Thursday, November 11, 2010

Barbie Basic 1.5 Model 003

Barbie Basic 1.5 Model 003, originally uploaded by alington.

This lovely Barbie Basics doll is from the 1.5 collection, and is Model 003 (Steffie face). She is wearing a J-Doll outfit, and accessories from the Gold Accessory pack (also Barbie Basics line).

I may try to repaint her lips a more neutral tone, at some point--her original outfit was a black taffeta dress with pink trim, which I assume her pink lipstick is supposed to match.

You can see more photos of her on Flickr.

Monday, November 8, 2010

Don't forget!

Don't forget to follow us over at the Fashion Doll Review blog now. We've added a couple of great contributors over there, including Shuga-Shug and Kathie (aka BarbieKenScout on her eBay store, Kathie's Fashion Dolls), who add to the conversation about 11-12" fashion dolls.

I'm about to start a short series on the Steffie sculpt, too. Thanks!

Saturday, June 12, 2010

The new blog is done!

The Fashion Doll Review is up and running. While I plan to leave this blog functioning, I will now be posting (along with several other authors who are more knowledgeable in the field of Barbie, vintage Barbie, Tiny Kitty, Momoko, Fashion Royalty, Poppy Parker, FR Nippon, Takara Jenny, Blythe, and other fashion dolls) from that new site.

If you don't already follow the Fashion Doll Review, I'd love it if you'd join us there. Please leave us comments on what you'd like to hear! Thanks so much!

Monday, June 7, 2010

Blog update...

Hello, dear readers,

I'm in the process of combining the Fashion Doll Review with the Barbie Queue blog once more. Within a week or so, I should have some news regarding these new plans, I hope. I'm excited about them, and I hope you will be, too!

Thursday, May 27, 2010

New releases from Barbie - photos are here

In my regular newsletter from Vogue's Collectibles, and I was delighted to see several new photos in there. Both sets are ready for pre-order from your favorite Barbie dealer.

First, a set that is terribly tempting to the shoe fetish that reside deep in my sole, is the Christian Louboutin Shoe pack. This Gold Label set retails for $69.95 and includes nine pairs of adorable shoes (replicas of actual shoes from the Louboutin line) and a few shoe boxes. They are so cute. These are due to ship in September 2010.

Second, the next in line for the Ladies of the 80s series, Jennifer Beals from 1983's Flashdance. She retails for $39.95, and I believe she uses the Mackie face mold. Her outfit uses the sweatshirt and leg warmers. The chair isn't included, and the pillows are chipboard and a part of the packaging. My only comment here is one noted by Dolls of Color's latest blog, and that's the color of her skin--she's very white, which I find rather interesting, to say the least.
These aren't quite ready for pre-order yet. From the Barbie Basics line, we've seen photos of the new Barbie Basics Wave 2. I must add Wave 2 #2, as Steffie is a staple in this house. Additionally, I've finally found real promo photos of the Basic 1.5 Shoe Pack Accessory #8, which includes 18 pairs of shoes. CUte! Love the zebra! And more fun clothing, jacket, skirt and purse accessories are included in Basic Look 1.5 Accessory #5 set. Both retail for #22.99.
Photos property of Mattel.

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Dal Charlotte on sale at The Doll Market

If you're a fan of ball gowns or historical fashion, check out this adorable Dal (Pullip's friend by Jun Planning) on sale at the Doll Market for $109.97 (retail $130). The Doll Market also offers a price matching guarantee as well, if you can find her for less.

This lovely strawberry blonde pouty-faced Dal is dressed in a gorgeous yellow gown, trimmed with blue and salmon ribbon flowers, lace and ribbons. Her hair is an intricate braided updo with ringlets on the sides, and to top off the look is a gorgeous yellow hat.

Photo property of the Doll Market and Jun Planning.

The No. 10 "Scandal"

Barbie Fashionista Glam, originally uploaded by alington.
I think I first read about the scandal on a doll blog this morning (and of course, I can't remember which), and it was all over Twitter. If you read about Barbie on the web, I'm sure you've heard of the latest Barbie "scandal" involving the gorgeous Basic Barbie No. 10, who is considered "too busty" for younger girls.

