Sunday, July 31, 2011

Happy Belated Birthday, Teresa! Drum Roll, Too.



God, it feels good to finally close my legs!

Oh, I didn't know I was on yet. But check the photo of me below. If you were told to assume a dramatic position, well, you might have done it, too. I was supposed to show how flexible I was. I was also supposed to be bought by some kid who would rip open my packaging and take me out of what had quickly become a painful position. My luck though, I go to a collector who doesn't remove me from my box until 14 years later. On a hot and humid late July afternoon. I kicked off my once-cool brown high tops and wrestled out of the pink corduroy wide legged pants and the long-sleeved argyle sweater. Console myself with this thought: if the kid bought me, I'd probably be in pieces. Here's how I posed in the box:



Whew!

Glad I got out of prison - the box. Why now? I am here to replace another Teresa who was going to bore you with the fashions she inherited from some other Fashion Fever girls. Some officious bit calling herself Izzy-Never-Bella starts snapping orders at me. Yo, Little Mama - who died and made you Queen? She tosses a dress at me, and tells me I won't be able to use the other fashions. The Teresa closet post was scrapped, but drums are on. Guess I am the Teresa understudy. Whatever.

Do any of you remember when my birthday was? First one to write back with the correct date will win a vintage Francie outfit. TBA tomorrow, August 1st.

Wait, bossy Izzy is back with a camera. If I weren't so relieved to have my legs comfortable again, I would seriously kick her ... okay, smiling for the camera.

Saturday, July 30, 2011

Jef Beck's Ken Book Available!

I Love Ken: My Life as the Ultimate Boyfriend by doll enthusiast Jef Beck is available online. The book seems to be about Ken as a dating expert. Sounds cute and fun, hmmm? This being Ken's 50th anniversary, what better time to read our favorite male fashion expert's views on dating. Anyone?

Thursday, July 28, 2011

Updates to PhillyCollector: Accessibility for Blind Readers

One important update long overdue is to make PhillyCollector blog accessible for blind readers. Yes, Virginia, there are blind doll collectors. Big smile. Hey collectors! At this time, blind readers cannot subscribe here due to the "Subscribe" image NOT having a text alternative. Text alternatives appear instead of photographs or graphics on a web site. They are GOOD because they allow a blind or sight-impaired (sorry, I cannot and will not type "sight challenged") viewer or someone who has turned off graphics (for faster web page loading) to "read" or to "hear" what is on the web page. I have been trying to insert text alternatives here. I have not had luck. So I have to investigate - probably best among the blogging set, rather than the collecting set - oh, thinking in terms of dolls and action figures again - I mean bloggers as opposed to collectors/enthusiasts as to how to make PhillyCollector more accessible.

So far, I have found these articles helpful:

http://www.unleashwebaccess.com/2011/02/help-blind-users-read-your-blog-help-everyone/

http://www.mainecite.org/awd/accdocs/article7.html

http://www.afb.org/Section.asp?SectionID=57&TopicID=167&DocumentID=2757


However, if anyone uses the "alt image" HTML tag for his or her Blogger subscription link, please share your tips on how I could add it to a Blogger subscription link. My thanks in advance for any advice.

Monday, July 25, 2011

ToysRUs Clearance Sale Today! New Liv Series!

Okay, it isn't the greatest of sales. I checked the two pages of Barbie stuff. Nothing I wanted. But then, I am not You, so there might be something that You, Faithful Reader(s), might want. Or the free standard shipping for orders of $75 or more might lure you to the ToysRUs site. (Note: video game hardware, software, accessories are NOT included in this free shipping offer.)


I won't be getting anything this time: spent my doll funds last Saturday. Got a few of those Liv jackets for sale. Thanks, Ms. Leo! No, really thanks ;-D

However, there is more to the ToysRUs website than the for sale items.  Example? Doll research! Yay! Guess who will be bringing new, tanned, JOINTED bodies out? You guessed it - Spinmaster. Cheers. Applause. The series is called Liv Color Change and you can click on the last word of this sentence for a link to show three of the tanned Liv girls. Love their robes and the foot bath thing. Neat.


Additional links to Liv dolls include these two websites: Liv Color Change dolls and Liv dolls dancing to Beyonce's "Single Ladies."

Good luck! Happy Viewing.

