Tonner Dolls has been expanding their doll line rapidly over the last years, incorporating new face molds (and new bodies lately) into their wide range. So it was inevitable that, with the love Robert Tonner holds for Old Hollywood, that famous stars of the past would find their way amidst their other film lines. The first glamorous Hollywood star to receive the Tonner treatment is none other than the magnificent Joan Crawford. A natural choice, both for her star quotient, interesting face and promising original outfits, most of which were designed by the genius designer of Hollywood glamour Adrian.
Basic 2008 Joan Crawford (Ready for Wardrobe is the moniker of the doll) arrived promptly for her photo shoot, with all the airs and fuss a diva of this magnitude commands. The turquoise box reminded me of the Integrity Gene ones, to which of course this doll is in direct competition: they belong to the same era, would be antagonists in real - life Hollywood and will be vying to share the spotlight in doll collectors' shelves. But how does Joan look and feel?
The doll bears an uncanny resemblance to the real star: her face is exquisitely sculpted to match Joan's characteristics, looking very much like her younger self in her earlier career in the 30s and early 40s. This incarnation of the doll has brunette hair, gathered at the back and cascading in big curls. Her eye make up could have been a bit more pronounced in my opinion (as the stars of the era did wear it heavy-handed) but she still is pretty much Joan. One basic problem: one of her fiery red painted nails had colour bleeding from it onto the finger, a thing that I have never seen before in a Tonner doll.
She comes dressed in a lovely turquoise charmeuse slip trimmed with black lace, hosiery with attached panties, and lovely black Mary Janes (see below). I think they should have included a long flowing matching robe, giving her a more diva feel - being basic does not mean she is a lesser star. Also the slip is a bit too short for her to pose sitting without showing too much for that era. I am sure they were wearing longer slips back then. She does not have any jewellery either. She has the standard Tyler body, which means that her silhouette might look a bit more modern than it should, although that can be corrected with careful tailoring of the outfits. The overall feel though is very nice.
So what should she wear? I knew she would be itching to get out of her slip as soon as she came her, so a lovely gown was waiting for her to put on. The Jungle Red outfit from the Joan Crawford Tonner collection took my breath away from the publicity shots: the cut, colouring and tailoring seemed ideal for a Hollywood diva. So here she is, basking in it's beauty:
The gown is a full length, pleated chiffon dress with intricate shirred detail and striking red and white contrast, paired with a coordinated beaded bracelet and faux leather open-toe red strappy heels. She would want a pair of diamond earrings to go with it too, but more of that later. Fortunately the dress comes with an attached white slip under it so that the bright red fabric does not stain the doll. The bodice is also lined in white.
It was a treat photographing her in various poses in this particular outfit: the fabric and pleating offer many possibilities and make her look even more glamorous and breathtaking, the true diva she is. A great addition to the collection of any Hollywood fan doll collector.
"So, what about those diamonds?" I heard her say, becoming more impatient with every camera click. So I dug out the set Franklin Mint's Marilyn Monroe was wearing in "Gentlemen Prefer Blonds" with her red outfit and put them on her - the diamonds and rubies match the white and red gown perfectly (see below). Joan in satiated - for now... wait till she sees what the other ladies are wearing around here...