Sunday, February 26, 2012

Wigging Shane

Part of the fun of owning BJDs is changing their wigs.  A couple of weeks ago, when Shane arrived, I was too caught up in the drama of his arrival to do anything but get him dressed and photographed in his full-set, which included a dark red wig.  It's a lovely wig and really suits him, but how would he look in other colors?  What does he look like wearing no wig at all?

Shane full view

I don't usually show my dolls in their unwigged state.  No matter how lifelike a sculpt may be, there is nothing like the telltale line between the head and the headcap to dispel the illusion.  The only reason I mention this is because I had a request to show Shane without a wig.  There is perfectly good logic behind the request.  Unless they have been trimmed or else styled with gel or hairspray, many wigs tend to obscure a good part of a doll's face.  Sometimes, the best way to evaluate a sculpt is simply to see the doll without hair.

Shane profile

Viewed from the front, Iplehouse SID heads are narrow.  They are wider in profile.  Their proportions mimic the human skull, which may be disconcerting to collectors accustomed to traditional (i.e., round) doll heads. 

Claude full view

While I was at it, I thought it might be interesting to compare the Shane sculpt with the Claude sculpt.  Both are extremely handsome heads.  How are they alike?  How do they differ?  The major difference, of course, is that Claude is smiling.  It's not a broad smile.  The corners of his mouth turn up ever so slightly and if you look closely, his eyes are smiling, too.  Depending on the faceup, his smile can look gentle or it can look like a smirk. 

Claude profile

Shane's mouth has a slight downward turn.  At first I thought he looked merely grim and determined, as befits a Sheriff; now I think perhaps he looks a little sad.  Again, it may depend on the faceup.  The newly released basic edition Shane has been faced-up using two new color palettes.  Each gives him a slightly different expression.

Both heads have a straight nose.  Claude's nose turns up slightly at the end; Shane's doesn't.  They have similar jawlines.  I would mention a similarity in their eyebrows, but those are painted on and not part of the sculpt.

Enough pontificating.  Let's get on with the wigs:

Here is Shane is a sweet baby blonde known as KB88.
All wigs on this page by Iplehouse.

The color of this one is milk brown.

The man in black.  Not bad.  On the other hand,
Barahan's charcoal gray wig did not suit him.

Claude's default wig in goldenrod.  I like it on Shane.

Claude wearing Shane's default red wig.
Pretty Sherrif has decided to stay blonde for a while.

Saturday, February 18, 2012

There's a New Boy In the House (Iplehouse Mars)

I must admit, Mars was never on my must-have list.  Whenever I cruised the YID (Young Iplehouse Doll) pages of Iple's website, my eyes always went to Barron and Ryushin with their more exotic looks, never to the more ordinary looking Mars.  He was good looking, but not a show stopper.  My plans were to add one or two YID boys to my doll family, and at least one YID girl.  Because they were basic dolls, I felt no sense of urgency to buy them, so when Iplehouse began offering one fascinating new sculpt after another in other sizes (BID, JID, SID, EID), mentally I put the YIDs on the back burner and all but forgot about them.

This is Mars.  Here at Resin Corner he will be known as Grant.
(Wig by Iplehouse.)
All that changed in December 2011, when Iplehouse announced the end of the line for the YIDs.  They would sell the dolls through January 2012, after which the sculpts would go away forever.  Talk about miserable timing!  I had already committed to two irresistable limited editions:  Shane and Zera.  At the same time that those were offered, Iple ran a Christmas special where they brought back the dolls in the Elemental Guardian series for a limited time.  I couldn't help myself:  I ordered Lahela.  (She has not yet arrived.)  They introduced some new BIDs in adorable snowboarding outfits. (I resisted those.)  And now the end of the YID line.  Ignoring my wallet's protests, I ordered one boy (Mars) and one girl (Harin).  Mars arrived this week.  I have only just paid off Harin's layaway, so there is no telling when she will come.  Soon, I hope.

Grant shows off cargo pants and a sleeveless tee from Iplehouse.
(Wig and shoes by Iplehouse)
Why Mars?  Why not Barron or Ryushin?  Iplehouse has been running a feature about some of their new sculpts entitled How Were You Born?  Mars, it appears, was the inspiration behind the SID Claude sculpt.  I have Claude (my Jamie) and so it seemed only natural to add his younger brother to the family.

