Sunday, September 11, 2016

Journey Girls Limited Edition Celebration Collection Gift Set

Journey Girls Two Pack Review

Last year Toys R Us released a two pack "Value Set" with Kara Rose and Alana in it.  This year Toys R Us released another two pack, this one from the Journey Girls Celebration line.  There is a brunette doll with bright green eyes and a blonde doll with brown eyes, neither have a name, allowing your child to give them a name.

The set comes with four outfits: a beautiful short, sequined purple dress, a long blue, "Frozen" inspired dress, a knee-length pink and white dress, and a flowing full length pink dress.  Each comes with a pair of shoes and a purse.  There is also a silver headband that matches a bracelet on the blonde doll.  Is the price of this set justified by the items in it?  Let's find out.

At $99.99 (USD) this set is the most expensive thing that Journey Girls sells.  If you were to buy the items separately (2 dolls and 2 outfits) you would spend closer to $120.  Taking this into consideration, the set is a pretty good deal, if price was the only factor.

Toys R Us has been putting the Journey Girls on sale up to 30% off, so keep your eye out for a great deal.  Price is not the only thing to consider though.

The box is a bit of a challenge to open.  Pull open the top by pulling the tabs and then pulling the box top up.  There are three pieces of tape to cut, one on each corner of the white cardboard, and one under the handle.

Once you cut the tape you can pull the piece of cardboard with the handle down.

Now you can pull the cardboard back that the dolls are on...then the real fun begins.  There are at least 20 I-fastners that you have to cut to get the dresses, purses, and the dolls' hair loose.

These things are such a pain to get undone.  Really wish that Toys R Us would find something else to use rather than the I-fastners.  Loosen the straps around the dolls' necks and feet and you will finally have everything loose.  Now we can review this set.

Last years dolls were very similar to Journey Girls that are already released, with Kara Rose looking like Meredith's twin sister.  Although this is a new trend for the Journey Girls, American Girl has been doing it for years.  The nice thing about similar dolls with variety in hair, eye, and skin color is that a girl can get a doll that looks like her.  The blonde doll in this set is the first blonde to have brown eyes.  Meredith, Giovanna, Mikaella, and Ilee all have blue eyes.  Jordan comes the closest of the released dolls, with hazel eyes.

The blonde's hair is also different than many of the other dolls in that it is layered and curled at the ends.  Her face sculpt is the same as Giovanna's (from last year), which is similar to the now normal face sculpt of Meredith, Kelsey, and Kyla.

She has very pale pink lip color.  Her bottom eyelashes are more pronounced then on Giovanna.

My doll also has a very small dot on her forehead (barely noticeable, but there).  Her joints and body are identical to all of the Journey Girls out right now.  That means her shoulders click a little as they rotate, as does her neck.  Her legs splay out when she sits.  My doll is more difficult to balance due to her leg joints being a little too far forward.  She has to bend back to not fall over face first.

The brunette doll has hair that is very similar in style to Alana's hair, but with no variation in color.  It is a deep brown, with a hint of auburn.  Her hair is parted so that it drapes in front of her right eye if it is not swept back.

She has amazing deep green eyes, that still look real, which can be a challenge with green eyes.  Her lips are a nice pink/mauve color.

Again same strengths and weaknesses as all of the Journey Girls right now.  One thing to note is that both dolls have a mark on their neck (very light...more of a shine than a mark) that looks like it was caused by the rubber band and tube that hold them into their box.  The brunette balances much better than the blonde doll.

Each doll comes in a "meet" outfit, and has a second one to change in to.  The blonde's outfit is a beautiful intense blue, full length gown.

There is a layer of satin blue fabric as the base of the skirt and the bodice.

Over this is a sheer voile blue fabric, the same color as the satin.  The voile is attached up the back of the skirt and is attached completely to the bodice of the outfit.

The skirt is gathered at the waist with a white flower lace "belt" separating the bodice.

The blue fabric ends with a semi-sweetheart neckline, but the dress has a jewel neckline made of a sheer white fabric with small silver accent flowers.

