Sunday, May 12, 2019

Summer Prep

It makes sense to invest in a pair of jeans and a good haircut - two essentials on which to build looks for this coming summer season. For this preview of male summer style, The Numina's Argent by sculptor extraordinaire Paul Pham models made-to-measure denim by the talented Chewin, along with two of the his hard cap wigs, and necklaces by Joy Jarred.

The Numina - Dollcis by Paul Pham

Chewin Doll

Joy Jarred Jewelry

Sunday, April 28, 2019

Creative Muse

Thanks to the Greeks, we have had for centuries a way of qualifying those entities that trigger the impulses that lead to expression in the arts and, of course, doll play: creative muse.  Dollectors all have their own.  For this entry, we propose to focus on two of Dolldom's inspirations for play - the first, a longtime source of beauty, glamour and joy, and the second, a new stylish character who has -intentionally- nothing to wear.

Liz Cole of Retros fame has been a constant companion to Dolldom for 20 years. Creator of everything B&G, Liz and her best man, Darren, have created - by hand - some of the most memorable and unique items for fashion dolls. From fashions to furniture to 3-D printed sunglasses and wigs, The House of Retros is steadfast in its production of a world of style that beats to its own drums (bongo, BTW) and that defies the let's-copy-the-runway fad.

Robert Tonner's Rayne, created as the last production doll for Phyn & Aero, was produced with a pair of high-heel sandals, a kick boxing work-out set, and attitude to spare. With a face-up that rivals Barbie's 1959 style, Rayne also sports a body sculpt beyond compare - Tonner's Gal Gadot Wonder Woman. So what is Rayne to wear? According to her creator, that is up to us!

As one and one equal two, then Retros and Rayne equal fabulous fun. Our editors and Rayne went into the Retros vault to select what to wear for this exclusive photo portfolio. Coiffed by Ilaria Mazzoni for Time of Doll and Chewin Malipunte, a basic auburn Rayne, profiles a young woman of character and strength not afraid to reference a time when beauty and glamour meant beauty and glamour!

"Lil' Abner "is the name of this comfortable dress made with a vintage bandana an silk shantung waist. It's summertime fashion at its best. Wig by Ilaria Mazzoni for Time of Doll.

"Gloria" is a Retros classic featuring a cotton-knit shot with gold and silver Lurex threads and cut to allow dancing.

"Poochii" is a suit for any occasion in a vintage crepe and recycled fur collar. Wig by Tonner.

Lo and behold - Rayne is joined in the Retros fun by her best friend Tyler Wentworth.

And soon it's a party with Marley and Antoinette who join in the Retros fun.

Retros Boutique - for B&G!

Saturday, April 20, 2019

Swan Song?

When Robert Tonner announced the closing Phyn and Aero, he also left his collecting fans with the promise of one more doll - her name was to be Rayne. Touted as the fashion figure of the collector's dream, Rayne is meant to be "a muse, a personal fashion model, a fashion canvas." Sculpted by the designer, Rayne is an invitation to be creative by dressing and styling the doll as the collector sees fit. Dolldom could not be more delighted.

For this very first entry, a basic "Midnight" Rayne chooses to wear a Nigel Chia design for the DeMuse Doll label. With her extra long bangs, heavy upper eyelid kohl liner, and RTB 101 body sculpt (created for the Tonner's Gal Gadot Wonder Woman doll), Rayne is a strong and determined character.

Now, is Rayne Robert Tonner's swan song? Dolldom sure hopes not, as his vision has shaped the way that the fashion doll has been created and collected for more that two decades. Still, Dolldom seizes the opportunity to express gratitude to he who invited us all to believe in the power of imaginative doll play.


Saturday, April 13, 2019

Visual Literacy

It's important to know how to decipher what one is seeing.

But as critical as how one sees - is how one looks while seeing. And we are not talking about wearing a pair of sunglasses to hide dark circles or to communicate the message that eyes kept in secrecy allow no window to the soul.

Today's lesson is taught best by the formidable Peggy Guggenheim. Eyes she had, trained and skilled to understand the artist's message. And it was she who best exemplified that, regardless of what one wears on the body, it is what frames the face that speaks volume about one's character.

LizRetros shares this sense of exuberance in design. For more than two decades, the Retros label has exemplified the golden standard in the handmade doll fashion cottage industry. Which presented no surprise when Dolldom learned that soon the doll world would enjoy the pleasures of much needed eccentric sunglasses for all sizes of dolls. The legacy lives on in LizRetros' 3-D printed and hand decorated miniatures. Now any doll can join in Miss Guggenheim in that rarefied realm of inspiring mavens who know how to look at art while defining it.

DAE Originals' "Sugarplum" Vivette goes all-out Tiki on her co-workers. Suit by Marirose.

