Monday, November 20, 2017

Selma DuPar James, Already Sold Out?

Screen capture of Selma DuPar James, the third doll in The Harlem Theater Collection by Mattel

The third doll in the The Harlem Theater Collection, Selma DuPar James, after a long wait for production dolls to arrive, has entered the collections of those who preordered and the doll (as of this writing) is already sold out at TheBarbieCollection website.  (Just this past Friday, order status there was shown as "preorder").  Intense interest among collectors must have been the driving force for the first dolls to sell so quickly.  Will there be others produced?

Described as follows:
The bold Harlem Theatre™ Collection represents the courageous women of an era who paved the way for future generations to freely and creatively express themselves. During the Harlem Renaissance era, patrons of the arts like Madam Lavinia™ would often commission artists to showcase their latest work. Up-and-coming artist Selma DuPar James™, was selected to hold her first solo exhibition in the Harlem Theatre salon.  Her piece is a beautiful portrait of jazz singer Claudette. The third doll in the Harlem Theatre™ Collection, Selma DuPar James™ Barbie® doll is powerfully creative and powerfully stylish.

Doll Designer: Carlyle Nuera
Label: Gold
Body Type: Articulated
Facial sculpt: NEW, Selma sculpt
Fashion: Dress
Fashion Sewn On: No
Accessories: Pearl necklace with pendant, gloves, shoes, painting with frame

Price $85.

Barbie enthusiast, Romona Jennings, is one preordering collector who is now enjoying her doll.  In her collection, Selma joins the first and second dolls in the collection, Claudette Gordon and Madam Lavinia.  Romona's lovely photos of Selma follow:

Holding a box of long-stem roses, (added by Romona), Selma relaxes during her first solo exhibition in the Harlem Theater Salon.

Art gives her life and it is her hope that her artwork inspires others.

Selma's portrait of jazz singer, Claudette, is admired by none other than Claudette herself.

The three divas, Claudette, Selma, and Madam Lavinia, pose for one final photograph at the conclusion of Selma's art exhibition.

When asked which one of the three dolls is her favorite and why, Romona replied, "Selma!  Her lips, her entire ensemble, and her hair; however, it is gelled.  I washed her hair to make it soft.  The dress has snaps in the back.”

Romona seems thoroughly pleased with the doll's appearance and the quality.  Here's hoping Selma's initial sellout was only for the first run of the dolls and that more will be in stock soon at  

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Friday, November 17, 2017

2017 "Little Red" Christmas Doll

Back in June of this year, Karen Oyekanmi (Kissing Kousin Dolls) was commission to create a doll based on my specifications.  The doll was to have a caramel brown complexion, red hair, and freckles.  Because I was not in a hurry to receive the doll and because Karen was working on dolls for The Festival of Black Dolls Show and Sale, which took place this year on November 4, 2017, I decided having the doll dressed in Christmas colors would be appropriate.  I, however, wanted colors or a color that would be suitable for year-round wear.

This photo of a little girl wearing a kelly-green dress was sent to Karen to use for the doll's dress color and style with the exception that I desired short sleeves as opposed to sleeveless.

As her inspiration, Karen used the above photo of a little girl with the complexion, hair color/texture, and freckles I specified.

The following photos, shared by Karen, illustrate the doll making progress.  Details are provided in the voice of the doll.

"My body has already been formed.  Look at me.  I can already stand by myself."

"Now that my face is painted, I think I look almost identical to the little girl in the photo.  My hair and freckles match hers too."

"My kelly-green dress has been made with matching undies.  I am waiting for socks and shoes."
"Socks and shoes have been added."
"My ears are pierced.  In this picture I wear faux diamond studs.  I also have a red gift box."
"After I was completed, my trip from California to Texas began on October 26, 2017.  Debbie did not pick me up from the post office until the afternoon of November 3, 2017.  After she opened the box and removed my tissue paper wrapping, I could see her smiling.  'She must like me,' is what I thought.  She examination me from head to toe.  I knew she was surprised when she saw my hands."

