Jul 052015
 

There is something about me that doesn’t usually allow me to leave my dolls untouched or un-customized in some way. I don’t know if it is because I like them to have something different about them than the other hundreds or thousands of them out there. Or maybe it’s an effort on my part to find and define their personalities. But whatever it is—it is. ๐Ÿ˜‰

Now I want to talk about Voltage Erin.
Yes, I know she isn’t even in production yet and she isn’t due out until late fall or early winter 2015. But I look at her and I see possibilities. I thought I’d share a few of them here.
This is her default factory appearance:

voltage erin

I think she’s quite pretty as she is. It’s the newer headsculpt for Erin (with the open mouth). But she didn’t wow me, exactly. I kept looking back at the photos of her and thinking she was “nice” but off track from my color tastes. Which lead me to wonder if that was down to the simple fact she was wearing a yellow based red (I dislike those tones but love blue based reds). So…I wondered what she might look like with different coloring options. Please note that these are quick edits done in PS so I could get a vague idea…

voltage-erin-options
Anyway, we’ll see what she actually looks like once she hits the market. ๐Ÿ˜‰

Jun 292015
 

So if you’re at all interested in Fashion Royalty / Integrity Toys’ line of fashion dolls you know that this past saturday was the reveal of the new “refreshed” line of the Nu Face/Model Behavior line. This was what I and a crap-ton of other people had been waiting the past 2 years to happen. I have to admit that I was somewhat underwhelmed by what was presented. Call me crazy but I expected to see a few new characters, and an edgier more contemporary-modern vibe. Eh. Not so much so. I can’t say that anything they made was terrible just that the majority of it did nothing for me.ย  I like the fact that they re-sculpted Nadja’s head and that they included the revised Ayumi (3.0) headsculpt and Dominique (although I thought she was one of the regular FR characters?)

Between Nadja & Ayumi I liked their purses and shoes best. I liked Dominique’s clothing out of the three of them. The dolls themselves–eh. I could leave them. But I should mention the two dolls that I did like: Voltage Erin & Energetic Presence Giselle.

Item # 82050
Voltage
Erin S.โ„ข Dressed Doll
The Nu. Faceโ„ข Collection
Limited Edition Size of 800 Dolls
Retail Price: $135.00 + Shipping & Handling
Estimated Ship Date: Approximately Late Fall/Early Winter 2015

Doll Tech Specs:

Head Sculpt: Erin 2.0
Body Type: Nu.Face 2.0
Quick Switch Feature: No
Skin Tone: Japan
Hair Color: Strawberry Blond
Eyelashes: Yes, Hand Applied

voltage-erin-all

This is the newest Erin sculpt (I think it is 2.0?). I like it better than her original sculpt and I think it makes her look less harsh and pissy. I know a few people who miss that one now–but not me.

Anyway…I don’t think that Integrity chose the best color to show off Erin. I made a small chart with her shirt in different colors:

I think that Erin would have looked much better in one of those other colors.

Energetic Presence Giselle:

This Giselle didn’t wow me but I think she would be good with some tweaking and a change of make up and hair restyled. It’d be nice to get her to paint her similarly to OIN Giselle and be able to have her with the different hair color. Or, since I covet one–I can re-root her in black and paint her to make a faux Glam Addict Giselle

Item # 82054
Energetic Presence
Giselle D.โ„ข Dressed Doll
The Nu. Faceโ„ข Collection
Limited Edition Size of 1000 Dolls
Retail Price: $135.00 + Shipping & Handling
Estimated Ship Date: Approximately Late Fall/Early Winter 2015
Doll Tech Specs:
Head Sculpt: Giselle D.
Body Type: ย Nu.Face 2.0
Quick Switch Feature: No
Skin Tone: FR White
Hair Color: Brunette
Eyelashes: Yes, Hand Applied

energetic-presence-giselle-all

IMO Giselle’s clothing isn’t anything to write home about. The stand-out piece is her multi-paneled skirt. Her purse looks nice but I can only think about the purse that came with High Visibility Agnes–it was poorly made with glue visible on it and had crooked stitching. But who knows? Maybe it will be better.

Please note that I did not take these photos nor do I own rights to them. ๐Ÿ˜‰ They are IT’s (I combined the photos).

 

Jan 202015
 

Here it is–the long ago mentioned Tutorial on how to modify Integrity Toys Poppy Parker body!

poppy-mod-and-poppy-non-mod-1

poppy-mod-and-poppy-non-mod-2

poppy-mod-and-poppy-non-mod-3a

I didn’t really bother with any nude pics but here is a pic with Giselle showing her improved side movement (it can go further or even way further but then it looks kind of weird like the FR2 waist joint)

giselle-poppy-parker-body-mod-2

 

Please note: I am the sort who takes risks with my dolls and customizations. This modification is done at your own risk and I am only sharing my results and methods. I got the idea to do this modification based on the information on Flickr posted by Marikah (no longer an active account). Her modification was done on Fashion Royalty Hommes and you can find an example on flickr under Emilia’s albums: https://www.flickr.com/photos/emiliacouture/sets/72157623459359238/

What you need:

  • Patience. This takes some time and can be really finicky.
  • A Poppy Parker body. I highly recommend doing this on a test doll first (one that you don’t like so much, or a spare body) so you get the hang of it.
  • Half a yard of thin elastic (about 3mm in size and white in color) this is the flat kind–not the round kind. You can usually pick this up from JoAnn Fabrics or AC Moore in the sewing section.http://www.joann.com/dritz-braided-elastic-1-8in/prd2906.html in the UK you can probably pick it up at HobbyCraft.
  • 1 pair of scissors (for cutting the elastic)
  • 1 Pair of round nose or needle nose pliers
  • 1 pair wire cutters
  • A bit of wireย  (I was using some scrap wire from out of a larger piece I’d gotten from Lowes) but anything that is 16 to 20 gauge ought to do the trick. You want a piece of wire that is flexible enough to finagle around curves but hard enough to keep hold of your elastic.

First:
Get your wire cutters ready!

Next:
Carefully bend the torso back and forth at the bust joint. I emphasize carefully since if you do it too hard/ fast you can cause stress-discoloration on the abs plastic there. :(

Do this until you can see the opening/ joint area. The black arrow shows where you should be looking to see if the gap is wide enough yet. (You’ll be sticking your wire cutters in there to clip the joint a few steps down from now).

3

While you’re doing that, this is what you want to see:

4

See that post that the black arrow is pointing at in the photo above? That’s what we want to get the wire cutters in there to cut (in half) which will allow us to separate the bust from the body’s main torso.

Looking at the photo below the Orange arrow is the post that was cut with the wire cutters. Make 100% certain you are not cutting the other posts (the ones with the screws in them). Those black arrows are pointing to the pieces you will be threading the elastic through.

5

So take a look at the photo below.ย  Aren’t all those arrows kind of overwhelming? LOL

I wanted to point out a few things here

1) Do you see that kind of snot colored stuff? As far as I could tell it has the consistency of hot-melt glue. I’m not at all sure why it’s in there (but I did find it on the inside of all 5 poppy parkers that I have done this mod to so far. The amount of it seemed to be random-alot in some of the bodies and very little in others. I don’t know if this was ITs solution to adding weight to the bodies w/o the giant nut inside or what. Because of the goop I ended up using the wire (in the supplies list above) to thread the elastic through. Depending on how much goop (if any) is in your body you might not need it.