When I saw the original interviews (and the "extensive" one minute 25 second story), I noticed several things:
  1. The reporter of the story is comparing collector dolls designed for adults (Barbie Basics) to playline dolls. It occurs to me that the general public perhaps really doesn't know there is a difference. Would a mother really buy her daughter a $20 doll dressed only in a black dress and shoes? 
  2. The first woman who is interviewed is wearing a deep v-necked shirt, which is quite flattering for her figure. While she isn't quite as perky as the Barbie, it's still fairly low cut. I wonder if she realizes that her wardrobe choices possibly minimizes the importance her complaint about the doll.
  3. Then, when the woman holds up the "right kind" of doll, she displays an older style Doll of the World Barbie, who is dressed in traditional costume. This is one type of collector doll which included world heritage costumes. Barbie Basics are fashion models, and they are fashion dolls. They shouldn't be wearing ruffles, turtlenecks and full-length gowns, because, even this woman's own wardrobe reflects, this is not what current fashion dictates.
  4. The second woman discusses the idea of introducing age-appropriate Barbies to her girls, and is fascinated by "middle-aged adult women" who pay "up to $100" for a doll. This sort of points out an extreme lack of awareness in the public of doll collectors. Check out Mattel's press release of the most expensive Barbie by Canturi, which was valued at over $545,000 for more on this subject.
  5. Finally, the doll in question is a black doll. Both women interviewed in the story are white. In the women's homes, I only saw white dolls. This doesn't mean that they don't have any non-white dolls, of course. But I wonder if the underlying source of this "wardrobe complaint" wasn't really rooted in something more subversive. One of the things I really like about the Barbie Basics line is the dolls' diversity. I was impressed with the variety of sculpts and skin tones that Mattel usually doesn't tackle very well. It seems to me that racism is very deeply rooted in our society, and if Mattel will fight this tooth and nail to keep this gorgeous doll on the shelf, I think that's one more tiny step towards progress.
Finally, I have to speak out as a mother of four children. Seriously now, when I take my children to Target, here is my experience:
  • Yes, they ask for toys. But I do not buy them every toy in the store, nor do I buy them everything they want. 
  • Yes, they often want age-inappropriate toys. But I did not buy them toys with small pieces before they were three, and I still do not allow M-rated video games in the house.
  • And no, the toys do not jump off the shelves into my cart without my knowledge. (Well, if I am alone, that might happen, especially at Target, since it can go under the "household" category in Quicken. But it's more like a case of my right hand not knowing what my left hand is doing.)
So if you don't like it, you'll be relieved to know that you don't have to buy it! It's as simple as that. Get over it. It's a doll. I'm just amazed at what passes as news. Isn't there anything more interesting to report? Though heck, it does make for an interesting blog post. ;)

Posh Girl

Posh Girl, originally uploaded by alington.
An older photo I somehow forgot to blog, this is Posh Girl, Misaki (FR Nippon by Integrity Toys), has finally been redressed after all this time. She's got the most fabulous aqua eye shadow.

She's wearing a dress from a Birthstone Barbie (probably March--Miss Aquamarine), one faux fur coats from the second Juicy Couture gift set and her original shoes.

See her full photo shoot on Flickr.

Thursday, May 20, 2010

Vintage Talking PJ

Vintage Talking PJ, originally uploaded by alington.
Here is a slightly better shot of a 1969 vintage Talking PJ. She's been squeezed into a current playline Barbie swimsuit and coverup, and she's holding a martini. I think it's perfect for beach season.

I just adore this girl.

Monday, May 17, 2010

Vintage Barbies on Display

Glass diplay vintage Barbies, originally uploaded by alington.
It's mint green and blue month at my house. I would have just one color, if I had more outfits, quit spending so much money on BJDs, and actually sold unwanted dolls rather than trading them, I suppose. But what would be the fun in that?

