Dolls and Doll-related Items for Sale

Wednesday, May 25, 2022

Cleveland Asian Festival 2022

This past weekend was the annual Asian Festival, that was held in the part of Cleveland known as Asian Town. Mr. BTEG, the Dancer and I all visited it on Sunday. Mr. BTEG has been to Asian Town often before, as he used to go lunch there with some of his co-workers of Asian descent. The Dancer and I had never been before.

Of course, I always look for doll things. I was afraid that I wouldn't see anything this time, until we checked out the stores in the small Asian mall, that also had the restaurant where we ate lunch.

There was a store that carried Chinese style dresses for American Girl and Wellie Wishers dolls. They also had a variety of little porcelain Chinese style tea sets. I didn't buy anything, but of course, the shop will be there while the Festival booths won't.

I did buy a pair of Hello Kitty earrings.

There were some performances from local organizations. We only managed to catch several acts from Hawaiian dancers

and some dancers from a school that teaches "Bollywood style."

I'm glad that I caught the girl dressed in Chinese style clothes in the picture. I saw her around the festival all day. Very few other people were dressed in traditional Asian styles, but I did see one woman wearing tabi (Japanese split-toe socks) with geta (wooden shoes with two wooden supports underneath.) I had to wonder how uncomfortable she was, because it had poured rain the night before, and had rained a little that morning, so there were puddles, and also some muddy spots. Sure, the geta kept her feet off the ground, but I don't know if the tabi got wet.

There was an enormous outdoor food court set up for the festival, but the lines for food stretched all the way down the food court, so we went into the mall to have lunch in the permanent restaurant there. We had to wait for a table there, but it was probably actually less time than the food court, with the advantage of sitting down! Mr. BTEG has eaten there before, although he prefers a little hole-in-the-wall dim sum restaurant in the area, but that was too far for tired people to walk.

Unlike a lot of American restaurants that have coffee carafes and coffee cups on the table, this restaurant of course had a tea pot full of hot tea, and traditional tea cups. Mr. BTEG and the Dancer drank some.

I had sweet and sour chicken, which I was just able to pick up using chopsticks. Meanwhile, the Dancer easily ate rice with her chopsticks. I was jealous, but she's been to Chinese restaurants a lot more often than I have. (Admission: I don't like Asian food. I like sweet and sour chicken without the sweet and sour sauce, though; it's just chicken fried in tempura batter.)

Spring ushers in a long season of fairs and festivals here, which doesn't end until after Halloween. Maybe we'll get out to more this year, now that they're back. And of course, I'll always be on the hunt for doll things! Do you like to go to festivals like these?

Wednesday, May 18, 2022

My Collection Part Nineteen: Madame Alexander Travel Friends

There aren't going to be any new pictures of these dolls. I bought them back in 2015, so even if you saw the posts when I reviewed the dolls, you've probably forgotten about them, and what they looked like. I reviewed them in great detail; unfortunately, there were a lot of flaws in the dolls, clothes, and box art. If you're interested, check out Germany and Ireland here, and Italy, Kenya and Russia here.

Here are the five dolls together.

Top from left to right: Italy, Russia, Kenya

Bottom from left to right: Germany, Ireland

The Germany doll, who I named Gretel, is wearing mini AG Felicity's dress, because her own outfit is just horrible. The shirt was too short, and the lederhosen were too baggy, and the straps were too tight when I tried to sit Gretel down. Plus her shoes were huge on her, as opposed to the other dolls. I guess that's because she came wearing stockings, which none of the other dolls did.

So ein Pech

The girls' clothes also had huge tags in them, that could stick out from the outfit.


When I re-read my reviews, I didn't remember how much I had really savaged some of the aspects of these dolls. However, I only paid $10 or so for each doll, and overall they *are* cute. They kind of remind of dolls like the Kruselings, only about 2" or 5cm shorter. I think I like my dolls' overall look better, actually. It's just too bad that Madame Alexander, a doll manufacturer name associated with quality, produced dolls with so many issues. This type of doll, which they also tried to use for a princess line, and a NASCAR line (so odd!) didn't sell very well, and few doll styles made it to stores.

