Tuesday, August 21, 2018

Ivy Goes to College

  We've been pretty busy lately, getting Ivy ready and stocked with stuff for college. I wanted to spend every available minute with her the last few weeks,if I could,because I am really going to miss her. She's my last baby. I know it's wrong to want to keep her here,but I've been dreading her leaving. The day finally came. On Friday we drove Ivy the 4+ hours to her new home for the next 4 years. We started out about 6 in the morning. Emma had had a very late night the night before,because she and a friend had driven to Detroit to a concert and got back in the wee hours of the morning. But she wanted to see Ivy off to college. Not that there wasn't some sleeping on the way.


Fuzzy was amazed Ivy was taking so much stuff, but Emma thought she was traveling pretty light. As it was we managed to fill the whole back of the car.

  So we arrived in time for the lunch and the welcoming ceremony. Ivy got herself sorted,and we met her roommate and her family. Ivy had things to attend,so we left her and went to pick up a few last minute things for her. And yes, I cried when we left. Hey, I had been doing well to hold it in for the last few months.
  I can't wait until she comes home.

Friday, August 10, 2018

So THAT'S What Those Are! Claudon Cats

  I have to start this post with an explanation. I have been writing drafts of upcoming posts. Some of them are just titles to remind me of dolls I plan to post on if I do Doll-A-Day again next year. One of them got accidentally posted the other day and 27 people looked at it before I noticed! So for those of you wondering what was up with the Ingrid Bergman post that was blank,there you go. Sorry!
  So today we're talking about some little dolls you may have seen before. I posted about them when I first got them at a yard sale. (That post is HERE.) I bought a bag of miniature houses and these 2 1/2" cats for $5.

These cats were my favourite things in the bag.

   At the time I didn't know who the artist was,and I was having trouble finding anything that even resembled these cats.

The other day I posted their pictures on a Facebook miniatures page and asked if anybody knew who the artist was. Almost immediately somebody came up with the answer! They sent me a link to the artist's old webpage. You can see that page HERE.

His name was  Charles David Claudon. (He went by the name Charles Claudon at the time he was making the cats.) He started by making realistic miniature cats. His business was called Butterfly Cat Studio. At the time he was married to  a lady named Ferbie. (I kid you not.)


Ferbie dressed miniature dolls. They decided to make anthropomorphic cats,which Charles would sculpt and  Ferbie Claudon would dress. 

They called the line Kitty Kitsch, (also known these days as Claudon Cats.)

The cats feature hand painted faces and real cat hair.

I think that's the whiskers. The hair on their heads looks too coarse, and too long to be cat hair.

They sold the cats at miniature shows from 1981 to 1995,when they got divorced and no longer worked together.

They also made some dogs.

In 1995 Charles decided to go by his middle name,David,instead of Charles. He was also known as C. David Claudon.

C. David Claudon  went on to publish a book of paper dolls, "The Paper Doll World of David Claudon", and to produce art prints based on his own paintings. 

I did some some additional research and found that,unfortunately, David Claudon passed away in 2016.

If you're interested in seeing more of these wonderful creatures there is an article about them on the website of The Mini Time Machine Museum of Miniatures,which you can see HERE.

Monday, August 6, 2018

Lottie Dolls by Arklu

 A while back you may have seen my review of Junior Reporter Sammi,from Lottie.

Lottie and friends are cute little dolls that promote individuality,inclusion,and imagination. The dolls have an innocence about them,and many of them center around fun and uncommon stuff,as far as dolls are concerned, like archeology,photography,and art. Since I did that post Lottie has come out with some really cool playsets. There is now a Campfire Fun Playset,which has a really neat backpack,and camping accessories.

 There's also the Canoe Adventure Playset,which I would love to have for photos.

There are even locks for the oars.
I would have loved this set when I was a kid,even though I wasn't anywhere near water,EVER,except in the bathtub.
The Stables set is great for kids who love horses. It's even made of real wood. 
I love the Tree House set!

What kid wouldn't? And I am basically a kid at heart. It's real wood too. These wooden playsets are nice because they're not as likely to fall apart as easily as a lot of toys.
  I also still love the Lottie clothes,like all the cozy coats and cute boots. And then there are the dolls that have great accessories,like Star Gazer Lottie and her telescope,Fossil Hunter Lottie,with her fossils and fossil hunting tools,and Always Artsy Lottie with her easel,paints, and palette. Little me would have wanted all of this stuff. I would definitely have bought Fossil Hunter Lottie for Fuzzy when he was little. For all the dinosaur toys, how many paleontologist dolls are there?
  Last month Lottie dolls celebrated their seventh anniversary. At the moment they are having 'bundle' sales and free shipping on orders over $50,in case anybody is interested. You can see what cool stuff they have by clicking this link:Lottie
  Next time we'll talk about some dolls you've seen here before that I just found out some interesting news about.