Monday, July 18, 2011

Upcoming Third Anniversary of PhillyCollector of Playscale Dolls

Time flies? Well, it can and does move quicker than expected when you're doing something you enjoy. So here I am, three years after I began this blog, PhillyCollector. Yes, three years. I've learned how to upload photos and insert links. I've wrestled with HTML to present lists and tables ... we won't say who won those early battles. Suffice to note: I am NOT backing down yet. Puff.

In fact, I am considering a blog update. No! some of you might be thinking. Please keep this cluttered format. Please. How else will we recognize you? By your cough wit? Ha! Yes, an update is overdue for the blog.

Why am I telling you this? Well, I value your opinions. You are readers of PhillyCollector. Let me know what you think I need to do to refresh.  I'll consider doing it.

Thanks in advance for any feedback!

Sunday, July 17, 2011

Surrender at Toys R Us

TRU Exclusive Liv Daniela with drums


Okay, this is one of those times when an accessory takes precedence over dolls: the Liv drum set. This I could NOT resist. The accompanying Daniela will - of course - serve as a donor body. But I had to have the drums. Sale price ... $16.18 with tax for both the body and the drums. Eight dollars and nine cents each piece. Not bad. No, there are no musical genes in my body. No dreams of becoming a rock star in my present or my past. But drums and motorcycles are two "cool" must have items. I have plenty of motorcycles and skooters. I missed the Liv drums sale at Walmart. Could not take a chance that I might miss them. I don't have a drummer yet for them, but I have the prop now. So, that's good. I have completely justified my surrender to buy.

Saturday, July 16, 2011

Doublemint AA Cheerleaders at Toys R Us

TRU Exclusive Black Cheerleaders Grace and Nikki

I really should NOT have been there in the first place. Toys R Us. It's just that I had not visited the South Philly Toys R Us for so long. I thought: I don't have to buy anything. Just look and see. See if they have something that the Cottman and the Aramingo stores do not have. Just looking was my downfall.

Because I was there and I did see this set and I almost broke down and bought them. Almost. I told myself that I had at least FOUR Desiree-faced dolls already. Told myself that I was getting tired of the Desiree face already. Told myself that the doll bodies were probably "hobbit Barbie bodies." Told myself that complexion variation was NOT reason enough to get another set of dolls with the same face. Repeated that reminder at least three times. Finally tore myself away after I found a long-desired item that caused me to set this Toys R Us special down.

The item so fascinating to me is the Toys R Us Exclusive African American or black cheerleader pair of Grace AND Nikki! Yes, two black female dolls in the Barbie pantheon, in the same box. Like Cara and Christie. Or Christie and Nikki. Wow. And although they both have the same face sculpt (grrrrr), they have different complexions! So I was very hard-pressed to leave these dolls behind me.

Now for those of you who do not have a Toys R Us selling this doll set, I suggest you walk your fingertips to this web page if you would like to add this Grace and Nikki set to your doll collection. Me, I am wondering when I will be back at the South Philly Toys R Us. Because I think I might get that set after all ....

By the way ... Toys R Us has FREE shipping for these dolls. Enabler? Moi?!

Friday, July 15, 2011

Thursday, July 14, 2011

CG Ice or Miss Fear: Who's Scarier?





I'd taken these photos comparing the head sizes of Takara CyGirl Ice and Hasbro Miss Fear, when I thought hmmm ... Ice looks slightly more intimidating in the side view photo. She seems to be leaning in and making herself look bigger as if to frighten Miss Fear. Not that Miss Fear appears to be backing down. No. Our Miss Fear inspires fear in hearts and minds here in East Philly.

But that's me. Who would you prefer to NEVER encounter in a dark alley?

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Do Specific Doll/Action Figures Inspire You to Watch Related Programs?

I saw the Character Optics Martha Jones doll in an action figure brochure, and decided to buy her. I had no idea who she was, but I liked her set chin and her odd molded hair. Then after I had her for a while, I began to wonder about the character she represented and the television show she "belonged to." So I looked into finding out about the new Dr. Who series. Ah! another fascination begins. I borrowed all the Dr. Who DVDs I could find.

So I wonder and ask: have you ever been inspired to watch a television program or see a movie because you liked a doll or action figure based on that featured that doll or action figure?

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Great News: Package Arrived!

