Dolls and Doll-related Items for Sale

Friday, June 26, 2020

BTS Dolls by Mattel

BTS is a K-Pop (Korean Pop) group. K-Pop is kind of like One Direction, or New Kids on the Block, for us older folk. They're a group of attractive guys, or gals, in the case of K-Pop, who sing and perform dance moves. Like One Direction, members of the group are picked by the producer, but there are many K-Pop groups, who apparently change out members when necessary. BTS is an extremely popular K-Pop boy group, which has many rabid fans in the US, and I'm guessing world-wide, so Mattel decided to offer BTS dolls. There was a lot of controversy from fans when pictures of the dolls came out, but presumably they've made enough members of the fan base happy.

I've had these two for months, and gave up on posting pictures about them because they're no longer new and exciting. But Dana just posted a pic of the ones that she recently bought, and encouraged me to put up a post about mine. The two I have are apparently the group members named j-hope and RM.

These dolls are supposed to be wearing specific outfits, so Mattel went more with what would make the dolls look good, than clothes that were made like human suits would normally be. The "shirt" has no sleeves; instead, the armscyes are sewn into the sleeves of the jacket. And the shirt doesn't come together in the back, either. Not usually optimal for doll clothes, but for making the suits look more realistic, it's not bad. I do like that the guys are wearing different styles of athletic shoe.

I mentioned to Dana that I wanted to give one of these bodies to another Asian male doll that I have, since these have articulation at the shoulders, elbows, wrists, hips, knees and ankles. RM was going to be the unlucky body donor, but now that I've dug these two back out, I'm thinking he may stay in my collection as is. I can always head the local Five Below, as Dana did, and see if I can find another one to be a body donor. If I do, here is the lucky guy who will get the new body. I dislike the fact that the cheap Fashionista dolls can't even bend their knees to sit down.
My apologies for some of these images being blurry. I'm having problems taking pictures with my shaky hands, and I need to get things in my craft area cleared out so I can use my tripod more easily. Since it's been so long since my last post, I decided to just do what I could this time.

While I was looking up the names of my two guys, I saw that Mattel is bringing out another wave of BTS dolls. This time, they're all wearing completely different outfits, presumably from another video or appearance that they made. I think some of the outfits look pretty sharp! That's really my interest in K-Pop, is the fashions.

Thursday, June 11, 2020

Vacation and a Sewing Haul

Mr. BTEG very badly needed a vacation, and I liked the idea myself of getting away. So the two of us drove down to what we call in Ohio, "Amish country," and spent three days there. I don't know that all of my non-US readers have heard of the Amish. They are a Germanic-Swiss group of people who started coming to the US in 1730 for religious freedom. Generally, they eschew a great deal of modern technology, and dress plainly. The largest concentration of Amish in the world, is in Holmes County, Ohio, and there are lots of Amish in the surrounding areas. Mr. BTEG and I enjoy going to Amish country for the delicious meals; the good food to purchase, such as cheese, dried meats and apple butter; and shopping for fabric, and tools. There's also a very fine handmade leather shop Mr. BTEG likes to visit every time we go, loads of antiques, and beautiful Amish-made furniture.

Here's an idea of what Amish country looks like, taken from the back of one of the restaurants where we ate. The area is very hilly, and covered with farms, Amish and non-Amish, and clusters of trees.
The back of our hotel had a lovely walking path with a pond. We didn't get to use it, for various reasons, but it added to the scenery.
Since the Amish make all of their own clothes, and also do a lot of quilting, there are sewing machine stores and lots and lots of fabric stores. A great many Amish don't use electric sewing machines, but there are some Amish and Mennonites, a branch-off of Amish, that can. Anyway, there is a Bernina sewing machine shop that I love visiting every time we go. I've always owned Berninas, and they use needles and feet specific to Bernina (and Brother, I think.) It's nice to pick up needles and other notions in person, and shop "local." They also offer sewing machine tune-ups, cleaning and repair. They had an open Bernina on display, and I thought you would enjoy seeing what a sewing machine looks like on the inside.
Happily, even though most of the fabric you can find is for Amish sewing, and quilt fabric, there are also some apparel fabrics at certain stores. I bought some lovely knit fabric, some gauze fabric, some quilt fabric for doll sewing, some nice quality hand towels, and some patterns.
I also grabbed a couple of useful notions. One is called a Bobbini, and it's a way to keep your bobbin with your spool of thread. The diamond shape squishes together and goes inside the spool, and the bobbin goes on the little knob at the top. I also bought some very small fabric clips, to hold pieces of fabric together while you're working on them. I'm showing what they look like on a Barbie sized dress that I have to finish very soon. I have so many projects that I want to work on!

I also bought myself my very own sunbonnet (which is not standard Amish or Mennonite wear,) and a Cat's Meow piece that looks like the store where I bought all of that knit fabric and the patterns and notions.