2) Looking at the arrows again you see that the black and orange are pretty much in the same place on each half of the torso (top and bottom *see photo above for top*). These are the spots you are going to be feeding that 3mm elastic through. Don’t cry! It’s going to be ok–really! ๐Ÿ˜‰

6

ย At this point get your wire, elastic, wire cutters (or other pliers) ready!

tools

Make a tight loop (small as possible) at one end of the wire. This is going to be your snake (assuming your doll’s torso is full of this goo. If not, you can probably skip this part…But I do find it helpful for threading the elastic through all the parts.

Now, tie one end of the elastic through the loop. Tie it tightly so that it doesn’t come undone while you’re doing your threading. Don’t make the knot(s) too big since they need to fit through all the gaps and bars. Small is best in this instance.

7

At this point I’d like to suggest that you also look at the photos from Emilia’s flickr. I did shoot pics of me trying to thread the elastic in but I am not sure if they are understandable. So check them out below:

8

See that goopy stuff?

If you find that you can’t get your piece of wire through it (there ought to be large enough gaps in it that you can, but I had it happen on 2 bodies that I couldn’t) get a heating pad or a hairdryer and set them on low — and that will help soften it up enough for you to wiggle your wire through the pieces.

This is the way I began stringing this body.ย  You can pretty much do it however you want. The main thing is to get it through the bars/ sections to evenly distribute the force and strain placed on the elastic. This is when I was just starting to get the elastic situated and began stringing.

10

Looking at the photo below you can see where the goopy stuff was–in this particular body it wasn’t a real issue and I didn’t have to warm the torso up to be able to get the wire through it (I use the wire, but you could possibly use hemostats too).

11

13

I found it easiest for me if I strung it from the top (bust) down into the torso then back up to the bust and to the torso.

It should resemble the photo below:

12

After you do that you need to determine how much you need to tighten up the elastic.

(tip:make sure you keep your wire attached to one end!! This will help to avoid it coming un-strung until you’ve knotted it off!)

Once you’ve determined this (you don’t want the elastic to be stretched out! You want just enough tension to hold the two parts together but not so little that the torso is floppy) tie the elastic, and knot it. I suggest double knotting it. You can cut off the excess at this point, and leave yourself a little (about 1.5 in) extra in case you want to adjust this at a later date.

The Elastic and knotting should all fit within the torso with no problem.

Hope this is helpful to someone out there (besides me!) ๐Ÿ˜‰


Jan 172015
 

At last!
Here we are finally at #1 out of the top 10!
Bet you thought I’d leave it until 2016 before I actually posted it, huh? ๐Ÿ˜›

#1
Description of Toy/Toyline: Dual purpose 1/6 scale Drafting Table & drafting Chairs by Mark of CKWorkshop

This table and chair set was custom made for me by Mark (that guy who is so talented it makes me green with envy!) I love him but oh, man oh man does he make me feel totally outclassed when it comes to making things! ๐Ÿ˜‰

I gave him a brief a few months back telling him that I wanted a drafting table to use in the actresses’ apartment since Taylor (who is one of the roommates is the costume designer/wardrobe person for the Wrenwood Hall production) would be doing some work at home etc… Add to that I wanted something that I could see in their apartment no matter how I end up designing or decorating it since they are all girls on a budget I figured if I could have a drafting table that could also double as a (pub height) dining table, then why not???

taylor-table-3

Although you can’t really tell (these are quick photos, I didn’t do a proper photoshoot for this post, sorry!) the drafting table can be adjusted to 4 different slope heights. I love it, it makes me remember my days of working at one as a freelance artist. :)

taylor-table-2

Why did it make your list?
Because it does exactly what I wanted and then some!
I was pretty fussy about stating what I wanted–hey,don’t look at me like that–it was for xmas, you know! Annnnnnd I wanted to be able to use it with both my FR2 dolls and the Poppy Parker bodied dolls (because if you make it for poppies only things end up being too short or small for the FR2s and if you make them for the FR2s they look too big for the Poppies). Add into that equation the fact that I adore furniture (in real life and in 1/6) that can fulfill multiple uses.

Dinner

drafting-table-1

The chairs are little works of art (and made up of over 70 pieces to make each one) with weathering and small details that really do make the difference. The seats and back rests are covered with upcycled vintage leather and are soft (not that my dolls will know but it just looks good!).

drafting-chairs

Downside to it: There isn’t one–although if I could convince Mark to make me 2 more stools to go with it I’d totally do that. I guess if I had to say there was a downside–I’d say it was the fact that it forced me to start making more of the various detritus & props that Taylor would have on it . I managed to make a few fabric sheets and sketches as well as that tatty looking portfolio case, but there needs to be more along with some wall stuff…

taylor-portfolio

Overall: I’m very pleased with it (obviously, since it’s #1 on the list, right?!) and I hope that I can talk Mark into making some variations of the stools to sell on Etsy. I’m not sure that there’s much of a call for 1/6 drafting tables (various colors or designs) since I haven’t really heard or read anyone looking for them…


Jan 112015
 

Ah ha! We’re closing in on the final stretch of the top 10! Yay! ๐Ÿ˜€ Woo woo woo!!!

There are 2 toys that fell into slot #4 (I couldn’t choose between them! so there’s a & b)

#4a

Description of Toy/Toyline:ย  Hot Toys Movie Masterpiece The Wolverine

wolvie

Why did he make my list?
Do you even have to ask!?? ๐Ÿ˜‰
I am a long-time fan of the Uncanny X-men comics (back before they split into like a billion different X-titles) and Wolvie has always been my all time favorite. Unlike a lot of people I really enjoyed the Marvel release of The Wolverine and as soon as I knew Hot Toys was going to make one I was starting to save my pennies!

His sculpt is ace and captures the Wolverine of the movie! Yay!
martin-1

He came with 2 complete sets of clothing, extra hands and accessories. His clothing was all incredibly detailed and well made and thankfully, Hot Toys (knowing like most action figure & doll manufacturers that black fabrics tend to bleed dye into the vinyl and abs plastic) gave him a long sleeved under-shirt to wear with his black dress shirt. I applaud a company that can think ahead and head off quality control issues!!

So here’s a photo of him next to Giselle (on a Poppy Parker body instead of her default Nu Face body)

giselle-martin-wolvie-body

Downside to it: (aka why he isnโ€™t the #1 toy on the list!)
The biggest (actually, the only) gripe I have about Hot Toys Wolverine is that his body is lacking the usual range of motion that Hot Toys True Type bodies have. That means that he’s missing the double-jointed elbows which make a big impact on posing and flexibility. I temporarily switched him onto the Hot Toys True Type Muscle body to see if he would look ok on that:

martin-and-giselle-1
And I think it works although I am not sure that he will get to keep it (He and Giselle look really nice together with the Muscle body) I’m still debating since none of his clothes will fit that body…

Overall: He was great value for money, a great sculpt and even though he bears a striking resemblance to Wolverine / Hugh Jackman, He’s going to be Martin and a character in the Quinlan Chronicles.

