Barbie for big girls.

Posts tagged “Mattel

The Royal Tea this series of shots were inspired by the outfit I posted on Instagram.  As with many images, what looks good on an idea board does not translate to a model or doll.  In this case, the hat that looked good on the board did not translate well to actual model.  And…as much as I wanted to use it, the teapot did not make it into the final shots either.  Sometimes it works out sometimes it doesn’t.  The post is called “The Royal Tea” because the dog is wearing a crown .Winking smile

Here was the Instagram inspiration:


You will notice a little bit of a color cast difference between my Instagram shots and the other images I use in the blog.  The reason behind this is a difference in camera.  Most if not all of the outfit boards that I post are shot with…wait for it…my IPhone.  If I ever get around to doing my next photography installment you will learn more about that.  Suffice it to say, as good as these new phones are these days, they still have a long way to go as far as color balance.  Ok…geek photography moment over.

I am sharing snippets of the photo process on some of these posts on my instagram stories so feel free to follow that if you want.  They disappear in 24 hours so they are there and then they are gone.

I am totally in love with this doll.  She is Rare Appearance Dania Zarr from Integrity Toys.  She was a WClub exclusive for 2014.  Still one of my favorite models.  The dress is a new acquisition from the talented Gwen of Gwendolyn’s Treasures

Model:  Integrity Toys Rare Appearance Dania Zarr

Dress:  Gwendolyn’s Treasures

Hat:  Bogue’s Vogues

Gloves: Integrity Toys IT Airways Poppy Parker

Necklace: made by me

Dog:  Mattel

Shoes: Integrity Toys Sneak Peek Eden

Perfume bottle:  Purchased at 2016 Barbiecon from Hande.  If you ever go to Barbiecon… her sales table is a favorite of mine.  Great minis!  Sorry, no website or Etsy store yet.

©2016 Inside The Fashion Doll Studio-The Royal Tea

©2016 Inside The Fashion Doll Studio-The Royal Tea

©2016 Inside The Fashion Doll Studio-The Royal Tea

©2016 Inside The Fashion Doll Studio-The Royal Tea

©2016 Inside The Fashion Doll Studio-The Royal Tea

©2016 Inside The Fashion Doll Studio-The Royal Tea

©2016 Inside The Fashion Doll Studio-The Royal Tea


More Silkstone News!!

So right after I posted yesterday, Mattel posted new images of the BFC exclusive Silkstone for 2016.  We have all had a gander at the sketch for many months and many of us had a chance to see the doll in person at the NBDCC 2016.  Here are a few images I took of her at NBDCC

©2016 Inside The Fashion Doll Studio

©2016 Inside The Fashion Doll Studio

And here is the information and official pictures

Glam Gown Barbie® Doll

Gold Label®

Designer: Robert Best

Release Date: 10/12/2016

Retail: $100.00

  • Body Type: Posable Silkstone®
  • Facial sculpt:
  • Fashion Sewn On: No
  • Fashion:  Pink satin gown with flowing organza train
  • Accessories:  Black satin opera gloves, chandelier earrings

She is a BFC exclusive which means you need to be a BFC member to purchase.

©2016 Mattel, Inc. 

©2016 Mattel, Inc.

©2016 Mattel, Inc.

©2016 Mattel, Inc.

Things to take note of….The IRL doll at NBDCC was sporting pink shoes not black and the fabric on the IRL doll did not show the same kind of fabric as the promo shots are indicating.  Just trying to keep it real folks and set expectations appropriately.  You be the judge but to these eyes, the ruffle material on the promo shots looks like it lays very nicely, whereas the IRL doll at NBDCC did not.  The beading also looks very different but there are always differences between the promo shots and the actual production doll.  The difference here is that the production doll was actually seen BEFORE the promo shots so, it feels kind of humorous to me.  It’s like saying “ Yeah…this is what we could have done…but….we didn’t”

All else being held equal, I’m still buying the doll.  She is a platinum updo with a pink gown…of course I’m buying.  Whether or not I feel very good about it is another thing.  I have a hard time supporting a company who is making some really unfortunate decisions regarding their collector line.  I find it hard to plug a product in this blog when I have a very real concern for the direction of this Mattel division. 


New Barbie Look and Silkstone News!

There has been a bit of a Barbie drought in this collectors house for a while but that may change in the coming weeks. This morning, The Barbie Collection added a few items for preorder that has some collectors very interested. 

First up are a couple of new Barbie Look dolls.

The Barbie Look™ Barbie® Doll – Park Pretty

Black Label®

Designer: Bill Greening

    • Body Type: Articulated
    • Facial sculpt: Millie
    • Fashion Sewn On: No
    • Fashion: Floral dress paired with yellow peep toe shoes
    • Accessories: Doll, fashion, shoes, sunglasses, bracelets, purse, phone, coffee drink, Miss Honey, dog tag

Release Date: 9/30/2016  **** Caveat…don’t be fooled by the date people, it says release but in actuality, this one won’t ship until 11/11/16**  Just keeping it real.

Retail:  $29.95

©2016 Mattel, Inc

©2016 Mattel, Inc

©2016 Mattel, Inc

©2016 Mattel, Inc

©2016 Mattel, Inc

I love the accessories this one comes with.  Honey the dog is always a plus ( did you know this dog has her own Instagram account!) and the phone and iced coffee drink is adorable.  It looks like this doll also has a semi ‘made to move’ body.  The knees at least look that way and one would assume its so Barbie can sit very easily on the picnic blanket while she is at the park.  Nice work Bill.  I like this one.

