Royal Wedding

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Royal Flower Girl Lottie

The Royal Wedding of Prince Harry to Miss Meghan Markle is tomorrow. In honor of the occasion, Arklu has created a special edition of their popular Lottie doll. We here at Dollsville USA love Lottie. Our very first post was dedicated to Lottie, way back in 2013. We think Lottie is adorable. She has a certain charm and innocence that many dolls today just don’t have. Arklu got its start as a toy manufacturer in 2010 with a doll of Kate Middleton that was released after her engagement to Prince William. Arklu also made a set of Prince William and Kate Middleton dolls in their wedding attire after their Royal Wedding in 2011. So it’s fitting that Arklu commemorate Prince Harry’s wedding to Meghan Markle with a special edition Lottie as a Royal Flower Girl.

Royal Flower Girl Lottie is a Gold Collection edition. Everything about this doll screams royalty. From the crown logos placed on the front and sides of the box to the oversized crown-shaped tag that proclaims “ROYAL EDITION,” the design elements underscore the Royal-ness of this Lottie.

I love the boxes for Lottie dolls. They are colorful and feature charming artwork. They also have handles on the top so children can carry them around. There’s also a space for children to write their names on the box, so they can take pride in ownership of their Lottie dolls.

There is also an illustration of Lottie, and a little blurb describing the doll’s theme from the viewpoint of Lottie herself.

According to the blurb on the box, Royal Flower Girl Lottie is the niece of the prince who is getting married, so is Lottie supposed to be Prince William’s daughter? It’s been announced that his actual daughter, Princess Charlotte, will be a bridesmaid in her uncle’s wedding, and Royal Flower Girl Lottie has brown hair like Princess Charlotte, so I guess a willing suspension of disbelief is in order for Lottie.

Royal Flower Girl Lottie wears a simple ivory dress with a white ribbon sash, short sleeves, and a ruffled hem. A floral headband, ivory Mary Janes, white tights, and a bouquet of posies complete the ensemble.

Lottie’s dress is an exact copy of the dresses worn by Kate Middleton’s bridesmaids for her wedding, but reverses the white dress and ivory sash of the original. Since we don’t yet know what Meghan Markle’s bridesmaids will be wearing, it’s a nice nod to Royal weddings to recreate the dress from the previous Royal Wedding.

Kate Middleton's bridesmaids and pages, 2011

Lottie’s accessories are tiny but incredibly detailed and well-made. The flowers on the headband and in the bouquet are not simply artificial flowers, they are tiny ribbon-roses. In addition to the headband and bouquet, Royal Flower Girl Lottie also comes with a tiny wedding card. It is a reproduction of artwork created by a Lottie fan.

In case there were any doubts, this card confirms that the wedding in which Lottie will take part is indeed Prince Harry and Meghan Markle’s wedding. Here’s a closeup:

The card features a poem inside:

It reads:

“Wedding bells are going to chime.

I hope you have a brilliant time!

Sending wishes for a lovely day.

Let’s all shout HIP HIP HOORAY!

Love from your flower girl Lottie”

Royal Flower Girl Lottie retails for $24.99. I purchased mine online from the Miracle Mile Toy Hall in Los Angeles, California. Miracle Mile Toy Hall is the exclusive retailer of Royal Flower Girl Lottie in the U.S.  I honestly didn’t expect to receive the doll in time for the Royal Wedding, but Miracle Mile Toy Hall processed my order immediately and sent it by Priority Mail. Turnaround time from placing the order to shipping it cross-country was two days!

Royal Flower Girl Lottie is not the first time Lottie has mingled with royalty. Last Christmas, Arklu gifted Lottie dolls to Princess Charlotte and her brother Prince George. One can imagine Princess Charlotte playing with her Lottie dolls.

We do love a Royal Wedding, so Ghoulia13 and I will be getting up super-early tomorrow morning to watch the wedding on t.v. Congratulations and Best Wishes to the Royal couple.

Will you be watching the Royal Wedding tomorrow?