#4b

Description of Toy/Toyline: Kimiko Gunn/Tina Tanaka from Integrity Toys Poppy Parker line.

tanaka-1

Why did she make my list?
Tanaka made my list because she has the original Ayumi 1.0 headsculpt–something that I didn’t think Integrity would be using or issuing again. So for that alone I am thankful! Add to that the fact that she is on a Poppy Parker body (which is easy to modify for increased range of motion and posability) and I couldn’t resist. That Poppy Parker body even looks good with the shorter Slim Shoulder Hot Toys True Type Body! She is going to be one of the actresses who arre in the Wrenwood Hall drama.

jeremy-and-tanaka

Downside to it: (aka why she isnโ€™t the #1 toy on the list!)
As nice as she is, I am not thrilled with her default factory paint. I am planning on repainting her in the future. Again, I’ll end up modding her body for better range of motion.

Overall: She’s a nice figure to have and I’m looking forward to customizing her in the future. I know that her sculpt isn’t a favorite among IT collectors so having a chance to add another version of her to my collection is great.

#3

Description of Toy/Toyline: Nightscape Giselle from Integrity Toys Nu Face Fashion Royalty line. Nightscape Giselle was released as a W Club exclusive in 2011.

emerson-3

Why did she make my list?
I pretty much wanted this version of Giselle as soon as I saw her back in 2011…but the secondary market prices for her were super crazy (and they still are!) so she was a no. I managed to find someone selling one nude on the DollPage and I got her for the same amount I would pay for any other nude doll from IT. So I feel like I got a great deal and that doesn’t hurt, does it? ๐Ÿ˜‰

emerson-3

Some of the things I like best about her is the combination of her hair colors – there’s a wine color mixed in with dark brown and it looks great. Her make up palette is really mellow and I don’t think I will be repainting her except to possibly tweak her irises a bit. Maybe.

emerson

She’s already got a role in the Quinlan Chronicles as Emerson Appleton, a relative of Giselle’s. I can’t wait to start using her in the scripts! Woo!

Downside to it: (aka why she isnโ€™t the #1 toy on the list!) There is no downside to her. She’s excellent and I am truly pleased to have her! The only thing is that I will need to re-body her onto a Poppy Parker body because of the articulation and the height (my issue with FR doll heights *sigh*)

Overall: I am still stoked to have gotten her into my collection! I understand why so few people have her for sale on the secondary market. She’s quite possibly one of the nicest Giselles out there. I bought her this year as my birthday present and I am so glad I did!

#2

Description of Toy/Toyline: High Visibility Agnes from Integrity Toys Fashion Royalty line.

hv-agnes-2

Why did she make my list?
Ok, I have been wanting an Agnes in my collection since I first saw her all those years ago…But she was always either a club exclusive or a convention exclusive which put her prices way waaaay out of my range. This year however I got a membership in the W club and she was one of the club exclusives! YAY! I was going Wooo! Wooo! Wooooooo! when I’d found that out. And for what it’s worth she’s also who I traded my Escapism Elise for so that I have a 2nd Agnes to customize without ruining (or more accurately–losing the spirit of her).

Remember how I mentioned that I was disappointed that On the Rise Elise didn’t have the newest version of the FR2 body? Well Agnes does! And it IS awesome! That is such a major improvement IMO that I hope they’ll apply it to all their bodies in the future.

hv-agnes-1

Downside to it: (aka why she isnโ€™t the #1 toy on the list!)
As thrilled as I am to have her in my collection I am disappointed to have seen and heard that IT did not fully root her head with hair. Which is a bummer and means I will have to re-root her or choose to leave one with the hair in its permanent style. I dunno. The spare I got I am looking forward to giving a more natural color palette and lip color.

Overall: She’s great. I was in shock when I got her through the club and that she was so much less money than I’d ever seen her for before. I’m still thrilled! I love the sculpt and I’m going to be including her in the Chronicles too.

Tomorrow I’ll be updating with the #1 toy of 2014~don’t forget to check back then! :)


Jan 102015
 

So I’m a few days late with this but better late than never, right? ๐Ÿ˜‰

Back to the top 10 Toys of 2014

#7
Description of Toy/Toyline: Jeremy Renner / Hot Toys Hawkeyeย 
Hot toys made a Movie Masterpiece Hawkeye from the marvel franchise of the Avengers.

jeremy

Why did it make my list?
He looks good. Look at that face, eh?

That and there is a serious lack of male action figures in my collection. Also, the cast of the Quinlan Chronicles cast is pretty female heavy and I need to add more male characters (who aren’t students).

His paint apps are really, realllly, reallllly well done and frankly, he looks good all around.ย  I love the fact that he has a stand alone neck (meaning the head pops onto the neck-post and then into the body) rather than the heads with the sculpted on neck. Because the sculpted on necks tend to be overly long and you get that weird giraffe neck thing going on.

He’s currently stuck on a Hot Toys Slim Shoulder True Type body. It looks good but he might get a taller body at a later date (I hear good things about the coo body but have yet to buy one). Maybe. At his current height he is still useable with Poppy Parker bodied FR girls. Jeremy was a gift to me from my good friend Will (check out his photos on flickr (some are NSFW).

Downside to it: (aka why it isnโ€™t the #1 toy on the list!)
There isn’t really a downside he just got edged out by other things ๐Ÿ˜‰ If you can get your hands on him then do it!

Overall: I’m not usually a huge fan of actor likenesses in my action figures but I think that Jeremy has enough of that “everyman” look to him that you can kind of forget who he is and let him be the character he is going to be in the Chronicles.

And on to #6

Description of Toy/Toyline: Schwinn Green Phantom by Zonex
Based on information on the internet, Xonex made this version of the classic Schwinn Green Phantom bicycle. (you may not know that I had gotten a 1/6 version of schwinn’s Black Phantom a few years back–and still, the quality on that one blows this one away).

green-phantom-1

Why did it make your list?
Ok. I admit it. I have a little bit of a bike bug. I like 1/6 bikes since I find that most of them can be used by the majority of my figures (including my FR girls who have been re-bodied onto Poppy Parker bodies). I like bikes for 1/6 because it implies that there is more going on in that realm than a bunch of talking heads in offices, fashion ateliers, and cafes.

tanaka-phantom
(don’t mind Tanaka’s bare feet in the photo above, ok?) ๐Ÿ˜‰
I wanted the Green Phantom for a while but it usually goes for crazy money on feebay–so up until this year it was always a no-go. I got this one for $60+s&h and I felt that that was ok. It was a splurge (like pretty much everything this year) and I don’t regret it.

Downside to it:(aka why it isnโ€™t the #1 toy on the list!)
While it is nice to have another bike in my collection I have to say that quality wise it’s just okay. I have noticed that the spokes on the rear wheel have become brittle and needed to be fixed with some zap a gap. So again, I know it’s an older piece (circa 1991?)but I think that the quality isn’t all it could be.

