Saturday, June 9, 2018

Australian Skirt Outfit

Chavonne Models a Wonderful Outfit

This little outfit from the Australian collection of the Journey Girls outfits, has to be one of my favorites.  It’s cute and fun, and is kind of touristy, which I think is neat.  The outfit comes with a pink skirt, a white long-sleeved t-shirt with a colorful image of the continent of Australia on it, tennis shoes, and a purse.  It isn’t anything unusual, as far as what is included, but the quality and design of this set is awesome.

I’m a little bit of a sucker when it comes to fun t-shirts for my dolls.  Especially ones that are from the areas they travel to.  So it’s no surprise that I like this t-shirt so much.  Like so many other Journey Girl t-shirts, this one is long sleeve, but doesn’t go all the way to Chavonne’s wrists. 

It stops about halfway down her forearm.  The back has Velcro on it, but not all the way down the back.  There is that pesky little spot at the bottom that is sewn, making it necessary to pull the shirt up over your doll’s legs. 

Ironed on to the front of the shirt is a depiction of the continent of Australia, done in multiple pastel tones.  Fading from a pink to purple, blue, then orange.  Australia is written across the continent in white cursive.  Nothing fancy at all, but a great shirt none the less.

Part of what makes this outfit so great is the feel of the outfit as a whole.  It doesn’t feel thrown together.  It feels purposely picked out.  The skirt looks like it is the only one that can go with the shirt.  It just goes perfectly.  When you first look at the skirt it looks solid and simple, but upon closer inspection you’ll find a very interesting piece. 

There are two layers to the skirt; the top layer is pleated and flowy, while the bottom layer is a straight skirt.  The bottom layer reminds me of a business skirt, straight on the sides, plain pink color.  The top is a different story, with three types of horizontal stripes, all pink. 

There are solid stripes, braided stripes, and see through tulle stripes, giving the skirt a really unique look.  From the sides you can actually see through the skirt.  The elastic waist keeps the skirt exactly where you want it.  A perfect, pretty skirt!

What is up with the shoes in these new Journey Girls sets?  They have been markedly better!  When I saw the shoes in this set, I was ready to buy the set just for the shoes!  Tennis shoes are not a new item to the Journey Girls line, but most of the time they are the molded plastic type.  This time, we get real canvas and rubber, tennis shoes. 

The soles of the shoes have white rubber wrapped around them, with a thin red stripe in the middle of the rubber, starting at the toes and wrapping around the back of the heel.  The canvas upper portion of the shoe has a tongue and little eyelets for the laces.  The laces are a ribbon rather than a shoelace, but that’s okay. 

The laces are long enough to tie in knots easily.  It would be nice to have a little piece of canvas on the heel to help pull the shoe onto Chavonne’s feet (like Dana’s shoe), but this is a minor complaint on an awesome shoe!

The final piece of this outfit is a purse.  Although this purse is a simple blue cotton purse, it is unique and goes well in style with the outfit.  More of a bag, the purse has short straps (just big enough to get onto Chavonne’s shoulders) and is open at the top with no way to clasp it shut. 

There is a thin black line down the middle of the purse and blue leather tassel's hanging from one end of the strap.  A simple, but fun accessory.

All ratings are out of 10

Value 10 – Are there lots of accessories with this outfit? No. It is made well though, and it has a great design.  And it has NEW SHOES!!!!!!!  Made of cloth even!  Yes, it's that exciting.  As mentioned above, the outfit goes together really well.  Each piece is made well.  My only concern is with the wear of the iron on Australia.  Not sure that it will look that good after lots of play.

Fitment 10 – Everything fits perfectly.  I'd love if the shoes had the little strap on the heal like Dana's shoes, but the shoes fit well without them.

Versatility 9 – There is so much flexability in the way that each piece of this outfit can be used.  I just love it!  I love that the shirt is long sleeve, but not heavy, so it could be used with summer outfits.  The skirt is awesome.  As are the shoes.  And I want to use these shoes with every outfit from now on...even formal outfits.

Cuteness 9 – As I mentioned before, I have a soft spot for touristy outfits like this one.  But even if the t-shirt had something else on it, the outfit as a whole is super cute.  I especially like the skirt.

Overall 9 – This outfit is close to a 10.  One more accessory or just a little better fit on the shoes and it would definetly be there.  Still, this is an awesome outfit!   The design of the skirt is unique and very cute.  I love the t-shirt.  And the shoes are such a huge step forward for the Joureny Girls.  It is so sad that they are not going to be around in the US anymore.  If you get lucky and find this outfit at your Toys R Us, grab it!  It is well worth it, even at full price.

AG Note

Another reason to love this outfit is that it fits American Girl dolls.  Granted the shirt is tight, but it fits.   Marie Grace has a hard time raising her arms because of how tight the shirt is on her.  

I was surprised that I got it to stay velcroed, but it does stay shut.  

