I’m making this a quick post to share a non-typical purchase I made earlier this week. Rewind a bit to earlier in January of this year. I attended a local doll show where I purchased a couple of vintage fashions from a vendor I purchase from regularly when the doll show comes around my way in Winter and Summer. In January I posted a picture on my Instagram account of a MOD fashion that jumped out at me … no pun intended …. “Jump Into Lace”. MOD Barbie fashions are not on my radar, mainly due to the fact that MOD Barbie’s are not on my radar. Ever really. But I bought the fashion on a whim, and then when I got home, I realized I had no proper doll to wear the fashion. I adored this jumpsuit and pushed it aside, thinking at some point I would find the right doll to wear it.
Rewind even further to Black Friday in December, to another Instagram post I made about purchasing a vintage Barbie find at a local antique shop … two pair of vintage Barbie wedges. During that same visit to the same shop, a different vendor had a very troubled vintage Titian Twist N Turn Barbie. I picked her up, looked her over, and dismissed her. Too much work. Surely her hair would never be tame again.
Fast forward to Monday of this week, and I found myself back at the antique shop on a shopping date with my hubby. I was secretly rooting for the messed up TNT to still be tossed about on the shelves on which I had originally found her. I visited the vendor’s booth, couldn’t find her, and moved on. But I made my way back a short while later. I searched more diligently. And sure enough there she was. Tossed aside and completely neglected. I showed her to my husband and I commented on what rough shape she was in. So dirty. Could her hair ever be tamed?! Her knees did click, and her rooted eyelashes looked to be in nice shape. But seriously, for $25, why would I be so indecisive? I told myself I could easily shave her head and put a wig on her, worst case scenario. And I reminded myself that I **desperately** needed a MOD doll to model that Jump Into Lace jumpsuit back at home. So I walked up to to the counter with her, and being the cheapskate that I am, demanded an additional $5 discount, of which I was granted.
On Monday I posted a pic of her on my Instagram and had a very helpful person give me some tips on smoothing out that mess of a head of hair. I decided if it didn’t work out, I would just revert to my shave plan. But to my surprise, she cleaned up BEAUTIFULLY! Yes, she’s a tad thin on top, but for $20, I’m not going to fret.
This is just one more reason why I thoroughly enjoy this hobby – I am constantly being surprised by tiny little treasures that just make my day. No one was going to take the poor orphan in, except for a Barbie Collector, and it turns out a NON-MOD collector adopted this beauty. I’m now in complete LOVE. Isn’t she adorable?!
Doll: Titian Barbie Twist & Turn / 1967
Fashion: Vintage “Jump Into Lace” (#1823) / 1968
I love cherubs more than than the average person – I’m sure of it. It is a common theme in my photos, mostly as an accent added to the 1:6 scale furniture that I’ve customized. When I created the backdrop for my display wall for the boutique photos I shared in my last two posts, I naturally incorporated a cherub head onto the wall. I go with what I love. And like I just said, I LOVE cherubs. 🙂 I kept thinking how lovely it would be to photograph a cupid themed Barbie, with TONS of pink. But Mattel has not created a cupid Barbie. So one day recently, as I was really rushed, I put together my version of a cupid Barbie, and photographed her with the backdrop. It happened to be late in the afternoon, on the ONLY sunny day in weeks, and there was a TON of natural light shining in the doll room. Often times I move my set to another room in the house (usually my upstairs bathroom) to catch natural light. I didn’t have time for that, so I went with the strong Western sun set lighting and caught some shadows that highlighted cupid’s wings. And yes, that wig is really difficult to tame, its never cooperated with me, but its a perfect pink and I just went with it. I got over the untamed flighaways, hopefully you can too 🙂 !
I was inspired to share this photo series on Valentine’s Day – you here you go – Happy Valentine’s Day!
Check out the shadow effect from the sunset lighting
By the way, those sconces are real, light up battery operated lights that I will blog about soon. My new fav find!
Cupid Head to toe. My Frankenstein creation consists of these items: Headband: from the 2007 BFMC Honey in Hollywood Accessory Pack / Wig: Purchased off ebay well over 10 years ago, no info other than it fits Barbie sized heads / Barbie Head: from the Barbie and Her Wig Wardrobe set / Body: Integrity Toys Dynamite Girl / Corset: An item I had commissioned well over 10 years ago, I no longer recall the seamstress’s name / Wings: from Happy Birthday Angel Barbie / Cupid’s Bow: Ever After High C.A. Cupid / Backdrop: Made by me using large doll house wall & trim
Last week I posted the 2018 Valentine window display for Barbie’s French Lingerie Boutique, “La Boutique Angelique”. Here is the link to Part 1.