Overall thoughts It’s nice to be able to add it to my collection–because there aren’t a whole lot of bikes out there that are really good for 1/6 use.

Ready for #5??
#5

Description of Toy/Toyline: On the Rise Elise Jolie, by Integrity Toys Elise Jolie is one of the many characters that make up the Fashion Royalty line.

Elise-2

Why did it make your list?
I had one version of Elise previously (Escapism Elise) but I just couldn’t make myself like her coloring even though I liked the facemold, and decided to trade with a fellow collector for a different doll. When I saw OTR Elise at the reveal I was surprised at how different she managed to look. I loved the combination of the dark hair and fair skin — but I debated about her. I bought her, originally with the idea that I’d probably keep her shoes, purse and jewelry and sell her on, but instead I just kept her. I ended up giving her to myself for x-mas (hey, a girl needs to buy herself a present sometimes!). I’m glad I did though because I have seen some really great photos of her on Flickr which give me ideas on what I can do with her (after I get her out of that orange dress and wash the styling gunk out of her hair).

Elise-1

Downside to it: (aka why she isnโ€™t the #1 toy on the list!)
This year they decided to transition all of their mainline FR dolls onto the newer FR2 body type and they introduced some new features on some of the FR2 line –namely that the arms, legs and so forth were all removable so that you could detach them for ease of dressing and potentially to change out high heeled feet for others etc. I hoped that she had that feature–but alas, she doesn’t, so she doesn’t get a higher ranking because of that. Also, Integrity Toys used to be really good with their accessories being high quality but her purse was crap and I am very disappointed by it.

Overall:As she comes out of the box On the Rise Elise Jolie is pretty nice. She’s got a lot of potential to look good and with some styling you don’t even notice her ginormous forehead. Her accessories were “meh” and IMO her original market price should have reflected that better, but que sera sera. Despite all that I think she’s going to have a good character to play in my photostories.


Jan 022015
 

Here we go….#9!

2) Description of Toy/Toyline: Kyu (London Calling Dynamite Girls) Kyu is meant to be part of the Dynamite girls/Guys line. He came with some ok clothing (he’ll probably never wear most of it again) and that was about it.

london calling kyu

4) Why did it make your list?
He’s the first FR guy I have gotten. I pretty much wanted one so I could see (in person) how tall they really are vs. other dolls in my collection. A plus is that he has the “handspeak” function so I can take his hands off when trying to dress him. (I wish Integrity Toys would do a footspeak system too.) Also, his headsculpt is a nice change. His best piece of clothing is the green parka he came with.

Look at that hair. Out of the parka. Ugh.

london-calling-kyu-head-front

5) Downside to it: (aka why it isnโ€™t the #1 toy on the list!)
He’s a Dynamite Boy/guy (aka FR Homme body) which means it isn’t particularly well articulated (barbie has better articulation!!) :( and I am going to have to do some modding to make him a useable (repeat) character in my photostories.

The second major problem with him is that his Hair is atrocious.(like he was pulled through a hedge–backwards!) I have attempted a partial boil to flatten it a bit more on his head (he had serious issues). I cut his hair some already and I will be cutting his hair some more when I can figure out some kind of style for it.

london-calling-kyu-head

His head is partially flocked, partially rooted and all kinds of wonky! My female characters might not be terribly picky about the guys they take home but he isn’t going to get their attention (in a good way, anyway) with hair like that!

Kyu with his hair par-boiled…See? It’s already improved! But deciding how to cut it now…not so easy! I’m thinking long angular bangs, asymetrical. If it doesn’t work then I’ll cut the rest of it off and flock it. Can’t be that bad, right?

kyu-boiled-hair

Overall, he’s not a bad doll but I don’t see myself going out of the way to buy another FR guy unless they have done something to improve the range of motion and articulation. (Unless they made one that looked so interesting I couldn’t resist it, I guess…but that’s pretty damned unlikely!).


Oct 102014
 

Ah. Hmm. Let’s see little blog…What’s been happening since I last updated?

Well, this week it was my birthday.

A totally understated affair that consisted of going to work, grocery shopping, coming home, watching some cooking competitions online and then, going to sleep. Nothing doll or 1/6 related at all. My lovely husband gave me a handmade card (a jigsaw puzzle made out of wood in the shape of a cat). Like I said. Understated.

Next: I’ve been working on making some patterns and test fitting garments for the poppy parker bodies and the new FR(fr2) bodies now that I got my long coveted after Agnes – oh, I didn’t mention that? Do forgive me! ๐Ÿ˜‰

Late September was the time for all my grail dreams to come true. (For those unfamiliar with the term, a grail is a doll or action figure that one wants but finds incredibly difficult to come by, either because of rarity of release or because of the pricing on the secondary market).

First, I got my grubby hands on not one, but 2 High Visibility Agnes dolls. Both are in pretty good condition and are awaiting future tweaking.ย  She’s a lovely sculpt and I’ve been thinking about how I’ll introduce her as a character into the Quinlan Chronicles.

Then, when I least expected it, I got the chance to get a Night Scape Giselle…(if you’d like to see what the doll looks like here’s a link to someone else’s photos:

http://www.shugashug.com/2011/07/06/night-scape-giselle-2/

Night Scape is the one doll that I have consistently wanted since she was first released as a convention exclusive in 2011.I got her nude and am so stoked. It took some serious finagling and shifting to get the money in hand for her but I am really glad I managed it.ย  I have no doubt she is going to be awesome although I am planning on rebodying her onto a Poppy Parker body (unless the reveals at the convention this month show that they’ve decided to give the Nu Face line removable lower legs for flat foot & high heel replacement feet–which I dream for but doubt will happen). I like the poppy body better because it is shorter and makes it easier to integrate everyone -doll or action figure or even with the volks dollfies.

Like Agnes I am thinking furiously about what role she could play in the Chronicles. I’m thinking a twin of Giselle…but now comes all the difficult parts of names and backstory generation. But it is fun, so that’s ok. Who cares if I give myself a headache thinking about potential family names, given names and professions? ๐Ÿ˜›

Now, since we’re on the topic of my birthday–let’s do a flash back for a moment.

Last year for my birthday I managed to talk my sweetheart into getting me Escapism Elise, an FR2 doll. I’d found her nude for 116 shipped and even now that is a pretty good deal.

Sad to say though, that she sat in her plastic storage box for …most of the year. I took her out a few times, went through my clothing collection to determine that very little that I had would fit her well, and put her back in the box except to use for measuring with regard to making furniture and things for etsy. I do try to make sure that we have an array of FR figures so that most things we make can work for all/ any of them.

I realized that although I like her facial features, it’s her hair that kills the doll for me.

elise-escapism-2

I have never been a fan of the super pale skintone and then the pale hair. Especially her hair which is a light blonde.

Escapism Elise

She isn’t an ugly doll by any means, and I do like the sculpt (which is primarily why she’s stayed in the collection until now). I’d got her with the intention of having her re-rooted. Probably in reds/copper penny colors so that I can get her to pull off that stereotypical “Irish” look.ย  So probably over the winter or in the spring I’ll see about moving forward with that project.

