Tuesday, October 21, 2014

The Queen's Treasures Ball Gown

Jordanna’s Historic Dress From The Queen’s Treasures

One thing that I love about the American Girl dolls is their historical aspect.  The Journey Girls are very modern in comparison.  Sometimes girls need some old school style.  Today Jordanna is modeling the Colonial Ball Gown from The Queen’s Treasures.

Jordanna wearing The Queen's Treasures gorgeous Colonial Ball Gown.

The Colonial Ball Gown is a light yellow satin dress with white and black stripped ribbon around the bottom of the gown as well as around the waist.  There are two accent pieces of satin fabric with lace around the bottom of them on the front of the dress.  The outfit comes with a black velveteen wide brimmed hat with black and white stripped ribbon around it that matches the ribbon on the dress.  There is also a velveteen drawstring purse, a plastic hanger, and a clear garment bag.

This is a beautiful dress!  It’s long, the fabric is wonderful, the color is gorgeous, there is just the right amount of accents, and it is wonderfully made!  There is a tulle underskirt that helps keep the dress fluffed out.  The satin fabric stays out on its’ own, but the tulle gives it just a little more fluff. 

Jordanna showing the tulle underskirt of the dress.

The dress isn’t as intricit as Jordanna’s blue dress…but it is so pretty.   It is really a great period piece, that doesn’t neccasarily look like a period piece.  To me the dress looks like it could be an easter dress, or a “off to the races” dress, or just a classic ball gown.  I think this dress makes every doll look better!

The dress comes with a beautiful hat and a nice drawstring purse.

All ratings are out of 10

Value 9 – The Queen's Treasures has the dress listed at $29.99, which is a good price for the quality of the dress.  If you sign up for their newsletters they will send you notifications when things go on sale.  I got the dress for 40% off.  I great price for a dress of this quality.  I love the hat that comes with it and the purse is okay.  I wish it can with shoes, but I have plenty of black shoes that go with this dress.

Fitment 9 – All of the Queen's Treasures items are made for American Girl dolls.  Most of the thing are a little large on the Journey Girls.  I did not find the Colonial Ball Gown to be real loose on Jordanna.  The dress fits nicely and looks very good on her.  The hat fits perfectly.  This outfit fits better than most of the dresses from the Our Generation line.

Versatility 7 – With period pieces there is not a lot of versatility.  The hat can be used with other fancy outfits.  And the purse can be used with anything.  The dress, much like Jordanna's original dress, is formal enough to only be used for formal occasions.  As I said earlier, the dress has a few more options other than just a ball, but it is still limited.  Let me be honest though…who cares!  You buy a dress like this to have a beautiful ball gown!

Cuteness 10 – This dress is wonderful!  My favorite photos of Jordanna are in this dress (her shoot at the Historic House).  It's a beautiful dress that is very elegant.  It is beautiful without frills.  I think the yellow color is perfect.  I love seeing beautiful dresses in colors other than pink!

Overall 9 – If you like dresses for your dollsthis is one to pick up!  I love the quality and craftsmanship of this dress.  All the stitching is top notch, the fabric is wonderful, and the detail is great.  I love that it comes with a beautiful hat and a little purse.  I love that the dress is full length.  I love the color!  It's just awesome!  Give your doll some old school class and buy her this dress!

Jordanna looks wonderful in this dress!

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

Journey Girls Go to the Mall

Jordanna, Chavonne, Kyla, and Callie stop by the outdoor mall.

Four of the girls decided to get together and hang out at the outdoor mall.  There are lots of great stores…but they mostly window shopped.

Chavonne, Kyla, and Jordanna hanging out at the mall.
The girls took turns taking pictures of each other as they explored the shops.

Callie relaxing on a light post.
Jordanna looking cute.
Kyla is pretty in her purple dress.
Chavonne loves the fragrant white pom-pom flowers.
Callie in a field of flowers.

None of them found anything to buy, but they sure had fun walking around and photographing each other.

All of the outfits are from Target's Our Generation line.

Saturday, October 11, 2014

New Journey Girl Meredith

Journey Girl Meredith Gets a Make-over

Toys R Us has released a new Meredith doll, just in time for the holidays.  Unlike the doll that was released at the beginning of this year for the London line, this Meredith doll is not just a re-dress.  She is a resculpt, much like Kyla was a few months ago.  Like Kyla, Meredith has the same issues and improvements.  So…is the new Meredith worth your hard earned $39.99…let’s find out!

Meredith in her box
New outfits for the girls

The box that Meredith comes in is no different than the other London boxes, except for the back, which has most of the girls in new outfits.  When I first saw Meredith, I really couldn’t tell that her face had changed that much.  Kyla’s resculpted face looks very different than her old face, more so than Meredith’s does (at least to me).  What is interesting is that it is obvious that both the new Meredith and new Kyla have the exact same face mold.  Meredith’s just doesn’t look as much different.