Prototype Sylvain, by Julian Kalinowski, captures the essence of Miss Guggenheim - it's all about the spectacle of her spectacles.

Julian Kalinowski's Little Miss Lolita (aka Lalka 2) relaxes in her Venice palazzo while watching gondolas pass by through her "Aquarius" sunglasses. Coat by Rosina Haskell.

Contract negotiations will go Ivy Jordan's way. No ones messes with her flamingos. Suit by JK Clothier. JAMIEshow wig cap restyled by Kathy Johnson.

"Check This Out" Esmé by Tonner Doll is mermaid supreme in this under the sea fantasy.

Serious art collector Sofía, by JAMIEshow Doll, goes to a gallery opening and sets the scene ablaze - with one look!

The party got to be very swell once Tonner Doll's Tiny Kitty Collier walked in in her red bubble dress and Retros' "Tikilandia" frames. Mai Tai and Zombies for everyone!

A walk down Fifth is never a mundane activity when invoking tropical climes. It's happy hour at any hour of the day for Tonner Doll's Miss America dressed in Kitty Collier's suit.

Society gals like Tonner Doll's Miss Kitty Collier know how to spice things up at balls and fundraisers with chiffon and flamingos!

Mel Odom's "Phoenix" Gene Marshall, produced by JAMIEshow knows how to make an entrance and kill the red carpet in her Retros's "TikiColor" sunglasses.

To acquire your own pair, make sure to visit Retros Boutique!

Sunday, March 24, 2019

A High Dose of Vintage Flair: From Beach to Bar with Little Miss Lolita

Glamour gals adapt.

They possess the know-how to quickly and fashionably transition from sand and sun to cracked ice and Pérez Prado. Julian S. Kalinowski's new Little Miss Lolita (aka Lalka 2) exemplifies the attitude, as she goes from beach to bar in minutes with just the right changes and touches of vintage flare. Kalinowski has produced a classic bathing suit in a sparkly Lurex that when paired up with sober black pieces becomes a sophisticated eye catcher at the cocktail lounge.

Example Number One: La Divina

In Juliet Whorton's silk separates and Liz Retros' turban, la Divina is divine.

Example Number Two: La Estupenda

In a black stole and satin skirt by Mattel, La Estupenda is nothing short of stupendous. Bandeau hat by Liz Retros.

For more information on Little Miss Lolita, make sure to contact Julian Kalinowski.
Bar by Darren Cole for Retros. Other furniture by Morrison Studios.

Sunday, February 3, 2019

A Brave, New, Non-Toxic World: The Numina's Argent

Last September 2018, The Numina's Discophelia event bore a rich harvest of photos on social media. Among the many reveals at the annual event, hosted by sculptor Paul Pham, were two new characters, the artist's first venture into the world of the doll-coded-as-male. And Dolldom took note. In fact, Dolldom went on high alert as it was - even in photos - palpable that the artist was not only making the ultimate accessory for his uniquely gorgeous and racially diverse female counterparts; these personnages, Aurum and Argent, were coming to life at a time when masculinity and femininity are being redefined by non-patriarchal standards and in the same way that gender binarism is no longer the norm.

And what are these new standards? We hope that any new standard is applicable to all human beings: empathy, patience, nurturing, attention to detail, spirituality. At the very least, these are the qualities with which The Numina's Argent is being gifted as he is welcomed to Dolldom. His face and body - his outward appearance - and what we as dollectors code by our own set of standards, will be perceived differently - just like beauty is the eye of the beholder. But as we continue to examine and explore the new options Argent will be our guide.

Argent's face (he identifies as male and his pronouns are he/him/his) has a special quality, perhaps what Susan Sontag calls "the haunting androgynous vacancy behind the perfect beauty of Greta Garbo." Depending on the angle, the identity reveals itself: deep in thought, solemn, intense. Argent has a mission and the agency to undertake a plan. His body is a sensitive examination of sinuous musculature developed via physical activity: "mens sana in corpore sano".

In this first feature, Argent takes the time to play basketball, to wear a skirt (a kilt is nothing but), and to show off the beauty of garments that have become part of the lexicon of universal fashion: classics that anyone can (and in Dolldom's view should) wear.

Track shorts and tank by The Numina/Dollcis. Wig by Chewin.

Kilt by Ayal Armon Doll Couture. Shirt by Tonner Doll. Wig by Chewin.

Hooded knit by Tonner Doll. Pants by Esefdoll on Etsy.

Coat and slacks by Tonner Doll. Turtleneck by Dollsviewpoint on Etsy.

Cap by Petit Tricotage.

Much gratitude to Paul Pham and Dollcis/The Numina for creating new opportunities to explore the world via dolls.