The Barbie Look™ Barbie® Doll – Pool Chic

Black Label®

Designer: Bill Greening

Release Date: 9/30/2016

  • Body Type: Articulated
  • Facial sculpt: Karl
  • Fashion Sewn On: No
  • Fashion: Floor-length aqua blue halter dress with gold detail
  • Accessories: Doll, fashion, shoes, earrings, bracelet, purse, phone, compact with pom pom, lipstick

Release Date: 9/30/2016  **** Caveat…don’t be fooled by the date people, it says release but in actuality, this one won’t ship until 11/11/16**  Just keeping it real.

Retail:  $29.95

©2016 Mattel, Inc

©2016 Mattel, Inc

©2016 Mattel, Inc

©2016 Mattel, Inc

©2016 Mattel, Inc

Very elegant and I love the accessories again.  Bill…you have this collector’s attention.  I am really liking these Barbie Look collections so far.

Classic Black Dress Barbie® Doll (Brunette)

Gold Label®

Designer: Robert Best

  • Body Type: Posable Silkstone®
  • Facial sculpt: Vintage Silkstone
  • Fashion Sewn On: No
  • Fashion:  Little black dress
  • Accessories:  Boots

Release Date: 9/30/2016 **** Caveat…don’t be fooled by the date people, it says release but in actuality, this one won’t ship until 01/31/17**  Just keeping it real.

Retail: $40.00


©2016 Mattel, Inc

©2016 Mattel, Inc

©2016 Mattel, Inc

©2016 Mattel, Inc

©2016 Mattel, Inc

OK…first off I am really happy that a brunette version of the adorable blonde classic black dress silkstone will be available to collectors now.  The price point is very attractive too!  However, this doll is eerily similar to a couple of the convention dolls given in Europe this past year.  If I were an attendee for one of these conventions and I saw this, frankly, I would be a little pissed off.   Those convention dolls are supposed to be super exclusive, a perk for going to them.  Now Mattel is offering up a doll so similar it’s uncomfortable.   Here is the Milan convention doll…

©2016 Dutch Fashion Doll World

Odd choice Mattel.

Eden Wears It Better

No disrespect to the fine talents of Mr. Best and Mattel but…I think Eden from Integrity Toys wears this one better. 

© 2016 Inside The Fashion Doll Studio Eden Wears It Better

© 2016 Inside The Fashion Doll Studio Eden Wears It Better

© 2016 Inside The Fashion Doll Studio Eden Wears It Better

© 2016 Inside The Fashion Doll Studio Eden Wears It Better

© 2016 Inside The Fashion Doll Studio Eden Wears It Better

And yes people…this silkstone’s shoes will fit the Nu.Face model here….barely but it works.  I am still trying to figure out if I like the swirl curl bang thing on her forehead.  Winking smile



IDC 2016–Cocktails and Barbie for President Gala

After the amazing fashion show, it was time for cocktails, nibbles and a really amazing dinner and convention doll reveal. 

©2016 Dutch Barbie World


©2016 Dutch Barbie World

Once Cocktail hour was over, it was time to go to the Gala dinner.

©2016 Dutch Barbie World

©2016 Dutch Barbie World

The amazing Monica Nuñez del Castillo!

©2016 Dutch Barbie World

©2016 Dutch Barbie World

And our fabulous table host Rogier and OOAK artist and table hostess Corinne Thorner.

©2016 Dutch Barbie World

It sounds like the evening was a huge success with lots of money raised for charity…approximately 20,000 Euros!!

©2016 Dutch Barbie World

The end of the evening brought the anticipated convention doll reveal!  Many were thinking it was time for a brunette articulated silkstone…and they were proven correct.

©2016 Dutch Barbie World

Photos below are courtesy of Jim Taylor {Hugs}.  Thank  you for letting us use these photos!




Last but certainly not least…our Rogier received an award tonight from the IDC!!!  A well deserved recognition for his efforts and work in the collecting community. Congratulations Rogier and Dutch Barbie World!!!  ** Thanks to Jim Taylor again for this photo!!**


©2016 Dutch Barbie World

Happy, Happy Mothers Day!!  Sales room photos will be coming your way soon!


There is Grey and There is Black and White

No this isn’t an April Fools’ joke.  I wish it were. 

I was all ready to share a quick blog post about the new Camel Coat Silkstone Barbie that became available on the Barbie Collection website yesterday for BFC members (a day ahead of general public distribution).  I was all ready…and then…something happened that sank me and many collectors into a state of complete and total disbelief.  It was a situation where something was so clearly black and white that I could not stay on the sidelines and watch it happen without comment.  Our story begins with a Sneak Peek on the BFC.

I can’t show you the sneak peek because that would violate my agreement with the BFC but I can tell you that pictures of the doll were shown last week (3/24/16 to be specific) and a release date of March 31st was given.  The big surprise — and a pleasant one at that — was the $50.00 list price.  This doll had a full outfit with accessories (yes she has earrings and a purse!!) and the price was more than reasonable.  The verbiage in the sneak peek was general…name, label, designer and…price.  It was not listed with suggested price, not estimated price, just price:  $50.  For the entire week after the sneak was posted, member after member commented how this price seemed low.  There were questions as to its validity but no correction or retraction was submitted or offered by Mattel.  As of this morning, $50 was the set price.

Fast forward to yesterday.  Gates open in the morning at and many collectors were able to purchase Miss Camel Coat at $50.  Somewhere after the first hours of happy purchasing, the price jumped to $75.  To say collectors were surprised is a gross understatement.  When people questioned this, the response back from the official Mattel channels was, “We are having issues with the price and that she was really $75.”  Hmmmmm…what issues change a doll with an “advertised” price of $50 to $75?  Look, I understand that mistakes are made and if Mattel had explained after say…a couple of days in the sneak peek forum that “oops we goofed, we put the price down wrong.” , I think it is fair to say that most of us would have understood.  Stuff happens.