The sheer white fabric creates nice elegant shoulder straps.  The dress has an underlay of tulle to help give it volume.

Accessories to this outfit include the always wonderful plastic shoes, this time in a light gray.

She has a fabric silver bracelet.

And a very simple silver purse.  The purse is a strange combination of should purse and hand bag.  It doesn't quite fit either way well.

Great thing about it velcros shut!  That is nice!  And it makes complete sense with a fold over purse like this.

The brunette doll comes in an amazing purple dress.  The knee length dress, has a fitted satin layer under a flowing purple tulle layer.

The tulle has sequins sewn into a floral/vine pattern that continues from the skirt onto the bodice of the dress.

The tulle is nicely hemmed all around and attached to the back of the dress up the middle.

A square cut neckline is accented with tiny tulle shoulder sleeves.

Unlike many of the recent Journey Girls dresses, this one does not have an inner liner to help deter color transfer to the dolls vinyl.  This may mean that Toys R Us has started to take care of this issue.  For safety, I am still going soak this dress...just in case.

Like the blue dress's accessories, this outfits accessories a mixed bag of good and bad.  Let's start with the good: the shoes are sandals with one glittery purple strap across the toes and one around the ankle.  They are cute and work well with the outfit.

The front strap needs to be moved back just a couple of millimeters to make the sandals fit better on the dolls feet.  Now the "bad" accessory: The purse.   This is a hand bag that I thought at first was made of purple glitter covered cardboard.

It is thicker material with purple glitter on it.  There is a silver rope wrist strap and the purse does open and Velcro shut.  The side edges are not so awesome and this purse is flat.  With no give in the fabric it's flatness can not be fixed by stuffing it with items, because then it won't close.  Just a strange choice in fabric to make this purse.

Like the meet outfits, the extra outfits are a mix of formal and casual.  The first dress is a shimmery pink balloon dress with a square neckline.

The fabric has a simple leaf pattern of light pink, pink, and dark pink leaves (that is not a great description...but it's all I can think of...the picture makes more sense).

Around the waist is an attached silver glitter belt.  It would be nice to have the ability to take the belt off.

There is a liner of white fabric to make the balloon part of the dress.  This also cause the dress to be very tight on the doll.  This is probably just a problem with my dress as there is some variation in sizes in Journey Girls dresses.

Accessories include three strapped sandals, a very pretty shoulder bag, and a silver sequined headband.  The sandals are a dark pink glitter that doesn't quite match the dress, but looks okay with it.

They have an ankle strap and two straps over thetas.  The one to the front of the sandal needs to be moved back.  The dolls toes will not fit through it no matter what angle I tired.

Unlike the little purple purse, this purse is amazing.  It is made out of a shimmery pink leather that matches the dark pink in the dress.  The shoulder strap is perfect length.

The purse does not latch closed, but that is fine with this style of purse.  Finally the headband is similar to the fabric of the bracelet, but not an exact match.  There are sequins sewn into a zig-zagging pattern on the top of the fabric.

An inch of elastic makes it easy to get on.  It is cute, and can be used with all of the outfits in this set.

The final outfit in this set is a light, flowing, pink, floor length (well almost) gown.

Again the base of the dress is a pink satin skirt with pink voile fabric on top.

This dress has three overlapping, offset tiers of voile.  The tiers are only on the front, sewn into the stitching on the sides.  One issue with the voile is that it shows the holes from the I fasteners, even if you carefully cut the fastener off (oh by the way...there are more I-fastners holding the dress  together).

An attached pink ribbon, with a bow, separate the skirt from the bodice of the dress.

The bodice is similar to the blue dress, with a semi heart neckline from the underlying pink satin fabric and a square neckline from from the voile.

The dress has velcro up the back, which is not always ideal with their type of sheer fabric on tends to snag it.

Well, this outfit comes with plastic shoes too...but at least they are different plastic shoes.  The darker gray strapped "wedge" comes with this outfit.  Not awesome, but okay.

The purse is a wrist purse made from the same satin fabric that the underskirt of the dress is.  There is a silver rope wrist strap (which broke when I tried to put it on my dolls wrist) attached to the side of the purse.