From the left:
  • 1968 Brownette Talking Barbie in Zokko repro outfit
  • 1969 Talking PJ in a current playline outfit (flip flops and martinini glass were also included in the set of three outfits, and the clothes barely fit)
  • 1975 (rebodied) Free Moving PJ, also redressed in, current playline Barbie clothes which barely fit
  • 1968 Talking Barbie (brunette), wearing current playline Barbie dress and Barbie Basics accessory pack boots
Do you rotate your displays? Do you have themes or redress your dolls? How often?

You can see more photos of my May display on my Flickr photostream.

Red, White and Warm Barbie Barbie Vintage Repro 1969 Made for Each Other My Favorite Career Vintage Student Teacher Sixties Fun Barbie Vintage 1974 Mattel Three Floors Townhouse

Saturday, May 15, 2010

Barbie Basics - Target Exclusives

Hang onto your hats--this adorable set of three Barbie Basics will be a fun Target exclusive available in the fall of 2010. The set will also include a red and white accessory pack and a second accessory pack.

Additionally, the Barbie Basics line will also release two more shoe packs and another Fashion accessory pack.

(Eeek--one of these ladies is Steffi, no bangs! And we actually don't have either of the other two dolls in black dresses yet, either. Love them--all three!)

Photo property of Mattel.

Barbie Collector Basics Model #008Barbie Basics Model #001  Barbie Collector Basics Model #003

Friday, May 14, 2010

Got an extra 1,600 Euros?

According to a short blog post in BoingBoing, there is a hotel in Paris (called the Hotel Plaza Athénée), which has two Barbie-themed rooms. Designed for guests, aged three and over, these rooms are modeled after Barbie's dream house. Including in the 1,600 Euro (per night) cost, a "special girlie gift" is also included, which is apparently "designed by Barbie."

For you fortunate parents, you can have a connecting room for a mere 2,500 Euros per night.

I noticed that there are quite a few strongly negative comments on this post on BoingBoing post. And while I would agree that spending $5,200 per night at a hotel does seem a little pricey (and certainly more than I'd like to spend), I would be the last person to pass judgment on how a wealthy person spends his or her travel money. I still don't understand what the big deal is--I have four children, and I know it's possible to spoil them. But it's also terribly fun to splurge on them occasionally. But it's quite possible I just don't have enough experience as a mother. Or a doll collector.

What's your opinion?

Photo property of the Hotel Plaza Athénée.

New special offer dolls from

A new addition which is limited in supply is available now from

  • 2009 Ex*Cute Lien/Angelic SighIII by Azone. Only four pieces are available. 11,550 Yen (about $124.96 US)
There was another limited edition Amelie (Tokyo Doll Show), but the only two pieces available are already sold out!

Photo property of Azone International.

Friday, May 7, 2010

New Barbies announced and available for pre-order!

Several new Barbies (and friends) have been announced. I heard about these from My Favourite Doll in Canada.
  • Mad Men Roger Sterling--Sterling Cooper partner's silver haired companion doll. He is ready for pre-order now, for $79.95. Estimated delivery is July 2010.
  • For you Twilight fans, I'm thrilled to announce the lovely Alice. With her wonderful short brown flip and golden eyes, she comes dressed in her standard fashionable outfit: a peasant blouse, velvet vest, and skinny jeans. She's available for pre-order for $34.95 with a fall 2010 delivery date.
  • Victoria is also available. Fashionably dressed in a glamorous coast, striped vest and purple blouse, and skinny jeans with black boots, don't let her beautiful fiery red curls distract you from her evil intentions. Retail price is $29.95 and she's expected in fall 2010 as well.
MFD will be closed for the holidays next week, from May 10-15. But they also advertise that they have both the Christian Louboutin Anemone Barbie in stock now, and will have Palm Beach Coral (Silkstone) next week.

Photos courtesy of Mattel/My Favourite Doll.

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

Finding older Barbies at the price you want to pay.

Perhaps you're like me--an adult collector who has decided to remake her childhood collection, and add the dolls she always wished for as a girl. In my case, it's 1980s-era pink box Barbies, which were made in copious supply. But these days, it's rare to find a NRFB pink box Barbie, and those can be priced fairly high. So, what to do? What is the best way to find a doll like this? I'll share my tips with how I found Crystal Barbie.