Total dolls: 82

Sunday, May 1, 2022

Making a Splash

Apparently bathtubs were the hot home-decor item at Michael's this spring. Of course, the doll collector can't help but wonder if any of the tubs will work with her dolls. I ended up buying three. 

The white tub with the black feet is just about right for 16" dolls. Sam's legs can't extend all the way out inside the tub, but she found it a nice place to soak and day dream.

There were two other sizes of this tub at Michael's. At least, I think that one next to the biggest tub, is smaller than the medium tub. I forget now, and it's hard to tell!

Teresa liked playing with a rubber ducky. This tub is just a bit on the big size for a 12" doll, maybe, but I think it looks fine when pictured from the side.

There were three colors of that bathtub at Michael's: the one above and the two below.

Marie thinks this bathtub just the right size for her and her school friends. The Eden line of Madeline dolls included a set of bathroom furniture long ago, but as with just about everything from this line, it's super expensive on the secondary market now. The soap/dish and bath brush came from a Madeline set, and I also have a Madeline freestanding towel rack which came with the towel that Marie is using.

I happened to go down a different aisle at Michael's and saw that there were also bathtubs like this one in red and green, in the "strawberry theme" section of home decor.

I tried the trick of putting clear Contact paper on the floor tiles, which is supposed to make the paper look more like shiny vinyl tile. Maybe it's just my lighting, or angles, or something, but I don't see a big difference.

Also at Micheal's was a bathtub/candle holder, in two different colors.

Someone else on Instagram bought it for dolls. I was debating getting one, but I didn't want to bother digging out the candle. These tubs were pretty small, too.

Also, there was this galvanized tub with a shower head. This would be about right for American Girl or a large doll like that.

Don't mind the prices on Michael's things. The newest stuff goes on sale practically from the minute it comes in the door. This conveniently means you can't use their coupons for the newest stuff, as most Michael's coupons are not usable with sales items. Occasionally you do get a coupon which gives you a percentage off of your entire purchase including sales. On the other hand, last month I walked out with a plastic scrapbook paper storage case, two rolls of materials for my Cricut, and a several foot long garland made up of foam-type pastel Easter eggs for less than $8. I felt like I was stealing something. The trick at Michael's is to keep your eye on sales and to be signed up in their membership program, which gets you coupons.

Also at Michael's of doll interest was this piece of artificial green grass. It was labeled as a placemat, but can you imagine crumbs and spills on this? Maybe it would be nice for a centerpiece, with an Easter tree on top. It's smaller than the other piece of fake grass that I have; I used this one for my Easter shoot.

Then there were these chairs. I thought really hard about getting the red one, but decided against it. Someone on Instagram showed one of those chairs with a Tonner doll, and it looked okay, but didn't make me regret not buying one. I feel like the yellow and white chairs had too deep of a seat. They're probably made to display something-not-a-doll on, so that makes sense.

That reminds me that Michael's did have a small group of little plants of the kind that rarely need water, like a bromeliad. They might make good plants for a doll house or display. If Michael's doesn't have any more, because it took me forever to get this post up, or if you don't have a Michael's, I'm sure they can be found other places. At least in the US, these plants are another one of the things currently in style for home-decor.

Michael's happened to have these trash and recycle cans. I've seen those for a long time in other people's pictures. I think they're supposed to be for use on an office desk.


Lastly were these wall-hanging shelves. Or at least, they're supposed to be shelves. I thought they would make good side tables for dolls. Jaye of Jaye's Doll Space put up a picture on Instagram where she used the shorter one as a raised cocktail table. It's fun to see other people find the same things to re-purpose for dolls that you did. The small and large are two different size options, not the same piece.

I happened to be at Hobby Lobby around the same time, but the only thing doll-adaptable that I saw, besides the dollhouse things that they sell, were these mugs and teapots. And of course the mugs and teapots aren't the same scale, unless maybe the teapot is a one cuppa size. Both items were also too big for 12" dolls, but could work with a larger crew.

How often do you find regular decor that you can use for dolls?