When you hike the price up 50% mid-sale while people are purchasing (yes, collectors have stories of seeing the dolls price change while still in their cart) then you have a bigger problem I think.  You not only have a problem of epic customer service proportions, you also have a potential legal issue.  Let me explain.

I need to state up front that I am not a lawyer.  I have never been one.  My background is in business and finance.  While studying for my bachelor of science in this field, one of the main areas of study was business law.  The first lesson we learned…and I mean the first lesson, day one… had to do with unfair and illegal marketing practices.  One of the most common ones is called “Bait and Switch”.  It is illegal in the United States.  Here is a brief description of what it means:

"Bait and switch advertising is a violation of consumer laws. It is a type of fraudulent business practice where one party, such as a manufacturer or business, will offer the "bait". This could be a product that is advertised at a very low cost and is designed to lure in a customer. Once the customer is attracted, the manufacturer will pull the "switch". The proposed product will no longer be available at the advertised price, but instead it will be offered at a much higher price or an altogether different product will be offered."  **

Simply put, you can’t advertise something for a price then hike the price when people come to buy it.  You just can’t.  Now, here is where things can get a little grey.  Do you consider the sneak peeks we receive in the BFC “advertising”?  I will admit, kind of grey because this is information shared only with BFC members and it could be considered preliminary.  If that had been the only place where Mattel had mentioned a price, then perhaps categorizing this as bait and switch could be debated.  However,  it’s not the only place they advertised the price.

©2016 Mattel, Inc

This was what you found when you went to the BFC tab of the website all day yesterday.  This is not a grey area.  This is advertising space on their public website. 

While I sat at my computer and saw this story unfurl I was shocked that Mattel was not coming forth and 1) apologizing for their error, and 2) honoring the $50 price for BFC members.  To me, this was so black and white.  They advertised it at $50 for BFC members, some BFC members had already purchased dolls at that price, and I assumed they would simply have to honor the price for other BFC members.  No brainer, fair, legally and ethically right.  But for a time, Mattel was silent and calls to the customer service center in Wisconsin just gave the response of, “The price is $75.”  Holy cow!  When I called the customer service center, I explained that if that doll was $75, then they needed to yank the ad that stated she was $50 or they could get slapped with false advertising.  The ad remained up all day. 

By late afternoon, Mattel did respond stating that the $50 price would be honored if you called customer service but it was a one day only deal.  For those who had purchased the doll at the $75 price, they could email customer service and their account would be adjusted.  On my third call to customer service, I finally was able to purchase this doll for the price she was advertised for:  $50.00  This was half my day people, to try to accomplish something that should never have been set up this way.  And this was half a day in which I had to argue with two customer service reps that their website and company were in violation of consumer law.   Not something I do every day…every year or frankly every decade.  It has left me repeating one phrase over and over again…”What in the Sam Hill is going on over at Mattel?”

For those unfortunate collectors who come late to the party tomorrow hoping to use their brand new quarterly reward on a $50 Camel Coat Silkstone, good luck.  I hope Mattel will do the right thing here and honor the $50 price to the BFC members they advertised it to.  I am hoping but I don’t expect it.  I am left with a lingering sense of mistrust in this company I have supported for years with many compliments, time and dollars.  What a sad way to show their appreciation.  #customerfail.

I’m not even showing the doll or giving the link.  Caveat Emptor people!  Now, as they say over at Flickr when a disturbing or alarming picture is about to be shown, “Take me to the Kitties”.  I have such a bad taste in my mouth on this one, I need a whole box of Altoids and hours of cute animal videos.


** –

Articulated Silkstone Now Available to Order

But she won’t be shipping until March 1st folks.  If you want her sooner, look to the dealers, they appear to be getting them first.  I like this idea of giving the dealers first dibs on shipment.  It makes sense to me and it helps support those dealers that have been loyally selling Mattel’s collector products for all these years.  I called my trusty dealer Barb of Windy City Dolls the moment I saw these ladies showing up on Ebay ( not happy that this is where the first ones showed up but not surprised either).  She sent one over as soon as they arrived at her shop. 

Classic Black Dress Barbie® Doll

Gold Label®

Designer: Robert Best

Release Date: 2/1/2016…hmmm…this is what the site says but they also clearly state that shipping won’t start until 3/1/2016.

Retail:  $40.00 at The Barbie Collection©2016 Mattel, Inc

©2016 Mattel, Inc

©2016 Mattel, Inc

©2016 Mattel, Inc

©2016 Mattel, Inc

So…what do I think?  I think the face on this first Silkstone of 2016 is a winner.  It is one of the best facial screenings I have seen in a while from the BFMC.  Very soft, and pretty.  The black dress is basic.  The material is nice and of a good weight…but basic.  The boots are…basic.  They are plastic people and almost impossible to get off unless you use the hot water trick **see below.   No jewelry, purse with this one nor undergarments..yep that’s right…Barbie is going full commando. 

The bigger question I think is what do I think of the body of this doll.  First and foremost, the dimensions are NOT the same as previous BFMC Silkstone bodies.  The bust is most definitely smaller.  Clothing does not fit exactly the same which surprises me as I believe Mr. Best said that the body was going to be the same proportions in the video announcing the articulated bodies.   I am not saying the body is bad…just different dimensions and for us redressers, that will be an issue.  The material feels weighty and solid which is nice and the joints appear to be solid and stay where you position them.  It is basically ok…but not great.  Here is why:  1) The articulation on the joints is minimal except for the legs.  This girl can do the splits if she wants but she cant rotate her hand enough to fully bend it one way or the other…it only goes a little bit one way or the other.  She can just barely put her hands on her hips.  Compare the functionality with Integrity Toys dolls and you will find that IT bodies are loads ahead as far as flexibility.  The new Silkstone body can however, do the splits whereas IT dolls cannot.  Not sure how that is something I will utilize unless I get the letch to do Gymnast Barbie, or Pole Dancing Barbie or perhaps contortionist Barbie.  You never know…it could happen.  I am hopeful that the next iterations of this body will beef up the bust size and include some additional rotation in the joints.  My other big concern with these new bodies are the rough edges and seams that show.  The knee joint on the one I received had a big ugly rough edge at the seam right above the knew joint.  Some may argue that you will hardly ever see that…maybe but in the dress she came in, it was VERY evident.  It’s not worthy of sending back, it’s just sloppy work on the part of the factory.  Am I expected now to file down the seams of Silkstone dolls that I receive? 