The skirt fits great, thanks to the elastic waistband.  

Unfortunately those wonderful shoes do not fit.  The AG dolls' feet are way to wide for the shoes.  Overall, this is a great outfit though, especially since you can use it with both Journey Girls and American Girls.  Get it before it's on eBay for $50!

Saturday, May 12, 2018

The Sleepover

Mikaella and Dana have a Sleepover

“I am so excited for our sleepover,” Dana exclaims to Mikaella.

“Me too.  What should we do first?”
“I have no clue…”
Mikaella sighs and thinks, “what about playing Simon?”

“Let’s ask the Magic 8 Ball.” Dana says as she lifts the ball.  She shakes it athen turns it over.  The little triangle surfaces and says “definetly yes” 

“Looks like the Magic 8 Ball wants us to play Simon,” declares Mikaella.
The girls sit down on Mikaella’s bed.  They put Simon between them and hit the start button.  

Beep the red botton lights up.  Dana pushes it.  Beep, boop the red botton flashes than the yellow one.  

Mikaella, pushes the button in sequenece.  Beep, boop, beep,  red, yellow, blue.  Dana quickly pushes the buttons.  

Now Simon starts getting faster, the lights flashing quickly and the accompaning melodic sound.  

Mikaella and Dana take turns hitting the sequence of buttons, repeating the sequence, until finally…merrrp.  Mikaella hits the wrong button in the sequence.

“Awww…” Mikaella says dissappointingly.

Dana giggles, “It’s alright.  We did pretty awesome!”

“True,” Mikaella agrees.  “Do you want to play again?”

“Ahhh…” Dana muses “Let’s play Barrel of Monkeys!”

Mikaella nods and gets the Barrel of Monkeys game.  

The girls take turns seeing who can pick up the most monkeys.  Dana  watches in awe as Mikaella picks up ever monkey to complete her strand!

“Wow…that is so cool!” Dana says, just as the string of monkey’s falls apart.  

Dana and Mikaella laugh as the pick up the monkeys and put them back in their barrel.

“What should we do next?” asks Dana.
“Let’s consult with the Magic 8 ball.” suggests Mikaella.  

“Oh Magic 8 Ball, should we have a pillow fight?”  She flips the Magic 8 Ball. “No?”

Dana laughs, “Can’t go against the Magic 8 Ball.  Better ask it something else.”
Mikaella shakes the Magic 8 Ball again while asking, “Oh Magic 8 Ball, should we dance?” The triangle appears with the words “Absolutely, positive.”  

Mikaella shows Dana.  She grabs the boombox, plugs in her iPhone, selects shuffle, and music starts playing.  

Mikaella begins dancing to the music. 
The two girls dance and sing to their favorite songs.  

Dana turns to Mikaella, “Watch this!” She spins as fast as she can, but looses her balance and falls back on the bed.

“You’re hilarious Dana,” Mikaella laughs as she picks up on of the pillows.  

She throws it at Dana.   Pffff…it hits Dana in the face. 

“Oh that’s how it’s going to be,” Dana says jokingly as she gets up from the bed.  Pillow in hand, she swings at Mikaella, bonking her on the head.  

Mikaella giggles and grabs a pillow, jumping up on the bed.  

They swat at each other, laughing as they do.  

Mikaella jumps off the bed and hits Dana.  Dana’s eyes get big and a determined look crosses her face.  

The girls smack each other with their pillows until finally Mikaella falls on her back on the bed. 

Dana laughs and sits at the end of the bed.  “Truce?” she asks, smiling.
“Truce.”  Mikaella conceeds.  

She laughs.  “Awww…we better go to bed.”
Dana agrees.  Mikaella bends down and pulls out the bottom bed for Dana to sleep on.  

Mikaella and Dana tuck them selves into the covers.  “Goodnight Mikaella.” Dana yawns.

“Goodnight Dana.”  

Mikaella says as she closes her eyes, drfiting off to sleep, she thinks “It’s awesome having great friends like Dana.”

Sunday, May 6, 2018

Australian Dana's Outfit Review

Not a New Doll, But a Great Outfit

Like most of the Journey Girls for the Australia line, Dana is not a new doll, but her outfit is brand-new. Dana comes in a schoolgirl inspired outfit with a plaid skirt, a T-shirt, a pink jacket socks and shoes. We're going to look at if the outfit is worth the cost of the doll.

The first thing that you'll notice is Dana's jacket.  It's a pink puffy style jacket with a gray jersey knit collar,  waistline and cuffs.  It's not as puffy as some of the Our Generation jackets, it's really just made to look like a puffy jacket with diamond shaped stitching.  

Fake pockets on each side, actually have some space to put something in but not much. If the Journey Girls arms bent they could put their hands in the pockets but with solid arms that don't bend, the pockets are just for decoration. Another thing that's just for decoration on the jacket is the zipper. Like so many other Journey Girls outfits this jacket has the teeth of the zipper, but not the actual zipper.  