Vladonna by Kidrobot

 

Vladonna made her debut yesterday. Who is Vladonna, you ask? She is a DIY alternative fashion doll, the brainchild of RuPaul’s Drag Race alum Pearl (a.k.a. Matthew Lent) and Gina Garan, the woman who single-handedly revived the popularity of Blythe doll. Vladonna is a project that has been two years in the making and is produced by Kidrobot, the creators of customizable collectible figures such as Munny. Vladonna is made of the same white vinyl as Munny, so you can paint her entire body as well as her face. You can choose from blonde, black, or lavender hair colors (no redhead, though). She is fully articulated. Her figure is certainly unconventional compared to other fashion dolls, particularly in the bust and backside. Her exaggerated proportions are evocative of the false busts and padded derrières of drag queens.  According to Pearl:

“Our inspiration for Vladonna was to create a fun and fantastical world where you can escape from the reality. Vladonna’s world is only limited to your imagination, where the stresses of life simply don’t exist. Vladonna is for everyone, because she is everyone no matter your sexuality, gender, race, size or talent. There is an unattainable standard to exist in this world; shine but don’t overshadow, be open but protect yourself, tell the truth but stay politically correct. But Vladonna doesn’t even know who the president is! She is the coffee break from life’s pressures full of fun, fashion and glamour. She allows you the chance to show the world what beauty truly means to you with the DIY customizable version. Vladonna is whoever you want her to be!”

-Matthew Lent aka Pearl

Vladonna retails for the surprisingly reasonable price of $39.99 and can be purchased here. In addition to the customizeable Vladonna, Pearl has plans for future editions that will come dressed and made up.

Vladonna’s Instagram account debuted yesterday as well. Check it out at Vladonnaworld to see how others have customized Vladonna, including doll artist Andrew Yang, and makeup artist Mimi Choi.

I purchased the Vladonna with the lavender hair. I’m not great at customizing dolls, but I’m looking forward to the challenge. I feel like, with Vladonna, I can be truly outrageous (my apologies to Jem). I’ll update my Vladonna’s progress in a future blog post.

What do you think of Vladonna?

 

Barbie Hello Kitty Fashion Packs

Do you love Barbie and Hello Kitty but refuse to pay $100 for the shockingly-overpriced-for-a-non-articulated-Barbie-doll Hello Kitty Barbie? Now you don’t have to. Mattel and Walmart have released an exclusive line of licensed Sanrio-character fashion packs for everyone’s favorite plastic princess. The Barbie Hello Kitty Fashion Packs include dresses, separates, and accessories featuring Hello Kitty and other beloved Sanrio characters such as Chococat, My Melody, and Little Twin Stars. They hit the stores last month and already Walmart.com is completely sold out. I had to turn to evilBay to get a couple of pieces, but Ghoulia13 and I are going to check out our local Walmart this weekend. In the meantime, here are some of the items from the collection.

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Tops retail for $2.44 and the dress/separates packs sell for $4.94. Prices on eBay currently average about 2-3 times the retail prices.

Did you find any of the Hello Kitty Fashion Packs?

Update:  Okay, so Ghoulia13 and I made a Walmart run after work. Our Walmart had plenty of Hello Kitty Fashion Packs. I managed to get all of the tops and all but two of the ensembles. Here is my Hello Kitty haul:

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Imaginarium City Studio Dollhouse

Today’s post is about something near and dear to my heart: a dollhouse. I love dollhouses. Ever since I began collecting dolls I’ve been buying plastic house play sets, which are great. I can set them up, do some photo shoots, and put them away. I never thought of buying a large dollhouse for my fashion dolls–until I saw the house of my dreams. The Imaginarium City Studio dollhouse, from Toys R Us, was beckoning to me. It was on display in the dollhouse section, furnished, and placed behind glass to protect it from grabby hands. When Ghouliette and I first saw it, Ghouliette said to me, “Monster High dolls would fit in that!”  I stood there and admired it for a while, but decided buying it would  be impractical. But from time to time I would walk past the display so I could stare at it.

 

. dollhouseempty

Finally, I broke down. Because it was so cool. And because my sister was right, Monster high dolls could fit in it. Unlike the often flimsy plastic play sets, this was a large, sturdy house. Barbie could also fit in it.  With fancy photo shoots in mind, I gave in to temptation and bought the house. And I love it!