On the very positive side however, the doll is only $40.  That is an extremely low price point for a Silkstone Barbie doll.  So…messy seams and all, this doll photographs beautifully.  I admit, I had to pin the gown on her so it fit more securing up top.  It was made to be worn by the older body.  She does look good though and I guess each collector will have to decide for themselves if she is a good fit for their collection.  I am keeping mine for the present and still hopeful for the year ahead for the BFMC.  I think it will be a very much paired down year but time will just have to tell on that one.

©2016 Inside The Fashion Doll Studio

©2016 Inside The Fashion Doll Studio

©2016 Inside The Fashion Doll Studio

©2016 Inside The Fashion Doll Studio

©2016 Inside The Fashion Doll Studio

©2016 Inside The Fashion Doll Studio

Beatuiful dress was made by Hilda of Bellissima Couture.

Oh..and as an added not to my loyal readers…After filing multiple DCMA claims with various accounts on Pinterest and Instagram all of which were cutting the watermark off my photos and passing them off as their own, I will have to start putting even larger and more intrusive watermarks on my photos.  Not my choice people but there you have it.  Sometimes…I just don’t understand some people. 

**Hot Water Boot Trick**  To help get those pesky black boots off, I heated up a cup of water to almost boiling then stuck the legs and boots in for about 30-35 seconds.  Using a towel because they will be hot, boots should slid right off.  If not, put the legs with boots back in the water for a bit more.

2016 BFC Membership Renewal Open to Current Members…

…and I am honestly conflicted about it.  I went ahead and purchased a membership ( and had difficulties doing it see story below) but I am conflicted as to whether this is something I would really recommend to a new or even seasoned collector at this point. 

©2016 Mattel, Inc.

©2016 Mattel, Inc.

Here is what I am liking about this years club.

1) AA Silkstone in a blue suit looks scrumptious!!  She will be a BFC exclusive so only available to the club.  This may be worth the $25 alone and is perhaps the main reason I signed back up this year.  Mr. Best, you get my vote…your tech department does not.

2)  Soda Shop Barbie ( part of the Willows, WI  line) is ADORABLE.  Love the poodle skirt and love where Bill Greening has taken and seems to be taking this line.  Well done Mr. Greening.

3) The Free gift is a chair!  And it seems to be the same pattern as the gilt chairs in the dioramas we all love so much from BFMC.  But…it’s black and not gold or gilt.  Hmmmmm… see more on this below.


Here is what I am not liking about this years club:

1) The chair is black and not gilt or gold.  I mean we can spray paint…no problem … but there is some work involved with that one.  You need to make sure it’s the right gold…and does that white seat cover come off?  Is it cloth or is it plastic?  It’s totally doable…just wish they had sprung the extra buck and had them sprayed gold is all.  I was kind of primed for the gold based on what was said in the promotional video about the articulated silkstone’s.  But…free is free so guess I really can’t complain.  Will take it and say “Thank you!”

2) The free gift doesn’t come until March?  Why the three month delay?  Yes, I say three months because I suspect this puppy won’t be mailed until late March.  Oh and read the fine print people…in order to get said chair, you need to have signed up by 03/31/16.

3) NOT liking the troubles I experienced on the “improved” website.  I had to sign in multiple times to get my account to recognize me as a BFC member and therefore allowed to purchase a membership today.  Once that hurdle was jumped,  I experienced the “waiting room” and once I made it out of the waiting room and had the item in my cart, I attempted to actually pay for my membership.  Here is what I got

BFC 2016 2

What!!  My response to the screen was “ You have got to be kidding me!  This was supposed to be the “improved system”.  Do you want my business and money or not Mattel?!!

After about 4 minutes, I went back in and was able  to re-enter all my payment info and successfully complete my transaction but for 4 minutes I contemplated whether or not it was worth it.  This BC website is seriously affecting my love of Barbie and my collecting mojo.  I am just not feeling the love from Mattel when stuff like this happens and the more it happens, it makes me question why I am giving my money to them.  I hate to say it but there it is.  Just expressing my concern and sadness.    Oh and the graphic you see above…the nice one with the pictures and explanation of the club…it’s only visible if you sign out of your membership account and are looking at the BC site as a non -member.  What?!!  So members were not able to actually see the free gift chair on the product page when they paid for their membership but people who are thinking about signing up for the first time can see it?  Can someone please, please explain this one to me?!! 

So…here I am….conflicted because I am in essence advertising the Barbie Fan Club and including links in this blog post for people if they are interested and yet…I am really disappointed at how the roll out of this club has played out.  Is this a harbinger for tough times ahead?  Will I continually have problems purchasing?  Will I have to log in and out of the website to see content that I am interested in?  Will I ever be able to search the BC website and find what I am looking for?  I remain hopeful but guarded.  Mattel, are you hearing any of this?

I guess what I will leave potential buyers with is a big fat CAVEAT EMPTOR .

                                       Caveat Emptor – let the buyer beware

If you are a current BFC member, you can sign up for the club now.  If you are a new member, you can start signing up a week from now on 1/19/2016. 