What else?

I’ve been working on a brick wall for use in the small diorama base.ย  It’s done, and painted but I’m not sure how I feel about it. I need to shoot some photos of it Saturday night after work and I’ll post photos then. I’m still debating putting another coat of paint on it to make it more white and less grey.

Okay, so that’s it until the weekend rolls around.ย  Catch y’all then! ๐Ÿ˜‰

 

 

 

 

Jul 032014
 

You probably didn’t know that I’ve been waiting what feels like forever for Wolverine to arrive at my house.ย  Ever since Hot Toys announced that they were going release a new version based on the movie The Wolverine. I loved the promo shots they showed but Hot Toys doesn’t always hit the mark with their production pieces so I didn’t want to let myself get too excited until I had him in hand, and could make a judgement on him.

wolvie

He’s staying and I’m very pleased. My friend is equally pleased to have made off with his katana, bone claw hands and metal claw hands (I’m not using him as the character of Wolverine/Logan/James Howlett so I don’t need the claws). His clothes are very nicely made and the extra shoe set is ace.

Ok, so I popped him out of the box (it was a nicely designed box, nice graphics etc.) and peeled his clothes off his body. This was for two reasons: he’s predominantly wearing black which tends to stain (and I wanted to check for staining) and second, I wanted to see what the body was like and why I couldn’t seem to get much in the way of bend on his arms.

So here’s the deal:

I was disappointed (although d’uh, I should have twigged this in the promo shots) that his upper arm is lacking any articulation. Call me spoiled, since my old HT true type bodies had a joint there. I have since found out that this is their standard “buff” body and they did away with the joint so that it was more aesthetically pleasing. Huh. I always prefer articulation over appearance but I’m just not the average 1/6 consumer…I guess.

So now, let’s compare this new Wolverine headsculpt with the older one I bought back in august of 2013 (wow! So long ago!! Where’d the time go??!)

ht-body-comparison-2

Both bodies have soft vinyl torsos over a framework. The Pro for the wolverine body is that it is dark and if it gets stained from clothing (or handling) chances are it won’t show or be as noticeable as on the TT muscular body. The pro with the muscular body is once I pop those overly long foot pegs into shoes he’ll be a tiny bit taller ๐Ÿ˜‰

In the shot below you can see the ROM difference in the arms between the Hot Toys Wolverine body and the True Type Muscle body (there are a few other differences but right now I don’t feel like snapping more photos).

ht-body-comparison-1

You might (or not) remember that the reason I bought the Muscle Body was so that my Fashion Royalty girls would have the option to have a guy who wouldn’t be dwarfed by their amazingly tall selves… below are the Hot Toys True Type Slim, Regular and Muscle Bodies with Giselle (on her original Nu Face body) for height comparison.

ht-guys-nu-face-body-height-comparison

And here she is with Wolverine’s body (in the photo below she has been rebodied onto a poppy parker body and is therefore shorter than shown in the photos above!):

giselle-martin-wolvie-body

You can see that once I pop her in high heels that once more she’ll be taller than him… (Yes, I know that Wolverine, the comic book character actually was rather short, but since he isn’t being used as that character I don’t think that’s germane to my thought process at the moment…)

Of course, since Wolverine is a Hot Toys action figure I can swap his head onto another Hot Toys body…

martin-and-giselle-2

Don’t you think they look good together? And she can wear high heels and he’ll still be taller than her! ๐Ÿ˜€

martin-and-giselle-1

The downside of the swappage is that the great clothes that he came with will have to go to whoever takes his factory body. The plus side is that he gets a slightly better range of motion and can (debatably) be used with the FR2/new updated FR bodies (depending on how much taller IT makes the new releases). And of course, with any Poppy Parker bodies…

So. Do I keep him on his original body? Or do I swap him onto the muscle body?

Jun 302014
 

A while ago I caved and bought a Poppy Parker, Irresistible in India doll. You may (or may not) recall that I bought her with the intention of swiping her body and re-selling her head–so that Kendall (aka Perk Colette) could have a poppy body that was close to matching her skintone and allow me a wider range of options for male cast members in the Wrenwood Hall / Actresses storylines.

To refresh your memory: this is India

poppy-india-parker

Of course, after I’d bought her, I found a sweet confection poppy body for super cheap and I bought that and popped Kendall’s head on it.

Which left me with India.

I hemmed and hawed and left her in her shipper, in her box for a few months. Then I finally broke down and de-boxed her. It’s usually a pretty sure thing that once I de-box (if I went and actually bought a BNIB doll/figure instead of getting it nude on the secondary market) that I’m going to keep her.

But she’s been out of the box for a while and I have been re-dressing her in an attempt to get a feel for what kind of character she might be (meaning more than just knowing she’s another one of the actresses on the show).

poppy

Her current face isn’t really inspiring me much… Yes, she is very pretty–but there is something missing IMO.

poppy-2

I’m still debating giving her painting some tweaks. Maybe change her lip color, her eye color and see how she looks from there? I haven’t modded her at all at this point but if she stays in my collection she will be.

Jun 082014
 

Yesterday I finally made time to go out after work and shoot some (non cat) photos with the nifty 50. I hesitated going to the local park/bike trail and my honey basically said wasn’t that the whole point of cobbling the old body & lens together? I said “yeah. something like that.” and after some hemming and hawing I got Giselle, redressed her in something appropriate and tossed her in a tupperware container and off we went down the road.

We got there and of course the place was teeming with kids and dogs. Neither of which I really want to have to deal with while I’m kneeling, or in some cases lying on my ample stomach to try to shoot photos. So Mark and I walked down the path a-ways until the noises subsided and the dogs and small people (and their keepers) went home. Out came Giselle from her tupperware prison and I looked for someplace likely to pose her.

I love the creek/brook that runs through the trail area.

creek

I only found the whole park last month when Mark came home and our friend came to visit. It seemed like a good time to explore our area, you know? ๐Ÿ˜‰

Anyway…Here are some of the photos I took to begin with: (my favorite photos are at the end of this post)

martin-1

Hmm, did I mention a new guy showed up in town…? We’ll have another post about him later!

giselle-at-the-creek-3

You can tell by looking when the light was stronger and when I changed photo locations. For the photo below I really should have gotten down to eye-level but I didn’t want to lay on my belly in the mud. ๐Ÿ˜› I know…it would have made a better shot. I have to think about bringing things to lie on, maybe?

giselle-at-the-creek-2

This next one is possibly my all time favorite of Giselle.

giselle-at-the-creek

giselle-on-the rocks

giselle-on-the-ledge-portrait-b

For some of these photos I had to get wet. I was standing in the creek to get them: but that’s part of trying to break through my camera/damage fear of shooting outdoors, right?

shooting-in-the-creek

Anyway, I think overall the photos came out pretty well. I was shooting without a tripod or other means of stabilization and that says a lot since I have incredibly shaky hands (and poor balance)! I did almost slip on the slimy/ moss/covered rocks under the water ,but I saved myself and did not go >SPLOOOOOOSH!<

So there you have it. The first batch of photos on my road to breaking through that mental roadblock! ๐Ÿ˜€

Something I WISH Integrity Toys would do with their doll bodies…

 1:6 scale Dolls & Action Figures, fashion royalty, What do YOU think?  Comments Off on Something I WISH Integrity Toys would do with their doll bodies…
May 312014
 

I thought I’d blogged about this already but apparently not! No wonder no-one had anything to say about my thoughts on the subject!

giselle Giselle however…Is concerned about what the future holds for her.

