Friday, 25 April 2014

From the Vaults: A new series, starting with Madeline Hatter!

So, even though I definitely do buy a lot of dolls, and often have something new to talk about, there are times when I don't. Recently, I've decided to take a step back and slow down on buying new dolls and take advantage of it being a bit of a slower time in terms of releases and regroup and get myself ready for all the new, exciting things that are coming down the pike from both Monster High and Ever After High!

In this downtime, I've decided I'm going to go through my collection and do reviews of some of my other dolls that I bought before I started blogging. I'm going to call this series From the Vaults, and I think it's going to be a lot of fun to take a deeper look at some dolls I may have had for years! These reviews may be a bit different, because I won't have the original packaging anymore, and I may have even played around with redressing the dolls in question, so you'll get a different look at them than just being straight out of the box. Plus, it gives me more opportunity to practice taking photos, which will be especially fun as the weather gets better and I can take some outside.

Over on my tumblr I asked for suggestions of dolls to feature in this series, and one of the suggestions was Madeline Hatter, so I've decided to start with her. She's the only Ever After High doll I have that I haven't reviewed yet, so it seemed like a good place to start! And since I've asked for opinions over there, I want to ask my readers over here as well. Have a look through my current collection, and let me know in the comments who you'd like to see my thoughts on!

Now that we've gotten that out of the way, let's jump in and have a good look at Madeline Hatter, the first Ever After High doll to join my collection, but the last to be reviewed!

Join Maddie on her way down the rabbit hole!

I don't have Maddie's box anymore, but if you've seen my other Ever After High reviews, you should be pretty familiar with the style! Maddie was the first EAH doll I bought, and I don't remember when exactly I bought her, but it was several months ago now. She was my gateway drug into the world of Ever After High! When I bought her, I still wasn't sure about their round faces, but Alice in Wonderland is one of my favourite stories ever. I even dressed as Alice in kindergarten for Fairytale Day, and I remember explaining to other kids that yes, Alice in Wonderland IS a fairytale!

And well, Maddie is just so darling, it was hard not to fall in love with her! The combination of colours in her outfit is just so gorgeous to me, and that hair! I think she was a good first choice!

Okay, now let's get into the review! On her head, she's wearing a cute little tea cup hat, which is on a headband so it is easily removable and replaceable. This is a bonus! Her face is very open and sweet, and her eyes are HUGE! Her eyeshadow and lips are both done in shades of pink and purple, which plays nicely off of her bright blue eyes. She has a lightly tanned skin tone, darker than Raven Queen, but lighter than Briar. It's worth mentioning at this point that there is a new variant of this Maddie floating around with slightly different facial screening, as well as other differences. It appears to be the difference between a doll made in Indonesia (as this one is) and a doll made in China (as the new ones are). The difference is definitely noticeable, and we're starting to see a lot of these variants popping up with these dolls now.

Her earrings are wee little teaspoons!

And a close-up of the tea cup hat. I like the touch of the little gold teabag hanging over the edge of the cup.

Her necklace is translucent blue molded gems, with a gold painted bow off to one side.

Her dress is super, super cute! The bodice is made of a sparkly silver fabric, and has purple mesh sleeves and a sweetheart neckline. There's a big blue bow tied around her waist.

Her skirt is actually made up of three separate layers. The top layer is purple with a gold scrolling pattern and gold trim. Under that is a layer made up of blue and white stripes, and finally a layer of black tulle covered in gold sparkles. All together it makes for a very full and fancy look! Also, Maddie is a shorter doll than the standard EAH doll like Apple or Raven. In EAH, this height is taken from the upper legs so they can still exchange all their clothing and shoes, unlike the different body types in MH. I actually like that the Monster High bodies (both short and tall) are really different from the standard because it's so rare to have different body types within a doll line, but I do understand the frustration at not being able to swap clothes, so I see why Mattel made the decision to just change the legs as opposed to the torso this time. I really love how cute and small Maddie is!

Maddie's hands are blue with white polka dots, meant to emulate gloves. This looks really cute with this outfit, but it really limits the options for redressing. On her wrists, she has white cuffs meant to be like the lacy cuffs of the gloves. I like these when her arms are positioned pointing down, but they have the tendency to slide up her arms in any other position. She's also wearing a large purple ring shaped like an elaborately set jewel.

The tights the EAH Signature dolls wear are one of my favourite things about the line. Doll tights are just extra delightful for some reason! Maddie's are white with blue polka dots.

Her shoes are predictably awesome! They're white with gold designs on the toe box, and gold soles and heels. The heels are pretty large, dramatic scrolls and definitely evoke teacups and their little handles without being exact representations.

Her hair is really, really lovely, and one of the things that drew me to her most! The majority of it is a soft, mint green, but she has streaks of purple around her hairline. Her hair is styled into soft ringlets, and I got lucky that even right out of the box, Maddie had good hair! There isn't a lot of product in the curls so they aren't crunchy, and the curls are nicely formed.

Finally, Maddie's purse! It's a cute little gold teapot with blue stripes, and a white lid. The lid comes off, but that's not really a good thing in this case. The lid falls off so easily, and I can see it getting lost. Heck, I dropped it today while taking these photos and thought it was gone forever and I'm a grown-up!

It's hard to get it on and off over her gloves. The easiest way is to pull her hand off, take off the wrist cuff, put the purse on and then put the cuff and hand back on. If you try to shove it on around the cuff, you'll knock the lid off!

I decided to see if I could capture Maddie's fun-loving (and just a little bit mad!) personality in a few photos. Taking these pictures, I found myself wishing her face had a bit more of that energy to it, but I still think she photographs really prettily.

Tea, anyone?

I tried so hard to make it look like she was pouring tea into her hat, but her arms just aren't long enough. Sigh.

Maddie down the rabbit hole! I'm really happy with how these photos turned out though. :)

This makes me want the upcoming Hat-Tastic Tea Party play set, because I was really wishing I had little tea cups and a table to arrange a tea party for Maddie! It's not a party if you're all alone.

And more pictures, because you can never have too many pictures!

And there she is, Miss Madeline Hatter! She's still one of my favourites of the Ever After High line, and I'm glad I got her first. Even more so now that I've read the two EAH books that are available. If you're at all interested in this line of dolls, it really is worth giving them a read! They expand a lot of the characters, and they're pretty well-written for the age group they're directed it. Highly recommended!

I hope you liked this look at Maddie, and remember to leave me your suggestions for which dolls should come From the Vaults next!

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