Homecoming and The Wizard of OZ

The title sounds like an interesting Indie movie doesn’t it?  Mattel finally released photos for two new offerings coming soon to Barbiecollector.  First up is the 2nd edition to Bill Greening’s popular Willows, WI. collection….a frothy homecoming queen.

©2015 Mattel, Inc

Homecoming Queen™ Barbie® Doll

Gold Label®

Designed by: Bill Greening

Release Date: 7/8/2015

Product Code: CJF57

No more than 5500 units produced worldwide.

Retail:  $75.00

BFC exclusive!  This means you have to be in the BFC to get one.  You can join the BFC here.

©2015 Mattel, Inc


©2015 Mattel, Inc

©2015 Mattel, Inc

She is cute!  Love the Silkie face on this collection as well.  Beautifully done Mr. Greening.

Next up is the annual installment of Mattel’s Wizard of Oz obsession.  I never thought of WOZ dolls as “cash cows” but apparently they are.  If you ever missed out on these no worries, just wait until next year’s installment.  Don’t get me wrong, I like the Wizard of OZ….just not THIS much.  That being said, this one I would put in the higher end as far as concept and design.  She is very nice.

THE WIZARD OF OZ™ Fantasy Glamour GLINDA™ Doll

Release Date: 6/11/2015

Product Code: CJF31

No more than 5500 units produced worldwide.

Retail:  Wait for it….$100.00

You can buy her now but she won’t ship until 8/6/2015.  This one is a direct exclusive which means she is only available through

©2015 Mattel, Inc

©2015 Mattel, Inc


©2015 Mattel, Inc

She is pretty…just don’t know if she is $100 pretty.  If I collected fantasy dolls…I might be considering this one. 

Valium Wasn’t Enough

Nope…Can’t touch this

Classic Evening Gown Barbie® Doll



Apparently even Valium wasn’t enough to carry the day for Mattel’s latest scheduled platinum sale.  According to Mattel, a server error before the sale even started was enough to cancel the entire thing for that day and no date has been named for its release as of this posting.  I have experienced Mattel and Barbiecollector system issues for years (YEARS!) before this hence my previous blog post “Get your Valium Ready” but even I did not anticipate a complete customer fail.

Customer Fail = to fall short of success or achievement in something expected, attempted, desired, or approved. 

What?!!!  This begs the question, if one server error was enough to bring this sale down, exactly how many servers were allotted to this event?  I am thinking….2.    Come on people.  It is a platinum sale.  You hold it once a year.  You know…I can believe that weird system things happen.  Believe me, I have experienced just such a thing.  The system issues that Mattel and BC experience at these platinum sales are consistent not just a “one-off” thing.  To come in two minutes before kick-off and say “We are sorry, but we have a system problem”, just comes off as poor planning to me. 

Don’t want to arm chair quarterback here but, if you don’t have the server capacity or you have had problems previously with the capacity, one would think you would have a back up plan…perhaps RENT some additional server space or start to question the ability of your system to handle  the load you place on it during these high volume sales.  There are companies like Amazon and Microsoft that offer up services to handle and solve such issues each and every day.  If you can’t diagnose and treat the issue, perhaps it is time to seek outside help.  Just a thought.  In the meantime, Mattel and the BFC have left their most avid and loyal collector customers with a decidedly sour taste in their mouths.  I have no idea if it is the IT staff at Barbie collector who plan poorly or Mattel Inc. itself that simply has not allocated the funding and resources necessary to handle these sales.  It is entirely possible that Mattel has told Barbie Collector and its IT staff they must make bricks with no straw on this one.  If that is the case, I feel for them.  Either way, it leaves the collectors questioning whether they want to purchase the product or not.  Not a positive customer experience.  Not a good day for Mattel and the BarbieCollector brand.

Thumbs down

As of this posting, no available date of sale has been given by Mattel or Barbiecollector for this doll.

Little Red Dress

My fabulous dealer Barb of Windy City Dolls sent this lovely lady to me last week and I finally had a moment to get her out of the box and in front of the camera.  She does not disappoint.   The fabric of the dress is nice and soft.  Very feminine. 

©2015 Inside The Fashion doll Studio

I had heard some concerns from other collectors regarding her hair.  The promo shots showed an elaborate updo.  The question was…how will this translate to actual production ?  Will the hair look like the promo shot or will it be “one hot mess” when it arrives?  I opened the box and am happy to report that the hair does in fact closely mimic the promo shot, or at least mine does.  I also love the honey highlights in this hair. 

©2015 Inside The Fashion doll Studio

©2015 Inside The Fashion doll Studio

©2015 Inside The Fashion doll Studio

And really the best side of this coiffure…

©2015 Inside The Fashion doll Studio

I am not going to lie, I had to make one little adjustment to the hair.  One of the curls in the back was not as tight as it could have been and it stood up too high for me.  I solved it with some hair gel and a pin.  If I were braver, I would give her a little bit of a bang trim too.    There are visible rubber bands in this coiffure …not a particular favorite of mine… but given the ornateness of the design, I am willing to live with it. 

©2015 Inside The Fashion doll Studio

The grey eyes with a hint of yellow are fabulous!  The smoky eye liner goes very well with the red lipstick, hat and gown.  I ADORE the fact that there are earrings with this one.  Perhaps the last set of earrings we will see on a Silkstone ( or so it would seem by the promo shots)

©2015 Inside The Fashion doll Studio

©2015 Inside The Fashion doll Studio

I am very pleased with this latest BFMC effort by Robert Best.  I mean come on…how can I not love a Silkstone in a Dior inspired dress .  Photos below are both 1950’s Dior dresses. christian-dior-1950s-dresses-i5





BFMC 2015 Video Shared to All

It looks like the BFMC released the video for public consumption.  Yipee!!  That means I can share some still shots here.

