Dolls and Doll-related Items for Sale

Monday, April 5, 2021

Kenmore vs My Modern Kitchen

This post is mostly going to be about the Kenmore kitchen set, but I wanted to add some comparison photos with the My Modern Kitchen, since that is a very popular 1/6 kitchen for collector dioramas. Kenmore is a brand name for appliances, which belongs to the department store Sears. The Kenmore kitchen isn't sold anymore, so it is very high-priced on eBay, for the most part. I bought this set for an incredible deal, even out of box, so I consider myself lucky to have it. You will sometimes see this as the Mammoth kitchen on eBay, since it was made by Mammoth Toys. Summer is our model for today's shoot.



Even the Kenmore kitchen is a bit short for Barbie, compared to a human-sized kitchen to a human. Many collectors put their kitchen pieces up on blocks.





 

 

The Kenmore kitchen has some pretty realistic features. I guess those dark blue circles at the back of the dishwasher are supposed to be sprayers of some kind? Our home dishwasher only has the sprayers underneath each "basket," that spin. The sticker with the controls for the stove was a little bit white at the front edge from peeling, so I fixed that with a black marker. Oddly enough, the dishwasher we just bought last year, looks a lot like the Kenmore dishwasher, from the outside.

 

As you can see, the Kenmore kitchen is taller and sticks out a bit more.  It also looks more realistic. Both kitchens were made as children's toys, but I guess Sears didn't want their own appliances looking cheap, even as toys. The microwave over the stove is more realistic to modern American kitchens, where the microwave also has a steam exhaust fan. The blue tile over the dishwasher and sink below were added by me. I was going to peel them off here, like I did for the stove, but they had stickers underneath that I thought would be more distracting. Plus, the tiles over the sink are currently helping hold the towel bar up. It screws on from the back, but somehow the towel bar came loose.


Neither refrigerator is much to look at on the inside. I pulled out and threw away all the cardboard from the back of the Kenmore pieces, because I washed all of them first, since I got them out of box. This is why the backs of those match the kitchen wall.

Speaking of kitchen walls, this is the first "permanent" room that I have made. I crafted it out of foamcore; the blue walls came in that color. You can see at the base that I wasn't really as neat with the hot glue as I wanted to be. I should be able to cover that with baseboard. I also followed a tip from someone on YouTube, and put sewing pins into the foamcore at the base and the corner on the back, at intervals, to help hold this together. Permanent rooms take up a lot of space, but I want to make the Kenmore kitchen, at least, look more like it has solid walls behind it, instead of four individual plastic units. That will require a long piece of tile to visually join at least two, or all three of the pieces, instead of individual cuts, like I did with the My Modern Kitchen. If I'm joining these pieces together, they should be somewhere they won't get moved around, which means a permanent room. I can also create a corner counter, so the Kenmore stuff doesn't just have to stand there all in a row, and they should all be raised a bit. I might paint the Kenmore cupboards? I've also seen somone separate the cupboards from the tops of the My Modern Kitchen set, and set them further back in a wall, since real life cupboards don't come all the way forward over what's underneath. Modern American kitchen sinks don't usually have cupboards over the sink anyway, because of the humidity, and dishwashers don't always, either. But some of the latter changes would require a lot of work; for now I may just get the Kenmore kitchen a basic set-up, for diorama use.

Do you have a favorite doll room you like to use for pictures, even if it's not permanent?

Wednesday, March 24, 2021

Two Kitchens

About a month ago, I acquired the 1/6th scale Kenmore kitchen, and I got it out to photograph for a theme on Instagram. I want to take more pictures for this blog, but I have some other things that are taking up some of my time at the moment, so I'm just going to put this picture up that I also used on Instagram. The theme was "Kitchen," and I thought it would be cute to include my Little Tikes kitchen, which is small enough to be a toy kitchen for the 1/6 scale little ones. It's kind of special to me because it's exactly the same as the play kitchen that my daughters had when they were little.



Wednesday, March 17, 2021

Happy St. Patrick's Day!

Erin and Ju-Ting are celebrating St. Patrick's Day at their favorite Irish bar.


I ended up having to take pictures at my own favorite restaurant to use on the backdrop wall of the bar, because it's really hard to find good pictures online that aren't quite expensive. It was fun to make, though. Hope you enjoy St. Patrick's Day if you're also celebrating!

Sunday, March 7, 2021

My Collection Part Fourteen: Barbie Dolls

This is part two of the dolls that I bought from Rachael. There are seven dolls in this group, including some new face molds. Two of these dolls got new bodies, too.

Three of these dolls all have a headmold marked with 2000, which means they should all have the Kayla/Lea face. The girl with the green eyes has the Summer mold, from 2003. According to Katti, the dolls with this headmold have "blown up" looking heads, and I can't argue with this. I'm not sure how she'll fit in with the rest of my crew. What do you think?


We'll call this first doll Kayla. The direction her eyes are facing is unusual, and I don't own a lot of dolls with eyelashes. Her lips follow what I think was the unfortunate trend of outlining your lips in a different color than the lipstick.

