Saturday, February 28, 2015

À la recherche du temps perdu

Travel in its ultimate form ought to be through time. Doll collectors of a certain ilk will agree that holding on to an object of the past is the best (and perhaps only) alternative to the previously proposed voyage, above all if that object has survived the passage of time relatively victorious. 

In the spirit of Charles Baudelaire...

Des poupées luisantes,
Polies par les ans...

For there is nothing more beautiful than a doll that exists with ample proof of its survival: it's called patina. Untouched yet imperfect, the doll - mellowed and softened - still retains its integrity of structure and character.  For regardless of how careful the storage, few substances can resist giving in to Master Time. Flesh and blood certainly cannot, and neither can composition,  although the latter can fare much better than the former. 

On this last entry for the month of February, Dolldom proposes a little game of reflection. Instead of merely documenting the history of a classic doll in its original box, Dolldom presents a creative re-enactment of a sweet memory lost.

This is the story of a fragment of the life of Maybelle, a girl who turns six years old on February 28, 1935. Maybelle, who lives with her mother, aunt, and grandmother, knows that life is hard and that all have to learn to live within a very tight budget. Still, on her birthday, she receives a parcel tied with orange and white waxed thread. There's writing on it and photos of a little girl on the bottom band. Maybelle realizes that it is her birthday gift: her very own Patsyette doll, made by EFFanBEE. The rest of this episode is best told in pictures, golden little photos of a golden moment long past.

A little history: Patsyette was sculpted by Bernard Lipfert for EFFanBEE. The vintage doll pictured wears a circa 1930s mommy-made dress, original shoes, and EFFanBEE golden heart charm bracelet. She is made of composition and shows crazing expected for a doll of her age.

Monday, February 23, 2015

Ecce Homo

Behold the man.

Mel Odom's Trent Osborn. Leading man supreme at Monolithic Studios and popular matinee idol. Trent Osborn made his debut in The Gene Marshall Collection produced by Ashton-Drake in 2001. 14 years later, Mr. Osborn makes his return as part of the JAMIEshow produced Gene Marshall line. And what a return it is. In his Smooth-J resin incarnation, the ball-jointed strung doll gains mobility that the previous issue did not have as well as enhanced anatomical definition. Most remarkable, Mr. Osborn can hold a pose unaided by a stand.

Dolldom is happy to welcome yet another high-quality JAMIEshow iteration of the unforgettable characters created by Mr. Odom as an extension of his trendsetting art.

This exclusive portfolio focuses on Mr. Osborn's physical essence.

Soon in Dolldom: Trent Osborn in many of his most celebrated roles.

Friday, February 20, 2015

Le Jazz Hot!

We interrupt this program for a very important announcement!

Mel Odom's Gene Marshall and her dear friends will be holding a magnificent celebration in Chicago to celebrate their 20th anniversary and their current producer JAMIEShow's 5th!

Trent will be there!

So will Madra!

 Chicago!  From May 22nd until May 24th! And right in the center of town! Dolldom knew that The Monolithic Gang would prefer to stay away from airport hotels. Classy crowd!

A 3-day event to enjoy with longtime friends, Mr. Mel Odom, Mr. González, and sufficient time to take in the rich cultural offerings that "The Jewel of The Midwest" has to offer.

A limited number of rooms has been reserved at the posh Warwick Allerton Hotel, right on The Magnificent Mile.

 With a museum of dolls, a sales room, banquets, cocktails (with Trent!) and new doll offerings, this is a not-to-be-missed event!

I better get dressed and start packing!

For more information, contact JAMIEshow Dolls at 800-557-5939

See you there!

Sindy's Fashion Dream

Sindy's back! In her new iteration, created by Tonner Doll Company, The Doll You Love to Dress, boasts a high quality creamy matte vinyl, hand applied lashes, and in her "Just Sindy" basic model, a beautiful head of red tresses.

Dolldom celebrates Sindy's arrival by featuring her in an exclusive photo portfolio doing what she likes to do best: dress-up! To illustrate the fashion fun quotient of this new version of the much loved character, Sindy models a wide variety of fashions, from vintage France to Poppy Parker.

It's time to play! It's time to dress the doll we love to dress!

Tonner Doll Company's "Just Sindy" basic doll models her cute pink gingham bikini. But perhaps, it's the expression on her face that steals hearts galore at the beach.

A hand knit dress by Vince Nowell is perfect for meeting her friends for tea.

Retros fashioned a colorful print sheath for Sindy for a more sophisticated look. Necklace by Joy Jarred.

Instant classic. Marirose's red linen summer strapless, hand beaded dress is youthfully elegant.

The Avenger? No, just Sindy modeling a fab coat made by Mattel (Note The Coat #1289) for Francie in 1967. The cap is by Integrity Toys for The Gene Marshall Collection. Tyler Wentworth sunglasses.

Parisian Fantasy. Sindy imagines herself a fashion model in Marirose's hand beaded bubble dress and black straw hat from BFMC's Muffy Roberts doll.

For a day of sightseeing, Sindy chooses a springtime classic: a lady-like lace over silk sun dress by Retros.

Sindy closes the fashion show with the look she loved most: a très Mod sheath by Integrity Toys for The Poppy Parker Collection ("She's Not There" from 2012.)

Dolldom wishes to thank the extraordinary and ever joyful Michelle Hodge at Tonner Doll Company. 