Let’s get Meredith out of her box!  I like to open the top of the box, but you can also open the bottom.  They open the same way.  There are a couple pieces of tape that will have to be peeled back or cut, so that the top flap can be opened.  

Cut the pieces of tape to open the box.  Sometimes there is tape at the bottom edge also.
Once that is done, pull the cardboard backing that Meredith is on out of the box.  On the back of the cardboard there are all sorts of things holding Meredith to the board.  Cut away the tape around the clear twists.  The clear rubberbands can be cut also.  

Cut the tape away from the areas circled in red.  Then cut or untwist the pieces holding Meredith to the cardboard.
Turn the cardboard backing around so that Meredith is looking at you.  Around Meredith’s neck is another clear rubberband.  Unhook the rubber band from the plastic hook at the back of Meredith’s neck, or carefully cut the rubber band.  Meredith should be free of the cardboard now…but not totally free.

Cut or pull the clear rubber band off of Meredith's neck.
The clear twists at the bottom of the box will stay on Meredith’s ankles as she is pulled out.  Untwist them and take the twists off her ankles. 

These just untwist off of Meredith's ankles.
Meredith’s striped sweater is held to her shirt by 4 clear “I” fasteners on the edges of her sweater.  Cut these to get Meredith’s sweater off.  Yeaaa!!! Meredith is free!

Cut the I fasteners, indicated here by the green circles, to get Meredith's stripped sweater off.
Meredith is wearing a cute black and white striped sweater with red edges and a red fabric flower.  There are also “pockets” sewn in to the sweater, which are just the red fabric sewn onto the sweater, not actual pockets.  Under that is a silver tank top that velcro’s up the back.  She is wearing comfortable blue with white polka dotted slacks.  Finally the outfit is rounded out with some red short heeled shoes.

Meredith in her new outfit
If you have read my review on Kyla or Mikaella, some of this may be repetitive.  Meredith has the same body and face sculpt as the other “new” Journey Girls.  There are goods and bads about that.  Let’s start with the goods.  Meredith’s face sculpt is cute.  I personally like her old face sculpt better, but this new one is so similar that it still retains that cuteness.  To me she looks older by a few years.  Meredith’s hair is still very nice. 

Meredith's new face sculpt compared to her old one.
I like the feel of the Journey Girls hair, more than American Girls, but there are some challenges with it.  Since the hair is rooted it does pull out in little strands.  Also the hair does seem to get knots in it more easily than American Girl hair.  All of the vinyl is good quality.  It feels thinner, but I don’t think that it actually is.  Meredith’s joints are good, for the most part (more on that in a minute).  Meredith’s torso is stuffed better than past Journey Girls dolls.  She is still missing a butt, like all Journey Girls, nothing horrible though. 

Which means her arms don't go out to the side.
Meredith's shoulder joint movement is still the same. 

Now, the not so good.  Meredith’s arms still only go out 1/3 of the way straight out to the side.  The joints start off a little stiff, but loosen up to a reasonable resistance with in a few play times.  My main issue is that Meredith has to do the splits to sit.  When I bought the new Kyla doll I was not excited about the way that her legs splayed out.  Now that I have Meredith, the 3rd doll of the new Journey Girls body style, I HATE the way the legs splay out.  

Meredith "sitting"
The Journey Girls have never been super ladylike in how they sat.  To be fair, American Girl dolls are not a huge amount better.  With the Journey Girls, I could always find a spot that they would sit that looked somewhat natural.  With the new Meredith doll she has to sit with her legs all the way out to the side, which makes her unstable as she sits.  

Old Meredith (right) does not spread her legs out as far to sit down as new Meredith does.
The other way to have her sit is to have her lean back on her hands.  Meredith’s legs aren’t as spread out…but now she can’t use her hands.  I hope that this is not the way the line is going.  What do you think?  Do any of you have a new Journey Girl?  Do the legs bother you?  Or is it just me?

Alright…enough of that!
At the bottom back of the breast plate "Geoffrey LLC"
is imprinted on all the new Journey Girls.
"Geoffrey LLC" is also still on the Journey Girls neck.

Meredith has a very versatile outfit.  Every single piece of her outfit can be used with other pieces of clothing.  The silver tank can be added to skirt for a fancier outfit.  The sweater can be used to warm any outfit up.  The pants are super cute!  I’m glad that Toys R Us gave Meredith something other than jeans.  I washed the outfit.  Some of the Journey Girl clothes will transfer color to the dolls vinyl.  Just to make sure I did not have that issue, I washed this outfit.  You probably don’t have to…but I think it is a good idea.

Meredith's new outfit.