For now this next doll can be Becca. Looking at her next to Summer, it looks like maroonish looking streaks were a thing for awhile? I think I vaguely remember my hair stylist sister-in-law having these colors in her hair at some point.

I wondered if Summer was originally a fairy from one of the Barbie movies, because of her slightly larger head and big eyes and open expression.

The last one can be Cara. She's got an interesting look, and odd hair. She's got the sideswept bangs, but then she's got a short piece on the right side of her head that really isn't part of the bangs. The braid on her left side also will make styling awkward, I think. It's hard to see the braid the way I pulled her hair back.

Of the next three, the first one has the Mackie face, which came along to save us from the monotony of the Superstar mold. I know a lot of people do like the Superstar face, but for me the Mackie face was a nice change of piece. The last two are marked 1998, and I think they both are Ana/Lara faces.

This girl's curls are in fairly good shape in the front, although there is "box hair" on the back of her head. She will need a boil perm at some point. Let's call her... Shirley. For now.

I think this doll should be named Chelsea. She has a husky voice and plays the guitar, and is a little Boho.

And for the very last, is this girl with the thick blond mane. Her eyeshadow really does not stand out as much as it seems to in this picture. This photo really does not flatter her.We'll call her Ana, since we haven't used that name yet.

 

The late 1990s/early 2000s era was really a golden one for Barbie collectors. We started getting new face molds, great outfits, and even some nice furniture. I'm glad that Rachael gave me the chance to own these dolls.

Total dolls: 66

And I don't know if you looked at all what these dolls were sitting on, but it is a pallet sofa, made out of six pallets that Mr. BTEG printed for me on his 3D printer. The couch needs cushions, but it was a great size to use for these pictures.



Tuesday, February 23, 2021

My Collection Part Thirteen: Barbie Dolls

Long time no see! I've been putting a lot of my doll time into projects that haven't gone very well, so right now, I have nothing to show for them. :(  Instead, let's move on to more of my doll collection. This time, we're starting to delve into the many Barbie (and friends) dolls that I own. There have been so many Barbie dolls with different looks produced over her long career, that one can acquire many dolls and have them each look rather individual, so it's easy to have a big collection! These Barbies are part of a group that I bought from Rachael; this is also a way for me to remember which dolls were part of the bunch that I purchased from her, before they go into my larger collection. Please excuse all the static hair!

Several of the dolls that I got were originally dressed dolls from the Fashion Fever line. I haven't given all these girls names yet, so I'm going to mostly go by face mold. Here we have Lara and Teresa, and the blond girl at the end, I'm going to call Summer.

Lara's mold was first used for a Generation Girl, as Ana. This doll has a slightly sexy air about her, for as sexy as Barbie gets. :)

Teresa's mold is a classic, one that I love and have in many different variations. I can never bring myself to sell off any of them. This Teresa has lighter skin than many, and I love her eyeshadow.

Summer's look reminds me of several blond dolls released with the name Summer in the Barbie line, but going by the marks on the back of her head, she uses the Generation Girl Barbie mold.

Next, we have Kira, Gillian and Lea.

Kira actually uses the Kayla/Lea mold as far as I can tell, the same as the doll at the other end, so you can see how many looks an individual mold can use. Her mouth was painted on a bit crooked, but just gives her an open, quirky look in my opinion.

Gillian in the middle has the Goddess face mold, going by the marks on the back of her head. Unlike many other dolls with that face, Gillian looks very girl-next-door.


And lastly, we have another Kayla/Lea face. Her hair is a bit "fluffy" right now, since I washed the gel out of it. Actually, all of these dolls got their hair rinsed with some conditioner, and it's amazing how soft their hair is now.

I'm thankful to Katti for her website, Faces in the World of Pink. She took the time to compile a lot of information about the different Barbie sculpts Mattel has used over the decades, including her friends, and other sized dolls like Francie, Jazzie, Stacie, Kelly, Tutti, and males in Barbie's world like Ken, Allan and Blaine. Her website is a bit behind the times now, but for older dolls, it's an invaluable resource.

Next up should be some more dolls from Rachael, or a craft project if I successfully get one done. Anyone else got any doll projects in progress? Today Mr. BTEG and I checked out the new Hobby Lobby store, and I have so many ideas and plans now. It was a glorious day, sunny and with a high of 44F/7C. It's been so cold for the past while that it actually felt kind of warm out there, and I am looking forward to spring!

Total dolls: 59

Thursday, January 28, 2021

My Collection Part Twelve: Tonner/Effanbee Ann Estelle, Patsy and Mimi

I thought all of these dolls were made by Effanbee while owned by the Robert Tonner company, but I didn't see Effanbee on my new Dottie Delight doll's box. But in any case, here's my group of 10" dolls, often referred to as "tenners" among collectors. :)


This is Basic Ann Estelle, who I believe was my first Ann Estelle purchase. She and the other dolls from the Ann Estelle line are based on illustrations from artist Mary Engelbreit. Originally she came with a short blond bob, but I recently replaced it with a Monique wig, as the wig she came with is pretty dry. If the braids are on her back, they curl up at the back; the ends could be tied to the tops and would look something like AG Kirsten's. She's wearing a Patsy dress that I bought loose at the Robert Tonner convention that I attended.