The City Studio dollhouse is a heavy wooden dollhouse that has four rooms and an outdoor patio. It comes with 11 pieces of 1/6 scale furniture. (the fridge in the kitchen did not come with the house.) An elevator runs along the left side of the house. The high ceilings make it perfect for 11.5″ – 12″ fashion dolls such as Barbie and Momoko. Even Blythe and her big head can fit in here comfortably!

The design is clean and bright, with lots of color, clever details, and some neat “views” of the cityscape out of the windows.  My favorite detail is the hardwood flooring and area rugs in the living room and bedroom.

The house comes unassembled, with clear step-by-step diagrams. I had no trouble understanding the diagrams, but it did take me three hours to put this house together, mostly because the pieces are very heavy. One side of the house has heavy wooden walls, while the other side of the house is supported by thin wood and plastic poles for the elevator. Because of the uneven weight distribution, shifting the house from side to side during assembly a little difficult. The one complaint I have about this house is that two of the three drill holes on the elevator side do not line up with the corresponding drill holes on the wall side. I had to leave them undrilled because lifting the floor up to the holes put the floor at quite an angle. I left them undrilled, and I have to say the house is still very strong and sturdy.

Are you ready for the house tour? Let’s start on the first floor. The furniture you see in each room comes with the house.

kitchen

The Kitchen    The City Studio kitchen takes up most of the first floor. It contains this asymmetrical dining room table and two diner stools.  The table has a built-in (i.e., painted on) cooktop that’s flush with the table surface. Like Penny has in the Bg Bang Theory! As you can see, glaring pink is the main theme here. I love doll kitchens, and the counter. refrigerator, oven and sink that are painted on are adorable. Nicely done, with highlighting “shine” on the chrome sink and fridge. But I like doll kitchen furniture more than anything. The nice thing about this house is there is plenty of room to add other pieces of 1/6 scale furniture, such as the Barbie refrigerator seen in the first picture of the house. Personally I don’t like the table in here; it’s weird. I’m going to put my Re-Ment dining table and china hutch in here. Because what’s more fun than decorating a house? Redecorating a house until it suits your tastes! Next up:

bathroom

The Bathroom   There’s more bright pink in the bathroom, which is just off the kitchen. What can I say about the bathroom? The tub is cool… I don’t see myself using the toilet in photo shoots. Personally I’d rather have a separate dining room or a den in the house than a bathroom.  The lime green floor mat is a nice touch. Now let’s move on to the second floor.

livingroom

The Living Room   This is my favorite room in the house. The living room takes up the entire second floor. It comes with the retro-inspired furniture here. The couch comes with one long cushion and two throw pillows.I have to admit the furniture in this room is what caught my eye when I saw the house displayed in Toys R Us. I’m a fool for retro stuff!

In the left hand corner of the photo is a ballet bar. It’s perfect for all the Made To Move Barbies out there! Flex and stretch! Reach!

The wall details include two floor-to-ceiling picture windows, a cozy fireplace, and built-in bookshelves. There’s a cut-out window behind the sofa.

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This room will be excellent for staging photos of parties and special events. There’s plenty of room to add more furniture in here.  Now let’s move to the top floor.

bedroom

The Bedroom   I like how the house carries the pink/blue/lime green color scheme from room to room. The modern platform bed comes with fabric and pillows that match the ones on the living room couch. It came unassembled but the pieces slot together easily. In this photo the “wicker” chair in the back almost looks three-dimensional, but it’s painted on the wall. Beyond the doorway on the right is the outdoor patio.

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The Patio   The patio is pretty simple, a little small, with a chunky wooden fence. The outside wall detail continues up the entire side of the house from bottom to top. I added the Barbie Grill. Because it’s summer time, and Barbie and her friends can grill some hot dogs and burgers out here.

Like I said earlier, redecorating a dollhouse is more fun than setting it up. I’ve added some Barbie furniture in here, so Barbie and her friends can relax.

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One sister is doing homework, and one sister is playing games. Guess which is which?

 

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Mandy loves to gossip. Francesca is stunned!

coffeekitchen

Ronnie and Francesca catch up over a cup of coffee.