Regular readers may recall my anxiety about a package sent to Germany that had not been received. Well, I am ECSTATIC to announce the package arrived! I am sooo happy. The buyer is happy. We would be doing Snoopy Happy Dances if there weren't miles of land and sea between us.

Huzza hooray for the postal systems, U.S. and German that got that package to its new home.

Whew!

Monday, July 11, 2011

Moxie Girlz Found at Family Dollar Store



I saw three of the Moxie Girlz - Avery, Lexa, and Sophina (shown twice here) - wearing these outfits. Does anyone recognize them? They were in a Family Dollar store in Germantown (near Wayne Avenue, below Chelten Avenue). Ten dollars each. No Bria or Owen or Jaxson.

Something for the Moxie Girlz fans here.

Sunday, July 10, 2011

New 12" Hasbro Joes? Bring on Those Real American Heroes!

Hasbro is bringing our favorite guys back. Stand and applaud the 2011 Return of the 12" Joes! Whooo hooo! Feet stomping and hands clapping.

Check out these new Hasbro G.I. Joes on ASMzine:

Police and K-9 unit has a German Shepherd dog that is a MUST for playscale animal collectors. I mean, that is one fierce looking dog. No curly eyelashes or drug-user airs about that doggie. That's the dog I would take were I a police person. Watch out for those pointy teeth!

First Responder Firefighter has cool looking firefighting gear. Tired of the firefighter suits found on some dollar store figures? (I've got at least one cheesy firefighter suit myself. I mean a playscale one, lol.) Or honor your favorite firefighter with this 1:6 scale replica.

Check out this Paratrooper with a working parachute. Granted, you will NEVER find D7ana emerging from an airplane or parachute, but isn't it a neat figure set?

If you missed out on the Return of the 12" Joes from 1993-2002, here's your chance to get similar figures. Where to get them? Try your local toy stores or an online shop like BigBadToyStore.

May you find the playscale heroes of your dreams.

Saturday, July 9, 2011

Where is the Van Brand Pizza Today?

Well, Old G.I. Joe and Lamont Wilson had had it. Then they went out for beers for that "perfect touch," but when they returned the pizza was gone. Oh! They accused some Kens lounging nearby. The Kens denied the charge. The Joes backed down - the Kens had been discussing the merits of skinny jeans versus baggie jeans and were none too happy to have such a thrilling topic interrupted for any talk of food. Usually Kens are mild mannered, but intrusion on their fashion discussions leaves them more aggressive than usual. The Joes recognized their folly and scrammed only to encounter a few Power Team members.

"Do you have our pizza?" Lamont asked.

"No, we do not. We are in training and NOT eating pizza."

"Well, that leaves them out," Old Joe responded. "Power Team guys are soooo serious about training."

"They are at that." Lamont answered. They sighed. Well, since the pizza was gone, they might as well enjoy the beer while it was still cold. And so they did.

But where then is the mouthwatering pizza we received from Van's Doll Treasures? Hmmm ... this picture shows the pizza and the pizza thief. Tawny Tommy!


He's guarding the pizza while his girl pal Abby gets sodas and napkins. Wonder how long he'll have it?


Interested in having your own Van Brand Pizza? Well, you'll have to inquire over at her blog to find out if she will be making any more. Good luck and happy eating ;-D

Friday, July 8, 2011

Don't Forget: Ross Dress for Less Has School's Out Liv Dolls on Sale



Here are three of the five School's Out Liv dolls at Ross Dress for Less stores in the Philadelphia area. And yes, the price is $7.99. I bought a Daniela and a Hayden. I have not seen any Alexis yet. She might be out there though.

Happy bargain hunting!

Thursday, July 7, 2011

Quickie Notes to Keep My July 1, 2011 Promise

Working on some projects - story line with Izzy, gathering stuff to sell, and checking on the Prettie dolls and the Mixis dolls. Oh and saw reference to some NEW fashionistas called "light up."

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

Reflections of "The Queen of Motown": Mego, Mattel, and Diana Ross

Diana Ross is a well-known American singer and actress. So it is not surprising that two major toy companies created likenesses of her. Mego created their 12 1/4" Diana Ross in 1977; Mattel produced their 11 1/2" version in 2004. I like both dolls: they both capture different aspects of the singer.