I don't know if even most of you in the US have heard of The Cat's Meow. It's a company that's been around for decades, based out of Ohio, that sells decorative pieces that look like well-known buildings, basic buildings, and scenes. I have Cat's Meow pieces that look like the hospital where I was born, and landmarks of downtown Cleveland, the town where I spent the first 24 years of my life, and the town where the BTEG family lives now (that's three cities, just to be clear.) I also have a few pieces for Christmas, one of Santa driving his sleigh, and one of two pine trees. The black cat is always somewhere on the piece; I even have a pin that looks like the black cat.

Mr. BTEG and I came back very refreshed and ready to tackle everyday life again. I hope you all are doing well, wherever you are at in everyday life.

Tuesday, May 26, 2020

A New Resident -- Who Is Not a Doll

Chris at My Barbie's Closet recently put up a post about losing a beloved dog to illness, and welcoming a new one into the family. At the very time I read the post, Mr. BTEG and the Dancer were on their way to pick up a new rabbit to add to our family, which I mentioned to Chris. She said that she wanted to see a picture of our bunnies, so here they are.

The bunny that has been with us since 2018 is named Kip. The Dancer has been thinking for a while that perhaps Kip should have another bunny to play and socialize with. We finally started seriously looking a couple of months ago, and a week ago, less a day, Mr. BTEG and the Dancer drove to a rescue a couple of hours away, and came home with Tallahassee (yes, her siblings were Little Rock and Wichita.)

Here is a so-so photo of Kip from 2018.
Here is a picture of Tallahassee. Hers is a much larger breed than Kip's. Pretty sure Kip is a Dutch rabbit, and Tallahassee is a brown/black Rex.

And a picture of Kip and Tallahassee investigating each other. Until they get their dominance issues sorted out and bond, their pen is split in half, and they get separate time to run around in the Dancer's bedroom.

Having a bigger bunny has been extra work for the Dancer. Talia (her nickname) drinks about twice as much, and pees twice as much, as Kip does. But it seems to be good for Kip to have a fellow rabbit resident, and of course Talia now has a good home. :)

Sunday, May 17, 2020

Discovering New Blogs

MonsterCrafts has been missing some of the now-defunct doll blogs that she liked to read, so she came up with a creative way to find new blogs, and to help everyone else find new ones too. She posted the URLs of some of her favorite blogs, and anyone else who wants to join in can do the same. That way, hopefully we can find new places to read and learn about dolls, and check out everyone else's collections!

Amanda: Miniature craft tutorials, doll reviews, doll living spaces, and lots of other doll adventures, often with the help (and snark) of Tinkerbell the fairy. In addition to Disney fairies, Frozen dolls and Marvel dolls and figures feature often on her blog. She also has a lot of links on how to improve your blog, and ideas to help represent yourself and your blog on Instagram. She's the only doll blogger I can think of at the moment who is currently on WordPress, so she may be interested in answering questions about it.

Chris: Mainly the latest clothes she has sewn for her 11 1/2" dolls, thus the name of her blog. She has also started a series of posts chronicling every doll in her collection, which, along with Rachael's posts, inspired me to do the same. Her dolls range from vintage Barbie, to 80s and 90s, to modern.

Coffee and Dolls: A Polish blogger who maintains two separate doll blogs written in English or Polish. I'm linking to the English version, but if you speak Polish, you can find the link to that one there. Both blogs cover the same dolls, mostly 80s era Barbies and Skippers. She's still active in adding those dolls to her collection. She also researches the differences between the same dolls who were produced in different countries, when she purchases a new one, which is not something you come across often.

Rachael: An Australian blogger whose varied collection includes Kish, Maru and Friends, Tonner Patience, Journey Girls, Shirley Temple, and many others. She likes to sew, and is interested in historical fashions, some of which she has planned to make for her dolls. She has already made several beautiful items of doll clothes, and has also created some paper dolls and outfits. We also get to see pics of her favorite distractions: the Giant Baby and Tiny, her children.

RagingMoon1987: Much of her collection is vintage, and includes baby dolls, soda-themed dolls, and Japanese, or Japanese-dressed dolls. Her American Girl dolls often get pretty new outfits, and we get to see some of her collection displayed at the library where she works. She does a lot of research for her posts, so you can definitely learn from them. A Missouri girl, she lives close to Tornado Alley in the US, and is interested in tornadoes and all sorts of weather phenomena.

Tam: A fellow Ohioan, who has a very extensive collection, and is knowledgeable about all kinds of dolls. Some years she will do a Doll-a-Day post, where all types of dolls are featured. This year, she's doing a Doll-Book-of-the-Month in between posts on dolls, play sets, and some photo shoots with her doll alter ego, a former Fern from Charlotte's Web doll that has been rechristened Tammy World. She also shares pics of her garden during the seasons.