As I said in my last post, I joined IT’s W-Club and had a good look-see at the new FR line and Poppy Parker dolls that they will be releasing later this summer/early fall. Of course I ordered some, of course! I went nuts. LOL. ๐Ÿ˜€ Despite my euphoria at getting an Agnes, and Integrity Toys re-releasing the Ayumi 1.0 mold (as Tina Tanaka in the poppy Universe) I’m still bothered and a bit disgruntled that with all the “re-vamping” and “changes” that IT is/has supposedly made/is making to their lines of dolls that they seem more hype than actual changes. Ok, so the FR/ FR2 lines merged and now there’s just FR 2.0.

IMO one thing that really sucks is that they just keep getting taller and taller and taller! My other big gripe is that the articulation/ pose-ability isn’t improving in any marked way.

This is what I mean:
Remember back in 2009 Integrity Toys came out with the Handspeak System?

Wow. Removable hands. They made life a lot easier for those of us who re-dress their dolls, and gave us pose-options with a few different hand types.

The handspeak system is a very simple one. Hand with a jointed section with a long pin to insert into the forearm/wrist area. It’s mostly a friction fit. NOT rocket science.

(As an aside:Sadly, Integrity Toys didn’t bother to release any packs of hands with alternative or different poses. I’d have happily plunked down money on that. And even bought duplicates so I could put different colored paint on the nails as polish for them!)

Well, what have they done since then?

1) “Quick Switch” headswapping feature (on limited dolls-1st Joan Crawford doll, now some of the Poppy Parker & Jem dolls that were newly announced will have it.)

2) ERR…? Anything else I forgot about? I mean aside from adding the FR2 line and then discontinuing it and melding it with the FR main line? Does anyone know if the new FR 2.0 line still has the waist joint the original FR2 dolls had or if that’s been nixed?

As you can see they haven’t done a whole lot of world shaking upgrades or changes. Maybe, if I didn’t know about the wide array of female action figure bodies (which are constantly changing & evolving into more aesthetically pleasing AND articulated pieces) I’d be ok about it. For example, if all I’d ever collected or played with were barbies—I’d probably still be over the moon about ITs handspeak system. Maybe. I doubt it though–I’m a demanding collector/player. ๐Ÿ˜‰

So back to that earth-shaking Handspeak System: Why couldn’t Integrity use the same thing for FR or Poppy Feet/ Legs? (again, because I’m a cross genre figure collector I know that 2/3 of the female action figures on the market not only have feet that are removable–interchangeable for flat feet or High heel feet)

Some people might say that it’s because adding those joints at the ankle (like Poppy Parker has) are unsightly and ugly. Some might say that they’d be fragile and unable to hold the weight of the dolls or the poses most fashionista doll owners want them to hold.

My response to that is this: many ball jointed dolls have those joints (and more) such as Sybarites, Dollfie Dreams, Soom dolls etc which are IMO “fashion dolls” not really doll-dolls. And of course action figure females, and also too, volks 27 cm beauty dollfies too. They all seem to function perfectly fine with that joint there.
Actually, thinking about it, didn’t Tonner’s Tyler Wentworth doll have removable feet at some point? Allowing her to have flatter feet or high heels??

Oh yes: they do!

24 bucks for a pack of feet?ย ย  I’d pay it just to have the options for poses! Why can’t Integrity manage to do something similar? WHY, Integrity? Why? *cries*
I’m not saying that FR/ Nu Face or even Poppy need to have ballerina feet (I have no ballerina dolls) but I do have dolls that I want to have more options for foot wear and poses!ย  It would be a great improvement on the lines to be able to swap out their feet. It would allow for more ranges in height (hello, notice that everyone in FR land is the same height as everyone else? Ugh.)

I’m not going all out here on articulating the Integrity Toys doll lines (for instance, I think they could also make the knee joint like the Syb’s but I don’t see them ever doing that they’d consider it too ugly, although the Jamieshow knees look ok).

Just talking about the next reasonable step from the Handspeak system. Shouldn’t it be the Footspeak?

My thoughts are this:

#1) They could either make the lower leg removable from the knee joint and sell a packet of flat or high heel (or uber high heel) feet separately. The pink line shows the post application.

footspeak-system-idea-1ย  footspeak-system-idea-2

#2 they could make the joint at the ankle (Hey, Poppy’s body already HAS a joint there! Score! If they wanted to test the feasibility they could release a Poppy with “foot speak” and see how that sells. I know a lot of people who dislike Poppy dislike her solely because IT made such a craptastic joint there. It flips back and forth when it SHOULD be a ball joint. unless they make it removable. Like the hands.)

Seriously, IT what were you thinking?ย  When you put her feet flipped back in high heels the line of the foot looks misshapen.ย  I deal with it because I love the fact that she can be shorter than other dolls but a lot of people avoid the line and or/ rebody their Poppy Parkers onto FR bodies because of it.ย  IMO they should re-do it and do it right.

So what to do?

1) I’m waiting for the Nu Face reveal later this year. Do I think they’ll have adjusted or added or done anything with the ankle? No. I doubt it. In fact, I’d bet good money that they won’t. I think the Nu Face girls will be taller, with slightly resculpted torso/ chest areas. That, and a new face sculpt or two. that I think is going to be the extent of the massively touted re-vamp.

2) A while ago I bought the Monogram Echelon on the doll page. I bought her specifically because she is the same skintone and chest size as the Poppy Parker body that I re-bodied Giselle onto. My original thought at the time was to tweak my other Old is New Giselle head and pop that on the Echelon body thus allowing me to have Giselle wearing High Heels when appropriate or having her in flats/ sneakers or whatever whenever I wanted. But you know, the more I think about that, the more I don’t want to have to have 2 versions of her head and body just for her to be able to wear some of the great high heeled shoes out there.

I’ll wait until the reveal, but if it reveals what I expect, then I will be doing some surgical re-modeling of the echelon and poppy bodies to give Giselle the interchangeable feet /legs she so needs and deserves! I have a saw and I’m not at all afraid to use it! ๐Ÿ˜›

But my point is: as a doll collector, and someone who enjoys playing with them: I shouldn’t have to play chop shop with my doll bodies to get them to be as good as what other doll manufacturers are putting out there.

 

May 272014
 

This year was my first foray into the W Club. I figured it would be a good experience and allow me a sneak peak at what new lines, dolls, and characters that Integrity is putting out this year. I thought at most I’d get one. Maybe two dolls.

