Remember the post about the little plastic princess? While I was looking into plastic and vinyl dolls I found I am not as immune to the charms of non-BJD as I thought I was. Reading other blogger’s blogs introduced me to a couple of dolls I hadn’t really noticed before. And if you are in the BJD hobby and follow the flickr or instagram accounts of doll customizers, you come across other dolls like Blythe, Monster High or Tonner dolls frequently. I like to look at them, but they never really tempted me enough to buy one, even though I thought repainting them might be interesting.
But these are strange times, and since I can’t work as usual at the moment, I have a bit more time – and a need to treat myself to something new to cheer me up. I am in the mood to try something different, and bought some vinyl and plastic dolls that interest me from the customizer’s point of view.
And that’s why I am adding a little corner for non-BJD dolls to this blog. I hope you don’t mind the occasional non-BJD post. I am waiting for a Kurhn, a Xinyi, a Mengfan, a blank Kissmela and a couple of bodies. All of these are 1/6 fashion dolls and have painted eyes.
The first ones to arrive are a couple of Paola Reina las amigas dolls. Paola Reina is a Spanish doll artist. And I have to admit that I mistook the las amigas for BJD for years. I first saw customized versions of this doll’s face on a flickr with a lot of Kaye Wiggs and Youpla dolls, so I just assumed she was one of those cute childlike BJD I like to look at but am not tempted to buy.
It was just by accident that I realized my mistake. The Paola Reina las amigas are vinyl dolls, and since they are European, you can get them at every toy store or Amazon over here. They arrive within a couple of days after ordering despite the shipping situation and are very, very affordable. Basic dolls without clothes are just about 20$, less than what you can spend on a pair of shoes or a wig for BJD.
There’s something about them that makes them stand out. They come with a very natural basic factory face, a bit of blush on the lips and cheeks, the occasional freckles, that’s all. But they sure have the potential to be addictive. I started with one (Carla from the pyjama series), but having her here I fell victim to her charms and bought a couple more. Ooops.
Paola Reina las amigas come in two basic face sculpt versions and a variety of hair colors. The larger dolls are 32cm tall, and the mini version is about 21cm. They have an adorable chubby-cheeked face and a little pouty mouth with a lot of sculpted detail- and character. That’s probably what makes them stand out from other vinyl dolls. They actually look a lot more like real little girls than the usual stereotype smooth vinyl doll faces.
They have tightly rooted, soft hair in a variety of lovely colors and eye lashes in a matching color. They smell of vanilla, which is quite a nice change if you are used to new resin smell, but I guess having a couple of them close by will give me a headache. Their lack of flexibility makes you appreciate the range of possible poses BJD offer even more, though. They can just turn their heads and move their legs and arms up and down, that’s about it. There are some jointed bodies for them on the market, one is offered by icukla and one is called Ellys action body. I might get an Ellys action body, they have a couple of joints more than the icukla.
And finding shoes for them is really easy, that’s nice for a change, too. They can wear Welliewisher, Corolle or Mellchan shoes, and the Helen Kish 14″ flats I already had for the JID girls fit quite nicely as well, as you can see in the pictures.
These three are Carla, Cristi and Carol, and I think they’ll keep their names. The pictures show their factory faces, the dresses are simple dresses I made for them. Carla and Carol are wearing the Kish14 flats from Boneka, Cristi doesn’t have shoes yet. Their eyes are changeable, but their original acrylic eyes have to be poked out of their sockets for that. I will customize them, and maybe I’ll spend a bit on eyes for them, once I have figured out if I want to keep all of them or customize and sell them. I think they already are adorable as they come, but they could use a bit of blush around the eyes and nose. I think too much paint would make them look less fresh and natural, so whatever I do it will be subtle.