  • First, I had to decide what condition I would settle for in my collection. Crystal Barbie was a doll I never owned as a girl, and one I had always coveted. Ideally, I wanted a complete and mint doll. Non-smoking home was a must.
  • Next, I started my search on Google. It helps a lot if you know the doll's year of issue. Crystal was originally released in 1983. It just helps because there may be other dolls with a similar name, and this will help narrow your search. I entered "crystal barbie 1983" in the search box.
  • Amazon often has third party sellers that carry vintage dolls. They currently have two listed. One for $99.97 and one for $30. Be sure to always check the sellers' rating before purchasing from a third party seller. And because the price range differ so much (when I was looking, I only saw the $99.97 doll for sale), be sure to do some comparison shopping, too.
  • Sure enough, on the first page of the Google listings, there are some Shopping Results. Again, pretty big price range, the lowest is $40 from Ruby Lane. Unfortunately, the doll listed there is missing her right drop earring (and her hair isn't exactly mint).
  • Don't forget about the wonderful DollPage Show and Sell site. It's free to post your ads for dolls there, and all listings are only for dolls. Do your homework (on price and also on seller feedback!) before making an offer on a doll, however.
  • Next, check out eBay. Make sure you ask relevant questions before you buy (for me, that question might be, "Does she come from a non-smoking home?") And also, be sure the seller has plenty of positive feedback. You may bid on more than one doll at a time, but you run the risk of winning all of them, or none of them. Also, you can do your own search on eBay as well. Here are the results of "crystal barbie -jubilee -rhapsody -splendor -elizabeth -holiday", which will show you mostly Crystal Barbie (and still some others you're not looking for, too). It's a good way to gauge going prices. Also look on Completed Listings as well, though you will have to log in to eBay to see the results.
  • If you're looking specifically for a Barbie, be sure to stop by the Doll Lounge. They often have dolls here at reasonable prices. They also have a selection of celebrity dolls, Crissy, Glamour Gals, Jem, Tuesday Taylor, She-Ra, Rainbow Brite, Masters of the Universe, Smurfs and more.
  • Also, don't forget to check Joe's List, Joe Blitman's website. His inventory is updated regularly and is worth checking out. He knows all there is to know about vintage dolls and collecting. I bet if you can't find a particular doll, he might be able to help you.
  • Doll club meetings and doll shows. Sometimes, you'll find the doll you've always wanted in someone else's collection. So don't be shy--bring up the fact that you're on the lookout for a particular doll. Lots of people are looking for a specific doll. Who knows? Maybe someone has one of your favorites up for sale or trade!
  • Nancy, one of my regular readers, left a comment with three other terrific sources for hard-to-find dolls that I forgot to add: your local thrift stores are the first. I found a wonderful 1970s era PJ in excellent condition quite recently, and now, I'm bummed if I drive by and the stores aren't open.
  • Her second suggestion: yard sales! Another wonderful resource. I have an aunt we sometimes call the yard sale queen. She finds wonderful deals without even looking. I need to put her to work for me. 
  • Nancy's last suggestion: Craig's List. You can even post Want to Buy posts on there, I believe. It's all free. You can look at local listings or national listings (if you know someone in the area, it's ideal, just for references and so you can pay cash). And thanks, Nancy!
Finally, I'd like to invite you to post a comment on this article, if you're looking for a holy grail or hard-to-find doll.  I'd love to help you out. Maybe one of my other readers can help you, as well. And don't forget to subscribe to the comment thread, in case someone gets back to you. Good luck with your search!

Great prices on 1990s era Barbies!

Check out these fantastic prices on the 35th Anniversary Barbie (both blonde and brunette), Hallmark Victorian Elegance from 1994 and 1995 (all 10% below retail) and also Avon exclusive Spring Blossoms Barbie from 1995, listed for only $12.

These dolls are all available from Let's Play Dolls. Better yet, you don't have to mess around with eBay and last-minute bidders coming in to swipe your auction.