To be fair, the forums are good, the people are pretty friendly, and I have gotten a lot of information that I’d never have gotten otherwise. So there was a reveal earlier this month.It wasn’t for the long awaited re-vamp of the Nu Face line (which I hope beyond hope that they haven’t screwed with Giselle’s face mold since I’d really like to pick a few of her up for customizing/ making into alternative versions of Giselle Weston, Actress and inhabitant of Quinlan. ๐Ÿ˜‰

The W Club makes it all about “secret” and “confidentiality” and all that jazz.ย  IMO they hype it up a lot.ย  Which, I’m not sure if people are paying for that exclusivity and feeling of being special or being in the first to know–or what. I can only discuss my personal motivations for being part of the Club.

I joined because I really was just hoping that they’d release an Agnes since I haven’t ever been able to afford one on the secondary market (she never seems to sell for under $200, and forget if you want her with some clothing, just forget it! Both of those things make her beyond the scope of my budget. Especially since I’m bound to eventually tweak and /or repaint her. Too much $$ for that…). Annnnnd there is supposed to be a release of the Nu Face line –and I wanted in on that before they went for scalpers’ prices on the dollpage and on feebay. So I guess I want that “first to know” info, don’t I? ๐Ÿ˜‰

Anyway, I broke down and bought more dolls than I’d planned on.ย  A lot.

I know, I know. I Knooooooooooow
I said I’d just buy an Agnes if they had one–and maybe a poppy if there was one that appealed to me… Now before I go and start showing you photos of the dolls I pre-ordered, remember, this is my first go-round with the process…It wasn’t quite as straight forward as you might think it would be…

So, how does it work? How do I get the dolls I want? (provided there are some I want, right?)
I was asking that just about the time that they (IT’s W club) sent out an email stating when the webinar reveal was going to be.

The basic answer I got was: “You have to call or emailย  when you see the doll you want (during the reveal/webinar). Thenย  you hope that one of dealers carrying the line will take your order! Some will. Some won’t. Somne make you wait until after the webinar, some don’t. But order FAST because everyone else will be ordering then too!”

Didn’t sound like much fun to me.
Sounded stressful.
Sounded chancy.

Hmm…and I signed on for this? It wasn’t what I was expecting. I’d kind of thought that since it wasย  a club, that it would be all neat and orderly–and that there’d be (basically) a doll for everyone who wanted to order one.

>Head Smack< What was I thinking?!!

Well, like any good survivor I rolled with it. Rather than waiting til the day of the reveal (I’d arranged with my job to work the evening shift so I could take part) I decided to do my homework and check out the various doll stores/ IT dealers and see what kind of feedback and what their shipping & payment policies were.

I was quite surprised to see how much it varied across the board.ย Some wanted 25% down, some wanted 50%, or 75% and some wanted payment in full before they’d take the pre-order. Some of them were reasonable, some of them weren’t (IMO) and some of them were real jerks when I called. Those ones immediately went into the discard bin. I’m not going to pay someone money to be mean to me (I may be a masochist, but I never pay LOL) ๐Ÿ˜‰
So I found two dealers who seemed pretty nice, capable of communicating, and willing to take my order (on the day of the webinar/reveal). Then all I had to do was wait for the actual webinar.

Well, the day came around, and voila! 11:30 I logged into the secret-magic-link that the IT people had emailed me so I could join the “fun”. I figured since it began at noon it was better to log in early and make sure I got all the tech/set up stuff out of the way. It was remarkably trouble free and when things started up it went pretty well. I wasn’t too thrilled at how the woman presenter was gushing over everything. Sorry, but no. Gushing will not make me want to buy something I think is naff.ย  Be real, would you?ย  I liked hearing the designers talk but the real show for me was (of course) the dolls.

They started with the Poppy Parker reveals. I didn’t really expect to want much. The whole spy-girl thing is ok, but I dislike Poppy because of her time period. It doesn’t appeal to me too much. (Now, take poppy, dress her in modern clothes and I think she’s much improved, and likeable.)
(photos below are all property of Integrity Toys)
They showed Lotta Danger Poppy Parker:
Poppy Parker Lotta Danger
She’s pretty, right? Nice coloring combination going on there.
Yea. I wanted to order her–but I didn’t order her right away–(while they were revealing the other poppy parker dolls) because I wasn’t 100% sure about her. To someone who didn’t collect action figures (male and female) the whole spy thing might have been cool. But come on. I know what the articulation on it is like. Poppy’s body isn’t one I’d use for a character that has to have lots of dynamic poses. Uh uh.
But still, she’s pretty looking.
I waited and thought about ordering her. I was pretty sure she’d be popular with that coloring combo.

Wondering what the other poppy dolls were going to be like–they showed another poppy who looked like it was influenced by some old Cleopatra movie crossed with the 60’s clothing styles. The paint application and coloring wasn’t as striking and I passed.
But then….
Somewhere down the line….they showed the “poppy friends”. (Sounds lame, right?)

Meet Tina Tanaka:

Oh. Wow.ppkimiko1
Oh Wow wow wow!
Integrity did something I never expected! They released a doll that used the Ayumi 1.0 headsculpt! FREAKIN AWESOME!@!!! WOW!!! ๐Ÿ˜€ ๐Ÿ˜€ ๐Ÿ˜€

I was thrilled! I immediately called and ordered one. How could I not? She’s on a poppy body with the articulated ankles, and that means I won’t have to futz around with body swapping! Ok, I admit the face will need repainting, but I was buying her so I could customize her. Repainting ahead!At that point I tried to order the Lotta Danger Poppy and was told by my first choice dealer that she was sold out (bummer) but I did try my second choice (they’re second because they want a larger pre-order deposit) and they had both (so err, I bought the poppy as well as a second ayumi.

Awesomeness! Yay! Now, even if there wasn’t an Agnes in the collection I could consider myself happy. YAY@!@@ After the certainty that IT wouldn’t be using that sculpt anymore (since they now had the 2.0 sculpt in the FR2 line) it was great to see ayumi’s original sculpt being used.

They went through more of the line, introduced a few new characters (and the old Nadja headsculpt) and then went into the next section. I think it was the Jem stuff. I have a certain amount of nostalgia about Jem, but as a doll, and as potential characters in my photostories they are too limited. Plus, I think that the paint applications on them are really flat looking.
They went through the Tulabelle stuff and whatever else, and then –then they started doing the FR line. I’m all kinds of anxious at this point. Is my internet connection going to hold? Am I going to get disconnected at the vital moment??!

No. It all was good. and surprisingly, the whole FR line was pretty good looking IMO. Just as well that I don’t tend to collect them. There were however two dolls in that set that I wanted and did order:

Eugenia:(mostly because I wanted her clothes for other wardrobes)since I’m not always the biggest fan of the sculpt.
frcityprowl

frcityprowl2

And of course the other doll:

Elise.

on-the-rise-elisefrjolie
I thought I’d buy her and then see how I feel about her when she gets here. I suspect though, that she might end up finding a new home because I already have Escapism Elise waiting for a re-root. On the Rise Elise wouldn’t need a re-root but…I dunno. She was an impulse buy and I doubt she’ll stay.

And then….

And then……..

