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).


Nonna said...

I am so glad I rushed out to get the earlier version. I like her face better but I mirror your sentiments about sitting. I had put off getting a Meredith because I did get Jordanna but they really are different...right? ;)

Thanks for the comparison. The new doll is still pretty but I like my "pink shirt."

JGKelsey said...


I bought a Paris Meredith, and just bought a London Meredith (in the red coat) to make sure that I have the old sculpt.

Jordanna and Meredith are enough different to warrant having both. They look like cousins maybe. :)