So much shimmering blondness made the camera's light meter go a little crazy.
(Grant's wig by Leekeworld; Jamie's wig by Iplehouse.)
Now that I see them together, I am not convinced that there is all that much family resemblance. As far as I am concerned, Shane resembles Mars as much as Jamie does.  I wonder if the resemblance might be more evident if Mars were face-upped in the same style as the larger dolls?  The lad wears entirely too much eye makeup.  I'd like to see him painted with more restraint.  Maybe one day I'll redo him.  For now, I am content to leave it alone and go along with Iple's conceit that Mars is a teenage model.  After all, I did order him with the model body instead of the muscle body.

"Smile when you call me Red."
(Grant's wig by Leekeworld; Shane's wig by Iplehouse.)
At 63 cm, Mars is nearly as tall as the 65 cm SIDs, but there the resemblance ends.  His body is slight and less developed.  It is obvious that he is meant to represent a teen.  Even so, he is quite a bit taller than my other dolls in the same supposed age group.  I expect Harin will be a little shorter.  Iple generally makes its male dolls proportionately taller than their female counterparts, except for the little BIDs.  I'm not sure about the JIDs, because I have only girls in that size.  (Don't tell me I need to order one.  Counting the two dolls not yet received, my Iple family has reached an even dozen!)

Elfdoll Sooah's wig by Iplehouse; Grant's wig by Leekeworld.
Word is spreading on Den of Angels that Iplehouse is about to introduce a new YID line.  Speculation abounds.  Will the bodies be smaller?  Will the sculpts represent younger versions of some of the EID dolls?  There is precedent for this:  Iple produced both an EID and JID Asa.  I, for one, would like to see smaller versions of the EID males, because they are just too big for me to collect.  Female EIDs are the same height as male SIDs and more slender, so they don't feel so daunting.  But that's just my opinion.  Whatever Iple produces in the way of YIDs, I am sure I will be buying one.  Or two.  Or three.  You get the picture.

Grant and Grayson (aka Yi Feng) clowning.
Grant's wig by Iplehouse; Grayson's wig by Jpopdolls.

Sunday, February 12, 2012

The Wild West Comes to Resin Corner (Iplehouse Dolls)

Yee-hah!  I have been waiting for these two dolls since early November and early December, respectively.  At long last Shane and Zera have arrived.

Not without drama, however.  I started tracking them as soon as I saw their status on the Iplehouse web site change to On Shipping.  Shane left Korea on February 6, Zera left on February 7.  On the afternoon of February 9 I found an Attempted Delivery slip in my mailbox.  It had Shane's tracking number.  The next morning I stopped at the Post Office and signed for the big Iplehouse box.  No time to go home with it, as I was already late for work.  So I drove the 30 miles to work crooning to the box, "My dear Mr. Shane," which are the only words I remember to the old song.  All day long I worked with that huge box under my desk.  I couldn't leave it in the car.  Too cold out, for one thing; too expensive, for another.

"My Dear Mr. Shane" -- another gorgeous Iplehouse man

At noontime, I checked on Zera's progress.  Oddly, her status on read Delivered.  At 7:31 a.m.  Hello?  I was in the Post Office at 7:30 and they didn't hand her over?  They had both boxes sitting in their back room and they gave me only one of them.  Even after I told them I was expecting a second box.  Given its size, they had to be tripping over it every time they crossed the room.  Didn't see it, I guess.  Hmmm...

Evening rolled around and I still hadn't opened Shane's box.  I wanted to document the box opening with photos that I could post on Den of Angels and the house was way too dark for picture-taking, even with all the lights on.  But then I had a phone call from Carol, a fellow doll collector whom I had e-mailed about the arrival.  She couldn't believe I hadn't yet opened the box.  It didn't take her long to talk me into opening it right there on the spot.  So I did.  And found...

Zera, wearing a blonde wig from Elfdoll.

Zera.  Not Shane. 

