Tuesday, May 24, 2011

The FFD gets a name, and a couple of shop reviews. . .

The other result of my weekend at Brimfield is that my reproduction FFD has a name! It really had nothing to do with Brimfield, unless you consider that two days of walking so much, surviving on junk food, and having a ginormous sinus headache may have caused my mental state to reduce to the point at which everything becomes hilarious. . . And it was at this point when I remembered randomly that her behind was so sizeable, and began laughing all over again, and then and there realized that she should absolutely be named Fanny! Ah, how I crack me up. . . ;)

Speaking of Fanny. . . I thought I’d take a few moments to review a couple of shops I ordered things for Fanny from. . .

First, Dollspart. The most important thing I ordered there was her wig, which is their “Sheryl” wig. It is mohair, and just absolutely lovely and so soft! The only thing was, it just was a lot of curls, and they were just a little bit more independently minded than I was aiming for. . .

I had really hoped for something that was more controlled and gave a very 1870s look, so I grabbed a couple of tiny bobby pins, and was very easily able to make it look more like what I had in mind. . .

I’m really happy with it now!

Also, while I’m talking about Dollspart, I want to mention that their customer service folks are some of the nicest I’ve ever interacted with!

Dollspart: A+

Next, Antina’s Doll Supply on eBay. I stumbled onto this shop while looking for a stand, and ended up ordering a few extra things as well!

First, the stand. It is supposed to fit a 14”-16” doll, but I think there’s no way it will work for my 15” doll. The bit that should be at her waist is much too high, and therefore it will only work as long as the doll is not dressed. I have some ideas on how to modify this stand to work, so stay tuned. . .

Next, the footwear. I ordered size 6 boots and size 5 shoes, both of which should be right around 2”, and were. I think they’re pretty standard antique-esque doll shoes, but they do look a little larger-scale on the doll, simply because they are tall, and not as fitted to the leg as antique boots were made to be. (Sorry, I was too lazy to button all the buttons on the boot as they were quite hard to fasten and I wasn’t leaving them on at the moment!)

The shoes were a disappointment. The style is super cute, and I liked them way better than the boots, but I ordered size 9, which is supposed to be 1 3/4”, but it was not. They were only 1 5/8” long, making them a bit too short for Fanny to squeeze her feet into them – especially since they have a pointed toe. Since it would cost me $7.75 for the shipping on one single pair of shoes, I am not planning to try a different size. :(

Finally, the earrings. I had this idea that I could use these eye pin things I had to make earrings, and I stumbled on to these and thought, that’s exactly what I was thinking! Except I figured it would be cheaper and less of a hassle to just buy them rather then make them, so I bought her four pairs, (rubies, emeralds, diamonds, and plain gold).

Here, Fanny models the “diamonds” for you:

I am very happy with the earrings! I think they’re really cute, and they fit perfectly.

So overall, I think they have decent products, and at great prices. However, the shipping is really high if you are just buying one item, and the measurements of things may be off, so there’s a little risk there.

Antina’s Doll Supply: B+

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

New dolls and a doll show review. . .

I went to the Brimfield antiques show over the weekend, and came home with a larger doll family than I went away with!

I told myself I had no desire for this sort of doll, but when I saw her, I thought she was so pretty, and at $15, I could hardly leave her behind!

I know she’s a repro straight off the bat because of her eyelashes. You never see lashes on this sort of a doll, and even if you did, I suspect they would be across the entire eye, and very fine and delicate.

I can’t figure out what era she is supposed to be a reproduction of, however. She’s got elaborate hair so I thought maybe 1870s? I need to do more research, so I can choose a style of clothing that is right for her.

I also found I could not resist this tiny doll head!

And when I say “tiny,” I really do mean tiny!

My thought process behind this purchase was, Charlotte is so jealous of the time I spend on other dolls, what she needs is a doll of her own! (The title for my blog really does seem accurate right about now, does it not?) ;)

Sadly, I did not get to admire any French Fashion Dolls at Brimfield. I think those dolls are just so valuable, that they never seem to show up at regular, general antique shops/shows. In fact, the only place I’ve seen them was a “Doll, Teddy, & Toy” show I went to back in March. It’s held at the Dedham Holiday Inn, and seems to take place twice a year (March and October).

Pros of the show:

Enough gorgeous, rare, spectacular dolls and accessories to put a doll fanatic like me in to cardiac arrest!!! I can stress the eye candy factor enough. There were so many French Fashion Dolls, that I contemplated selling a kidney so I could take one home! There were many other dolls as well, and all kinds of excellent clothing, accessories – you name it! Both antique, and nicely made reproductions. And it wasn’t all $1000 items either, because I saw some boxes of Monique wigs at great discounts, and things like that. And, the folks at the admission desk outside the show were super nice and made us feel quite welcome.

Cons of the show:

The room is super small, so the fact that it’s so tightly packed with booths and people, while giving a great variety of beautiful things to look at (and buy, if you have the funds!), it also means it’s a bit of a challenge to navigate. A claustrophobic person would not enjoy it so much! The worst of it was the dealers themselves, who were clearly excited to be reuniting with their doll pals, (and understandably so!), but unfortunately, when they are blocking the entrance to their booths so they can be nearer in order to chat with one another, it makes it a bit harder for the customers to make their way in to their booth, or even past it to another!

Also, I hate to say it, but some of these dealers were not nice people. I had some good chats with a couple of nice folks, but there were multiple dealers where I walked to their booth, gave a friendly smile and complimented their excellent collection of things for sale, and in return, got an icey scowl. I know not what I did to tick off so many total strangers, but they clearly wished I would die and immediate and horrible death. Maybe they sensed that I only had like $40 with me, and clearly should be therefore treated like dirt. It was really disappointing because I was hoping to get to chat dolls with like-minded folks.


I think it’s worth it, if you love antique dolls – even if you aren’t planning to spend. Just be prepared mentally to deal with the tight, small room, and don’t expect all the dealers to be friendly. Oh, and bring a coupon plus $6 for admission. Coupons can be printed here - although it looks like they aren’t quite ready to download and print just yet. (And if $6 seems high to window shop, consider it the equivalent of paying admission at a museum!)