Thursday, October 29, 2020

Yara Shahidi Barbie


I preordered the Yara Shahidi Barbie from Amazon in September. The doll arrived during the third week of October. 

The doll's face is thinner than the actress's face in my opinion. Otherwise, her features are captured well. She has brown painted eyes and black rooted natural-textured hair with painted on "baby hair." 

As illustrated in the photo immediately above, the box lining is yellow with the phrase, "RAISE YOUR VOICE VOTE" printed throughout. 

Sculpt comparison: the Mrs. Which (Oprah) Barbie and the Yara Shahidi Barbie - their noses differ, the smiles differ, the cheekbones differ.

Based on the prototype photos, some collectors thought this doll uses the Oprah/Mrs. Which head sculpt. The side-by-side headshot captures of the Mrs. Which doll and the Yara Shahidi doll above confirm this is not true.

Details from the Barbie.Mattel site also confirm that the doll uses its own head sculpt.
  • Label: Gold Label®
  • Designer: Carlyle Nuera
  • Release Date: 9/23/2020
  • Included with doll: Blazer, t-shirt, pants, shoes, backpack, ballot, doll stand
  • Eyelashes: Painted
  • Fashion: "Vote" t-shirt, gray blazer and matching pants
  • Fashion Sewn On?: No
  • Body Type: Made to Move Petite
  • Doll Stand: Yes
  • Facial sculpt: Yara Shahidi (sculpted to likeness)
  • Package Dimensions (H/D/W): 13" x 3" x 9"


An in-the-box full-view of Yara Shahidi Barbie

Yara Shahidi Barbie wears a gray tweed-ish pants suit, white tee with VOTE printed on the front, and white high-top sneakers. 

Most of the VOTE T-shirt is visible in this photo.

An "I voted" sticker is attached to her backpack. The fabric and print of her pants suit are visible in this picture.

She holds a black backpack in one hand with an "I voted" sticker on the front. A ballot is held in the other hand.

Close-up of the 2020 ballot


On one side panel, VOTE is repeated at the top with SHAHIDI printed in bold letters at the bottom.YARA, in bold letters, is written at the top of the other side along with VOTE repeated on the lower half. 

 The actress is pictured on the back of the box holding a megaphone.

On the back of the box, Shahidi is quoted, "This is our right, this is our duty, this is our chance to call the shots."

A brief bio of the actress on the back of the box is shown above and transcribed below. The back of the box also has a scannable register to vote barcode. 

Actress, model, and activist Yara Shahidi is a young woman who is using her exuberant voice to inspire change. Passionate about empowering her peers, Yara has used her stage to launch We Vote Next, which strives to help new voters learn about the impact of using their voice and their vote to shape the future. Yara Shahidi is honored as a Barbie "Shero," a woman who has broken boundaries to inspire the next generation. Girls need more role models like Yara, because imagining they can be anything is just the beginning. Actually seeing that they can makes all the difference.

As indicated on the back of the box, the doll is fully posable. As of this time, the doll is available at Barbie.Mattel here and also on Amazon here.

With voting soon concluding for the 2020 U.S. presidential election, I urge you to utilize your voice to vote for the best candidate who can effectively run this country, who cares about all Americans. If you have not yet voted and are undecided, I hope you will be able to decide appropriately and vote your decision between now and November 3rd.

dbg


There are countless items to collect and write about. Black dolls chose me.
__________

Thank you for reading. To contact me, please use the contact form on the right of the home page, which is visible in "web view." A link to web viewing should be visible at the bottom of this page.

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Saturday, October 24, 2020

Mini's Found on Zulily

These three American Girl Mini dolls were found on Zulily.


These American Girl Mini dolls are currently on Zulily, but the campaign ends soon. I ordered them in September.

As illustrated in this photo, their complexions vary.


Described as Smart Girls, they are 6-1/2 inch all-vinyl dolls. Two of my dolls use the C├ęcile Rey head sculpt with different complexions and hairstyles. The other uses the Nanea sculpt. 

Their graphic T-shirts are better visible in this close-up.


Dressed identically, their white T-shirts read "Stay True to the Real You." These words are written on a white star and surrounded by four smaller stars. They wear denim Capri pants and turquoise flat slippers that have a molded bow at the toe.

With the deepest complexion of the three, this doll has straight brown hair styled in two ponytails. View her on Zulily here.