Friday, February 13, 2015

A Little Morning Rhyme

Faint apparition, diffused by light,
Who are you, what's your plight?
Hair alight, of a tiny fungus the height, 
My eyes, dazed, of you catch sight. 

Micro Myling doll by Katarina Carlsson
Mushroom specimen by Cody Foster
Words by Manuel de Campo y Prado

Wednesday, February 4, 2015

A Dreary Genealogy

noun \-jē\
: the study of family history
: the history of a particular family showing how the different members of the family are related to each other

Tonner Doll Company's Agnes and Viktor Dreary play endlessly in a spooky manor enveloped in dark fog. Theirs is a somber and silent world shared with the older and simply named Sister and Brother. But most collectors wonder if the Dreary Twins do not have more of an extended family tree? After all, it takes a village to raise a child, even if said children live in a world of shadows and eternal dusk.

For example: who takes care of Agnes and Viktor's education in botany and taxidermy? Is anyone in charge of the family's lugubrious gatherings? Who is responsible for maintaining these indisputable fashion plates' armoires? Who teaches sad ballads to these eerie bambini?

These and many more questions are explored in this Fashion Doll Quarterly exclusive in the hope that those who enjoy TDC's Drearydom in their collections may create their own extended family trees. The wealth of character sculpts that Tonner Doll Company has issued through the years for many of its fashion doll lines makes this creative endeavor not only easy but also fun and cost-effective. Maybe all the collector needs to do is adorn an haute couture queen with a tulle stole and a fancy hat and baptize her with a-new-yet-obscure-name to turn her into an eminent Dreary progenitor.

Role Models
A restyled "Another Dreary Day" Agnes in "Dreary Days" and a first issue Viktor (with installed glass eyes by Jim Ash, a top hat by Peggy Feltrope, and a little gentleman fashion by Andrea Jacques for The Doll Workshop) stroll the garden at dusk with silently handsome Brother. But who is the little witch girl? That's cousin Ottilie whose love of her Ben Cooper Halloween mask (from the Let's Pretend doll line by Fun World) keeps anyone from ever seeing her face.

"Dinner Doldrums" Agnes poses with her favorite antique porcelain-headed play pal in her dry-blood red dress. A first issue Viktor (with installed glass eyes by Jim Ash and a hand-knit skull sweater by Liz Cole) wonders who is hiding behind them. Vintage ghost costume by Our Sweet Creations.

Someone to Watch Over Me
"Odd One Out" Viktor plays hide-and-seek with Ottilie. Or is it another cousin? Ben Cooper vampire mask from Let's Pretend doll by Fun World.

Bloom Gloom 
Sometimes it's best to play alone in a corner of the vast garden. "Stone Cold" Agnes, engrossed in her reverie, fails to feel the presence of Countess Flora Cavendish (née "Regina Returns" from the Tyler Wentworth line) who has inhabited the left wing of Dreary Manor for time immemorial. The Countess wears the gown from "Mystique Angelina" and a hat made from the best that can be harvested from a forest floor after a windstorm. Feathers, withered flowers, and a lonely tiny bird (hidden) find a home in this evocative confection by Peggy Feltrope. "Stone Cold" Agnes shows her new face-up designed and painted by Jay's Petite Salon.

Where's the Picnic?
A first issue Viktor is fascinated by the effect that he has on her second cousin twice removed, Lady Lottie Larson, (a "Basic Euphemia" from Tonner Doll Company's Cinderella line) who in Sister Dreary's "Covered in Darkness" coat and a fascinator hat by Peggy Feltrope cannot control her phobia for big bugs. Viktor's "The Fly" costume was created by Liz Cole for her Retros label.

Music Lesson
Émilie Poulin a former danseuese, (née "New York City Ballet Basic Emilie" by Tonner Doll Company) left the madness of the Paris ballet limelight for a quieter life as head governess at Dreary Manor. To impart music lessons to an unwilling Viktor, Emilie wears Ellowyne Wilde's "Chills" fashion and a top hat fascinator by Peggy Feltrope. Viktor wears separates from Ignite's Napoleon Bonaparte's uniform. Glass eye installation by Jim Ash. A question remains? Has Émilie noticed Agnes escaping with her doll?

Little Lady
"Another Dreary Day" Agnes learns how to maintain proper pose and walk like a lady from Sophronia Winterbottom, (née "Basic Euphemia" from Tonner Doll Company's Cinderella line) her charm and manners tutor, who dressed in Sister's first issue dress and a hat by Peggy Feltrope, has come a long way from being just a nasty step-sister.

Sartorial Secrets
"Scary Christmas" Viktor poses with great aunt Tallulah de La Falaise (Tonner Doll Company's "Evil Queen" from the company's Snow White collection) who in Superfrock's "Basique Noir" separates and a black velvet hat by Peggy Feltrope, keeps the twins' fashionably dressed thanks to her many connections with the elite of the haute couture world.

Resources for Readers:
OOAK hats by Peggy Feltrope for Feltrope Studios

Agnes and Viktor's glass eyes by Jim Ash

"Stone Cold Agnes Dreary" Face-Up by Jay's Petite Salon

"The Fly" costume and other fashions by Liz Cole for Retros

Vintage ghost costume by Our Sweet Creations

Viktor’s white shirt, black slacks and suspender set by The Doll Workshop by Andrea Jacques.