Image courtesy of Let's Play Dolls.

Plastic Collection by Barbie®
- Welcome to the official Mattel site for Barbie Collector

Be sure to check out the fantastic Plastic collection on sale now at It's filled with lots of unique items for collectors and fans alike. You'll be sure to find something you don't already have in your collection. I'm impressed!

Friday, April 30, 2010

1969 Vintage Talking PJ

1969 Vintage Talking PJ, originally uploaded by alington.
Another part of my recent trade: a restored 1969 Talking PJ. I don't have her original shoes, but she actually talks! She is so cute. She's the original Midge sculpt (before PJ used the Steffie sculpt). I just adore her.

I got her in a trade (when I was trying to restore my doll budget and failed miserably--but I did get three amazing new dolls). See more photos of her on my Flickr photo stream.

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

1968 Vintage Talking Barbie, Brownette

One of my new additions, she's older than I am. :) Can I just say... I'm smitten?

She's a brownette 1968 Talking Barbie, and yes, she actually talks. I got her nude, and I need to probably find some real vintage clothing for her next--as soon as my budget starts to recover. She's in very nice condition--her face has yellowed a bit, compared to the rest of her body, but her hair and rooted eye lashes (and talking!) distract me so much from this that I just can't help but love her to pieces!

For those of you who haven't been following my budget issues, you can read about them on my blog. Click on Newer Post for the next one. There are three posts about this issue, if you're interested, or if you are currently arguing with your loved one about your dolly dollars. Read through my posts and then you can talk to your significant other and claim, "Look at this girl. I'm not nearly as bad as she is!"

See the rest of this lovely lady's photos on Flickr.

Monday, April 26, 2010

Doll-worthy Reading

[I apologize for a duplicate post, if you also follow the Fashion Doll Review, but it's really good reading, and I think you should visit this site!]

If you love sewing for your dolls of all sizes (including BJDs!), be sure to check out Lori's blog, Sew Many Doll Clothes. She has great articles and fantastic photos, and her sewing is really cute! 

Her latest post includes photos of Berdine's Creedy new ballet cutie, Pepper-Mint. Pepper-Mint includes a ballerina costume, but Lori actually made her a real tutu with tights. She's just adorable. So go find her post and follow her blog!

April Doll Meet

April Doll Meet, originally uploaded by alington.
According to our Spring Green and Easter Dress theme, here are several Silkstone Barbies and a Joe Tai doll in front. A Jazz Baby Barbie is wearing Dressed to Thrill (Integrity) in front. Also I believe that's Metal Maven Vanessa in the black and pink cocktail dress in the front row. More photos from this meet are on Flickr.

I love doll meets. Especially when you know the rules of the club in advance, like if children are permitted or not. I prefer clubs with very few rules, which are run more like a get-together of doll enthusiasts who like to sit around and talk dolls for hours. And eat. And drink.

But that's more my style. To each his or her own, I say!

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Solo in the Spotlight

Solo in the Spotlight, originally uploaded by alington.
Another eBay find, this is a 1994 repro of Solo in the Spotlight and my second vintage Barbie sculpt doll. I think her face is just wonderful. I also adore her outfit, and the fact that her hair is brunette.

I am not sure that these repros are such a great idea. For one, they have sort of ignited a hidden passion for the original Barbie doll in me that I didn't even know was there. These repros and also seeing original mint Barbie in other collections possibly was an influence. But what a wonderful way to broaden your collection's horizon!

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Deficit spending and collecting dolls?

This item I came across today, and it's really essential reading for every doll collector out there. 

Perhaps you are a follower of my Fashion Doll Review blog, and perhaps read my rather desperate attempt at saving both my doll budget and marriage--why is it so hard to keep both afloat? Just in time, another doll collector comes in to save the day!

We are really doing a patriotic duty to our country, especially in this time of patriotic crisis, with our doll collections. Be sure you visit Random Doll Blathering's post, and see her valuable points on why we should consider Deficit Spending when it comes to buying dolls. She's very persuasive!

(Like I am getting my credit card out of my wallet as I type...) 