They announced the Event Doll–Agnes! WOOT! There it is! The golden ticket! Rawr!
(Do I sound like a complete nutter yet???)
high-visibility-agneshigh-visibility-agnes-1

Her clothes don’t do it for me at all, but that doesn’t matter. She’s ordered and I have someone willing to split a 2nd one with me (she takes the clothes, accessories etc and I get the nekkid doll) which totally stokes me because it means I can experiment with taking her hair down (which we were cautioned about in the webinar) and see how it goes. It also means I can (on that one) tweak the lips and make them slightly more frowny like a regular Agnes! Woot!

So… let’s see. I’ve blown 4 months of doll savings in one morning. ouch.ย  No one warned me about that! ๐Ÿ˜›

Jan 172014
 

Let’s see… This is what Kyu looks like now that I have boiled his hair…

kyu-boiled-hair

He needs a haircut/style but I’m a bit stumped on what to do with it. Do I cut it short? Just cut the bangs area and try to level the rest out? I’m so clueless…. :S

Aside from Kyu needing his hair restyled he needs more doing to him.

1) He needs to have a joint-fix applied so he has a better range of motion.

2) Repaint or partially repaint his face. As it is now it’s pretty bland. It needs some life being given to it!

3) Make some clothes. Poor guy only has the threads he came in and IMO they don’t do it.

 

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Jan 082014
 

Tell me, what was Integrity Toys thinking when they gave London Calling Kyu his hair style?

london-calling-kyu-head-front

Can you really call that a hair style? I don’t know! I don’t think so.
It’s so helmet-head-ly. And…. What is this?

london-calling-kyu-head

Flocking? Uhm…o-kay… So we have massive side-helmet hair, flocking…..and…..

london-calling-kyu-head-side

Underneath that side-flip-helmet hair thing — MORE flocking?!

Ugh. What am I supposed to do with that? Ugh, Ugh UGH!

The way I see it, I have the following options:

1) thin out the side-flip so that it lays a lot flatter and closer to the head.

2) Cut the whole side flip thing off short enough to make the center look like a brush-cut. I suspect this may work because of the flocking on both sides.

3) thin the hair out, boil perm it so it will lay smoother and more flat over the flocked sides. This is the one I think I’m going to go this route and if it fails then I’ll go route #2. Of course there is the chance that the flocking will come off when I do the boil perm…

Right now he looks like this (which I find much better) LOL

london-calling-kyu-head-front-mussed

Jan 052014
 

Yea. I know. I said it was highly unlikely that I was _ever_ going to break down and get a Fashion Royalty guy doll. I know. And I’m now being forced to eat my words! ๐Ÿ˜›

So I hear you asking…

Why, Erica? What’s changed? you might even look at me funny and say: Didn’t you just swap a whole bunch of your Fashion Royalty girls onto Poppy Parker bodies so you could use them with Hot Toys Action Figure guys?And you’d be right! I did!

What changed is the fact that Mark and I are going to be making doors & windows (and other things too) for Etsy.

I would feel rotten if we sold a door to someone that it is good for FRs and found that it was actually too short (not that that doesn’t happen in real life, mind you–our house is old and Mark smacks his forehead on them all the time). But still. We don’t want that to happen….

Kyu is roughly 13.5 inches which in 1:1 scale means he’s 6 foot 9 inches tall. He must be a model…or a basketball player! ๐Ÿ˜€

So My FR girls are expecting an FR guy to arrive soon.

I was trying to source a low-cost, FR guy that I could tolerate looking at. Not an easy feat in the after x-mas financial state… I ended up selling 2 of my Girls Mission dolls to a fellow collector and using that money to buy London Calling Kyu, from the dynamite girls collection. It was a sacrifice–letting go of older, hard to find figures to get him. I really, really hope he ends up being worth it!

london calling kyu

I’m not overly thrilled with his appearance. However, I suspect that with some work I can make him into a figure I can tolerate looking at and using. And who knows–after a re-style, a bit of repainting and a re-name… maybe he can get cast in a role in Wrenwood Hall, you never know. ๐Ÿ˜‰

The first thing I am going to have to fix is that “helmet head” thing he has going on.

Anyway that’s the doll update. ๐Ÿ˜‰ Keep watching Etsy — I’ll be listing stuff later this week (probably Thursday) and mark is still working on his technical drawings for the furniture he is making for etsy! Exciting things ahead! ๐Ÿ˜€

 

 

Dec 132013
 

So it’s been a while, right? Since I managed to put together a Friday Monologue. I’m recalling now why I have been so reluctant to do them. My memory made me think it was just normal stress, and regular life stuff. But that is incorrect.

(You can skip through the following rant to the photostory! I’m feeling very rant-y today!)

The real reason is the software program that I was using. I’ve been using Plasq Comic Life 2. I had been using their original (first release) when I was in the UK and although it was buggy (and prone to occasional crashes) I liked it for throwing things together quick and easy.

I can’t say the same about Comic Life 2.0 for Windows(or the 3.0 which is in beta, that I had downloaded last week and after 1 use and looking it over decided to uninstall it.) IMO it’s a bloated program that has lost most of it’s charm–and any reliability it had. Today, in the course of working on Giselle’s FM it crashed a total of ELEVEN times. Eleven times in FOUR HOURS. Not good. Ok, I knew that I should always save every few minutes (or hell, any time I actually put some text in the bubbles) because I tend to diverge from my sketch scripts…and when I’ve done that, failed to save it and it crashes–well, that flash of creativity and insight into that character is gone with it. :(

I am going to say this now. Giselle’s Friday Monologue is the very last one I am going to be using plasq’s comic life for.

It’s too unreliable, too frustrating.
For example:

  1. No matter what I do or what settings I use the text always looks less than crisp.
  2. The interface for the program is so filled with bells and whistles and crap that it makes my eyes hurt. SCREW THAT>> Life is too short for crap programs.
  3. It is so buggy it needs an exterminator.
  4. Crashes like there is no tomorrow! (and for some of the scripts, there are NO tomorrows!)

What’s my solution?

I’ll do them old school from now on, in a proper graphics program.

Shoot, it looks like I’m going to have to learn my way around illustrator! >_< steep learning curve, but I can do it. You folks deserve to know the whole story behind each character. I’m washing my hands of Plasq’s Comic Life. (the comic part must be how many times I kept trying to use it! Bleh!)

I’d also like to apologize to some folks that I recommended the program to. When I’d done that I was still using the first edition, and was pretty darned happy with it. :S My how software changes–and not always for the better! >:(

ANYWAY! On to the story: Giselle’s moved to Quinlan, you know? :)

As usual CLICK on the image below for the monologue!Friday Monologues: #11 Giselle Weston

Dec 032013
 

So you may or may not recall that I got a Poppy Parker Spicy in Spain a little while back. I swas surprised at the time that I kep her because, well she didn’t really fit my tastes…but I kept her anyhow. I thought that if I did a partial repaint I’d like her better… And I do! ๐Ÿ˜€

So here she is before:

poppy-spicy-spain-2

And how she looks after:

repainted spicy in spain 2

I like her new look a lot better although the repaint is pretty sloppy when you see it close up. But even so, it’s an improvement in my book!

 

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