Sophie was purchased next in line. I bought either her or Ann nude, as this is a basic Sophie, but I only have one basic romper. She had a red bow sewn into her hair, which I removed. Her face is really endearing to me. She may get a new wig, as hers is pretty dry as well. She's wearing a dress made by me.

I think Ann's baby sister Lilah came next. Lilah dolls are pretty rare. There was another Lilah produced as a centerpiece doll for a convention, riding a seahorse. I don't remember off the top of my head if there were any other productions. Lilah is wearing her original outfit, minus her tights, which are a bright red net, with large bright red dots woven in. Her sweater is removable, but the bodice of her dress has a loose piece of thread floating inside. She rattles when moved, like she has something loose inside of her. You might not be able to tell, but her legs are a little curved, so she's meant to be seated.

I bought Mimi around the same time as Lilah. Mimi was part of a line by Effanbee called Petite Filles. The other doll in this line was a brunette named Babette. I ought to buy one of those just because of her name. :) Truly, though, I did like the clothes these dolls were dressed in. This is Strawberry Cupcake Mimi, wearing everything original to her. Her body has bending knees, like the Patsy dolls, but straight arms like the original Ann Estelle dolls.

Patsy was a line produced by Effanbee, that hearkened back to the composition Patsy dolls produced by Effanbee in the 1920s-1940s. Patsy's body is pretty similar to Ann Estelle's, except that Patsy dolls have bending knees, elbows and wrists, as well as the standard shoulder and hip movement. I bought this Patsy with new eyes and a new wig. I ended up not being fond of the wig. It was a very shaggy short style, that kept falling in her eyes. I just got this Monique one, but I don't know that it suits her. It was up in two high pigtails, but it looked too happy and bouncy a style, to me, for the wistful look on her face. I tried to tie the hair in two bunches, low, but the hair keeps wanting to ride up, since that's how it was styled. I might get something new at some point, even more so since this one is a bit small on her. Her head and body are slightly smaller than the Ann line, though. The dress she is wearing is one that I made using the same pattern as the ones that Georgia and Sophie are wearing, but it swims on Patsy.

I bought Georgia wigless. She only came wearing a pair of corduroy pants with an elastic waist, made for her by the woman who was selling the doll, and had used Georgia as a clothing model. I like her new wig on her, although it's funny to see her with a full head of hair after being bald for so long. She looks so sweet in it, though! I also made her dress.

The next Ann Estelle is named A Bit Younger. She was made for the 25th Robert Tonner doll convention, along with a teen or young adult version of Ann Estelle on a 16" body, called Breit Nights. Both dolls wear age appropriate versions of the velvet dress with embroidered flowers, a petticoat with lace, white tights, and matching shoes and hair bows. This Ann's hair is soft, but extremely flyaway. I had to keep her away from my backdrop, or her hair looked she was touching a plasma ball. For fun, I'll include here a shot from the convention, of Robert Tonner and Mary Engelbreit signing after the Cheery Cherry Mary Engelbreit luncheon. I got A Bit Younger's certificate signed by both.



 

And lastly, I recently posted on how I was able to receive Dottie Delight Ann NRFB as a gift for Christmas 2020. I'm so thrilled to have her back in my collection.

You never know what you'll find when you're searching around on eBay. One day, I saw a small wooden cabinet with drawers, painted by an individual to resemble Mary Engelbreit's style. I posed Ann next to it, wearing the basic romper, so you can see what a good job the artist did. You can also see the size. I store things like the Ann dolls' glasses in there, along with a couple of cardigans I bought from eBay as well.

I think these "tenners" are all cute as a button. :) From basic to convention, I love all of them.

Total dolls: 53

Sunday, January 24, 2021

Bunny Update, and Tonner Marie/Clara

Some pictures of my Ann Estelle dolls are next on my to-do list, but that will take me at least a couple of days more. In the meantime, I know that some of you were interested in my daughter's two bunnies and if they were going to bond. Well, it's taken about eight months, but they seem to be pretty comfortable around each other now.

Tallahassee is much more comfortable dealing with Kip, but she has been around other bunnies. Kip had a weird past, and it still seems like he just doesn't know all of the ways a bunny "recognizes" another one as a friend. But they can be trusted to be around each other now, even if Tallahassee will always be the more outgoing bunny.

When I was talking about my Tonner 12" dolls, I mentioned my daughter's Nutcracker Marie doll. Said daughter has started making her bedroom more for an adult, instead of the child that she used to be. She's keeping her Wonder Woman and ballerina dolls, but she gave Marie to me.

I'm officially adding her to the My Collection list here.

Total dolls: 45