Vanessa Switcheroo

Vanessa, originally uploaded by alington.
I allowed Queen V to pose in True Royalty's gown, much to Vanessa's grumbling. But Vanessa even got her own turn in Queen V's lovely cream silk outfit as well, and a new updo (just ignore all the flyaways--updos are not yet my forté).

You can see all Vanessa's shots on Flickr, and leave me a comment, to let me know if you think Vanessa or Vero carries off the best switch!

Sunday, April 18, 2010

Veronique redressed

Veronique, originally uploaded by alington.
I've redressed Queen V Veronique in True Royalty's (Vanessa) outfit for photos. I think it suits her quite well--it really make's Vero's eyes pop. She's got such a nice pale (almost glowing) skin tone.

Jewelry is by LVNV Dolls and matches well, too. I love it! See thre rest of her photo shoot on Flickr.

Friday, April 16, 2010

Anemone Barbie pre-sale list is now open

The Anemone Barbie by Christian Louboutin is up on the website. Only 7,700 will be made (2,500 for the BarbieCollector online store), and you will be able to purchase this doll for $150 online. She will also be available from your favorite Barbie dealers, but you probably should pre-order her now, just because she's such a small edition number.

The pre-sale event is April 28, 2010. If you fill out your information online, you will be put on the contact list for the event on April 28.

True Royalty Vanessa

True Royalty Vanessa, originally uploaded by alington.
Please check out my latest gallery creation on Flickr. I'm officially addicted to creating galleries now.

It's filled with twelve photos of True Royalty Vanessa (photo above is my doll, however). All different shots of the same doll, including some that have been rerooted as a platinum, brunette and even with silvery-pink hair.

Hope you enjoy it, and that you are inspired to create a gallery of your own. You can see my various photos of True Royalty Vanessa here. I just redressed her yesterday, and she's due for a photo shoot.

Thursday, April 15, 2010

It's a Major Award!

I feel like the father on A Christmas Story (you know, with the leg lamp)! I got a nice comment to one of my blog entries recently, stating that this blog has directed some of the most traffic to the Mini Treasures website in the past year. Fantastic!

I'm #24 out of the top 25 traffic producers. So I get to post an award on my site. 

Let me again mention the Mini Treasures blog and Wiki--anything you ever wanted to know about miniatures, you can find on this site. It's really wonderful!

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Glimmer of Gold Barbie

Glimmer of Gold Barbie, originally uploaded by PrinceDonte.
The first Platinum Label™ Barbie Fan Club Exclusive, Glimmer of Gold™ doll will go on sale tomorrow, April 14, 2010 at 9:00 AM PST. The doll was created exclusively for fan club members, and is available at the price of $84.95. Items are limited one per fan club member.

She's dressed in Grecian-style draped ivory cocktail dress embellished with gold embroidery, gold shoes and coordinating purse and earrings. The listing on BarbieCollector states that the fashion is actually designed for Silkstone® dolls, so she must be using a new facial sculpt. I think she's gorgeous. Almost pretty enough to make me join the Barbie Fan Club!

Monday, April 12, 2010

Those lucky W Club members!

I knew I would regret passing on the W Club this year! They recently were given the opportunity to enter a special lottery for a limited edition, lemon-colored hair Valia Pivione doll. I just adore her neutral make-up.

The cost of $275 may seem outrageous at first--until you hear that the price also includes a second doll! Each order will include either the brunette Valia Pivione or the Valia Raison d'Etre. Wow!

So jealous am I! I just think she is amazing.

Photo property of Integrity Toys.

Sweet Roses PJ

Sweet Roses PJ, originally uploaded by alington.
Another Ebay find, I got her for a song. She needed some hair work, and still isn't quite perfect. But here she is after a bath.

I think her shoes aren't the right ones, and she probably needs earrings. But I find her adorable.

I'm pretty sure she was a rose-scented doll--I never owned her as a girl. My neighbor did, and I coveted her something awful. (Great grammar for a blog, don't you think?) At any rate, I'm thrilled to have her in my 1980s collection now!