Friday, September 16, 2016

Now she's really living!

Disney recently released several dolls from their new Elena of Avalor TV Series.

So far there's a classic doll of Elena and a two pack set with Isabel (that Elena doll sings). There's also a classic doll of both characters sold at J.C. Penny. Classic Elena is pretty much the same, except the Disney store has articulated elbows and wrists. The Isabel doll has a different outfit and her legs are made from a white rubber to mimic tights. There is also a gift set coming out eventually that has I believe all the outfits from every doll in it. Don't think the doll will sing though.

I've purchased both Elena doll's from the Disney store. Pretty much just to get their shoes. I thought that the Isabel doll was wearing the classic Disney flats, but they're actually different. They're smaller, made slightly different, and marked on the bottom as copyright Disney. They do fit Charlotte, so they technically work, but I didn't keep them in the shoe collection. It just didn't feel right. Singing Elena's shoes are really cute gold shoes with kitten heels. They fit the Poppy Parker foot really nicely. The classic doll's shoes don't fit as well since her foot in thinner. They are a lot longer than the average Disney/Barbie foot. I think they fit the Tall/Curvy Barbie high heel foot.

I ended up with two sets of the singing dolls since my first one arrived with issues, most of them with Isabel. The worst one was that her hair wasn't rooted properly and part of the vinyl was lifting on her forehead. Despite their shoddy quality control Disney is pretty good at sending out replacement sets. The doll was better in my second set but the dress hem on Elena's dress was really mangled, so neither set was perfect. I ended up taking the head off the first Isabel doll. She has a very unique body. It's the Disney Store fairy body, but without the wings and with wrist articulation. She does have internal clicking rubber knees. She pretty much has the same level of articulation as the classic dolls. I believe this is the same body as will be used for the upcoming Alice and Queen of Hearts Heroes and Villains set. (For Alice, not the Queen of Hearts, her body is stuffed).

I searched my stash for a head that could work for this body. It's a bit small, so it's hard to find just the right size. She's roughly Skipper sized, but more curvy and a little taller. The body is a pink/orange skin tone. I ended up putting a Living Skipper head with cut hair that I had on it. I did have to rubber band the neck knob to get it to fit and it's a bit wobbley, but it works for now. I've kept her like that for a while so I must like it. Skipper is a little pinker than the body, but close enough. I'm curious to know how the body would work with a 90's Skipper head, but I don't have one here to try with it. The neck is pretty thin (but feels sturdy) so it might be an option for all those Skipper dolls with broken or cracking necks.

I do kind of want to modify the body. Ideally I'd replace the legs with ones that are hard plastic and articulated but can't see that happening since I don't have smaller legs to use and the color match would be hard to do. The other thing I'd like to do (which might actually happen) would be to mod the elbows. The fairy body has this weird flap on the elbow at the top that keeps the lower arm from bending a certain way. At least in theory, the material it's made out of is very soft so you can push it out of the way. It does interfere with some of the doll's mobility and can look down right odd. I'd like to trim it off, but am hesitant to do that just in case I mess it up. I'd like to trim her wrists too since they have too much material there and it interferes with her mobility and looks weird. But again, worried to do so.

Skipper does need a re-root but I'm not sure if I will give her one just yet. While I like the head and body combo I'm not in love with it. The head does feel slightly small too me. She stays as is for now, but time will tell how things go in the future.

Thursday, September 15, 2016

Ebay Update

I had two non-payers from the last E-bay go around. Both Disney dolls oddly enough. One of the buyers had like 70 feedbacks, the other one had 0. Everyone else paid pretty quickly and got their items into the mail at the start of the week. I decided to be patient with these two. The auction ended on a Sunday I waited until the middle of the week and sent an invoice as a reminder and nothing. So on the following Sunday I opened up cases against them for not paying. That seemed to get the one with feedback to actually reply to me. They sent a brisk two sentence email telling me they had changed their mind, didn't want the doll any more and to please cancel it.

Which I ignored. 

Had they contacted me after they had bid or after they had won it but before I opened the case I would have canceled the bid. I would have been annoyed, but I won't (and actually can't) make someone buy something if they don't want it. Also, they could just pay for it and return it and I'd be out shipping both ways. So it is in my best interest to not make people follow through on something they don't want.

However once I open a case, the only way I will shut it is if they pay. Once you end a case early you can't open another one and have to cancel the auction which means the buyer has to agree to it. And it's not like I have any confidence in their communication skills or anything. So if they ignore the cancel request, then you're out the fees for that listing and nothing happens to them.

So random E-bay person, the issue is now closed, so you kinda got what you wanted but now you have a nice little strike against you. Perhaps next time you'll bid on something you really want.

And I never heard anything from the other auction so whatevz.

I heard from Integrity!

Thanks to a suggestion from John on my last post I ended up posting a comment on Integrity's Facebook page. They told me to send my email with my issues to Patient Care and gave me the e-mail address.
I contacted them and they wrote back the next day asking for pictures and the names of the dolls so they could see the issue and find out which skin tones I needed for replacements. I sent them the pictures and names and they wrote back that they'll be shipping out replacements. They're apparently coming from Montreal, so it'll be a few weeks until they show up here. Which I am fine with. These dolls are just sitting around right now so they can keep their discolored hands and feet for a little bit longer. I am impressed with how quickly they responded. Not sure where my first email ended up, but I do know those things happen. I almost want to contact them about my other doll who had her hair rooted in one spot too closely and it tore her scalp, but not sure if they can do anything about that.

Since I took/edited the pictures already, you get to see them too.
Here is some of my budding Homme collection:

Thursday, September 8, 2016


Hello everyone,

September continues to be just as awful as August. My parents got the check for my father's totaled truck and were forced to return the rental car, well before the original date they were told so we're down to one vehicle for the family. They have been looking for a new car every day in the morning, but have not had much luck. They're working with a limited budget so it's hard to find cars that aren't a mess. They were close yesterday to getting one, but after checking it out with a mechanic it needed over 2 grand in repairs so they didn't get it, leaving us with just one car yet again.

So I've been forced to call out of work twice this week. I told them I had messed up my ankle. I have today off, but work again tomorrow and I'm worried I'm going to have to call out again. I'm supposed to be showing them I'm worth more than minimum wage but I'm thinking I'm going to be stuck at that rate for another 30 days due to this setback, if I'm even working there by then. Where I work has a point system, you get a point every time you call out. You get 6 points within a 6 month period they are forced by the company to fire you. The store itself has no say in the matter, they have to due to corporate. I am very worried that might happen. I've never been fired from a job before and I'm extremely worried how this is all going to play out.

So needless to say I've been extremely depressed lately. I hate having to call out of work and let the store down and the fact that there's no end in sight that might lead to my dismissal really sucks the joy out of my life. Things have not been going well, and life just keeps piling more crap on. I don't seem to be the only person having a crappy August/September. I have yet to hear any good news from anyone these past weeks. It's all been bad, bad, bad.

At least my depressed state helped talk me out of buying another new doll. I've been eyeing the Charlotte Olympia doll since I love her face and cat shoes but figured I wouldn't get a chance to purchase her. I saw she was listed over on Barbie Collector but managed to talk myself out of buying her since I'd just want her head and shoes and I really didn't need to buy another doll right now especially such an expensive one. I'm still in the red for 136 dollars for this past month so I really shouldn't be adding any more to that. I reasoned with myself saying that for that money I'd rather buy a vintage doll or one of the My Little Pony dolls, but right now I'm so glum I don't want to buy either of them.