You can find the full length video here


The lineup for 2015 looks like this:

2015 BFMC video 4wmsized

2015 BFMC video 2wmsized

From left to right is Boucle Beauty, Blush Beauty, Fabulously Floral, Lavender Luxe and Little Red Dress.

Boucle Beauty:

2015 BFMC video 5wmsized

2015 BFMC video 6wmsized

The hair is quite a departure from the original photos released of her.  I wonder what the actual production doll will look like.  Time will tell but I am guessing it will be more like this than the previously released photos. 

Lavender Luxe:

2015 BFMC video 12wmsized

2015 BFMC video 11wmsized

Be still my heart and open up my wallet!!!  { moment of silence as I send silent meditative thanks and praise to Robert Best for this little piece of heaven}.  The scene from the old Mervin’s commercial comes to mind where the woman is glued to the store door chanting “Open, Open, Open”.

Yes…me likey and me buying.

Blush Beauty:

2015 BFMC video 9wmsized


2015 BFMC video 10wmsized


Little Red Dress:

2015 BFMC video 8wmsized


2015 BFMC video 7wmsized

May need multiples of this one for redressing Smile

It looks like the BFMC team is really feeling the Dior vibe both with clothing and set design.  Too cool.

Welcome Carlyle Nuera

There is a new Barbie Collector designer in town… and his name is Carlyle Nuera.  He knows how to make an entrance!   His debut design for BC just had photos released yesterday and she is a beautiful homage to the rich culture of the Philippines. 

Mutya™ Barbie® Doll

Gold Label®

Designed by: Carlyle Nuera

Release Date: 2/2/2015

Doll Details

Body Type: ModelMuse™
Skin Tone: Tropic Tan
Facial Sculpt: Kira
Fashion Sewn On?: No
Eyelashes: Painted

Mutya Barbie Doll 1


Mutya Barbie Doll 2


Mutya Barbie Doll 4


This is not Carlyle’s first offering in the collector community.  He has offered up some amazing OOAK dolls for charity in the past couple of years.

Noëlie Barbie for the 2014 National Barbie Collectors Convention

Carlyle Nuera OOAK 3



Who could forget his Adam Lambert OOAK for Project Angel Food!

Carlyle Nuera OOAK Adam Lambert 1


Also in the Charity Buzz auction benefiting Project Angel Food was his design of  “Haute Hiver”.

Carlyle Nuera OOAK Haute Hiver Barbie


Carlyle Nuera OOAK Haute Hiver Barbie 2


Fashionably Floral in February

Mattel’s first BFMC offering will be available at BFC starting February 2nd.  What a perfect way to welcome Valentine’s Day. 

Fashionably Floral™ Barbie® Doll

Gold Label®

Designed by: Robert Best

Release Date: 2/2/2015

Product Code: CGK91

No more than 10000 units produced worldwide

Retail: $50.00

Fashionably Floral 1official


It looks like Mr. Best and Lars(set designer for Mattel) are channeling their inner Dior with this set.  How Fabulous!!  I ask again…can we please, please, please get these little chairs in production for purchase?!!

Fashionably Floral 3official


Ahhhh….so very Dior.  I want to see the sketches on the table.  Any clues to what is coming out this year?? 

Fashionably Floral 2official


{SWOON}  You had me at the hat people…at the hat.  I have to admit though, the little side chignon is making me do the happy dance too.   Here is another thing making me do the happy dance, the new box design.

Fashionalby Floral box design_edited-1


Rogier over at one of my favorite doll blogs, Dutch Barbie World, reported this morning with these pictures from European Amazon sites.  If you want information on the Silkstone world first…sign up for his blog posts.  I have to say…I like the IRL photos even better.  And that pale pink liner?!!! {Swoon…again}  Now how am I supposed to debox that?!  Rogier laughed and said “Easy, get two”  Wise words Mr. Corbeau.

The new logo is very reminiscent of the vintage Dior logo.

Vintage dior box



Owning a Silkstone has never been more affordable with this $50.00 price tag.  What are you waiting for collectors?  I will be running to get this one…may even get two Winking smile


Karl Lagerfeld Barbie Announced

WWD announced today that a Karl Lagerfeld Barbie is in the works and set for release later this year.



Hope she won’t be too limited of an edition.  I will be interested to see the actual doll photos.

Worth The Wait

Patience is indeed a virtue.  It is a  virtue I don’t happen to have a clear grasp of most days.  When I send a doll off for repainting, I want it back like yesterday.  I like to send a doll off to a repaint artist and give general likes or dislikes but I don’t give specifics about what I want done.  I usually like to leave it in the talented and capable hands of the artist and I get what I get.  I sent a few ladies off to Jon Copeland of SeloJDesigns a number of months ago and while the wait to get them back was longer than he or I would have liked….it was entirely worth it.  I received three sublimely unique and beautifully painted OOAK’s that I am completely in love with.    I will be photographing and showing them over the next couple of weeks.  They are treasures…each and every one.

I am also going through a a bit of a wedding kick ( you know…the whole June thing) so a few brides will be thrown in the mix as well.  My bride fetish and one of my new OOAK’s from Jon combined in the doll room this afternoon for a truly enjoyable photoshoot .  I had roughly 30 minutes of sunshine today to do this set of photos.  I believe I maximized the time well Smile


© 2014 Inside The Fashion Doll Studio

© 2014 Inside The Fashion Doll Studio

© 2014 Inside The Fashion Doll Studio

© 2014 Inside The Fashion Doll Studio

© 2014 Inside The Fashion Doll Studio


The Art of Redressing

I look at this process as an art form.  Others may not but I do.  One of the many meanings of the word “redressing” is to set right; remedy or rectify.  However you view it, most of us at some point as collectors participate in it…the redress.  The sometimes exhaustive process of finding the perfect dress for the perfect doll gives me mental hives at times. I have some definite preferences when it comes to redressing, displaying and photographing a doll.    I may get a doll in and while I love the face, the dress does not speak to me…as in the case of my latest acquisition Principessa.  It is not that I think the dress is bad.  I just didn’t feel it on this doll.  Many times the disappointment with a fashion is tempered when I see it displayed on another doll.  This happened to me just last night when I saw the Principessa wedding gown displayed, slightly altered, on a different doll.  The dress had a whole new life for me. 

