Saturday, February 20, 2010

Tatiana's Doll House: The Living Room

As we promised, here is the second instalment of the presentation of Tatiana's doll house. In this post we visit the living room. I remind you that, as mentioned in the previous installment (dining room) the whole house will be made in black and white.

The room is another box made from double corrugated cardboard. Tatiana used oversize coverstock for walls and floor. The curtains are dinner napkins - black ones are faux dupioni silk, white is polyester. The console table and the TV bench are made from another one of the frames she got from a clearance sale. The back panel behind the TV was cut out from cardstock sides of the box that came with the Fashion Royalty bed (inspired by a visit to local IKEA store). Tatiana replaced the Barbie sticker on the TV screen with a cutout from the card that came with the registration gift at the Chicago Fashion Royalty convention. It may have to be replaced with a plain black cardstock later, but for now she likes how her dolls are watching Convention News!

The sofa and chairs are jewelry boxes. The black coffee table is from the Fashion Royalty Loft collection; the accessories on top of it were included: the shaker, glasses and champagne bottle in the bucket. The white carpet is just a piece of craft felt: Tatiana used two sheets for thickness. The two small side tables are acrylic risers from re-ment bakery cases, turned on a side with tops glued to them. Their sides, originally slightly sloped, became horizontal under the weight of the tops and lamps. The black mirrored tabletops are from a friend of Tatiana's - she is not sure what they are. 

The lamp shades, candles, telephones, vases, electronics and jewellery box come from various Mattel play sets. Tatiana repainted the vases, jewelry box and statuette, which is an Esmeralda figurine from kids candy. The lamp posts are from the Gloria playset. A piece of thin wooden rod and a clear bead were used to attach them to the lamp shades. She purchased inexpensive self-adhesive mosaic stones from the scrap booking section and placed them adhesive side up under the back legs of the sofa and chairs to level them up.

Tatiana says she had fun making this diorama and likes that her dolls finally have a modern living room; she was meaning to make this one for years. They sure look great sitting in there.

All photographs courtesy of Tatiana.

Friday, February 12, 2010

A Tribute to Alexander McQueen

Alexander McQueen is my favourite fashion designer. It was a shock for me too then, to discover on the morning of February 11th that he had committed suicide. It is a loss not only for his family and friends, but also for the world - talent such as he had is rare to come by. Read more about his work in my other blog. As an hommage, I photographed Fashion Royalty's Kyori Sato in mourning with a dress that Integrity did for the 2007 Wu Event IV - it was one of the convention fashion outfits, called Lap Of Luxury. It copied blatantly one of my favourite Alexander McQueen dresses, as the theme of the convention was The Royal Life - Anglophilia ruled, so it was an obvious choice. R.I.P. Lee, we will miss you.

Black As Night Kyori Sato in mourning, wearing Lap of Luxury

Spring/Summer 2007 show - one of my very favourite dresses

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

Tonner 2010 collection unveiled!

The Tonner Doll Company, as they usually do every year, unveiled their 2010 collection during IDEX 2010. Lots of dolls, old and new, lots of directions to go for the company and collectors alike. I will not be posting all the dolls that are in the line as that would be space-and-time consuming. Instead I will focus on what I liked from the vast ofering plus some new lines. For more check out their website.



Cami & Jon is their brand new line and most awaited this year. It is about three basic 16" fashion dolls with the Antoinette body and many outfits - in other words, a new sculpt for Antoinette. I do not like the Cami face, it is too dolly-like and not very realistic. I think she looks like Tyler Wentworth. The outfits are contemporary fashion styled but nothing extraordinary. Although I must say that the quality of Tonner clothing always makes their contemporary fashions very desirable - and the Antoinette collectors will love the variety now offered.

Update: Jon is finally up on the site, the face sculpt is Jac, a very popular and loved face. It is always good to see more diversity in skin tones.