I couldn't post all of the blogs that I enjoy reading, so I hope no one takes it personally if you don't see yours here. Also, MonsterCrafts listed several blogs that I already enjoy, so I didn't list those again. If you want to join in, I'm sure we'd love to know which doll blogs you enjoy visiting!

MonsterCrafts created an icon for your post on discovering new doll blogs. I couldn't get it to show up where I wanted it (new Blogspot software can apparently be a pain.) But here it is for you to grab if you decide to create your own post.

Sunday, May 10, 2020


Barbie up above is providing a good picture of how I felt yesterday. I didn't have any interest in doing things that I normally enjoy doing; I didn't really have interest in anything. But I got this image in my head, and I wanted to photograph it. I hope that it is a good expression of my inner self.

Here's wishing that everyone who celebrates Mother's Day today had a happy one. Mr. BTEG and I went to Youngstown to celebrate the day with his sisters, their spouses, and our niece. The Dancer has been staying with one of her aunts since Wednesday. Her aunt and uncle found out on Tuesday that his mother had passed away, so the Dancer and I drove down on Wednesday, and I came back home that night. The Dancer also got to spend some nice time with her cousin that way.

Sunday, April 19, 2020

Second Doll and More Light Stand Photos

The previous spa doll was all about pampering. This Barbie is a fitness doll. She has bendable elbows, wrists and knees. I think she has the Bambi face mold, and different looks from the spa girl.
She comes with her outfit, two pink weights, two purple weights, a water bottle, a gym bag, a hoop, and the exercise mat. I'm not quite sure why the hoop was included. I know they're used for gymnastics, but gymnastics doesn't seem to be the theme here. The blue mat is just a thin piece of foam. It scratches easily and attracts little pieces of hair and dust like crazy. It came rolled up in a plastic clip, so it will take some time for it to lie flat. Fortunately, foam sheets are fairly inexpensive at the craft store, so the mat is super replaceable, or you can acquire more mats if you want to start a Barbie exercise class. :)

It's cute that the puppy is joining Barbie in her workout routine.
The gym bag is made of thin plastic. If you push the two sides together at the top, the bag opens up enough that you can put the weights and water bottle in.
The shoes have nice detail.
I think this doll is very pretty for a playline doll. She has at least two color tones in her red hair, and eyes of a nice shade of gray.
And now some more shots of the new light stand that I bought. It stands on a fairly sturdy tripod, and it has two places where the post can be extended or reduced to make the light taller or shorter. I haven't checked how high the light will go, but well over six feet, so I think it will be fine for all of my photography needs.

The actual light source consists of a curly lightbulb inside of a rectangular umbrella type frame. Then there is a white piece of diffuser fabric that attaches to the frame with Velcro. The frame measures 20"x27" (50.8cm x 68.58cm.) Neither Mr. BTEG nor I could find a way to turn the rectangle so the long side was at the bottom. I have to take care when I rotate the frame up or down, to make sure the frame's weight stays balanced.

This light stand wasn't as expensive as I thought it would be, so I'm glad I invested in something a little bit better to help my photography.

Thursday, April 16, 2020

A New Light

I mentioned that I had ordered a standing photography light with a diffuser, and it finally arrived. I decided to take pictures of the new Barbies I bought. They're home spa-themed, which is pretty serendipitous for Mattel right now, especially since a lot of the other dolls that were in line to be released this year are movie dolls. I haven't seen anything official as to what Mattel plans to do with those dolls, since the movies they're based on have been postponed. I presume stores that are still open are going to want some sort of merchandise for their shelves, and then Mattel also has fulfillment contracts, so who knows?

Anyway, on to better subjects. I only had time to get a shot of one of the new doll sets, and I'm also including a picture of my new light. I need to do some more tidying in my area of the craft room, but I really, really, really wanted to try out my new lighting capabilities. This new doll does not count towards my collection count, since I honestly only bought this doll as a body donor. :) I thought you might like to see her and her accessories, though.

She came with the wrap around towel, the headband, a "rubber" duck, a faux candle, the puppy, neck pillow, a bath brush, slippers, faux cucumber eye masks for her and puppy, a faux magazine which is merely a piece of cardboard, only printed on one side, the mat, and that box with six colored spheres. I'm guessing those are supposed to represent colored bath bombs. There's another doll set that includes a bathtub, which I don't plan on buying.

And then here is the light. I have a lot to learn about what angles will work best to eliminate shadows, but I really needed a better light source, so here it is.

Once I get my craft area in better shape, I'm planning on photographing the other spa doll I bought, and maybe some skin tone comparisons, if anyone else thinks these dolls would make good body donors for a doll in their collection.