I’d seen a couple of people online mention finding dolls packaged in twos for $1 to $3 at their local thrift stores. And I had just bought a few new ones, from $8 to $25 each! It’s almost a no-brainer to go to the thrift store first before buying a doll if you aren’t giving it as a gift. I was craving this nice deal (and some poseable bodies), so I thought I’d check it out.
My local Goodwill doesn’t bag dolls in twos or threes, but each individual was maybe $1.99. For some reason, I keep finding the poseables with their clothing and accessories still on. Just imagine, a quick wash and you’ve got yourself a factory doll for only a dollar or two (and without any unwanted accessories)!
I sifted through the tub of dolls and considered a Barbie, but her shoulder joint was loose. However, I found someone I can only consider a complete treasure.
Jackpot! Not only is she a Monster High doll (arguably the most poseable fashion doll out there), but she’s Clawdeen from the 13 Wishes line. Amazon and Ebay are charging anywhere from $15 used to $100 for her new-in-box. A HUNDRED DOLLARS! I got her for ONE!
Yeah, so her hair’s a mess and she doesn’t come with all of the accessories (not that I want them, anyway). But imagine the possibilities. Someone is probably making bank off of this kind of shopping.
But I didn’t get her to resell. I got her for her poseability. As much as I love how Monster High dolls overflow with personality, I’m going to sacrifice her to a good cause: Star Darlings Leona.
They look to be a near-perfect match, as if finding this doll were meant to be. It’s been a while since I believed in that sort of thing, but I think these circumstances at least call for me to treat her well and treasure the gift that I’ve received.
Thanks to the stranger reading my blog! We are obligatory buddies now.
How do you like my impromptu photo studio and excellent phone camera skills? I’m using a sketchpad and my window sill that I was too lazy to repaint to match the rest of my room. I’m also great at formatting blog posts.
Anyway, here’s the lineup of dolls I’m starting with. I’m gonna post one picture of each and say what doll they are and what plans I have for them. Above is Bratz Sasha, sleepover edition. Purchased in 2018 and I’m too lazy to search for the release date. I grew up with Bratz and I love them despite their ridiculous faces. I think their eyes are pretty and I prefer their oozing personality over the basic, boring Barbie. Barbie was always the working mom while Bratz are the cool teens. Barbie just isn’t a teenager, you guys. And being an adult is lame. Plue Bratz have this ridiculously long hair that you can do whatever you want with which will inevitably end up a frizzy tangled mess. Yasmin is my first and favorite, for the record.
None of the dolls have been named so far. Sasha is one of the two or three who I’m not entirely sure what I’m going to do with. I’m envisioning a carrot-colored, bunny themed decora/kawaii kid and Sasha is the only available candidate. She’s got a wonky leg due to the way she was packaged and I intend to eventually sculpt her some real feet so I can make shoes. Bratz all come with peg legs and shoes that pop on, so they can never be barefoot. There was one or more with flip flops that slid off and that was encouraging, but I’m not going to try the gruelling process of finding feet on ebay that will match Sasha’s skin tone.
I also think her face is a bit dorky, do I’m going to practice repaints on some Moxie girls I’ve been neglecting.
Next is Isul Duke, my first and only Pullip. I’ve included both pictures because I thought it’d be interesting to see the difference in colors when using flash. His eyes often appear dark brown in photos, but are actually a hazel green in person. This made purchasing him a bit difficult because I wasn’t sure what I’d be getting. He’s beautiful either way.
I’m not impressed with the creaky body he came with. Just about everyone in this lineup is a candidate for a body swap. I was worried he would break when I first got him. His arm was chopped off in the war (non-canon), but all the pieces are there. I just need to be sure the glue I use to fix him is safe. He’s the tallest due to his big-head syndrome (canon), so I use him for measuring the rooms and furniture, along with the most poseable, Ever After High.
I have visions for him as a mint green, sheep-loving kawaii/fairy kei boy with debilitating self esteem issues. The faces all dolls really do a lot to decide their personality. I couldn’t decide on the themes of all the dolls and I thought it would be fun to pick a favorite color and stick with it, and then pair up two kawaii kids to explore different themes, as well as more masculine vs feminine and fairy kei vs decora.
Here’s the wild-eyed Disney Princess (Royal Shimmer) Merida. The hair on these Disney dolls is surprisingly thin and the poseability is sad compared to the other dolls in the lineup. I’m probably influenced by The Most Popular Girls in School series on Youtube, but I felt Merida had to be a cynic. This transferred to our EAH girl and Merida became an adrenaline junkie. She’s going to be a more typical beanie, red plaid, and studded leather punk/grunge girl. I like her weird face, so the only thing I’ll change is the body to be more poseable and maybe reroot the hair to be more thick, but keep a red color.
Disney’s Elena from Avalor made her personality clear from the moment I saw her. Her upturned eyebrows and smile indicate a motherly and exasperated person. It might also be the dress she came with, but I knew I wanted her in lolita. This Elena is going to have her work cut out for her as the designated mom friend. While also a fan of cute things and dress-up, she will be (canonically) providing her roommates with the majority of their food and clothing and trying to keep them on track to becoming mature human beings. My mother’s favorite color is purple, so purple always indicates maternal feelings for me. Elena’s favorite color will be purple as well, and I think I’ll take her lolita in a more classic or country style, since we already have enough kawaii for the whole household and I wanted to try something less popular than sweet lolita.
Elena has the same thin hair and unposeable legs as Merida, but she’s one step up with articulated elbows. I can’t see myself changing anything about her unless I come across a body that matches her skin tone.
