Tuesday, March 27, 2012


My husband went away for the weekend and came home to find the Barbie dolls had taken over one of the open shelves in our bedroom.  I'm not sure whether it will end up being a boutique or an apartment - in fact, I think they are still making up their minds, or possibly plotting to take over more shelves -

Yes, definitely plotting to take over every single shelf.


Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Will Liv Survive in Australia?

Liv is a 29cm fashion dolll produced by Canadian company Spin Master.  She is the same height as Barbie but has a larger head similar to Bratz.  I can't find an actual release date for her but she seems to have become available some time in 2009.    However, she only made it to Australia (at least in toy stores) late last year.

I saw my first actual Liv doll (as opposed to a picture on the net)  in a toy shop just before Christmas.  She was in the middle of the doorway, obviously so everyone could see her because she was new and special.  But I was shopping for nephews and neices and she wasn't on my shopping list so I thought 'interesting' and walked on.  One of my friends bought the Boutique Window set as a present for her daughter but told me it was a Barbie set so I don't think that special display made much impact.

But now Christmas is over and I have time to wander and look and so a few weeks ago, I was in our nearest Toys'R'Us store. Now I had time to explore and I found - Liv dolls. Not many - the choice was between a set with Alexis and her dog (and her eyes were set so she looked a bit cross-eyed) and Schools Out Katie.  But at $10, Schools Out Katie was good value.  You could also buy extra wigs for $5 - they only had pink.  And they had some playsets - the scooter, the drum set and the Boutique Windows set.  So I bought Katie and a wig. 

It was only later that my daughter (who is also my photographer) said I should have bought the Boutique
Windows set as she could have used it for some good photos.

Our nearest Toys'R'Us isn't that near so it was a couple of weeks before we went back there. Naturally they had sold out!  So I thought I would check out the other local stores that sell dolls:

K-mart and Target - no Liv's.

Toyland - which is where I saw Liv first.  Here we had a choice of Katie with two extra wigs marked down from $34.99 to $13.99 or $10.99 if the box was damaged, or Schools Out Daniela marked down from $24.99 to $13.99.  (I wasn't tempted.)  The only other Liv items were these:

also heavily marked down.  In fact, it looked to me like a final clearance of an item which will not be stocked again.  We'll see.

Big W - here there was the whole range of female Schools Out dolls - all on the clearance rack marked down from $13 to $10.  No other Liv items.

So I haven't got the Boutique Windows set (which for some reason is being sold here as a Fashion Design set) yet.  But I did end up with another Liv doll.

I couldn't resist as she reminded me of a girl I know and I couldn't leave her on the shelf. She has been renamed Raquel in her honour.

So will Liv be easy to buy in Australia?  At the moment, I don't think so.  Will I ever get the Boutique set?  We'll have to see.

Friday, March 2, 2012

The Doll That Was Responsible

I was going to start this blog by writing about my new Liv doll.  I had just bought her and it seemed like a good idea - new doll, new blog.  Then I saw the J doll - Marche on Doll Epic's blog and I thought, 'there's another doll I would like' - yes, there's alway another doll.  And that got me thinking about the doll that started it all.

This one:

My first real Barbie - a strawberry blonde ponytail Barbie in a red swimsuit and shoes, with a wire stand.  (Why don't the new Barbies come with stands?) Her red lipstick has now faded to pale pink, her ponytail had to come out when the rubber band perished and she's lost some of her nail polish but she is the doll that started it all.

Obviously she is responsible for my love of fasion dolls and BJD dolls and I blame her for the growing numbers that keep coming home to live with me.  But she is also responsible for a number of other things.

She is responsible for my first foray into sewing.  New Idea published 'Enid Gilchrist's Teen Dolls', a magazine with trace off patterns for a complete wardrobe of Barbie clothes  and I wanted to make this wedding dress.

So Mum bought the magazine and said she would help me later on.  Of course, I wanted to do it now.  I had a lovely piece of white satin so I traced off the pattern, cut it out of the fabric, sewed it up - and I had HALF a dress!  Mum had to explain that the fabric should have been folded so I had a full front and two backs.  Now I sew for a living.

She was responsible for my dream of sewing and selling doll clothes.  When I was 12 a big new shopping centre was built near our home and I had a dream of a stall in our front garden full of beautiful Barbie clothes for sale.  That never happened. But now, thanks to the internet, I am taking the first tentative steps to selling to the world.  If you want to check them out, the links to my shops are on the sidebar.

And finally, when I started to write this blog post, I went to find this doll for her photo and found - "the Box under the Bed" which was full of more dolls than I remembered  I had. ( No photos - they need to be cleaned up first.)  So now I have to find a better place in our home for these dolls to live.  And she's responsible for that too!