"The next morning, after making some minor adjustments, she took the following photos of me in my new home."

"Debbie thinks I am beautiful!"

"How about you?  Do you think I'm cute? "
"There are three pearls on the back of my dress, which is permanently sewn on.  A green velour ribbon is at the waist of my puff-sleeve dress."

"My green headband matches the waist ribbon of my dress. Debbie exchanged my faux diamond earrings for pearl studs to match the buttons on the back of my dress.  She loves the texture and color of my hair because it reminds her of how red her grandson's hair was when he was younger.  I am looking forward to meeting him and his little brother."
"Debbie took photos of my hands to show my fingernails.  She was surprised about this.  Each of my fingers is also wired for posing. Pretty cool, right?"
"Here I am in one final photo, seated with the red gift box Ms. Oyekanmi sent with me."

"There's a toy inside my gift box!"

"On my certificate of authenticity, Ms. Oyekanmi gave me the name, 'Little Red.'  Because of the color of my dress, Debbie renamed me Kellie and wrote that on the certificate alongside 'Little Red.'"

Kellie is made of felt.  She has a gorgeous hand-painted face which, as she indicated, is almost identical to the photo of the girl that was Karen's inspiration.  She is 20 inches tall, with mounds of beautiful wavy red hair adorned with a green velour headband.  She has applied ears, which are also made of felt.  Her kelly-green dress has a solid green bodice with collar and skirt made of black and green print fabric.  The hem is trimmed with yellow scalloped stitching and the skirt is made fuller by yellow crinoline underneath.  Kelly-green panties, pearl stud earrings, white socks, and black faux leather shoes complete her fashion.  Made as a limited edition of "1" by Karen Oyekanmi of Kissing Kousin, Kellie is my first 2017 Christmas doll, a present from me to me.  I will have an opportunity to enjoy her for several weeks before Christmas and for many years to come.

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Wednesday, November 15, 2017

Family Dollar Lovely Patsy Chef Set Doll

11-1/2 inch Chef Doll by Lovely Patsy, Ltd.

After grocery shopping at Aldi, I visited Family Dollar, which is in the same shopping strip.  I only needed to purchase a couple of household things that Aldi does not sell (Chlorox spray bleach for bathroom sanitizing and a package of cellulose sponges).

Family Dollar's toy aisle is now at the front of the store, so of course, I browsed the doll section, which is where I found this Lovely Patsy, Ltd. Chef Set doll. (I would have still browsed the toy section, no matter where it's located in the store.)

There was one blonde and several African American versions in stock.  I do not recall if the blonde uses the same head sculpt, but it was this doll's head sculpt that influenced the $5 purchase. Her unique face reminds me of someone whom I cannot pinpoint at this moment.  The thought of using her for eye repainting practice entered my mind as I examined all dolls to find one without imperfections.  I initially reached for the one with black hair, but the tip of her nose was blemished from being pressed against the plastic front of the box.  So I chose the most perfect brown-haired doll. 

Still attached to the box liner, the chef was removed from the box for a better photo.

Under column headings:  Manufacturer/Artist, Name, and Description, her spreadsheet entry reads:

Lovely Patsy Ltd, circa 2017 Chef Set from Family Dollar 11-1/2-inch fashion doll with brown rooted hair, has a unique face, wears white satin dress, red neck tie; has pink and white polka dot apron, pink pumps.  Accessories include cooking utensils (a pair of tongs, a knife, spoon, and spatula), bowl, cup/saucer, tray of pastries, boiler, skillet with top, and a pitcher.

The month of purchase and price are also headed columns of the spreadsheet under which were typed, September and $5, respectively.  She is not jointed, but for $5, I would not expect that extra detail.  She does have click-bend knees.  Her arms and legs are made of a pliable vinyl.  The body is  hard plastic.

As indicated, I purchased this doll in September, but now that the holiday season is steadily approaching, Family Dollar, Dollar General, and other such stores will beef up their toy department with dolls (and other toys), some of which might be worth purchasing.

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