This medium complexioned-girl has brown rooted hair styled in a side ponytail with curly ends. View her on Zulily here.

The Nanea sculpted girl has the lightest complexion of the three. Her darker brunette hair is styled in a low ponytail with straight ends. View her on Zulily here.

Priced $12.99 each, they are available on Zulily. Either one or all are perfect for larger dolls to hold. They also make great gifts. 

dbg


There are countless items to collect and write about. Black dolls chose me.
__________

Thank you for reading. To contact me, please use the contact form on the right of the home page, which is visible in "web view." A link to web viewing should be visible at the bottom of this page.

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Monday, October 19, 2020

Hannah's Pinafore and Pockets

I used a 12 x 12 square of white felt to make my doll's pinafore.

Another Hannah by Nancy Revoir Dezotell was sold on eBay after I purchased my doll. The doll in the subsequent auction wore a white pinafore and held a stalk of corn. I was not concerned about my doll not having corn stalks because she holds a doll and that would be my preference. I did, however, want her to have a white pinafore. So, I made one for her.

As illustrated in the first image, I used a 12 x 12 square of white felt to make my doll's pinafore. 


I folded the felt square in half and measured and cut it down to the desired width and length.

After measuring the length and width of Hannah's red dress, I folded the felt and cut it to the desired width and length. 

After trimming off excess felt, a neck hole was made.

With the felt still folded, I cut a half-circle in the center of the folded top that was too small to accommodate Hannah's head.

The trial pinafore.

The neck area was too small for Hannah's head; so for the trial pinafore shown here, I cut a slit down the back. After doing this, I decided just a small slit would make the neck area large enough to accommodate Hannah's head. 

I remade the pinafore and made it wider than the trial. 

To open the neck of the second pinafore, I cut a small slit in the back center of the opening.


The side slits are held together with ribbon ties, one on each side.

I made slits on the sides underneath the elbow area and threaded a white ribbon through the slits to tie the pinafore in place. Not shown, to keep the ribbon ends from fraying, I applied clear fingernail polish.

Looking pleased, Hannah posed with her new white pinafore.

I thought about adding red rick-rack or buttons, but that would make it too obviously different from the original pinafore. After a week or so, I decided to use felt from the trial pinafore to add pockets to Hannah's pinafore.

The lower back sides of the original pinafore were cut off and glued to Hannah's second pinafore.

Close-up of Hannah's pinafore with pockets attached.

I traced the back side and bottom edges of the cut-out felt pockets with lines of Aleene's Clear Gel Tacky Glue and pressed these onto the bottom of the pinafore, as illustrated above. I kept the top edge open in case Hannah wants to put something in her pockets. 

It appears her slightly crooked smile became wider after she saw her new pockets.


The doll wearing the original pinafore is shown with my doll in before-and-after pinafore photos.

The pinafore nicely complements Hannah's red dress. 

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There are countless items to collect and write about. Black dolls chose me.
__________

Thank you for reading. To contact me, please use the contact form on the right of the home page, which is visible in "web view." A link to web viewing should be visible at the bottom of this page.

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Friday, October 16, 2020

Tribute to Dianna Effner


Sleeping peacefully, this porcelain doll was made from a Dianna Effner mold by Donna Flint in 1998.


Dianna Effner was well known in the doll community as an artist who created dolls that captured the essence of childhood from babies to young girls and boys. In addition to creating and selling her dolls, she also sculpted dolls for others. Her doll molds have also been used by independent doll artists. When the news appeared on my Facebook timeline on Thursday, 10/15/2020, that she passed a day prior, I looked through my doll photo archives and created a Dianna Effner dolls album. Photos from that album are shared in this tribute post to the artist.

Seen in the first image above, I named this doll Precious. The mold is called "Sleepy Head" ©1996 from Effner's Expression collection. The doll was made in 1998 at my request and is the first African American doll made by the artist, Donna Flint. This doll is also my first Dianna Effner sculpt.

The "Angela" sculpt by Effner was used for this porcelain baby made in 1998 by Donna Flint.

Monday's Child Series

Monday's Child Daria was sculpted by Dianna Effner in 2008 for Boneka Puppenmoden GmbH.  This German manufacturer is well known for its fine doll fashions and accessories. Daria is a 10-inch all-vinyl doll.