Part 2 is a revisit of what lies behind the display wall, for those that are new to my photos and doll room.
As I mentioned in part 1, I created this 1:6 scale diorama for my Silkstone/BFMC Barbies in 2005. Here are some of the details of the boutique:
As I mentioned in Part 1, photos of the boutique taken over the years can be viewed at my Flickr album entitled “La Boutique Angelique”.
I leave you with a heads up that my next post will feature a photo shoot that the Shopgirl commissioned recently for a marketing campaign for the boutique featuring the window display wall seen in Part 1.
In 2005 I made a permanent diorama fixture for my collection that remains a favorite of mine. At the time, I was inspired by many of the beautiful lingerie pieces from the BFMC Silkstone collection, along with several well made Barbie Fashion Avenue lingerie sets and the like. The lingerie from the BFMC are delicate works of art. I thought it would be fun to create a lovely Parisian themed lingerie shop so the beloved items could always be on display. I call it “La Boutique Angelique”. I have an album in my Flickr account you can view here if you’re interested in seeing some past photos of the boutique. I attempted to incorporate some of the elements of the inspirational BFMC photo sets when I created the boutique.
During the heydays of the Barbie Collector forum, I had a thread that I contributed to regularly with photos of the boutique. Don’t go looking for it now – its buried deep in the vaults along with everything else over there. Around Valentines Day, I used to enjoy creating and featuring a Valentines themed display. Its been years since I’ve been inspired to take new photos of the boutique. Time constraints don’t allow me as much time for elaborate photo shoots like I once took time for. However, this year I told myself I was going to revisit the theme, and so I did. Sometimes, you just need a source of inspiration, and this year I’m going with a theme I call “Bleu Valentine”, inspired partially by this vintage Valentine from 1912. Angels and cherubs have always been part of the boutique theme, so this postcard is perfect for the theme:
Once I got started planning the new display, I realized my idea allowed me to utilize props that I’d been collecting (or hoarding, rather) for years. This year, I chose to change it up a bit and create a “window display wall” that you see from the store front window, as you enter the boutique. Here is La Boutique Angelique’s Valentine Display for 2018:
Part 2 I will take you behind the window display wall, to the boutique sales floor.
A couple of days ago I stumbled across these acrylic doll display cases at Michaels Craft Store. They retail for $14.99 each. Michael’s “50% off one item” coupons are readily available – half price for one of these cases is an even better price.
The cases are excellent for protecting and/or highlighting those special individual dolls and/or outfits that are a concern for collecting dust.
They measure 5 x 5 x 13 inches. The front of the case is a completely removable lid for access to the interior. The acrylic is thinner than some of my other acrylic cases that I have in my collection, but I don’t mind, I like that they’re not as bulky.
They are not a great option for large ballgowns or dresses with long trains, however I still think they’re an item of good value to sprinkle throughout a doll room mixed with other display cases.
Two dolls in slimmer outfits will fit in the case just fine:
I collect various cases for creating displays within my doll room. Obviously they help protect from dust but they also add an element of highlighting a doll or a theme (for example, my “Cruise Ship Passengers” theme featuring the BFMC Silkstone “Boater” doll, pictured below).
Another example of how I use acrylic cases:
There are some dolls that just look great featured alone and deserve their own individual case. These are perfect for that.
Great item to consider adding to your collection!
Recently I found myself browsing ebay auctions for Silkstone Barbies. I came upon auctions for the Silkstone Vanity. It has been quite some time since I’ve checked out the high-end price tag items in the BFMC Silkstone arena and I have to say I am stunned by the secondary market pricing for the Silkstone Vanity. Out of curiosity I ran comparables on recently sold auctions (the realtor in me shining through) and have found the average sold auctions fall anywhere between $399-500. YIKES! Should I mention that one sold for $840 in October? Current actives are well above the sold prices (typical hopeful sellers, just like in real estate). When did this exorbitant price jump happen? Maybe I’ve been asleep or just plain clueless, but I honestly didn’t expect it to pan out like this. I say this because I recall that when the vanity was first released, collectors were astonished at the MSRP : at the time, a whopping $125.00. I scanned a page from a 2004 Barbie Collectibles catalog, pictured below.
When the vanity hit the market in 2004, I didn’t hesitate for a second to purchase it. At the time I was spending equally as much if not more for beautiful, good quality 1:6 scale Bespaq (or items of the like) furniture pieces, so $125.00 hardly seemed ridiculous to me. I was, and I continue to be, a major diorama geek, I was in the camp that was shouting for more 1:6 scale furniture pieces and was willing to pay the price for solid, quality furniture pieces. I only purchased one. What those collectors then could only realize now. There IS in fact a huge void in this portion of our hobby. The need for well priced, well structured furniture pieces made of durable, quality materials.
