclusives they took on. We may never know the underlying problem. Right now, we're just waiting for some explanation.

Some of their recent exclusives have been Sybarite: The Cross; Dolci Bambola Giftset and Peak's Woods Goldie.

 While I'm sure The Cross (LE 150) sold out even with it's $820. price tag, I don't know about the  LE60 Bambola for $510.  That's quite a specialized type of doll and I know of just one person who purchased one. The Peak's Wood doll (LE 40 @ $760-$810) is the latest and part of an entire collection of exclusives which included many fashions. When the ordering for those items opened up, that was when their system went haywire.

Previously they offered an exclusive Traveler Innoquii. This doll had to be practically given away she was so disliked. Ditto for the Valia Pivoine whose initial price point was ridiculous, was put on sale and then the W Club wound up having a 2 for 1 lottery on their leftover Valias. 

I always thought those two dolls resembled eachother. In a prior blog post, I parodied a Haute Doll cover which featured Innoqui with my version of Valia whom I named Innoquous.

Now she needs a cover.
Must be the new Abused Woman style.

The Beautiful Veronique Perrin Fashion Royalty Doll

I'm still adding Vero dolls to my collection. This "Close-Up" Veronique called Morning Frost was released in 2003. She was an edition of 1000 and originally sold for $29.99.

Recently I was lucky enough to pick up the head for $35. Fully dressed, a mint condition doll like this will go from $99-$125. After washing and restoring her hair to it's original beauty, I put the head on a tall FR body.

The replacement body I used was from one of my older dolls and was extremely wobbly at the waist and hips. While that can't actually be repaired, it can be controlled to a certain degree. I put pantyhose on the doll. That helps a great deal. A slim skirt is essential as it holds the legs together. 

The dress is a La Boutique as is the leather handbag. 

She's as good as new and as beautiful as any Fashion Royalty doll.

Alice Cullen ~ Twilight Character Figure ~ Dolls

Alice Cullen is my favorite character from the Twilight series of books and in the movies. She is also the latest addition from the Tonner Doll Company to their Twilight line of dolls.
 I think she is adorable with her "Ashley Greene Head Sculpt", 16" Ballerina bust Tyler convertible body, amber eyes, wigged hair and cameo skintone. She is wearing a reproduction of an outfit she wore in New Moon.  The retail price of Tonner's Alice is $139.99 and she is expected to ship in September, 2010.

Here is NECA's prototype of Alice. It was shown at the New York Toy Fair in 2009. I could not find this one for sale.

Here's another from NECA being sold at Amazon .com. I cannot locate a better photograph of this doll. She is obviously wearing the same costume as Tonner's doll.  This one is only 7" tall and is called Twilight "New Moon" Alice Cullen. Price at Amazon is $39.95.
Finally we have the Barbie Collector Twilight Saga "Eclipse" 11" Alice doll for $24.99. This doll will ship in August, 2010. This one has the cutest face and changing the shirt to white was a good idea. It would be an even better idea to make all the dolls with a pivotal body. A vampire has to move, doesn't she?

Which of these dolls is your favorite?

Barbie Giant Pez Dispenser

Recently released by Mattel in honor of Barbie's 50th birthday is this 12" Giant Pez Dispenser with a reproduction vintage Barbie head.  Included in the box are 6 packages of Pez. This thing dispenses whole packages of Pez. There should be giant Pez, not just giant dispensers.

Prices vary from $21. to $29. for the dispenser. Shop around!

How Many Alices Are There in Wonderland?

 Has the Alice in Wonderland theme been overdone? Yes, it's been going on forever. It's the definition of a classic. The story is an ageless one that has enchanted children and adults alike since it was written in 1865.  The story embodies the battles of good vs. evil, apathy vs. involvement, greed vs. generosity and on and on. Who doesn't identify some opposing characteristics in their own personality?

When I saw the numerous Wonderland dolls at IDEX in January, I was impressed by how many different companies and individual doll artists chose to do Alice themed dolls this year. It was not that surprising due to the Alice in Wonderland movie but seemed rather odd that there were so many.

Has one company 'done it right' above all others? No. With the variety of Wonderland themed dolls out there, it's foolish to compare.

I understand that some collectors have an irrational loyalty (also known as ass-kissing) to some manufacturers and so their praise for that company is endless. These people need to become educated about what's out there.

I have already posted the new Integrity Alice.

Tonner has produced several Wonderland character dolls and stunning fashions. 

This is Mattel's latest Alice:

Some others that may be available at different sources on the internet:

Madame Alexander Cloth Alice

Madame Alexander Alice

Living Dead Doll - Alice

Vogue Marge Meisinger's Alice Vintage Repro Ginny Doll

 Azone's Sahra in Wonderland

Pullip Fantastic Alice  (12")

Gwen Stefani "Tick Tock Gwen"

This is just a small sampling of Alice in Wonderland dolls. I've not even touched on the fantastic OOAK and artist dolls which are gorgeous and very pricey such as Maggie Iacono's "Painting the Roses Red" for $1,695.00 or R. John Wrights "Alice in Wonderland for $1,180.

 Doll Reader magazine has published several issues with cover stories that depict artist dolls that are Alice themed. 

There's no comparing one with the other. But...if a company decides to do Alice, one hopes that it's different from any Alice that's been done before and not just another run of the mill blond in a blue dress with a white apron.