So there's no way to close the jacket, it always stays open. In my opinion, I think they should've just skipped the teeth of the zipper and put the jersey material up that middle part rather than teasing us with a zipper. Overall a really nice little jacket, even if it doesn't zip up.

The gray cotton T-shirt, similar to many other Journey Girls T-shirts, except for a few little details, like the dark gray short sleeves.  

Velcro up the entire back which means that you don't have to put this shirt on over Dana's legs. As you know from other reviews this makes me very happy. I think this is a good design. 

On the chest on the left side there is a letter of black leather pockets that does actually have space in it so you could put a little pen in there or a handkerchief or something like that it's a cute design.  It gives a little bit more fashion to the T-shirt then just being a normal great t-shirt.

The skirt that comes with this outfit is a plaid skirt it's mainly ahead a dark gray color similar to the gray in the T-shirt. It also has darker pink stripes or muted pink stripes and black stripes that accent the skirt.  

There's a hemline around the waist and the skirt has a little bit of a flare out towards the bottom so it's not completely straight but it doesn't have pleats that make it spread out. There's a little bit of Velcro in the back, about an inch long, just enough to make it easy to get the skirt on and off. The skirt does have a liner in it, the white fabric that we see in many of the Journey Girls outfits, presumably to help with the color transfer that happens with some of the darker colors.

Something that was surprising in this set was the little socks that come with the outfit. They are a gray cotton knit, very similar to what the T-shirt is made out of but a little bit softer.   

There's really nothing to the socks.   They are tube socks, they have a little hem at the top to make sure that they don't fray, there's a little bit of a heel, but not much.  Overall, very simple but such a great piece to the outfit.  

I love that my doll now has socks that go along with the outfit and she doesn't have to wear shoes without socks. 

Speaking of shoes we have some brand-new shoes with this outfit. The shoes are a shiny silver leather, not sparkly (yeah no glitter everywhere), just shiny. The sole of the shoe is made out of the plastic that we've seen on some of the other new shoes.  I love these new soles.   They're great, they give the shoes a lot of heft. 

However, the one issue that I have is that there is no tread on the bottom and because it's literally a hard plastic it is very slippery.  So standing the doll on carpet or even sometimes tile, there are traction issues. 

For play, probably not a huge deal, unless your child really likes to stand the doll.  Then it's going to be a challenge. The shoe itself is kind of a loafer style shoe.  It has a little bit of a low cut, a tongue upfront and an awesome little loop on the heel of the shoe to help pull the shoe up! 

I wish all of the shoes had this on them.  It makes it so much easier to get them on the dolls foot. So unlike many other shoes that we've seen with Journey Girls these shoes are great and really add something to the outfit.


All ratings are out of 10

Value 8 – Even with the extra price of the doll, this is a great outfit.  There are many great pieces to it, and tiny surprises (like the socks) too.  Again, it would be great to get this outfit by itself, but it is still worth it with the Dana doll.

Fitment 9 – Everything fits well.  The skirt just fits around Dana's waist.  Really, that is it.  Everything else fits perfectly.

Versatility 9 – There are so many possibilities with this outfit.  The top and skirt can go with many different outfits.  The jacket is a great accessory to other outfits.  Although with no zipper it can't really be used as an outside winter jacket, it's still very versatile.  The shoes have so many options.  All of the pieces of the outfit can be used with other outfits, which is a great thing.

Cuteness 9 – This is an amazing outfit.  Cute and useful.  The skirt is my favorite "cute" part.  The colors are great and the design is classic.  I love that the jacket works so well with the skirt. 

Overall 9 – A solid nine.  With lots of pieces to the outfit and great versatility of the pieces, the value of this outfit is awesome (even with the extra cost of the doll).  The new design of the shoes is great.  The little socks are nice.  It's just an all around good outfit.  Well worth the cost.  Pick it up while you still can.

AG Note

Like many other Journey Girls outfits, this one has some issues with fit on the AG dolls.  Gabriella can barely fit into the skirt, and it can't be Velcroed all the way.  

If you pull hard enough the top can be done, but just the very tip top.  The shirt may fit, but I couldn't get it past Gabby's right hand.  There have been other Journey Girls outfits that have this same problem.  

Some of you may not have the same issue as consistency can also be an issue with outfits.  The jacket fits, but is tight.  Gabby can't really raise her arms.  

The sleeve is so tight on her wrist that the entire sleeve turns as you raise her arm.  

The socks fit, but I fear that if the socks are on an AG doll too long the will stretch and won't stay on the Journey Girls.  

I wish the shoes fit because they are so cute, but like all the other Journey Girls shoes they unfortunately do not.  For the money, this one is not worth it if you are going to mostly use it for your AG doll.  It is still amazing for the Journey Girls though!