Ashton Drake

Dianna Effner has sculpted several dolls for Ashton Drake. The one I own is shown next.

Released in 2010, Malya is a 6-1/2-inch resin doll from the Ashton Drake "Hands Around the World" series. She represents Kenya and holds her rag doll.

Maru and Friends

Effner sculpted most of the dolls for the Maru and Friends doll line. My Maru and Friends dolls include Tanya, a special-edition Raven, Halle Mini Pal, and two versions of Raven Mini Pal. These dolls are shown next.

Tanya by Maru and Friends has readily recognizable Effner-doll facial features.

In this full-length view of Tanya, her original turquoise sweater fashion and black boots are fully visible. Tanya is an all-vinyl 20-inch doll.

Tanya has enjoyed being redressed on a few occasions; some of her redresses are illustrated next.

Tanya wears a Karito Kids fashion and shoes. She holds a doll by Madame Alexander.

Tanya is dressed for the holidays in another Karito Kids fashion.

She looks ready for fall in this dress made for 18-inch dolls. It is worn with the tights and shoes from the Karito Kids holiday fashion shown immediately above.


Maru and Friends Raven uses the same Effner sculpt as Tanya. Her deeper complexion is complemented by her hazel eyes. Raven was chosen as the 2017 WLBDA club doll. She arrived wearing the "Spring is in the Air" Maru and Friends Fashion.

The 2017 WLBDA Raven wears a dress made by Rachel McCullough Sherrod. Rachel was commissioned to make identical dresses for our 2017 club doll as well as identical cloth dolls for our dolls.

Raven is shown holding her cloth doll made by Rachel McCullough Sherrod. The cloth doll's name is Ruby Zee; she wears a dress made of the same fabric as Raven's dress.

Maru and Friends Mini Pals

Mini Pals are all-vinyl 13 inch-dolls sculpted by Effner for Maru and Friends.

Halle Mini Pal, sculpted by Dianna Effner for Maru and Friends is the company's first dark-skinned Mini Pal.

Raven Mini Pal Special Holiday Edition by Maru and Friends strikes a cute pose.

Another club doll exclusive, this is the 2017 WLBDA Holiday Limited Edition Raven Mini Pal. This doll was dressed for my doll group by Maru and Friends.

Phyn & Aero/Nancy Ann Storybook Dolls (NASBD)

Effner began sculpting Nancy Ann Storybook dolls after the company was sold in 2003 by Albert Bourla to sisters, Claudette Buehler and Darlene Budd. Effner's NASBD sculpts continued in use after the company was acquired by Robert Tonner's company, Phyn & Aero. The final doll in this tribute to Dianna Effner is my one and only Phyn & Aero/Effner/NASBD.

Flower Power, a Nancy Ann Storybook Doll, was the souvenir doll for Dollology club's annual May Day Luncheon which was held on May 11, 2019.

Sculpted by Dianna Effner for Nancy Ann Storybook/Phyn & Aero, Flower Power is full-body porcelain and stands 6 inches tall.  She has black painted eyes and brown wigged hair. Her "flower power" outfit is reminiscent of the luncheon's 1970s theme.

Dianna Effner's doll creativity, as illustrated here, will be missed by those who loved her and her dolls. Her official obituary can be read here.

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There are countless items to collect and write about. Black dolls chose me.
__________

Thank you for reading. To contact me, please use the contact form on the right of the home page, which is visible in "web view." A link to web viewing should be visible at the bottom of this page.

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Monday, October 12, 2020

Brown and Black Clonette Dolls and a Gift from Israel

The six colorful dolls shown above are Clonette dolls or baby DeiDei (day-day) dolls.

In July 2017, I purchased the six Clonette (Baby DeiDei) dolls shown above. A brown and/or black Clonette doll had been on my radar ever since that purchase. 

Recently, I communicated on Instagram with an artist from Israel who crafts ceramic figures that are inspired by Clonettes and other vintage dolls. She shared pictures of her creations and we discussed her style, which I will describe later in this post. During our communication, I shared that I wanted brown and black Clonettes after which she provided a link to Clonette Dolls' website. I was familiar with this England-based site and had considered purchasing from them before. The shipping from England was a deterrent. Now, over three years later, I decided to bite the bullet and order the two desired colors since the price of each Clonette was reasonable. Clonette Dolls has an Etsy site and a website. I ordered from their Etsy store because the total price of the dolls plus shipping was slightly less.

