La Poupee Mannequin: Anouk

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There’s a new girl on the fashion doll scene. New, yet strangely familiar. With a vintage feel and a wardrobe to  match, Anouk may remind some seasoned collectors of a certain French fashion doll from the 1960s called Caprice. Caprice was based on the French actress Catherine Deneuve and was intended to be a Catherine Deneuve doll. However, when the actress didn’t give her permission to market it as a doll in her likeness, the doll was renamed Caprice. Caprice was, in effect, the French Barbie.

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Vintage ad for Caprice

Anouk was created by British artist and designer Navdeep Sikand as an homage to Caprice and other vintage fashion dolls. Mr. Sikand researched doll factories for one that was able to realize his vision for Anouk. He found one in Spain that uses the same equipment that it used in the 1960s – very fitting for Anouk! Anouk was prominently featured in the current issue of Fashion Doll Quarterly magazine, and when she launched earlier this month, I was able to order Anouk directly through Mr. Sikand. She was despatched from England in record time. Anouk comes packaged like Caprice, in a clear plastic tube.anouk7_5Her tube features an embossed label that was designed after the label on the original Caprice dolls. It’s very chic and gives the collector the feeling that Anouk is not your average fashion doll. It’s clear that Mr. Sikand paid attention to every detail with Anouk.

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Anouk arriving from her transatlantic flight

Even Anouk’s dress evokes vintage doll dresses, made from quality fabric, and with real snaps instead of velcro (*involuntary shudder*).

The dress also features a damask label, just the tagged fashions of Caprice and Barbie.

Anouk herself is made of weighty, durable vinyl. In keeping with the original Caprice doll, her arms and legs can move but her legs don’t bend at the knee. Anouk offers a great deal of variety for the doll collector. She comes in three skin tones: caucasian, African American, and Cote d’Azure – a sun-kissed tanned version. In addition, she comes in four hair colors (titian, brunette, ash blonde, and champagne blonde) and two rooted hairstyles: a page boy with bangs, or long hair tied at the top with a little bow.  There are six outfits to choose from with Anouk. I chose Printemps, a minidress with a colorful op-art geometric pattern. It’s well-made and constructed of quality fabric. It comes with a matching headscarf as well as a pair of green heels and pink sunglasses.

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Groovy, baby

Like Caprice and other fashion dolls of the 1960s and ’70s, Anouk comes with a brochure. Mr. Sikand designed it and created the artwork for it. It’s gorgeous and further adds to the feeling that, with Anouk, I possess a vintage doll that transports me back to another era.

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Front cover

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Choice of hair colors (ash blonde shown here)

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Choice of skin tones with the two different hairstyles and the champagne blonde color

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Choice of six stylish fashions

The first edition of Anouk is limited to 300 dolls. Mr. Sikand offered a set number of Anouk dolls for sale to members of his Facebook group La Poupee Mannequin: Anouk. He will sell the remainder of the dolls on eBay. Mr. Sikand has plans for future editions of Anouk. Dare we hope that more fashions will follow as well? You can follow the trials, tribulations, and developments of Anouk through Mr. Sikand’s blog.What do you think of Anouk? Do you like her vintage vibes? I do! I have been hoarding vintage Barbie fashion pack dresses from the ’60s and ’70s that I’ve been buying on eBay in anticipation of Anouk. I feel a major fashion photoshoot is in my Anouk’s immediate future.

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