Both Diana Ross figures are dolls although Mego usually produced action figures. Back in the mid-seventies,  Mego had plans to have a doll series bigger than Barbie so they made their fashion dolls 12 1/4" tall. Okay, you can recover from laughing. Barbie before Bratz was a juggernaut. But Mego had the license and they produced their Diana Ross doll first.

Mego's face is larger and stronger than the Mattel face. Oddly, in spite of the hugeness of the doll - which bears no similarity to the physique of the singer-actress - I find her face looks more like the real person. Something about the half-mast eyes, the nose and the mouth shape, and the complexion. And what talons she has for nails.



Mattel's Diana has more grace


... but her face doesn't capture the vividness of Mego's Diana



Here the two are side-by-side


Which do you think - if either - best captures the likeness of Diva Diana Ross?

Related links with additional links

Diana Ross on Facebook

IMDB - International Movie Database

International fansite

Wikipedia entry

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Coke, Kumbaya, and Why I Sometimes Ship Internationally

Can I confess to having hippie leanings? You know, the people united theme. For example, the television commercial that I felt had the strongest impact on my youth, would be this one. Note: if my YouTube link does not work, you can find the video under this title, "Coca-Cola 70's Christmas Hilltop Commercial."

Why? The variety among the people, the people all singing together. Sniff. That Coke commercial embodied a kumbaya moment and event to be achieved.

So what has Coke and kumbaya have to do with me shipping international? Motive. Reason. That sentiment is why I ship dolls and action figures overseas and outside of the United States. And why despite the international shipping snafu I am currently experiencing, I will continue to do so. See my SIX reasons here ....

Global neighbor
Selling dolls internationally seems to bring the world closer. Like, no, there aren't mountains and oceans and land masses between us. Let's trade: dolls for cash. I can't teach the world to sing in perfect harmony. But I can sell dolls.

Fair play
I buy from international vendors and/or international collectors so it is fair to turn provide a similar service to someone outside the U.S. Back in the 1990s I bought Takara Jenny and her friends from David Hammon, an American collector who traveled overseas and then brought those otherwise unobtainable fashion dolls here. If I could buy Jennys then later Momokos and Susies from the East, I could spare some American dolls and/or action figures to send East.


Active market
The strain on the U.S. economy has affected doll buyers. Fewer, more cautious sales happen now. Modern playscale dolls and action figures are a small category in the world of doll collecting. It makes no sense to keep pitching to the same people, at the same places. It's time to seek new buyers. Buyers beyond the state lines. Sales and returning buyers has made selling overseas worth the attempt. Bienvenue, monde!


World-traveling dolls
Nice to think that dolls once mine now live overseas. I cannot travel; they can and do. I don't get to know about their experience after they are gone, but it sounds sophisticated to write that my playscale figures have gone further afield than I have. Like launching my "babies" off into the world of other collectors.


Paperwork, Packaging
Ever experience the challenge of using the correct custom form by weight and/or postal service? What about considering whether first class international plus registered mail service is cheaper than global express? How about figuring out which services are available for which countries? And never forget the fun of packaging dolls and action figures for overseas voyages: cannot be too heavy or you miss letter rate postage; too light and worry about the figure having enough protection.


Helping the U.S. Economy
When I sell dolls, I help the U.S. economy. Yes, every trip to the U.S. Post Office adds to their coffers. I pay for their services. People can stay employed. Isn't that worth a little of my time and attention?

Monday, July 4, 2011

Happy Independence Day! July 4, 2011 in Philadelphia


Whatever you think I am doing, I am not. I could explain this, but that would mean airing dirty laundry.

Just passing through to say, "Hi! Happy Fourth." This is my day of liberation, too. I used to be on a undeveloped ballerina princess body. Now I have a Liv Daniela body - yes, my new body is just a hair lighter than my stunning face, but that's okay. I am free to move now. And move, I shall.

Just remember for now though ... you did not see me.

Izzy-Never-Bella

Sunday, July 3, 2011

Friday, July 1, 2011

Thirty-one Days of Blog Posts

I'm taking up a July Challenge this year: I want to submit at least ONE post every day. A while back, another collector/blogger wrote about doing a blog post a day. Well, this is my birthday month, so I am going to try it. A post a day. See what will come of it, hmmm? Yes, let's.