So where was Shane?  At the Post Office, obviously.  But how would I collect him, seeing as I had already surrendered his Attempted Delivery slip?  There was no new slip in my mailbox when I came home.  They must have handed me Zera before they could write out her slip.  I fussed all evening.  Needlessly, as it turns out.  Saturday morning I dashed to the Post Office, armed with printouts showing the tracking numbers for both boxes and the paperwork from Zera's box in case they needed to scan it.  Fortunately, the clerk behind the counter knows me well enough that she didn't demand to see proof or identification.  She brought out the second box, as well as a smaller box postmarked Australia (containing a doll head I ordered on the Den of Angels marketplace), scanned Zera's tracking number and wrote out a new slip.  I signed it and flew out the door.

Zera and Shane in Iplehouse wigs and clothes.

No time to open it, alas.  After more than a year I finally have a buyer for my condo and the inspection was scheduled for 10:00 a.m.  The homeowner is not supposed to be present for the inspection, so I had to leave.  Two hours later I came back and scooped up Zera to take her to a doll meet.  (Talk about a crazy weekend--my days are usually much more placid than this.)

There were three of us at the doll meet-up, and three dolls:  ModernWizard's Janvier Jett (an Angelsdoll cat avatar),  Goldi's Penny (a Fairyland Minifee Chloe) and my SID Zera, who will be known as Zofia.

Zofia and Penny being serenaded by Janvier Jett.

By the time I got home I was too eager to see Shane to stop for photos.  I tore into his packaging and spent most of the remaining afternoon dressing him.  So many tiny buttonholes!  Much as I applaud the workmanship, it took me forever to button his shirt.  I collect antique button hooks.  I should have raided my collection to see if I had a hook small enough to use here.  As it was, I fashioned a loop from a twist-tie and made it work.  Then there were the belt, gun holster, chaps, and three ammunition belts.  I sure could have used a photo or a diagram to see how it all goes together.  (Here's a handy tip:  if it doesn't fit, you did it wrong.)  I put his outfit together, all except the bullets.  They are individually wrapped, like teeny tiny party favors, and I had plumb run out of steam by then.  Since there are no bad guys in the house for him to shoot, it can wait.  I'll unwrap them later.

"What do you mean: no bullets?"

Shane is the first fullset I have purchased from Iplehouse.  Usually I buy the doll without the outfit, as it costs less that way.  This time I sprang for the whole package.  The Wild West theme appealed to me and Shane makes a very cute Sheriff.  On the other hand, I did not buy Zera's fullset.  She was also protrayed as a Sheriff, which didn't ring true.  Iplehouse showed her in tan skin, which made her look Native American.  A Native American woman Sheriff may make sense in an alternative universe, but not in any historical sense.  On the other hand, I had been looking for an SID woman with Asian features who could fill the role of wife and mother in the little family consisting of SID Barahan, JID Asa and BID Byuri.  By buying Zera in realskin instead of tan, I have that woman.  My little family is complete.
Anastasia, Zofia, Evgeny and Yuri

Sunday, February 5, 2012

Not Another New Doll! Kaye Wiggs Fair Skin Human Nelly

--How does she do it?  It's an endless stream of incoming dolls!

In case anyone is wondering how I can afford to keep buying dolls, a number of recent arrivals were funded by the departures of others. Those dolls who have found new homes over the past several months include Limhwa Luna, Limhwa To You Sara, Unidoll Anthony, Rosette Marguerite, Supia Yisol, Blue Fairy Tiny Fairy Jasmine, and Dream of Doll Twing-key. Not that any of them were unloved, only that they either did not quite fit into the collection or else did not speak to me on a personal and creative level. Currently listed on DoA’s Marketplace are Planetdoll Emma (I think I have a buyer), Souldoll Ahee (ditto, but for the body only), and Souldoll L-Heart. I will soon be adding Limhwa Limho Mono (tan version) and an Island Doll 41 cm girl body to the Marketplace.  I'm torn, but Bambicrony Toto may be joining them.

--So who's the new girl?  How did she come to join the family?

