Maud Humphrey

Maud Humphrey

Thursday, May 11, 2017

Hasbro Beauty & the Beast Doll Review

I had been eyeing the new Beauty & the Beast merchandise ever since it started appearing in the stores.  I especially liked this Belle doll which I found at both Walmart and Target.  I resisted for a long time, but finally caved at Easter when I bought her for my daughter's Easter basket.  I had every intention of doing that, too, but then ended giving her a Moana doll instead.  So I kept the Beauty doll for myself!  Yay!
Here she is, still in her packaging.  It was really hard to get a good picture because of the glare from the plastic.  There's another version of this doll that sings, but I chose this one because I wanted the articulated arms, and the singing doll only has straight arms.
"Please get me out of this package!"
Back of the box with a beautiful image of Emma Watson from the live action movie.
Another picture of Emma on the front of the box.  This packaging was really pretty, but SO difficult to open.  I tried to keep the package intact, but there was really no way to open it nicely.  I basically ended up cutting the plastic away from the cardboard backing with scissors.  The doll herself was secured to the background with about 7-8 plastic ties and rubber bands which were fairly easy to snip off. 
Free at last!  Belle celebrated her first moments of freedom by taking a stroll through the garden (overgrown backyard, but I'm not telling!)
I think she's a very, pretty doll!  I can see that they tried to sculpt her face to resemble Emma Watson, It's a slight likeness, but not exact.  Still, I really like it.  In fact, I think I like it better than the Disney Store version of Belle.  There have been many complaints from people about how that doll is just plain unattractive.  I don't think I'd go that far--and I still think I might get the Disney Store version at some point--but for the price ($29.99), I thought this Belle was a good value.  Here is the basic Disney Store version of Belle:
I think she looks a bit angry, but I've seen her in other pictures and she doesn't look so bad.  She definitely resembles Emma Watson more than the Hasbro Belle.  Maybe I'll just have to get her and see for myself!
She poses so nicely with her articulated arms.  Her legs, on the other hand, are just straight and not articulated at all.  That doesn't bother me at all, but it does make her less posable.
I love her hair.  It is very soft and silky.  And her dress...I'm impressed!  The skirt has several layers, and there's also an attached petticoat. 
Cute, gold shoes.
Beauty was very surprised when she saw her Prince striding through the gardens overgrown lawn towards her.
We found this Prince, aka "the Beast", at the thrift store last week for .99 cents.  He had his shirt but was missing his pants, so he borrowed some from one of the other prince dolls that reside at our house.  I think he's an older Disney Store doll, but I'm not positive.
I think he's quite handsome. 
What an adorable couple!
Belle is still clinging to the paper rose that she's been holding since being confined to her box.  I think I need to find her a "real" one.
A tender moment.
One more photo, taken by my 8 year old, in front of the backdrop from Belle's box.
By the way, the movie was WONDERFUL.  I took my three youngest to see it shortly after it came out, and we all thoroughly enjoyed it.  I ended up embarrassing them just a little because I sang along with nearly all the songs.  Seriously, how could I not?!?  I have loved the soundtrack from Beauty and the Beast ever since the original, animated movie came out back in 1991.  I really liked how Disney portrayed the relationship between Belle and her father in this new movie--she was willing to give up everything in exchange for her father's freedom.  And the costuming---oh, my was gorgeous!  Every dress and outfit were simply stunning.  I can hardly wait until this movie becomes available for purchase, because I definitely see myself watching this many, many more times!

Friday, April 21, 2017

Sylvia Natterer Fanouche Dolls by Gotz--and a Baby!

A couple of months ago, I came across this sweetie at a doll vendor's booth at a local antique show.
I knew right away she was a vintage Gotz doll, designed by Sylvia Natterer.  She has a full vinyl body, beautiful rooted hair, painted features, and stands about 18 1/2" tall.  She is all original, down to her shoes (except for the hair ribbon--I added that).  I snapped her up when I saw that her price was only $40.  What a deal for a quality made, German doll!
She wears the sweetest, little wrap dress which ties shut at the side front.  I'd love to replicate this style for some of my other dolls.
Sylvia Natterer is a German doll artist who was heavily inspired by Sasha dolls when creating these dolls for Gotz in 1989.  The earlier dolls have no painted lower lashes--lower lashes were added to the dolls in 1994.  This cutie has brown painted eyes and no lower lashes.
She has the longest, most luxurious hair!
Two weeks ago--16 days to be exact--I had back surgery to repair a slipped disc and compressed nerves in my lower back.  The surgery went great and I've healed from the incision just fine, but what no one tells you ahead of time is that you WILL HAVE immense pain for the next several months as the affected nerves "wake up" and heal.  This part has been so hard for me, and it has confined me to my bed for most of the day.  So, to take my mind off the pain and combat the boredom, I find myself doing a lot of browsing on Ebay!  I'm actually surprised that I haven't bought more than I have--I think I've exercised a lot of restraint, given the circumstances.  But last week, I happened across this little cutie and just couldn't turn her down:
This is the original doll that Sylvia Natterer created for Gotz, named "Fanouche".  She has long, red hair with lots of curls framing her face.  All the dolls that came after her with different hair and eye color were simply known as "friends of Fanouche".
Both of my dolls are marked like this on the back of their neck:
Her outfit is so sweet.  It consists of a teal, velveteen dress with a lace collar, a Swiss dotted pinafore, white tights and black, patent leather shoes which buckle.  Her dress closes with snaps.
No painted lower lashes. blue painted eyes, and a light sprinkling of freckles.
Gorgeous red hair!
This little guy is also a doll by Sylvia Natterer for Gotz--but he was made after 1994 since he has the painted, lower lashes.  He also has a full, vinyl body.
Close-up of his sweet face. 
I believe that Sylvia's later dolls were given names, but since I got this little fellow second-hand from a doll show many years ago,  I don't know what his might have been.
He makes the perfect baby brother for the Fanouche girls!
Aren't they so sweet together?
Gotz stopped making Sylvia's Fanouche and friends doll in 2003, I believe.  Her dolls are now being created by the Petitcollin doll company of France.   I did a post on August 30, 2015 showing two of these newer dolls in my collection:  Finouche ZOE and Minouche JOELLE:
Here is the link to that post, if you're interested:
Besides the wonderful quality of these dolls, I also love the fact that they can sit nicely without splaying their legs wide open like some dolls.
These dolls are just so sweet!  I wouldn't be surprised if more ended up joining my doll family before too long.