In their usual mode of operation - building up excitment and tension without an actual product to show - Tonner announced they will be officialy producing Lord Of The Rings dolls, starting with Aragon and Arwen. No photos yet, still pending approval of faces. If they are as late as the torchwood and Doctor Who dolls, they will have another bomb in their hands. Same goes for Tim Burton's Alice In Wonderland - but at least here they have an Alice to show. Supposedly a likeness of Mia Wasikowska, the doll looks ugly. At 16" with the geisha bust, she looks too adult to be Alice. Mad Hatter, Red and White Queen pending approval - I hope these turn out to be more interesting.


DC Stars are more action figures than fashion dolls, so I will not show any here. But the fashion doll that shares their body, Deanna Denton, has a great looking doll in the collection: Peggy Harcourt Cristal. The gown is excellent and her face paint a bit more daring and sexy than the usual Tonner style. I would get this one if I could afford her. The rest of the collection is very predictable. They also offer one gown for the DC ladies (which DeAnna can wear too) which looks great: Onyx, from the Tonner wardrobe collection, which consists of outfits and accessories made for the action figure/doll series, making them look more casual and properly dressed - can't wear tights and capes all day long!


Jessica Rabbit

The aformentioned gown can be shared by a new doll added to the Disney line of princesses Tonner is making: although she is no princess, Jessica Rabbit sure can steal the limelight from all of the blue-blodded belles. With the 17" athletic body and a cartoonish face, she does not thrill me a lot (why couldn't she look more like Cristal for example) but I am sure lots of collectors will want to add her to their collections. The two new princesses, Tiana and Cinderella are not approved by Disney yet.

Ava Gardner Black Magic dressed doll

Hollywood Glamour Fame and Fortune outfit

Joan Crawford Woman Of Passion

Gene Marshall "Unforgettable" by Ashton Drake

There is a new Ava Garnder dressed doll, as well as a new Bette Davis and Joan Crawford. I wonder how many dolls of the same actress can one collector have before stopping - one or two is more than enough for me. Maybe they should just keep releasing the Hollywood Glamour outfits for them and make new stars to release as dolls - how about Rita Hayworth, Marlene Dietrich etc. The outfit on the new Crawford doll reminds me of Gene Marshall Unforgettable by Ashton Drake.

Antoinette Wanton dressed doll

Antoinette Alabaster mannequin

Antoinette this year has become a bit stale outfit wise. The only interesting one is Wanton but they should have made it in colour, not black. The white skinned mannequin, Alabaster, intrigues me as she could help me finally realize a long dreamed of project for a doll.

Scarlett O'Hara "What my lamb gonna wear?"

Gone with the Wind from Tonner finally releases the famous green dress from the barbeque at 12 Oaks. And they do it in WHITE? Are they kidding? Is their designer colour blind or is it possible they could not find a proper fabric? This one has been done so many times by so many companies that one would think Tonner would get it right - epsecially considering their GWTW releases so far. But no, they go and majestically screw up one of the most iconic dresses in the history of film making. And she has no lace shawl either. Mammy would be furious! They are also doing the same doll in 22" size as well as the All Dressed Up Like Racehorses dress (the Honeymoon dress), which has been done much better by Franklin Mint.

Mei Li basic black doll

The basic Tonner fashion doll line, Tyler Wentworth, has only three dolls (so far at least) a basic Mei Li, a dressed Tyler and a dressed Sydney, both of whom are boring to say the least. But Mei Li is a much sought after sculpt and her re-release in basic form will make many collectors happy.

Backstage Invitation Reneé Devereaux dressed doll

The Re-imagination, Fashion Zombies and Sinister Circus lines are presented together. These dolls leave me fashionably numb. Horror and fashion never merged well. But there is one final doll that may be the best one in the line-up: One of the Deveraux Sisters, the flapper dolls that Tonner makes. Backstage Invitation has it all: the extravagant lush outfit (with velvet robe and silk slip) and the dreamy facepaint. No wonder it got a Coty award. I wish I could afford this one, she looks smashing.