Frozen 2: Singing Elsa Doll ❄️

Official Frozen 2 art!

I LOVE Frozen, so when I heard there was a second movie coming out, I watched the trailers obsessively and rushed to the Disney store in search of new dolls. I ended up getting an Elsa doll that sings at the twirl of her wrist. There was also an Anna one, and it was so hard to choose, considering their gorgeous costumes. That’s the unfortunate thing about being a young collector: you can’t get all the things you want, due to monetary restraints. But considering the similar build of the dolls, I think it’s fair to say that most aspects of the review below will also apply to the Anna doll. Let’s get to it!

The sisters side-by-side.

Quality

Rear view ❤

Several things were off. For example, there were some minor shine marks on her face, a couple lose threads within the stitching, and not… let’s just say not ideal painting on the boots. The bottom of her braid was burned together, and while I realize why this was done (to keep the hairs neatly in check) it makes the last part of her braid look like a garlic clove.

Overall, the quality is around what you’d expect for an average Disney store doll.

8/10 !

Accuracy (to the movie)

The most clear full-body picture I could find.

When making a movie based doll, they’ve got to make them look like the character, right? Queen Elsa sports a variety of looks throughout the movie, the sparkly, pastel blue gown being the most notable.

Elsa, front view!

The doll definitely has more purple on her, with the belt and lavender gradient at the bottom of the gown. She has translucent shoulder pads as well. The main reason she looks different, however, is the hair: it’s too slick and thick.

Now, I realize that certain changes had to be made to the doll for aesthetic purposes. Disney knows what they’re doing. Still, the accuracy rating gets a 7/1o from me.

Singing!

Sound holes (shaped like a heart <3)

The sound is surprisingly loud and clear. I’ve attached a video below, but just in case you’d rather not watch it, Elsa sings a part of the song “Into the Unknown”.

Ignore my h a n d s

Every day’s a little harder

As I feel my power grow

Don’t you know there’s a part of me

That loves to go

Into the unknown

Lyrics, as heard by me

Thoughts

That lil gecko is everything.

Getting the Elsa doll has definitely pumped me up for the movie’s release (November 20th), and I believe she was worth the 27 bucks I begged my mom for. However, if you dislike dolls that just never shut up, aren’t a huge fan of Frozen, or would rather go for some of the rarer dolls that the Disney store has recently released, you might wanna sit this one out. I’ll give her an 8/10.

You can watch the trailer here:

Mystery Porcelain Dolly

Jeanette, looking pretty in pink! ❤

First of all, I’d like to wish my fellow Canadians a jolly Thanksgiving! I’m grateful for a lot of things, this blog being one of them. So to everyone who’s ever read, liked, or commented on a post: thank you.

Now, into the mystery.

I’m fond of looking through thrift stores, trying to find vintage treasures. This time around, a beautifully curly-haired, Victorian style doll caught my eye. I decided to name her Jeanette (thanks for the idea, dad). But…who made her? Does she have an actual name? The only clue was the phrase, “Cathay Collection: 1-5000” written on her upper back.

Cathay Collection Dolls

2 dolls similar to Jeanette.

Fun fact:

Cathay was another name used for China (the country) back in Europe’s medieval days.

I searched the internet for a long time, looking for answers. Ebay listings, people trying to find the value of their dolls, and Pinterest posts were pretty much all I found at first. Turns out, there are many different types of Cathay Collection dolls! They come in different sizes, poses, ethnicities, and styles.

But finally, I found this excerpt on Reference.com:

Cathay Collection dolls are collectible, porcelain dolls that are available in North America. They are handcrafted, and many come with certificates of authenticity with purchase, as well as unique, decorative boxes.

https://www.reference.com/hobbies-games/cathay-collection-dolls-169d63a0bfaa4b86

The fact that they’re handcrafted makes a lot of sense. They can cost A LOT outside of thrift stores (30-200 bucks!) and all of the dolls have a unique feel to them. However, this still left a lot of questions. I decided to dive deeper.

Further Research

Daisy, a Native American Cathay doll. I wish Jeanette came with a certificate as well, but alas.

And then I hit it: the perfect gold nugget of information I was looking for. (I’m mostly going to paraphrase what the website said, but I highly suggest you read the original article at https://dollreference.com/porcelain_collector_dolls.html)

The dolls were first created around the 1980s. They were meant for collectors, not children (which I think is fairly obvious, from the quality and price) and many bought and resold theirs to make a profit. Cathay Collection was just one of the many types of porcelain dollies that fit into this buy/sell category. Fascinating, eh? Considering the amount of dolls I saw for sale at such high prices, I can certainly see this theory coming to life.