Wednesday, March 22, 2017

Adora Dolls "Sandy's Adora-ble Friends"

Ever notice how thrift store shopping is either feast or famine?  Lately, it has been the latter for me, at least in terms of dolls.  Funny, because nearly every time I pull up to the Goodwill there is a line of cars waiting to drop off donations, yet I keep coming up empty on scoring good doll finds in the toy aisle!  Either little girls aren't playing much with dolls anymore, or people just aren't donating them right now.  Or, other thrifters have gotten to them before me! 
Well, today I stopped in at one of the Goodwills in my area, completely expecting to walk out empty-handed.  But I also always have hope as I walk through the front doors.  You just never know what you're going to find at a thrift store!  I made my way over to the toy aisle and quickly rummaged through the dismally stocked shelves.  Hmmm, some naked Barbies, a few Cabbage Patch Kids, and several LaLaLoopsies.  Slightly disappointed, I walked back towards the area where Goodwill keeps the breakable dolls.  I always look over these dolls because many times there will be a vinyl doll thrown in the mix, because the workers can't always tell the difference.  And BINGO!  I found this little sweetie, smiling down at me from way up high on the top shelf:
As soon as I picked her up, I knew she was hard vinyl.  I could also tell that she was a quality doll from her detailed, well-made clothing and her darling face sculpt.
She even had this little tag around her wrist, helping to identify her.  I still wasn't familiar with her though, so I figured I would do some research on her once I got home.
The back of her neck is also inscribed with "ADORA".
For the price of only $3.99, I couldn't help NOT taking her home!
She stands a hair over 8" tall. 
She is jointed in the usual places: hips, shoulders, and neck.
After doing a bit of research, I discovered that she is part of the Adora Doll line.  Here is a description I found on Samantha's Dolls website: 
Thanks to Adora Doll Company, you no longer need a passport or a plane ticket to travel the world.   You only have to meet a globe hopping, pig-tailed girl named Sandy.   She the star of Sandy's ADORA-ble Friends, a 12-piece set of travel-happy eight inch dolls that bring the world to your fingertips!  This collection revolves around Sandy, who's trying to learn about the world's different cultures.  So she visits her varied friends, who hail from Brazil to Norway to Vermont, and their adventures unfold in an accompanying storybook that highlights each region.
While initially in 2006 there were only 12 dolls, I found another web page that listed 18 dolls for 2008.
.   This link, shows them all.   I'm not sure how long these dolls were in production, but I don't think it was very long, based on the fact that I've never seen any before, and a quick look on Ebay didn't reveal many, either.
I did discover that my little sweetie is Molly O'Malley from Ireland.
I think her face is adorable.  Her red hair is a nice wig.
Her clothing is very nicely made, with quality fabrics.  The apron is lined, the ruffles have the tiniest of hems, and the dress closes in backs with snaps.  There is even tiny piping around her collar, sleeve cuffs, and dress hem.  And just look at her darling shoes:
The shamrocks are actually embossed into the leather and the ankle straps close with a buckle.  So cute!
The dolls all came with a book and look like they originally retailed for around $49.95.  The Samantha's Doll website even shows that there were extra outfits available that could be purchased separately.
It appears that all of the dolls were girls, except for one:  Hans from Germany.  I would love to find this doll!  Take a look:
Here's another one I thought was really cute, Rachel from California:
And while we're at it, here are the rest from the line up:
Carmen from Brazil
Gloria from Wisconsin
Jennifer from Wyoming
Katrina from Australia
Maggie from New York
Mary (no country listed in description)
2006 Sandy from the USA
Taylor from Colorado
Erika from Norway
Jade from China
Kanosak from Alaska
Lily from the Jamestown settlement in Virginia
Lucy from New Jersey
Mackenzie from Mississippi
2008 Sandy
Back view of my little Molly O'Malley
She is just the right height to play with this little, wicker baby buggy from my doll buggy collection
I am so pleased to have found this doll today.  It restored my faith in thrift stores, that's for sure!  So never give up hope on what you may never know what's waiting out there for you until you look.  And sometimes, you might have to look for a long time before you find that treasure.  Just be patient!
Tomorrow I'm off to my doll club meeting.  We don't have a program, but are doing a "show and tell" instead.  So I will bring little Miss Molly with me.  Especially since St. Patrick's day was just week ago, I think she'll be the perfect dolly to bring along, don't you?