These next two photos are from the collector and photographer Julia Castro Fuentes whose  photos I have followed for years.  I love her eye for color, lighting and styling in her doll photography.  She has an enviable collection and an even more enviable talent behind the lens.  To see more of her fantastic work, feel free to visit her Flickr photostream at  The two photos below are under Julia’s copyright and are being used on ITFDS with her permission. 

Wholeah Dulcissima redress 1

© Julia Castro Fuentes Photography

Wholeah Dulcissima redress 2

© Julia Castro Fuentes Photography

I realized when looking at Julia’s photos, that this dress had a whole lot of potential.  I also realized…it looked WAY better on a my opinion.  With that revelation in mind, I searched the doll room for a better model for this dress.

© 2014 Inside The Fashion Doll Studio

© 2014 Inside The Fashion Doll Studio


© 2014 Inside The Fashion Doll Studio

© 2014 Inside The Fashion Doll Studio

And…the sunny window setup.  Many times one of my kids holds the reflector for me ( a job that they crankily do for their dear old Mom) but, I also find an extra music stand works really well too.  My trusty tripod is never far but many of the shots in this set were free handed…that lovely sunshine makes things easier with that.  I used a Canon  Canon EF-S 60mm f/2.8 Macro USM lens with these shots.

© 2014 Inside The Fashion Doll Studio



Barbie is in Sports Illustrated

…for their annual swimsuit issue.  The “body image” talk is already starting.  I have a question for people claiming that impressionable young girls are getting a bad body image from this doll.  If girls are getting their body image from a toy….aren’t there bigger issues involved here?  Should we blame the toy for that?  I liked to play with GI Joe when I was younger too.  Did that give me a tuff guy body image?  Did I think I could become the next Jean Claude Van Damme?  I am just asking. 

Obviously, I don’t belong to the camp that believes Barbie is the root of these so called “ body issues”.  I played with Barbie, my nieces played with Barbie, my daughter played with Barbie…not a bad body image displayed in any one of them.  As far as I can tell, they are happy, well adjusted , successful, articulate and confident young woman.  I am not judging or invalidating anyone’s point of view here.  I am simply adding my data points to this issue. 


Body issues aside, the folks at Sports Illustrated and Mattel have teamed up for what looks to be a fun SI issue.  Here are a few stills.


source:  Sports Illustrated


source:  Mattel


source: Sports Illustrated

There is also an adorable video of the behind the scenes with veteran SI photographer Walter Loos.  I had to watch it a few times just to drool over all the equipment.  You have to give this guy credit…he was a really good sport about it.

If you like this doll, you can order her from target here

The Barbie Look for 2014

The news out of Mattel is Bill Greening has some new Barbie Look’s for us.  The news from retailers is that these “The Barbie Look” offerings will be available in December and will go for roughly $29.99 each.  Many shops are offering up these beauties for presale so if you like them, put your order in with your favorite Barbie retailer.





There is a pink gowned one so she will be on my Christmas list for sure SmileI adore the applied lashes on these beauties!  I am thinking the gold gowned  Diana Ross inspired number may have to come live with me too.  I am really loving the edgy earrings of the blue pant suited blond and I like the coloring of the doll wearing the more casual blue dress.  Oh heck…who am I kidding…I will probably just get all of them LOL!

Haunted Beauty

Last year Mattel and Bill Greening helped collectors celebrate Halloween with the direct exclusive Haunted Beauty Ghost™ Barbie® Doll.

Haunted Beauty Ghost

Photo credit: Mattel, Inc

This year, Mattel and Mr. Greening serve up another helping of gorgeous gothic splendor with Haunted Beauty Vampire™ Barbie® Doll.  She looks to be all decked out in a very close representation of an Alexander McQueen cloak over a deliciously gothic gown.  If I were into vampire or gothic design dolls, I would be all over this one.  While I may not be in the market to purchase this one, I can certainly admire the artistry of her design.  Another win for you Mr. Greening.

Haunted Beauty Vampire™ Barbie® Doll

Retail:  $100.00 ( this is a BC direct exclusive.  Only available at

Haunted Beauty Vampire Barbie 4

Photo credit:  Mattel, Inc.

Haunted Beauty Vampire Barbie 1

Photo credit:  Mattel, Inc.Haunted Beauty Vampire Barbie 2

Photo credit:  Mattel, Inc.

Haunted Beauty Vampire Barbie 3

Photo credit:  Mattel, Inc.

And the inspiration and much photographed cloak by the late Alexander McQueen…

lexander mcquuen cape worn by daphne guiness in vanity fair

Photo credit:  Vanity Fair



Photo credit:  Harpers Bazaar

Even Integrity Toys has done this one.


Another Barbie Brouhaha A-Brewin’

At the Italian Doll Convention in May, it was announced by Mattel that there was an Herve Leger Barbie gift set in the works.  Some prototype pictures started floating around, the interest level was definitely high, and all of the sudden….Mattel sends a notice to its dealers saying “Due to a partnership update the Herve Leger Barbie Doll is no longer available for Mattel Barbie Dealers.”


Today, popping up in grand Technicolor on Spanish and UK Amazon sites, were photos of what appear to be a finished product.

