Sunday, November 6, 2016

Gleanings from the Arizona State Fair

Look what Julianne Hoof won at the Arizona State Fair! It's a younger sister!

Amazing what you can get by tossing the ball through the ring!
Thanks to the power of Pokémon GO, stuffed pikachu were everywhere, toted like the prizes of some bizarre hunting season.

Tie it to the front bumper to haul it home. It'll feed us all winter.
The dollhouse division of the domestic arts competition either vanished or got no entries, and miniature floral arranging appears to be long gone, so for 2016 state fair delights, we're going to have to settle for seeing what miniatures I bought at the hucksters' stalls and doing a more detailed unveiling of Julianne's younger sis.

Wednesday, October 12, 2016

Tuesday Morning Quarterbacking

Is Tuesday Morning in dire straits? The question came up in the comments related to Hey It's Muff's disappointing visit, and now Miss Hanzo wants to know, too. Fortunately, her financial advisor Dena has been reading the company's August financial reports and earnings call transcript, so Miss Hanzo has come to Dena's office to hear what's what.

Dena likes to keep her office minimalist.
Disclaimer: This post covers only issues of interest to fashion doll collectors and should not be construed to be investment advice.

Is Tuesday Morning on the road to nowhere?
Not right now. After some bad years, the company has been profitable for the past two fiscal years and has no debt on its balance sheet. One concern is that it's spending more cash on capex (building, repairing, buying equipment) than it generates from its stores, but it looks like a chunk of this was related to the new distribution center in Phoenix, which is completed. 

But my favorite store has vanished, Dena!
So why has my nearest store disappeared?

Saturday, September 24, 2016

Another Day, Another Quest for Smaller Monster High People

My dismay over grocery shopping means I tend to reward myself with a trip down the toy aisle, which is why I have five (?) Sparkle Girlz Minis, five miniature My Little Ponies, the shy forest creature from a couple weeks ago, and... articulated miniature Monster High persons made by Mega Bloks.
Where the Kroger toy aisle is concerned, this was not my first rodeo.
On a prior trip, I'd picked up Cleo de Nile and Draculaura because I believed the MH persons were being clearanced at Ghetto!Kroger. They fit nicely with the Avon miniatures my parents sent; I declared they'd have a house someday; I went back to working on the half-scale hotel.

The girls have brought their living room suite outdoors to enjoy the fall weather.
But no!

Wednesday, September 7, 2016

Meet Evi LOVE, the clone who isn't quite a clone

Some of the younger folks gather excitedly to see who came home in a box after my Toys R Us visit last week.

It's a motley crew. L-R: Madame Alexander travel doll Italy, Sparkle Girlz Mini,
Chinese clone of SGM, and Stacie's friend Miranda.
I found this gal over in some random aisle where the Shopkins and My Little Ponies lurk, but she sure looks like a clone of a Sparkle Girlz Mini... only some, including this bike rider, have articulated knees! This pack cost $6.99.

Comes in white and ambiguous brown!
Let's unbox her!

Saturday, September 3, 2016

Go Ahead and Fake Yourself

Who is this shy forest creature who delicately turns her head away from the crud on the electric plug?

Summon birds to clean this kitchen? I do not THNK so.
This is Featherly, protector of birds, a forest pixie from the Dragon Games line of Ever After High. When Featherly and her fellow unarticulated pixies, Harelow and Deerla, appeared in stores last year, my first thought was "Mattel's making its own fakies!"

In the $8-$12 range, this wasn't a compelling value proposition, but clearanced at $5 at Fry's, on a day when I was feeling particularly cranky... it seemed like the moment to compare a forest pixie to a real fakie. 
Cool belt, Featherly. Clare's or Forever 21?
Read on to see how Featherly compares to Nile, the Gothic Tales clone of Monster High Frankie Stein, a doll that goes for about $3 at Dollar General (introduced here, got her current dress here).

Sunday, August 28, 2016

I go to Target and Walmart and I see things

Let's start with the doll I found most mysterious. She appears to be articulated at wrists, elbows, and knees, and she looks like she just arrived from an Asian cartoon.

Asking "do you know who I am?" does me no good at chi-chi restaurants.
Meet Marinette, who is purportedly 10 inches tall, and who hails from ZAG Heroez Miraculous, a Nickelodeon series featuring female superheroes (description). The official site promises us that Marinette is a sweet, helpful, mildly impulsive person who transforms into the superhero Ladybug, a sweet, helpful, mildly impulsive person who really likes polka dots.

She's not the only interesting doll I saw. For instance, there's...

Thursday, August 18, 2016

This is what a failed product launch looks like

Meet Ismena, who cost $4.27 at Walgreen's. I think New Bratz may have flopped big time.

The rain SERIOUSLY turned that dry wash into a river in 5.6 minutes.
The backstory is that I needed ibuprofen for my monsoon-related headaches, and I figured I'd enjoy the newish tram-line extension by visiting the Walgreen's up at Northern (several stops beyond the old end of the line). In the toy aisle, behold! New Bratz marked down to $4.27. There was a Raya, but I'd already bought her for under $10 in January (she's the tanned blonde in the polka-dot skirt), and then I dug a bit and... there's Yasmin!

And, unlike many of the New Bratz, she doesn't look terrified, only mildly wary.