I wanted to find the blog of someone who knew more about these dolls than I did, but was unsuccessful. There might be a little something coming soon though, so stay tuned!

Jeanette: Photos and Details

Her shoes feel like genuine leather and have hard soles.
She’s naked, don’t look!

Finally, we get to the girl herself.

Jeanette is about 41.5 cm (16 inches) tall, can’t sit down or bend her arms, but is big enough to be able to try on Journey Girl and American Girl clothing.

Claire Elizabeth (right) and Jeanette swap dresses!

She has curly, dark brown hair with lighter brown eyes. Her eyelashes are non-existing and her nose is fairly triangular, giving her face a unique look. And who can forget the adorable blush and rosy lipstick!

There was another doll at the thrift store, a golden haired beauty, and I kind of regret not getting both while I could. I’ll definitely be on the lookout for more Cathay Collection dolls, now that I know their significance, and hopefully I can find one of the fairies or brides.

Thank you so much for reading, hoglets, and I’ll see ya later. 🙂

Cute close up.

The Top 10 Spookiest Toys Ever

Spoiler: I hate this dude.

Hello hoglets, it is I, back from my hiatus. Between school and other work I simply have not had time to write, but I am back and just in time for Spooktober! In this list I will be ranking the scariest toys ever made (in my opinion, of course), and giving a brief run down on their histories.

10: Chatter Telephones

Are they iconic? Yes. Do I want one? Also yes. But are they creepy? I think a glance at the eyes might answer that for you. Released in 1962 by Fisher-Price, the Chatter Phones have brought both joy and fear to children worldwide.

9: Anatomy Dolls

Damn Barbie, nice bones ya got there.

Made mostly by Jason Freeny (or at least from what I know), anatomy figures take a popular pop culture character and split them in two. I highly suggest you check out his sculptures and prints for some gnarly, slightly spooky fun.

8: Hugo: Man of a Thousand Faces

Hugo, made by Kenner in 1975.

Hugo’s a friend, an enemy, and anything you want him to be! Kenner, I see where you were going with this, but did you have to give him such a cold, blank, stare?

7: Little Miss No-Name

This is another example of great idea, poor execution. Little Miss No-Name is an orphan girl who just wants love and friendship. Well, Hasbro, how am I supposed to love her when her eyes pierce into the very depths of my soul? All jokes aside, I think this is a pretty cute toy which I might talk about in further detail in the future.

6: Teletubby Toys

Source: thinster197 on youtube.

One word: Teletubbies. I’ll pass.

5: Reborn Dolls

Yep, that’s a doll! I admire the artistry, but… why?

Reborn dolls are hyper realistic dolls created from pre-existing doll parts (hence the name). They are usually babies or very young children, and cost a lot. The art is beautiful and requires weeks of work, but the question remains: why? If you’re a reborner or a collector of such dolls, feel free to contact me! Anyways, there’s something unsettling about a baby that looks alive but simply isn’t. Or maybe it’s just babies in general. Babies scare me.

4: Jack in the Box

Anxiety simulator for the tots.

Pop goes the weasel! Welcome to jump-scare central, ladies and gentlemen. There’s no other way to put it: the music can be pleasing, the doll cute, and I’ll still scream.

3: Undead Teds

WANT.

I love Undead Teds, and have an article I’ve been procrastinating on about them. But I can’t deny; they’re REALLY freaky.

2: Whimsies

Produced by the American Character Doll Company (what a doozy of a name) in the early 60s, Whimsies are whimsical dolls with cute names and personalities. It’s not my fault that I find them terrifying.

1: The Jolly Chimp

No.

What. The. Absolute. Hell. WHO thought this was a good idea? People in the 50’s were not ok. Out of all the toys in this article, this is the only one that genuinely gives me chills. It all started with that scene in Toy Story 2… ugh. I can’t look at that demented monkey any longer.

Goodbye, hoglets, and thank you for reading!

Gemma Stone Review 💎

I’ve wanted Gemma Stone ever since I found out about her. She has gorgeous layered hair, pearly makeup, and is gemstone themed (fun fact: I absolutely love crystals). And guess what? I finally got her. Did this sparkling shoppie celebrity live up to my expectations? Or could she have used a glow-up? Find out below.

Gemma Stone taking a “selfie” with her fans.