Photo credit:  Amazon.esHerve Leger Barbie 1

Herve Leger Barbie 6

Herve Leger Barbie 8

Herve Leger Barbie 3Herve Leger Barbie 4

Herve Leger Barbie 5

So my question is…”Is this doll legit or what?!!”  It certainly appears to be and these photos look like Mattel promo photos.  Yes, the photos were available on the Amazon sites but you were not actually able to order the thing so this tells me it  very well may be available but is not necessarily currently available.  The other questions of course is where will it be available.  So far it looks like Amazon has the inside track.  I have to be honest here.  I have never known Mattel to be this ”lacking” about releasing data on a much anticipated doll.  What gives?  Is it a secret?  Only those with a secret password get the information on this doll?  Only people incessantly trolling the retail sites will be able to get this doll?  Click your heels together three times and say “There’s no place like home, There’s no place like home” and you might be able to get this doll?  What is the formula here?

If I am asking these questions, I am sure others are too.  Note to Mattel:  “We like the product.  We want to buy the product.  Why won’t you tell us how?!  We want to give you money and yet you stand there silent and stoic blinking in tune with the music.” 

And the answer from Mattel appears to be….


I don’t know about you guys but…this aint relaxing to me right now Sad smile

Holy Hand Grenades Batman!!

Yes, I am mixing a bit of Monty Python in there.  Mattel comes through with another set of upcoming dolls from NY Toy Fair.

Ahhhhhhhhhh!  How cute are these??!!!

** photos are courtesy of Mattel, Inc.**

Batman Ken® Doll

Retail: $34.95

Available: 6/7/2013

Batman 1

Batman 2Batman 3

Batman 4Batman 5


Catwoman Barbie® Doll

Retail: $34.95

Available: 6/7/2013

Cat woman

Cat woman 1

Cat woman 3 Cat woman 4

Ummmm….LOOOOOOOVE!!!!    faint

Getting Ready for the Oscars

When I was doing  multiple posts on award show fashions, I was thinking wouldn’t it be fun to do a photo of Barbie getting ready for the Oscars.  I needed an appropriate background and Mattel provided that with their amazing new Barbie Look Wardrobe.  It also needed a bigger than life dress because it is…after all…the Oscars. Who better than Jason Wu and his talented team at Integrity Toys could do that?!  Finally, I needed the prefect model for the dress and I wanted someone who is not seen that often.  Since I am a deboxer, I have the luxury of redressing a rare or low production number doll.  For this photo shoot, I decided to use Pinch of Platinum.  She is a platinum edition doll which means there are no more than 999 of her in the world.  I also felt , given the pain and aggravation of her entry into my collection , she deserved her moment to shine.  No valium necessary with this one .wink

Model, earings, shoes:  Pinch of Platinum Barbie

Bracelet:  Showgirl Silkstone Barbie

Gown:  Dark Romance Giselle NuFace Fashion Royalty

Set:  Barbie Look Wardrobe, Horsman pink chair and scroll side table, Jonathan Adler side table,  Randall Craig zebra rug and too many little items to name individually.  If you have questions on any item, just ask .

Stylist:  ITFDS





How about this fabulous closet and it’s potential!  When it comes to diorama pieces folks…it doesn’t get any better than this.  My only complaint is the price.  It is pricey ( $70!!).  I purchased this one on sale and received $20 off.  That definitely made it more palatable.  It comes with three interchangeable backgrounds ( I love the black and white one!) and you could make your own too I suppose if you had big enough paper.  Oh, and drawers open and it comes with a bunch of hangers.  Someone mentioned on the doll boards that it would be great if Mattel could offer an extra set of hangers on their website.  Excellent notion!




And… because Rebecca loves her macro lens…a few more shots of the doll and her accessories.  Love those shoes!  If you click them together three times and say “There is no place like Mattel” do you think you could be transported there?



Music from the shoot…..

P.S…I Love You, Barbie® and Ken® OOAK Auction

Charitybuzz  and Mattel are teaming up again for a OOAK auction.  This time, it will benefit the LGBT Community Center of the Desert.   Here is the write-up taken directly from the Charitybuzz website.

“Mattel Principal Designer, Jim Holmes, collaborated with Photographer Steven Henke, to create this stunning one-of-a-kind duo Barbie® and Ken® dolls for the Barbie Does Palm Springs Charity Event.
The ultimate Palm Springs girl, PS… I Love You, Barbie® is in a 60’s inspired strapless patio-pant lounger with a citron animal-print caftan. The neck of the caftan and hem of the patio pants are encrusted with gems and jewels.

Ken®, the ultimate poolboy, is dressed in matching hipster stovepipe pants, cropped white knit top, citron flip flips, pork pie hat and sunglasses. And, to show his devotion, Ken sports a tattoo of "Barbie" on his arm.

And no Palm Springs pool party would be complete without a few festive drinks. Pool lounge furniture, a mid-century screen, and pool towels with Barbie and Ken embroidered on them, complete the flagstone set.”

** Photos are property of Charitybuzz **

Charity Buzz and Mattel OOAK sets 1

Oh if only I had a money tree!!  Auction ends October 31st.

There are also three photographs by Steven Henke (  up for auction.  They are gorgeous!!

Charity Buzz and Mattel OOAK sets 2Charity Buzz and Mattel OOAK sets 3

If you want to check out the all of the Barbie related auctions, here is the link

Here are a few photos of other collaborations between Mattel and Charitybuzz.

Warning!! Severe Eye Candy below!!

Pink Diamond™ Barbie® doll

proceeds went to benefit MAC Aids Fund organization

Pink Blond's blond

Winter Bliss Barbie®

proceeds went to benefit 2011 Project Angel Food

CharityBuzz OOAK Barbie 6

Oh my!!!  Gorgeous dolls and supporting our local communities!!  That’s a solid win in my book. Smile