Fast forward to today. In as much as I adore and appreciate this vanity, I have to ask myself if I would pay upwards of $400-500 for the piece if I didn’t already own one. It is an incredible 1:6 scale item, and I’ve been very pleased with the quality. It has held up perfectly for these past 13 years. Zero complaints. But I know that because I own one. However, I write about this because I know that at some point, new collectors will stumble upon my blog. And it is quite possible that this all new and fresh to them. So, if you are new to this hobby, and you decide that you want to seek out this piece to add to your collection, but you’re not sure if the price tag fits the crime, I’m here to tell you: do the crime. Its a big price to pay. Would I pay $800? No. But you may be in a different tax bracket than I, and then of course it is all relevant. A couple of hundred dollars for a really well made, classic, stylish piece of BFMC furniture is definitely worth it.
The vanity is a treasure to photograph and display. This photo is from a vignette/diorama that I photographed in 2007. Its one of my favorite photo series featuring the vanity. All of the sweet accessories that come with it are priceless. This vanity is a BFMC classic and it is a crying shame that Mattel didn’t add more beautiful pieces to the mix. Lord knows that if they would follow some of the prices of the auctions out there, they might note that there is HUGE gap to be filled, and if only they would jump in and fill it.
Today I took a few photos of my vanity for this post. It was a great reminder to take time to appreciate the treasures that I do have in my collection, and share the love for a lovely piece of BFMC history.
……wishing everyone the best of all Holidays this year!
I have a fantastic wintry white backdrop that I greatly adore. I’ve used it in several of my winter vignettes. Obviously there are limitations as to how many times a year I’m going to be inspired to shoot photos with a winter theme and utilize such a backdrop. Every December I have the best of intentions to take a Christmas/Holiday themed Barbie photo. However, I inevitably get caught up in the holiday bustle and I just never get it done. Today I noticed some incredible natural, sunny light in my home, so I put all projects and priorities on a brief hold, took advantage of the light and enjoyed a quick holiday photo session.
Until today, I had never redressed Dulcissima Barbie. In fact I’m fairly certain that given my limited amount of time spent with my hobby these past couple of years, I pretty much deboxed her when I got her, and then threw her up on a shelf without really taking time to appreciate her beauty. I’m glad that I chose her to model for this session. She brought this underappreciated classic Christmas plaid gown to life today!
Barbie Model: Dulcissima Silkstone Barbie (2014)
Gown: Winter’s Eve Barbie (1995)
My goodness where has the time gone?! During the Summer season, I knew I had been so far behind in blogging that I just avoided it altogether until I had some quality time/inspiration to spend with my hobby. Unfortunately, I have to fast forward to the month of November in order for that to become a reality. So I here I am, all the way into the end of November finally sitting down to write a post.
Those that know me know I have two very active daughters. I spent a majority of our Summer driving to and from soccer tournaments, camping trips, sleep overs…the list goes on. I also had a large chunk of time spent on training for a half marathon, my first, of which I competed and finished in Kauai, Hawaii in the month of September. So much healthier for my body than re-dressing dolls, but not nearly as creatively satisfying!
In October, I brushed past the cobwebs in my doll room and found my way back to some time with my hobby. I admit the love came rushing back when I received the re-issued Barbie Dream House. My 9 year old helped me assemble it and it was a fun project for us both. The repro doll that comes with the set really set my heart fluttering – she’s adorable and I really love her retro dress. I took a few quick pics, one of which I shared to my Instagram account a while back:
The set is really large and consumes a lot of space, but it is a great piece to own for a vintage backdrop. I have had several opportunities in the past to purchase the vintage version at estate sales or the random doll show but I just never bit. I’m glad I purchased this set because I know I will use it later for photo ops.
New and fun items seem to be what it takes to get me back out to the doll room. I took time to re-do some displays (a couple I started in late Spring). Over the Thanksgiving Holiday I found myself with a bit of rare extra time and worked on some more displays and re-dressed several dolls. If you can handle photos with horrendous Pacific NW winter lighting, here is a sampling of my efforts:
Did some Black Friday shopping – but not at Target or Wal Mart. I hit the antique stores with a friend and scored these two vintage pairs of wedges:
I moved all my vintage dolls to my Ikea Detolf cabinet
Started my holiday display I do every year with this backdrop:
Updated more displays throughout my doll room:
Naturally, I’m left with a mess to clean up:
So now we are all reacquainted and caught up. I hope to get back to posting more regularly – like I always say LOL. I always look for inspiration out there to keep the creative juices flowing. Lots of ideas up in this brain, just need to get them implemented.