The Unboxing Process

Unboxing Gemma Stone was very difficult, especially considering that I wanted to keep some of the illustrations on the box intact (the sides were metallic and highly reflective, and the back had a bunch of information on Gemma and her shopkin pals). I liked the crystal-like packaging itself.

Front and back of the box (can you read what the shopkins’ names are?)

You absolutely couldn’t get Gemma’s card without ripping the back. Card? That’s right, like most shoppies, she came with a “credit card” inscribed with info you can enter into the Shopkins World app to get rewards. She also came with a stand and a plastic purple handbag. (See image below.)

Gemma Stone, still packaged. Check out that rainbow reflection!

Quality check!

Just like any other shoppie, she wasn’t perfect. Her dress had some loose strings, her bangs were slightly uneven, and some of the paint on her purple fingerless gloves got messed up. I know she didn’t originally sell for over 100 dollars, so the quality is ok for a 30-40 dollar buy. I’m not disappointed.

Gemma chilling with Marsha Mallow.

Final Thoughts

Gemma Stone is still my favourite shoppie; in fact, even more so. I can’t guarantee the quality of your doll if you decide to buy her, or that you’ll think she’s worth the high collector’s price, but she was absolutely worth it to me. Also, her shopkin gems look like candies. I want to eat them.

Top left: Rosie Ruby. Top right: Allira Amethyst. Bottom left: Emma Emerald. Bottom right: Diana Diamond.

That’s all for now, cowboys. Shine on! ✨

Sastrugi, my Furby Baby!

im babey

Howdy, guys and gals. It’s been kind of a while since I’ve written an article. But today is my birthday, and I got some absolutely delightful toys I would love to review and look at. One of them is my unopened, 1999, beautiful powder blue Furby baby!

My sketch of him + the boy himself

Sastrugi is tiny, specifically 11 cm tall. I’ll admit, I knew they were small, but I didn’t know the Furby babies were that small. He has pastel blue fur with a white belly and soft white feet. His eyes are green, which makes for a stark contrast between his pastel pink ears and hair. Like all the Furby babies, his eyelashes are white.

Unfortunately, he didn’t work at first, but after some internal poking around he was operating perfectly.

Functionality

The pentagonal box came with a Furbish-to-English dictionary and an Instructional Manual. I won’t write everything that I’ve read, but I’ll give some general information and fun facts.

Furby baby has an internal sensor, stomach sensor, back sensor, and special forehead sensor that can detect darkness and other furbies. You use the sensors in patterns to interact and help your furby. For example, three claps, a back rub, and a belly squeeze should make the furby go into deep sleep move. If your furby is constipated, a hug might help, and if it’s full you can burp it by stroking the back.

Yes, I put a fake flower crown on my Furby. No, I don’t need help.

The hardest part is getting your furby to sleep. Even though there’s many ways, none of them work especially well. For example, my furby gets nauseous instead of sleepy when getting rocked, and darkness does nothing. The best way I’ve found so far is to rub your furby’s back until they start snoring, singing a lullaby, or saying “way-loh” (sleep) multiple times.

There are hidden games you can play with your furby: Today we played hide and seek. Around 2 minutes into hiding, Sastrugi started complaining about not being found, and when my sister discovered him from under a pillow, he went, “You win! Woohoo!”. Only 3 games are written in the manual, and the other ones you must discover yourself.

Last thing I’ll talk about is their ability to learn English. Within a day, Sastrugi was saying “happy”, “cake,” and “tummy hurt!”. It was pretty impressive. One of the selling points of the furby babies are that they pick up on English quicker, but I wasn’t expecting them to be such fast learners.

On the second day of this journey, he learned more English phrases, and even said, “I love you, mama! Muah!” Needless to say, I love him too.

Final Thoughts

An aesthetic image for my boy.

Why did furbies ever lose popularity? Soft, cute, entertaining, and even educational, I’m incredibly glad to have gotten my hands on one of these babies.

Until next time, cowboys, and remember to may-may (love) your furbies!

Lil Vs. Regular Shoppies

Popsi Blue edition.

Are you a parent, unsure of what to get their Shopkin-obsessed child? A collector, perhaps, only here for the review of Popsi Blue and her mini counterpart? Or maybe a lost soul who has somehow wound up on this article at 3 AM? No worries. As one of my friends would say; “I got chu”.

Big Shoppies

Ominous yet cute energy 🙂

~ Big/regular Shoppies are 14 cm tall on average.