My brown and black Clonette Dolls arrived wearing a Clonette Dolls tag around their necks.

The dolls arrived in good order. I was surprised at their height of 9-1/2 inches. They are a full inch and a half taller than the original six as illustrated next. 


The yellow Clonette, purchased from Treehouse Kid and Craft, is 8 inches tall while the brown and black Clonettes are 9-1/2 inches tall.

Like the smaller version, the brown and black dolls are constructed of thin, molded plastic with molded-on clothing, socks, and shoes. They each hold a rabbit with their right arm and each makes a squeaking sound when pressed.

As quoted in my original post on Clonette Dolls, "These sweet plastic dollies, known as Clonette dolls, or baby DeiDei dolls, are a significant part of African history and have become quite the collector's item! Modeled after colorful traditional wooden and grass dolls, these little girls were the first industrially produced doll in Africa and have been made from recycled plastics in Ghana since the 1950's. Often given as a gift to expectant mothers, Clonette Dolls are said to be a totem of good luck and act as a guardian for babies and children. Their retro look and pop art colors have made them popular the world over. When squeezed, baby DeiDei makes a squeaking sound, adding yet another element of charm to this already-fascinating doll." [https://treehousekidandcraft.com/products/deidei-doll?variant=14709626116] Read more about the history of these dolls and my independent research at the related link, Baby DeiDei Clonette x 6, below.

The above description of Clonette dolls does not provide the original use of these now commerically-produced Ghanaian-derived dolls. There is a high incidence of twin births among Yoruba women with the unfortunate death often of one twin. Clonettes have been used as an ere ibeji to memorialize a  deceased twin. Original ere ibeji were male or female figures carved of wood or made of glass. The Yoruba women would care for the figure as though it were a real baby. Commercially-produced Clonettes have also been used for this purpose.

All my Clonette dolls posed together in this photograph.


Fugi Naim
This is a colorful display of black ceramic figures by ceramic artist, Fugi Naim.

Ceramic artist, Fugi Naim, resides in Israel where she makes mostly ceramic dolls in her studio. She shared that she makes her figures with "great love" and deliberately chooses to use the colors for her black figures "since they are identified or correspond with other works done in the past." Made with positive intent, her motive is to continue the discussion with her reinterpretations of vintage dolls. 

As a result of my online conversion with the artist, she graciously sent one of her ceramic vintage doll creations to me. 


This 8-1/2-inch mauve-cheeked ceramic girl by Fugi Naim has two sculpted Afro puffs, mauve eyeshadow and lip color.


She is a modern interpretation of Clonette dolls.

Fugi Naim was inspired by Clonette dolls to create this sweet approximately 8-1/2-inch ceramic figure. Like Clonettes, the clothing is molded on and the figure cradles a white rabbit.
This is a close-up image of the white rabbit and the figure's colorful dress, socks, and shoes.


Unlike Clonette dolls, Fugi Naim's figure has colorful facial accents and brightly colored clothes. The bodice of this particular one's dress is painted red and white polka dot. The base color of the skirt is white with red and black diagonal lines and inverted V-shapes that create a pattern throughout. Red and white striped painted-on stockings and shiny gold metallic shoes complete the painted attire. The figure stands on a white ceramic base. The bottom of the base is padded with a protective shimmery gray felt round.

The following additional photos further illustrate Fugi Naim's Clonette interpretation.

The figure is illustrated from a full-length partial side-angled view.

In this close-up partial side angle, the sculpted Afro puff is better illustrated.

The figure is signed on the back "Fugi Naim" with a "pulsating" heart shape drawn underneath.



The black and brown Clonettes pose with the Fugi Naim-interpreted figure.

Thanks to Fugi Naim's suggestion, I have now crossed brown and black Clonettes off my short want list and I own one of her beautiful Clonette interpretations that arrived with a Jerusalem, Israel postmark.

Thank you, Fugi Naim, for enhancing my collection with your art.
  

Related Links

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There are countless items to collect and write about. Black dolls chose me.
__________

Thank you for reading. To contact me, please use the contact form on the right of the home page, which is visible in "web view." A link to web viewing should be visible at the bottom of this page.

Check out what I am selling here
Check out my eBay listings here.
Please follow my sister blog Ebony-Essence of Dolls in Black.
Donate here to support this blog. Thank you!