Here’s who I assume to be an Ever After High doll. I picked her up at the thrift store in her original clothing and some accessories. A quick google search tells me she is Fairest on Ice Poppy O’Hair. I absolutely love his name now that I’ve learned it and I think I’ll be keeping it. She has a snowflake painted on her cheek which I intend to remove.
Ever After High and Monster High dolls are notoriously the best articulated fashion dolls thus far, which has lead to modders stocking up to repaint and customize them. She definitely has a lot of personality. One of the first poses I put her in was an exasperated face-palm. Out of this little family, Poppy is the most cynical. She wants to see the world change and is an environmentalist and a vegan. Her roommates exhaust her and she can be a bit arrogant. I will be styling her with solarpunk influences, a subculture that needs a lot of exposure. I haven’t quite decided on her color scheme, though it will probably be mostly beige/tan and pale/forest/olive green. Her room will be full of plants and stained glass and she will be dressed solely in flowing wrapped cloth with feather and leaf motifs. I’m really excited for her to find her aesthetic, since solarpunk has the least amount of restrictions out of all of the styles. From my perspective, this will be all about defining what solarpunk means to me.
Oh boy, does Spot love to “manspread.” She just can’t sit with her legs in front of her! This is the Lalaloopsy Girls Spot Splatter Splash. She came with a paint theme and I don’t know where any of her stuff is. She had a bright red plastic bow that I cut off of her head. I absolutely love Spot’s style and as I was getting into Lalaloopsy, I knew I wanted her in some form or another. Lalaloopsy gets a bad rap from my sister and other normies for their button eyes and faux sewn smiles. They are made of plastic, but meant to look like ragdolls with floppy limbs. Doll photography wasn’t even on my radar until I saw Happily Candied’s Lalaloopsy photographs and I absolutely fell in love with the colors. Of course Lauren is also great at coordinating accessories, outfits, and props to match.
To no fault of her own, Spot is starting to take on a villainous role in the group. I’ve put her in Poppy’s glittery dress because she is giving me major princess vibes. I’m not entirely sure how to style her, but I know her character is glamorous, expensive, and entitled. It’s probably the tiny pursed lips they gave the Girls line.
Her plastic pigtails are going to give me some trouble, but sometimes restrictions can help a person to be more creative. I love how different she is from the other dolls, but this also makes her far more likely to be graduated out of the crew and turned into more of an art project.
Last and certainly not least is Star Darlings’ Leona. I adore the Star Darlings head sculpt and her shameless gold and yellow color scheme is delightful. Unfortunately, this also makes is hard for me to want to do anything with her. She’s got such a strong sense of aesthetic already and I don’t want to mess with that. However, she came in the most horrendous condition for a new-in-box doll. Her entire head of hair was crunchy and stiff from root to curled tip and her body’s articulation is laughable for what it was trying to be. I brushed her hair out and pulled most of the tinsel out of her scalp and it’s now a nice fluffy texture. I like the shape of her body, but it’s just not going to work. The plastic is a poor quality and while she’s set up for articulation, her knee joints are constructed in such a way that she might as well be one of the Disney girls. Her arms are so weak that I’m afraid to pose her. If she weren’t such a unique skin tone, I’d be ordering a body for her already.
The body itself has a sheen to it that is pretty and her head has sparkles in or on it. I don’t want to mess with the faceup to find out if they would come off. She has such an adorable, hopeful expression. I had honestly forgotten about her while I was ordering some of the other dolls and so she really is an odd one out. I wasn’t sure what to do with her and decided to wait until she came in the mail and I could see her in person. She’s also the only one I got on Ebay, so I was worried that she wouldn’t come at all. However, I’m determined to make her work while I figure out what to do about her body. I have a headless Novi Star waiting around who I intended to sculpt a new body from scratch (a first for me, so I haven’t gotten around to it), so she might join Allie Lectric as a body buddy in waiting. Then we’d have another bedroom to make for the two of them to even things out. I have a Barbie that could also balance the numbers if I really felt the need, but I find Barbies so boring and she’s so unposeable that I’d rather Leona just be the extra wheel who canonically lives in a different dorm.
I love Leona so much and I want to do her justice. With some of these dolls, I feel like I’m giving them the love the manufacturers never did. Sasha’s box had dust on it, for pete’s sake and Leona is from two years ago! Both of them with the tight elastics and crunchy hair.
I had thought about doing steampunk, but none of the dolls jumped out at me and I felt like the aesthetic was too much work for what I was going for. I think now that with her gold, Leona would make a great steampunk girl. I view her as wide-eyed, optimistic, and a little delusional.
That wraps up the lineup we have so far. The only style I didn’t get to try was cyberpunk. Like solarpunk, it doesn’t have a lot of exposure (and therefore a lot of development). I was wanting to do black and neon (can’t be cyberpunk without black) with gamer themes. Maybe Allie Lectric can fill that spot in the far future.
I’m a young adult who likes dolls. I just bought a few for myself for Christmas, and I’m building rooms for an apartment for them. I’m planning their personalities and sense of aesthetics and I’m going to document the whole process here because I feel like it. This blog is for me and whoever stumbles upon it and likes the content. We’re starting with some fashion dolls (Bratz, Ever After High, Disney Princess) and a Pullip Isul, and will eventually incorporate fancier BJDs into the mix. I have plans for each doll to have a specific style, including Fairy Kei/Decora/Kawaii, Lolita, Solarpunk, Cyberpunk, Steampunk, and regular Punk/Grunge. Whoever you are, thank you for reading!