~ They come with stands, hair accessories (held on by elastics), removable skirts/shorts, and typically removable shoes.

~ Their hair is extremely big and vibrant in colour and makes all the dolls with longer hair top-heavy.

~ They retail for $13-20 (CA), although some of the rarer dolls (Mystabella, Gemma Stone, etc.) are very expensive and you can only get through collectors after their promotional event has expired.

~ You can move their heads 360 degrees, spin their arms in their sockets, and make them kick forwards and backwards. Only certain dolls can move their elbows.

~ Regular Shoppies usually come with a brush, a codebook, and a Shopkin partner as well.

~ All in all, they are beautiful and manoeuvrable, but their hair can get tangled easily and their awful balance might not be the best for play.

Lil’ Shoppies

credit credit credit: The Dolly Dreamer (on FB)

~ Are 7.5 cm tall on average (like half of a big shoppie, it’s adorable).

~ Also come with stands and surprise accessories like hairpieces and bags.

~ They have rubber hair that makes their (already large) heads even heavier.

~ Although their outfits are removable in theory, the hair gets in the way. The shoes and undergarments are painted on.

~ They can shake “no” but they can’t nod or go all the way around, if you were wondering. Their arms and legs go up and down.

~ I’ve found them listed from $8-12 on Amazon (again, in Canadian money).

~ They make fun travel size buddies, but if you prefer more customizable dolls, go with the bigger option here.

The Blues

Beachside fun!

Although I love Popsi Blue’s popsicle inspired design, and her straight pastel blue hair is marvellous, the sailor hat is questionable. It just doesn’t stay on, and when it does, it makes the whole doll topple over in 0.5 seconds! Also, regular Popsi Blue comes with a translucent yellow swimming ring, which also has a hard time staying on properly. But in the end, I’ll give the character a 9/10 and the litlle version of her an 8/10, design wise.

Summer has come, folks! So go out there, get yourself a tasty popsicle, and sashay down to the beach, for who can feel blue when the world’s so bright?

Later, cowboys.

My Opinion On…Bones?

This might be a bit heavier or more morbid than usual, but it’s an interesting topic I wanted to cover.

Moose bone hair sticks from Forevergreenflora on Etsy.

In this article, I’ll discuss taxidermy, vulture culture, animal accessories, and show some examples. If you are triggered by skeletons or dead animals, your discretion is advised.

Definitions

Vulture Culture is an internet community of people who find animal corpses, clean them, and repurpose them. They do not kill animals themselves; that’s where the “vulture” part comes in. People in this community typically collect bones and occasionaly make crafts and jewelry out of them. Taxidermy is related to Vulture Culture because, well, wouldn’t you want to stuff a badger corpse you found if the fur was relatively nice?

Taxidermy is “the art of preparing, stuffing, and mounting the skins of animals with lifelike effect” (the dictionary definition).

You’ve probably heard of it or seen it at some point. They’ll often sell stuffed quails or other birds at antique stores, and who can forget those creepy “trophy” heads hunters display on their wall?

Anyways, it’s time to get into what I think about all this.

From aloof-lyulf on Tumblr.

What I Think

There is nothing inherently wrong in being interested in animal anatomies. I think skeletons and skins are cool! But the problem comes from killing the animal just to “rebirth” it. In my opinion, hunting for sport is disgusting, and if you’re only killing tigers so you can have a cool tiger head decoration you’re scum.

Except many of these people don’t do that. They either take remains from an animal killed for food (ex: wild rabbits or geese) or come across the corpses naturally. On top of that, I know a large portion of individuals respect the passing of the animal and honour its life with art. That I can get behind.

A beautiful example of taxidermy (credit: luxtaxidermy on Instagram)

Fashion

Credit to lonelybonesjewelry on Instagram (the headband was made out of scrapped ears from bunnies killed for food).

What about wearing animals as accessories? I have mixed feelings on this one. On one hand, it’s extremely cool. Imagine a bird skull pendant or teeth rings! On the other hand, way too many animals are killed to make fur coats and scaly shoes, and using actual death as a fashion statement gives me weird vibes. However, it comes down once again to sustainability and humanity. Should animals be killed for clothes? No. But is it alright to make animals into clothes (or accesories) if they die naturally? Yes.

Conclusion 🙂

Taxidermy is cool, and most definitely an art. As long as the animal isn’t killed just for the project and its spirit is respected, I’m totally fine with it! Feel free to share your own opinions below. And as always cowboys, hope you enjoyed!