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I love when a dollhouse comes alive. I give the Imaginarium City Studio Dollhouse two thumbs up for being a chic yet cozy place where friends can get together.

Do you have any dollhouses you’re fond of? What is your favorite? Tell us in the comments!

LOL Surprise by MGA Entertainment

Image courtesy of MGA Entertainment


I was at Toys R Us today, buying some Tokidoki stuff, when I saw the LOL Surprise display at the checkout counter. I’ll admit I’m a little late to the ball regarding the LOL Surprise dolls. I’ve been seeing the displays at my local Target for several weeks now among all the other blind box displays, but the LOL Surprise display boxes were always empty. Apart from seeing the empty displays, I didn’t know anything about them, but my curiosity about these little blind boxes was further peaked one day at Target when a little girl went up to the boxes, saw they were empty, and said “Nobody has them!” So when I saw that there were a few left in the display box at Toys R Us today, I bought one – but only one, because Toys R Us limits LOL Surprises to one per customer. That’s how popular they are.

LOL Surprise promises seven layers of Surprise inside. I got a Series 2 LOL Surprise doll. The dolls come in a large round orb wrapped in plastic…

…and more plastic. So many layers of plastic. You have to unwrap each one, and are greeted with little hints and messages with each layer. Unwrapping the first layer reveals a hint as to which LOL Surprise you receive, along with layer 2.

Tea Party?

Layer 3 gives you stickers.

Layer 4:

Layer 4, opposite side. Angel and devil, get it?!

Layer 5. I see hard plastic. It finally looks like we’re getting somewhere!

After five outer layers of plastic, the inner orb is finally revealed. But the unwrapping still isn’t done.

Looks like the Death Star

The top of the orb hides the first piece of the toy, which, wait for it, you also have to unwrap.

Yay!

Two more surprises in the top half of the orb, and more surprises in the bottom half.


Finally, the package containing the doll:

The LOL Surprise dolls are broken down into “clubs,” such as the Glam Club, the Hip Hop Club, and the Athletic Club. After I dressed my doll, I checked the pamphlet that came tucked inside the orb to see which one she is. She is Heartbreaker, from the Storybook Club. All the Storybook Club dolls are characters from Alice in Wonderland. Heartbreaker is the Queen of Hearts. So the “tea party” hint makes sense now.

The orb comes with a handle so after you put it back together, it becomes a convenient carrying case for your LOL Surprise doll. 

Still looks like the Death Star

It also has holes at the top to accommodate the doll’s feet, so the orb is also a stand.

I’m on top of the world!


When it’s open, the orb serves as a little playpen for the doll. It has a space for her bottle, and you can turn the top piece of the orb over to serve as a food tray. It even has a slice of pizza on it.

The instruction pamphlet shows how you can fill her bottle with water and then pour it into her mouth.

 Then you can make her cry, 

and spit out water,


and urinate. (Yes, you read right).

Oops!


I didn’t put water into the doll to try it myself, so I’ll just take their word for it. The pamphlet also explains that you can dip the doll in ice water to make her hair color change. The water has to be about 32 degrees Fahrenheit for the color to change. When I dipped Heartbreaker into ice water, the white side of her hair turned red and a heart-shaped birthmark appeared over her right eye.

LOL Surprises are cute, but I bought mine more out of curiosity than with the intent to collect them. At $10.99 each, they’re a little expensive for such a tiny doll, especially when you can’t choose which one you get. But it was fun unwrapping five layers of plastic and opening five packets to reveal the Surprise. LOL Surprises are made by MGA Entertainment, the company best known for creating Bratz and Lalaloopsy dolls. Here’s a link to the official LOL Surprise page, where you can watch their commercial (I hope The Ramones don’t sue for copyright infringement 😂). LOL Surprise Lil Sister dolls are also available, featuring infant versions of the original dolls.

Have you been able to find LOL Surprise dolls? What do you think of them? Let us know.

My Excellent Barbie Haul. At Walmart.

Do you love to live vicariously through other people’s blogs about when they go shopping? I know I sure do. Hopefully you won’t mind a post about items I haven’t de-boxed yet. if you love reading what strangers on the internet have purchased, read on!