A week ago I received an email notice that extra Nelly dolls would be sold on the Jpopdolls website at 6:00 p.m. Pacific Time that very day.  That's 9:00 p.m. my time, and it was already 8:30 when I saw the message.  I usually miss these special sales.  Either I look in too late or I forget to look at all.  This time, with only a half-hour to go, I determined to be at my computer at 9:00 on the dot, even if it meant cutting short a telephone conversation.  (Sorry, Cheryl!)

Nelly wearing Sweet Jane pattern from Adams-Harris.
Her lemon yellow wig is from Custom House.
Normal procedure for selling the Kaye Wiggs cuties is for Jpopdolls to take pre-orders for a set time period.  The dolls are manufactured in Asia, a process that takes several months, and returned to Jpopdolls for distribution.  In addition to the pre-ordered dolls, the factory usually sends a few extras.  Some of these are auctioned in support of good causes, others are put up for sale at an announced time.  That is how I bought my Nelly.

Nelly's glass eyes look almost gray here, but they are a lovely light purple.
The eyelashes are way too long.  I'm going to have to change them.  I don't
love the shape of this wig on her but the color is good.  (Hiroki, from Jpopdolls.)
In order to ensure that only one doll goes to a customer, the Jpopdolls site makes it impossible for a buyer to return to the Nelly page after placing the order.  At least, that's how I explain the fact that I was not able to re-open the page.  Not that I wanted to order a second doll.  I only wanted to copy her measurements so I could get started looking for clothes.  I had to go to The Resin Cafe, the online forum devoted to Kaye Wiggs dolls, in order to find Nelly's statistics.

Nelly's long wig is Jrock from Monique Gold.
Layla is wearing Jpopdolls' Kye.  The tulle
petticoat is meant to hang below the skirt.
And what a strange assemblage of statistics they are!  Nelly stands 53cm tall with human feet (55cm if purchased as a faun with hooves), which places her in between MSD and SD sizes.  Her bust measures 19.5cm, waist 17cm, and hips 26.5cm.  Undressed she looks pear-shaped, small on top and larger at the bottom.  By comparison, 45cm Layla's measurements are:  bust 19cm, waist 15.5cm, hips 20.5cm.  Except for the length (Nelly has longer legs), both girls can wear some of the same clothes, so long as skirts are full to accommodate Nelly's hips and derriere.

Oh-oh!  Somebody pulled the old switcheroo.  Now it's Nelly
wearing Kye and Layla in the Custom House lemon yellow.
Bonus: the elf ears keep the hair out of her face.
I have begun sewing a dress designed for Kaye's 45cm girls.  I'm hoping it will fit Nelly.  If not, Layla will have it.  Right now I have Nelly in an outfit called Sweet Jane from Adams-Harris Pattern Company.  It was designed for Iplehouse YID Sylvia, a taller, curvier doll.  It's not a bad fit.  The blouse is loose in the bust but fits at the waist.  The skirt and skirted vest, the one full and the other flared, accommodate her hips with ease.  Finding shoes was a different story.  Nelly's feet are wide with big toes.  In the end, I came up with only one pair of shoes that fit.  They were not made for BJDs and don't have much of a sole.  She can barely stand in them.  She can squeeze into my DollHeart shoes, but I am afraid she will stretch them until they no longer fit the Elfgirls.  The hunt is on for pretty shoes that fit and support.

Looking a little bit like Planetdoll Emma here.  I should
have kept Emma-- she would have fit right in with Kaye's girls.
We tried on a variety of wigs, some size 7-8 and some 8-9.  Her head measures 8.25 inches (21cm) so 7-8 will fit only if the wig cap is stretchy.  Some 8-9 wigs, such as Kye, are too loose and require a wig cap to keep them from falling off.  After trying on several of each size, Nelly appropriated Layla's Kye wig from Jpopdolls and Layla settled for the lemon yellow wig from Custom House.  Judging from Layla's expression, she is not best pleased.  I had to appease them both by promising an online wig shopping spree one day soon.

Saturday, February 18, 2012:

Nelly has a new wig from Jpopdolls.  It's called Winter Angel and the color is Dark Chocolate.  Now Layla has her Kye back and both girls are happy.  Nelly also has new shoes, made just for her, from Jpopdolls.