Thursday, April 27, 2017

Zig and Zig #50 or #57?

Zig and Zag Curvy Barbie

I had no plans to buy Zig and Zag Barbie, none whatsoever, but the person who often reminds me of the number of dolls I own was with me at Walmart the day she was purchased.  I was just browsing.  He saw Zig and Zag (ZiZi) and asked me if I had her.  After I answered, "No."  He (surprisingly) said, "You should buy her. You know you need a doll with her hair shaved on one side."  I corrected him by saying, "That side of her hair is braided.  I don't really like her."  We went back and forth for a minute and I relented after he pointed out her curvy figure.  "I guess I'll buy her, but her lip color is going to be changed," I said.

At home, the day after the purchase, I recalled not having removed the doll from the shopping bag or seeing it after when got home.  I went to the car to see if the package was there, no ZiZi.  I asked Husband if he remembered getting the bag when he grabbed the few others from the store counter.  He said, "She [the checker] put everything in one bag."  As it turned out, he left the bag there, so we had to return to Walmart to get my doll.

So the Zig and Zag I originally did not want, was wanted after all because she was paid for.

After remaining in her box for some three weeks or so, I finally removed ZiZi to give her a three-part, quick makeover.  Before the makeover began, I noticed the front of the box indicates she is Fashionista #57 while #50 is shown on the back of the box, as illustrated above.

Cellophane has been removed, but she is still attached to the box liner.

Bright pink lip color

ZiZi shows off her molded braids and the hole in the back of  her head caused by the plastic fastener.  Mattel must do better in this regard!

Blonde side.  I loosened up her stiffened curls a bit with my fingers.

The Makeover
First up was to paint parts in her hair in between her cornrowed braids.  No one has a black scalp, Mattel!

ZiZi now has parts that separate her cornrowed braids.

I used acrylic paint (a mixture of Real Brown and Chocolate Bar) to create the appearance of parted hair/exposed scalp that separates her cornrows.

Part two was simple.  She had her ears pierced and gold hoop earrings (borrowed from another doll) were inserted.

Part three of ZiZi's makeover was to remove her pink (pank) lipstick and apply a more suitable color for her skin tone.

Using fingernail polish remover, ZiZi's lip color was removed.  I tried a variety of acrylic paint colors, but settled on Gold Medal fingernail polish as her new lip color.

Her new lip color almost matches her blonde hair.

ZiZi and I are not thrilled with her original sundress and shoes, but clothing here for curvy girls is quite limited.  The original fashion and shoes will have to do for now.  (On viewing this picture, it appears she was about to have a little wardrobe malfunction.  I thought I corrected the position of her top, which easily slides out of place when the doll is manipulated, before taking photos, but I missed this one.)

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Tuesday, April 25, 2017

From Controversy to Empowerment the History of Black Dolls

The I See Me:  Reflections in Black Dolls exhibition, which is currently ongoing at the Charles H. Wright African American Museum of History in Detroit, Michigan has been extended through June 25, 2017.

From Controversy to Empowerment:  the History of Black Dolls, by Nadja Sayej, published today in The Guardian, offers nice coverage of the exhibition.  Sayej's article also touches on the history of black dolls.

For more information about the exhibition, visit the events tab of this blog.

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Monday, April 24, 2017

One More Clothespin Doll

Jointed clothespin doll with molded hair wears a Christmas-themed dress

A collection of collections is probably the best way to describe my various black dolls and the categories they represent.

My tiny clothespin doll collection is one of these many collections within the collection. I recently won the one shown above. She has sculptured curls with three yarn braids.  Her dress has tiny Christmas trees in the print of the red fabric, but I will keep her displayed year round with the ones shown below:

Clothespin doll made by a special doll friend, dressed in my favorite color:  peach.
L-R:  Custom-made doll-collector clothespin doll by Clothesline Cuties,  one-of-a-kind clothespin doll by Curiositeej Dolls & Collectibles, Jemimah Angel clothespin doll by Rev. Dr. LaVerne C. Hall, and a circa 1980s jointed clothespin doll with Afro found a few years ago.
I also recently won an auction that included several clothespin dolls, the group photo of which is shown below, followed by separate photos of some of the items the auction included.

These unfinished clothespin dolls and block-doll kit with craft tongue depressors were included in an eBay auction win.

This package includes 10 doll pins and 10 doll stands.  The heads on these are small.

This package contains 13 craft clothespins.  The heads of these are small as well.

This makes my second multiarticulated 8-inch unfinished clothespin doll.  I found an identical one on eBay a couple of years ago. I like the larger size head and body proportions.

These five separately packaged "wooden jointed forms" will make very interesting clothespin dolls.  The heads of these are slightly smaller than the 8-inch doll, and should be because they create 5-inch dolls.  

This kit will create an 8-inch wooden block doll.  The tiny image in the lower right corner of the package illustrates the contents, including the "block" body.  The fabric for the dress, hair, and the stuffing required for the arms and legs will have to be purchased separately.

These unfinished dolls and kit will keep me busy once I get started making additional clothespin dolls to add to the now, still small collection.

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Friday, April 21, 2017

New 'Do, New Clothes For Musician Barbie

To create a sleeker look, Musician Barbie's hair (which looked like this originally and like this after brushing it) was restyled into two-strand twists as shown above.