All ratings are out of 10

Poseability - 5  - I won't rant any more about Meredith's legs.  The rest of her is on par with other 18" dolls.  I have more trouble standing her up then with the old Journey Girls body style.  But that may just be my disdain for her leg joints that is clouding my perspective.  As I have mentioned before, I would love more movement in the shoulder joint.  Something that I don't talk about enough is the awesomeness of the neck joint.  I love that Meredith's head can tilt (like all Journey Girls)

Quality - 6  - I feel as though these new dolls are cheaper…not made as well.  That is a feeling more than observation, because there are actually some things on the new dolls that are better.  The joints in general don't seem to be loose.  There seems to be a little more consistence between dolls, as far as their quality.  The stitching and stuffing are much better.  The legs are a big issue.  I also feel that, even though cute, the face mold is not as pretty.

Adorableness - 7 - I don't like the new face sculpt as much on Meredith.  I'm not exactly sure why.  I think my issue with both Meredith and Kyla is that the new sculpt makes them look older.  All of that being said…Meredith is still a cutie!  In my opinion she still has the cutest face on any 18" doll out there.  I really like the vinyl breast plate also.  It gives so many more options for dressing than the all cloth body.

Compatibility - 6 - No difference in compatibility between the old sculpt and the new one.  Even with the difference in the leg joints I have not seen an issue.  Some tights are a little tighter, but not bad.  Clothing made for American Girl dolls are still big, especially around the waist.

Overall Score - 7 - Overall I like Meredith.  I like her new outfit.  I like the stitching on the cloth body. I like that her body is stuffed better than in older dolls.  I like her face.  Those pretty blue eyes are wonderful!  I have made it abundantly clear that I hate her leg joints.  I knew that her legs would be this way and still bought her, because she is still very cute.  I would say if you can get her on sale…buy her.  If you see an older  Meredith…get that one instead!

Both Journey Girl London Meredith's.  New sculpt (left) and old sculpt (right).

Monday, October 6, 2014

Meredith's American Girl Doll Coat

Meredith try's out an American Girl winter coat

One of the great things about the Journey Girl line is that most other companies’ clothes fit them.  I decided that my girls needed some winter coats since they all live in the tundra of the Midwest.  Meredith is modeling last years American Girl “Pretty Pink Coat Set”.  I ended up getting this at the end of the season so it was half off (about $18).  American Girl has a new puffy jacket out for this year, but I didn’t like it as much.

Meredith in the "Pretty Pink Coat Set" by American Girl
“Pretty Pink Coat” comes with a light pink puffy coat and gray boots with a pink ribbon around them.  The coat has a nylon outside with “fur” around the hood and the wrists.  It has a gray ribbon that goes around Meredith’s waist.  The ribbon is sewn right to the coat.  Both the coat and the ribbon have Velcro at the front to fasten them.  The coat goes to about knee length on Meredith.  The coat does have a wonderful fur lined hood as well as fur around the cuffs.  I have to say that getting all of Meredith’s hair into it was a challenge.  Otherwise the coat fits well.  Meredith is wearing a t-shirt underneath the coat and it fits fine.  I’m not sure that a sweater or sweatshirt would fit.

Getting Meredith's hair in was a bit of a challenge

The boots have a plastic/rubber bottom with a stiffer fabric top.  The pink ribbons that wrap around the boots match the coat.  The back of the boots have a slit all the way down them that Velcros to make them easier to get off and on.  Journey Girls designers take note…this is how you make a boot.  There is no goofy gap at the back, like with all of the Journey Girl boots.  The boots fit great on Meredith.  Journey Girls’ feet are a little longer than American Girl dolls’, but they still fit wonderfully in the boots.

All ratings are out of 10

Value 9 – This coat is top notch as far as material and design.  It is very well made.  There are no loose threads, no extra glue…just good tailoring.  The coat feels and looks exactly like a coat that your little girl is going to wear!  It's very nice.  If you can find it on sale…but it.  At $36 it's a little too expensive for me.

Fitment 10 – The jacket fits perfectly on Meredith.  I had read online that the coat didn't allow for clothes underneath of it.  Because the Journey Girls are just a little smaller they can wear an outfit underneath the coat.  Be forewarned though, sweaters are hard to keep from scrunching up in the sleeves.

Versatility 7 – Well…it's a coat…and a winter coat at that.  It is a nice in between type of coat…meaning it's not too dressy and not too casual.  The boots are awesome.  They can be used with a lot of winter outfits.

Cuteness 9 – I love this coat.  It is a really cute length.  The fur hood is really cute.  And it is not overly pink!  I love pink, put too much pick is too much!  It's a great color with good accents and wonderful boots.

Overall 9 – A wonderful coat!  I will have reviews later of other coats that are available.  This is definitely my favorite of the ones I have.  I would give it an 8 if I had paid full price.  I think that it should come with ear muffs or mittens.  You are paying for the quality though.  And you get good quality and a cute coat!  Bundle up…it's going to be cold!

Meredith is all ready for winter in her American Girl coat.