Sunday, August 5, 2018

My Farewell to Toys R Us,and What I Bought There

  Today was National Doll Day. This was news to me. I've never heard of National Doll Day until today. But it does make it fitting that there are lots of dolls in today's post.
  Toys R Us is a thing of the past now. When my kids were little just about every one of their birthday celebrations involved a trip to Toys R Us to pick out a present of their own choice,(in addition to what we had picked out for them.) As they got older we took fewer and fewer trips to Toys R Us. My youngest is 18 now, so I hadn't visited Toys R Us much in the last few years. But I was sorry to see Toys R Us go. Like the doll show's decline, it's a shame, because it's so nice to be able to see something in person and even handle it,before buying. Sometimes you don't even realize how much you like something until you see it in person. For kids, there's nothing like walking into a toy store. It still has to be more exciting than ordering off a computer.
  We visited a few Toys R Us as they were on their way out. There were some things I hoped to catch when they were marked down,like the Journey Girls,which were pretty much gone by the time there was a decent discount. Then there were some other things which,like I said above, I didn't know I wanted until I saw them in the store. Here are my buys.
 Ivy and I had seen an Edna doll, from the new Incredibles movie, at Target a week or so before and we loved it. When we saw this one at Toys R Us we gave in to the cheap price and brought her home.

'Over 55 sayings'? I keep getting the same ones.

  For those of you who don't know, 'Edna' is based on Oscar winning costume designer Edith Head.

Edith Head designed costumes for movies such as Rear Window,for which she designed the Grace Kelly dress that was copied for the doll made in 2011.

Boy. Sometimes my posts stray to some unconnected places,don't they?
  I found these little guys.

I had never heard of Floogals before.I just thought they were cute. I definitely would have had them when I was a kid. Ivy even succumbed to a plush one,the character with freckles.

I had also never heard of Knolly Nibbles,but is this not the cutest character you're ever seen?

I was hoping to catch a Kuu Kuu Hara Juku doll on a good discount.but all they had were huge sets,and outfits. I nabbed a couple of outfits,and hopefully I'll come across a doll at a thrift store at some point. They had several of the outfits at some of the stores we went to,but I just got my two favourites.

Here are the dolls.

They had Supergirl and Batgirl. I wasn't too keen on Supergirl, but I like Batgirl.

One Toys R Us we visited had a few of this guy.

I like him, but then I noticed he has molded on gloves. That puts me off a bit.
  When my kids were little we loved watching Hey Arnold on Nickelodeon. It was one of the best cartoons of the era. I related to the character of Helga. These days the toys take me back to my kids' childhoods. There were very few Hey Arnold toys made back then. There was a variety of them at Toys R Us during the closing though. I got these Arnold and Helga plush dolls. 

They had Gerald too, but he looked weird. I got this Arnold bobblehead.

I also got these  2 small Hey Arnold blind box figures.I got Arnold and Phoebe.

Surprisingly, they still had these Marvel Fan Girl dolls at a pretty big discount. I love this one.

She's the prettiest one in the line I think.

And she has the coolest outfit.

There was also this one. She's ok, but I don't like her lips much.

Same face sculpt?

There was one doll that was at every Toys R Us we visited,and in large quantities. I don't know why,because I thought she was very pretty.

There were three dolls in the series, and one of the stores we went to had all three. 

I had decided to get Becky,but Emma almost had me talked into getting Eva,the one with fire engine red hair. At the last moment I went back to the orange haired Becky though.

She's beautiful.

Her outfit is kind of interesting,but I think something else would show her off to her best advantage.

Her clothes are printed. It's almost like she's a cartoon.

There are lots of gears all over her stretchy pants.

Her boots are open at the back so they're easier to slide on and off.

She's jointed at the neck,shoulders, elbows,wrists,hips, and knees.

Her arms can move out to the sides, but her legs aren't very posable other than the bendable knees.

So I decided to find something to redress her in that would show just how pretty she is. All I could find that even partially suited what I had in mind was a vintage scarf. I tried to make her look a bit like a goddess or something. Hey, don't judge me.

Much better than the steampunk wrestling outfit at least?

  So goodbye Toys R Us. I have heard Kaybee Toys is going to be making a comeback, taking over from Toys R Us. We used to go to Kaybee a lot more often than Toys R Us since there was a Kaybee here in town,and Toys R Us was an hour or so away. Kaybee was much smaller though. Toys R Us was the big boy,and that will be missed.