A silver glitter flap velcros at the front.  It's an okay purse, nothing outstanding.

All ratings are out of 10

Value 10 – This is a ten because I got the set at 30% off.  If it was its normal $99.99 I would give it an 8.  You get a lot for the price (especially at 30% off).  Although the outfits are not quite the same caliber as a true Celebrate outfit, they are better than the normal outfits.  They are made well, with good material, and have decent accessories. The dolls are wonderful!  The eye and hair color are great.  They seem like they should look identical to other Journey Girls, but they don't.

Fitment 9 – Everything fits well, except for the pink leaf dress.  Really tight for some reason.  One other thing that bothers me is the fact that the gowns down't touch the ground.  It would be nice for them to actually be floor length.  Minor complaint for otherwise great fitting dresses.

Versatility 5 – Two of the gowns are really never going to be used for anything other than formal gowns (the blue and the pink gowns).  The purple and pink leaf dress have the ability to be used as more formal dresses, but also as everyday outfits.  The shoes are all good colors that can be used with other outfits (even the dull gray plastic shoes).  And the purses can be used with lots of different outfits (although the purple is not very pretty).  The headband and bracelet are very versatile and would look great with many outfits.

Cuteness 9 – This two pack has a lot more potential than last years, especially with the dolls.  The brunette doll is quickly becoming one of my favorites (second of course to  my freckled Kelsey).  The outfits are all very cute, even though they aren't as versatile as last years.  Even two of the pairs of shoes are cute (no, I am not talking about the plastic ones!)

Overall 8 – Wait for a sale...and get this set.  There is nothing horrible about this set.  Last year Kara Rose was so similar to Meredith it was a bit ridiculous, but both of these dolls are similar to other Journey Girls, but unique enough to make them their own.  The outfits are great.  The accessories are mostly good.  And the ones that aren't great, are easily replaced by others (purses and shoes) in your collection.  There is a chance that Toys R Us will put this set on sale for half off near Thanksgiving (like they did last year), so it may be worth it to wait.  Just make sure you don't wait too is a limited edition (how limited, I don't know.


Farrah Lily said...

Wow, awesome review...I think they are both stunning dolls. I especially love the brunette and I'm so happy they came out with them as I hope it re-sparks an interest.

Anonymous said...

Thank You for the great review. The dolls are beautiful.

Anonymous said...

The dolls are beautiful and the accessories are great addition.

Anonymous said...

The set is a bargain. I love the dolls especially the brunette.

KAF FRUM said...

My local TRU has the blonde doll on her own, not sure if the outfits are exactly the same or not though.

Sharon said...

I particularly love the brunette, she's so pretty....but am unlikely to get her as our TRU are still selling the Italian ones the time their journey takes them to NY, I will be too old to enjoy dolls!
Thanks for the review though, you are very thorough and I enjoy reading your opinions.

Nonna @ mommydollclub said...

Ah! Now I want them! Thanks for another excellent review. It's so odd to me that they don't have names.

Ride On Cars for Kids said...

So nice blog I like this.

Paul Ullman said...

Toys R Us told me they will no longer sell these dolls in the stores, only online. Does anyone know anything about that? I hope they're not getting rid of them.

JGKelsey said...

Paul, At the Toys R Us stores that are going to sell the Truly Me American Girl dolls, the Journey Girls dolls are not going to be sold. The still will be sold in some of the stores and online. Hope that helps!

JG Mom said...

Just picked up this set today for $29.99! The brunette is stunning with her bright green eyes. The mauve lipstick is prettier in person. My favorite part of the outfits are the sandals. So cute! I'll probably save the blonde as a gift for my niece as well as the formal dresses.

Darlene Hawkey-Cruikshank said...

Deed said...I just bought this set from Toys R Us this weekend. It was $30.00 with the tax. The dolls are pretty as you described. I want to thank you for the review. It convinced me to buy the set. I am hoping to buy another American Girl Doll in the future, but these are nice to add to my collection for now. Paying so little for two 18 inch dolls is absolutely an amazing deal. Thank you again.