After wetting it, I started from the neck area and moved up by parting several horizontal sections and separating each into tiny twists until all hair was twisted. Before twisting each section, I applied Eco Styler Olive Oil Styling Gel, which resulted in a very light hold and sheen; it does not make the hair stiff.

After hair twisting, Barbie's ears were pierced using white-tipped quilting pins. These were inserted into each lobe in an upward angle as shown below:
Inserting the pins at an upward angle, as illustrated, prevents possible piercing of the face or other unwanted area on the opposite side.

With ears pierced and new hairstyle, Barbie strikes a pose.

Next, we both wanted to see how she would look in some of the Sparkle Girlz fashions purchased last year and as recent as last week.

These were purchased last year. 

Musician Barbie looks these over to see which ones she likes best.

Purchased last week
Barbie and I discovered one of the most recent Sparkle Girlz fashions is a duplicate of one purchased last year. 
These were two that interested Barbie, but they are both cut too small for her frame.  The back Velcro closure does not meet.  These are probably better suited for a petite Barbie.

She tried on a one-shoulder multicolored dress, which has a handkerchief hemline.   The hem length is perfect from the front, but not from the back.  She would not be able to bend over without exposing herself.   The black closed-toe heels she wears came with the dress.

This is the same dress worn with a different shoe, a close-up of which is shown next:

This shoe is from a Barbie shoe accessory pack.
The same black Barbie shoe is worn with this two-piece Sparkle Girlz fashion.  The top has a geometric pattern while the faux suede skirt is fringed.

Exposing her belly button, Barbie now wears a brightly colored midriff top and denim short-shorts.  The orange heels are from the same Barbie accessory pack as the black shoes.

More short-shorts, these are trimmed with tiny orange pom-poms.  The lacy top is made of knit.  She elected to wear the same orange Barbie shoes she wore with the previous fashion.

The same fashion is worn with her own high-top sneakers.

Finally, just because the skirt is orange, Barbie wanted to try on an even older Sparkle Girlz fashion that has been here for more than a year.
Bright colors complement her complexion, but she looks great in everything she tried.  Which one do you think she likes the best?

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Wednesday, April 19, 2017

I Can Be Musician Barbie Photos and Video

I Can Be Musician Barbie arrived swiftly from with one sneaker on and the other resting on her keyboard tray. I am glad my plans were to immediately release the doll from the box. Otherwise, the runaway sneaker would have been annoying.

The back of the box illustrates the doll comfortably seated on her bench at her keyboard stand with hands on keyboard. The box text provides girls with a description of a professional musician's skills.  It encourages them to explore their musical talents and the possibility of becoming a professional musician.

As noted in my previous post about Musician Barbie, the doll's accessories include: guitar with strap, keyboard, stand, bench, sheet music, two mics, headphones, and water bottle.

The following brief video provides a closer look at the accessories.  Note that the video was recorded prior to detaching the doll from the box liner.

Still Photos of Accessories
Cellophane has been removed from the package for a closer look at doll and accessories.

Keyboard is realistic-looking.
Wood-inspired keyboard stand has tray for keyboard.  A black bench is included.
Mic stand is adjustable with extra larger mic that clips onto the mic stand; sheet music stand has sheet music decals; it attaches to the top of the keyboard stand.  Sheet music and bottled water, as shown, are included.

Musician Barbie wears light pink lipstick and has parted lips with undefined, painted teeth.

The pink guitar has a detachable strap.
Detached from Box Liner

With her high-top sneakers on, Musician Barbie can stand alone on a flat surface.

With sneakers off and guitar removed, she strikes a pose.

She has a slight arch in her feet, which as indicated in the video, will allow her to wear high heels.

The articulation is not as great as I expected.  The waist is not articulated.  The elbows, wrists, and knees are.  She cannot sit comfortably in the chair designed for PopLife Christie.  A taller chair would be more suitable.  She can cross her legs at the ankles but not at the knees as gracefully as I would desire.  I did not try her seated on her bench, which will probably work much better than the chair I selected.

In this seated position, her bottom does not touch the seat of PopLife Christie's chair.

This is the best crossed-legs-at-the-knees position she can achieve.  Her bottom never touches the seat of the chair.

This is the best she can do at crossing her ankles while seated, but she is almost standing.
Mattel made a decent attempt at capturing loose, curly-textured hair; however, the hair is not of the best quality.  As seen in the above photo, a small wad of it was dangling from the back.
Whoa!  Was brushing it a mistake?  She now has big hair, but it is manageable.

Complexion Comparison
None of the dolls I used for complexion comparison have the exact same complexion as Musician Barbie.

In comparison to Fancy Flowers Fashionista, Musician Barbie's complexion is close in color, but is a little lighter than her look-a-like friend's.

I knew her complexion would not be as deep as this doll's (Barbie Basics Model No. 04, Collection 001), but I went ahead with the comparison.

So-In-Style Chandra's complexion appears to be the best match, but it is still slightly darker than Musician Barbie's.


Finally, I darkened her lip color with a mixture of maroon and brown acrylic paint.  Using the same paint mixture, I also gave her a closed mouth.  Neither the light pink lip color nor the hint of teeth worked well for her, in my opinion.

Can she be a good body donor?  Yes, if you do not mind her limited movement and zero waist articulation.  The accessories should be useful for those who enjoy creating dioramas.

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