Today Ghouliette and I made our usual Walmart run to see if there was anything new in the doll aisles. We haven’t been in a while, so there were a lot of cool items we haven’t seen before.  I picked up a Barbie doll that was calling my name, debated whether or not I really needed it, then put it back on the shelf and walked out of the store. KIDDING!! I really did debate whether or not I needed it, decided that I did, and picked it up.

barbiemusicfront

I really need Musician Barbie and her keyboard in my life. The pink guitar is cute, but it’s pink. Call me a snob, but I prefer a natural wood grain on my doll acoustic guitars. But I love the keyboard. If  only I could find a set of Barbie-sized drums, the band will be complete!

I’m also a sucker for dolls that come with audio headphones.

barbiemusicback

Eat your heart out Lady Gaga.

This Barbie is on a made-to-move body. Mattel seems to be bringing out more dolls on the MTM body, and I hope this trend will continue, and move away from Barbies with cheap, hollow plastic bodies that don’t bend (*cough*Fashionistas*cough*)

I’ll post a detailed review of Musician Barbie when I open it.

Next, I spied something on the bottom shelf. This was really cool and I knew I had to add it to my collection.

barbiecamping1

OMG it’s Barbie Camping Fun! I can’t resist dollhouses and domestic playlets. This isn’t a fully enclosed house, but this will be fun to photograph and play with.

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Dolls are not included. I love those chairs and that bench. And my love of tiny tea sets is well-documented here. This will be so much fun. I’ll post a review of Barbie Camping Fun after I open it.

I intended to stop there, but it turns out I wasn’t done yet.

barbietvtime

This is the Barbie TV Time mini furniture set. I like how Mattel pays attention to the small details, such as the VCR and the media cabinet it rests in. The beanbag chair and the orange pouff pulled at my 1970s nostalgia-loving heartstrings.

I had to dig through the Barbie clothes and accessories because they had been tossed around a little bit. (Why do they let kids in the toy aisles? lol) Eventually I found a couple of neat sets: one fashion pack, and one accessory pack. First, the fashion:

barbiefashionpack

I’ll start with the outfit on the left. I love the dress. I love the leopard print coat. I just don’t love them together. That coat is definitely going to make its way into a lot of pictures, particularly when paired with vintage Barbie clothes.  It’s divine!! The dress is cute and summary, with a red, white and blue heart. Very patriotic, although it also looks very similar to the Pepsi logo. Oh well! 🙂

The shorts and tee shirt set on the right are cute, too. My Barbies now have a fun new outfit to wear while relaxing in their Barbie hammock. I love separates because the mixing and matching options are endless.

Personally, I wouldn’t pair those shoes with either outfit. So I fixed the problem of what to match with these outfits.

Mattel’s tiny, inexpensive dress and shoe sets are brilliant. This set includes a pair of tall black boots, black high-heeled sandals, white hightop, orange high-heeled sandals, and–my favorite–a pair of gold flat sandals. You had me at tiny gold sandals…

I thought I was finally done once and for all at this point, but as i walked toward the checkout aisle, I spotted something else on the very bottom shelf. It was hidden behind something else, but I could see enough of it to stop and check it out.

barbiedollcase

I can be a Fashionista? Cool.

I didn’t know Mattel was making new carrying cases! Lately I’ve been obsessed with finding vintage cases from the ’50s through the ’70s. Do kids these days even carry their Barbie cases to the beach, pool, friends house, etc. anymore? We did, and that was good times! Or are today’s kids too cool?! Is playing Barbies not cool?! Well I remember these from back in the day and I was overjoyed to see a new one. Maybe a $9.99 Barbie case shouldn’t make me this happy, but it does!

The three Fashionista dolls on the front are very pretty, with killer outfits. The bright colors are a great contrast against the black. Nice one, Mattel. This case can fit up to 6 dolls, or fewer dolls and their clothes.  The case is constructed in the exact classic style of all previous carrying cases. inside is a slim partition on the left for a doll, and a large area on the right for clothes or more dolls.  It has a pink handle, and the classic latch on top.

Have you purchased any of the new play line Barbies or sets lately? Which ones? Which doll or set is your favorite? Leave us a comment and let us know!