Saturday, June 8, 2013


Our story starts on June 4th, a Tuesday (Gosh I'm so behind on blogging). That upcoming weekend there were two big events. On Saturday it was the 4th Anniversary of the Swell Doll Shop and on Sunday it was my birthday. This story mainly deals with Saturday.
I had been hoping to visit the Swell Doll Shop on Saturday for their 5th Anniversary celebration sale. My family was also planning on having my Birthday Party on Saturday since that's when my sister could come, but she wasn't going to get here until the late afternoon. I even asked to borrow some money from my parents for the Swell Doll Shop. I'm really starting to wrack up the debt with them. I'm going to have to really put my nose to the grindstone and pay them off.
I was given the okay and things seemed to be all set... but then I checked my e-mail. In there was an e-mail from Joe Blitman regarding the newest additions to his site. Apparently Joe had gotten a variety of vintage Japanese exclusive dolls in and had just listed them. I'm not sure if I've mentioned this, but I covet the Japanese exclusive dolls. I was poking around his site and just seeing what everything was listed for. Like usual I played the game where I guess the price before actually seeing it. I was pleasantly surprised to see that the prices were lower than my guesses. (These are rare dolls so they usually go for $$$). One of the most surprising values were the prices of the seven Japanese Skippers that he had listed. They had some damage but the heads ranged from 99 dollars to 59 dollars. I was expecting them to be going for a lot more than that. I walked away for a little but, but Skipper kept calling me back. I knew the higher priced ones were way out of my price range, but there was one at 59 and that was very close to the amount I was borrowing for the Swell Doll Shop visit. I do like shopping at the Swell Doll Shop, but getting a Japanese Skipper would be a lifelong dream come true. So I asked my parents if I could borrow a little more and they agreed. I quickly e-mailed Joe and asked him how much the cheapest shipping would be and if she was still available. He quickly replied saying she was and that shipping would be five dollars.


After checking with him and setting it all up, I sent him a money order for 64 dollars the very next day. I thought about contacting him again to tell him I sent the money order, but didn't want to be a pest. I had already e-mailed him several times just setting the transaction up. I noticed the next day that the seven Japanese Skipper head had been whittled down to four. Mine was among the dolls removed from the site. By Saturday all of the Skippers had been removed and the text "Sorry all the Japanese Skippers had been sold" were now in their place. Good thing I hadn't waited, or else I would have been out of luck. At the start of the new week, I began to get a little worried. I had not heard anything about my Money Order arriving, and I knew that Joe's policy was to only kept things on hold for a week. I would be devastated if my money order did not arrive in time and the head was re-listed and sold out from under me.

My fears were stifled considerably when she arrived on Tuesday the 11th. 


Sorry, I've been trying to not doing that for the entire time I've been writing this, and I just couldn't keep it quiet any more.
Anyway, Japanese Skipper arrived. And I just love, love, love her. I was so excited to rip open her box and finally have her in hand. I knew that according to the write up on them, they were all unused vintage stock
from Mattel, so they never had any bodies. They were originally mint, but over time their heads discolored and they got green in their vinyl from their brass headbands that had been kept on them. Other than that they were in mint condition, with amazing hair and flawless face paint. And she did not disappoint (although I had seen her picture from several angles, so I knew what I was getting). Her hair and face paint are wonderful. She has the Japanese exclusive large black "pie in the eye" style eyes and beautiful butter cream lips. Her face paint is just gorgeous. Her hair is great too, I had heard people say the Japanese exclusive dolls have silkier hair than the U.S. dolls, but it really is true. It's not that different, but comparing the two types of dolls the Japanese one's hair just feels smoother. I already mentioned that all the dolls suffered from some green on their scalps from where their brass headband caused corroding on their head. Luckily the majority of the green stains are hidden under her hair. When I got her she had a lot of green gunk around her hairline, and in her hair plugs. She didn't have any play dirt on her, but she did need a bath when she arrived to get some of the green off. I was surprised with how much green came off her head with the initial washing. Her head is still noticeably green at her hairline, but it's now considerably lighter than when I got her. Her hair took longer to get clean since the green was imbedded in her hair plugs. Eventually I used dish soap and a toothbrush to brush it all out. It took several applications, but I think I managed to get it all out. The inside of her head also got washed in an effort to remove any green gunk that was inside her head as well. While for the most part I'm fine ignoring green ear, I do have a major problem with leaving it as is and possibly allowing it to spread.
The green ear was not her only problem, as you can see she is a very sallow yellow color. She should be an extremely pink color, pinker than the mod dolls are. I guess she was made from the same vinyl as the mod dolls, and they too are prone to discoloring. She does retain a few spots where she's still pink, one at her right
temple and one at the back of her head.. I wouldn't be too shocked if over time these too faded to the yellow color the rest of her is. I wouldn't mind if it did, right now the few odd spots look weird themselves. But overall they're really not that noticeable and I can easily live with them.
As I already mentioned I bought the cheapest of the Japanese Skipper heads. Mine was the 59 dollar one, a couple were 69, several were 89, and at least one was 99. In all honesty I didn't see much difference in condition between the one I purchased and the ones that were more expensive. The only difference I could see between those was that the one I bought has a line of green above her right eye. I assume that's some discoloration from from her
headband that traveled, but I could be wrong. I think that it really doesn't look that bad, just like she has a line of eyeshadow above on eye. I don't even mind that it's only over one eye. If it really did, I could just get the other side repainted, or get both eyes painted in a more... traditional color. (But like I said I don't mind it).

You can see that Skipper found a body already, she actually stole one. She's using the body that belongs to that Skipper I bought on Craigslist. I had her head off because her body was outside getting sun in an effort to clear up her red stains (which are still there somewhat). Since her head was already off and I'm still on the fence about giving her a re-root I decided she could loan her body to Skipper. I've already looked up the prices for getting a replacement one, and they're relatively cheap.
But that's going to have to wait, I'm currently 99 bucks in the hole to my parents. (But it was so worth it).

Japanese Skipper AHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH!!!!!!!!!!

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