Monday, 31 August 2015

Freak Du Chic Toralei Stripe

A few weeks ago, Toys R Us had the Freak du Chic dolls on sale for $22.47, down from $29.99. Of course, my Toys R Us didn't have any when I went in, so after getting a price adjustment for the Honey I'd purchased just a few days prior, I asked about getting a rain check. They told me the dolls were available online, but the catch was I'd have to get all three in order to get free shipping...Long story short, a few days later, a huge box from Toys R Us arrived on my doorstep containing Freak du Chic Toralei, Frankie and Jinafire! Luckily, all looked to be in pretty good shape and had good faces, because that is always a concern when ordering Monster High dolls online. 

I decided to review Toralei first, because I think she's my favourite of the ones I got in that order, although it's honestly really hard to choose. Pulling them all out of the box one after another was pretty exciting, I've never gotten so many dolls in the mail before! I will admit to having a bit of a freak out after I'd ordered them, because even on sale it was more money that I like to spend on dolls in one go...but I don't regret it now that I have them, and I am glad I got them on sale!

Let's just get right into it, shall we?

Toralei's box is just like Honey's, and her art is just as gorgeous. I love the swooping red anc black curtains across the top and sides of the front of the box. I don't think I mentioned that on Honey's review, but I love how it makes it look like the dolls inside are really performing. On the back of the box we can also see a little silhouette of a tightrope walker. I love this little touch to the Freak du Chic line; it's small, but I think the silhouette's on all the boxes are a cute way to tie the line together and also to continue the circus theme,

And here she is! She comes with a small poster, just like Honey, as well as a stand but no brush.

This art continues to be amazing! Also, what I really love about Toralei's art is that she got her last name back! I feel like we haven't seen her last name on her dolls in a really long time, so I'm glad to see her get full billing on this poster!

Her major accessory is this adorable umbrella. The handle is twisted and black with feathers dangling from the bottom. There's also a rectangular handle on the bottom which allows Toralei to actually hold her umbrella! She can hold it surprisingly well in a lot of positions actually, which we'll look at more in a bit!

The top of the umbrella is red, and is more just the frame of an umbrella rather than one that would actually protect you from any kind of weather. Tightrope walkers often used umbrellas as a balancing tool, so it doesn't really need to be functional as an umbrella. Also, you may have noticed by now that the umbrella has a cat face and ears! I particularly like the ears, I think they're adorable!

I think one of the reasons I love this Toralei so much is because of her colour combination. Purple, orange and red are some of my favourite colours, and I always love them together even though maybe they don't technically "go". Purple is a new addition to Toralei's colour scheme, and I really think it looks lovely against her orange skin, and I hope we see it again!

In her hair, she's wearing a black headband featuring an umbrella surrounded by feathers. There's a good amount of detail on this piece, but it's pretty hard to see unless you get up quite close because of the solid black colour. I don't really know how exactly I would paint this to make the details stand out more, but I do think a bit of paint would go a long way. I didn't even realize it was an umbrella right away, until I turned it letting the light hit the details. Even just a bit of metallic gunmetal paint dry brushed over the details would probably bring them out enough but still keep the piece fairly simple.

Now, her hair. I really love her hair! This picture I posted on Instagram might help explain why :P

Toralei's hair is different from her usual look for a couple of reasons. One is that it is much longer and fuller than usual. Toralei's signature look is a sleek bob, but even in dolls where she's had long hair before (Power Ghouls and Coffin Bean) it's always been straight, so this full, wavy style is new. Also, her hair is usually a mix of shades of orange, but this is straight up red. It's a lovely rich colour, and I love the purple and black streaks in the front. Out of the box her hair was a bit sticky, but a quick wash and brush and it's quite nice hair! Soft, nice to brush...just generally good hair. It doesn't have a lot of style to it, but sometimes I don't mind that, because I do like to brush my dolls hair from time to time!

I always fine Toralei's face really beautiful, with her big green eyes and her full lips, but this is an especially lovely face-up. The makeup on her upper lids is kind of a soft, translucent red, and underneath, her eye is rimmed in purple. Her right eye is maybe slightly larger than her left, but I find this kind of "wonk" is much more noticeable in photos than it is in person. I didn't even notice it until I took these photos!

Her outfit is a fairly simple one piece dress, but the fabric gives it a lot of interest. Like Honey, Toralei's dress is accented with black and white striped tulle, a detail we'll see repeated throughout this line. Toralei's is on her straps, giving the illusion of full sleeves, as well as an underskirt. The pattern on Toralei's dress is made up of stripes, checkerboards and slashes. It was pointed out to me on my review of Honey that because of the randomness of the pattern her dress is made of, different dresses can look very different in terms of colour, so I'm interested to know if that's the case with Toralei (or the other dolls in this line) as well. I always find that interesting and fun, like the way the fabric was made for Invisibilly's hoodie, there were so many variations out there!

Toralei's shoes are, as expected, pretty darn cool. They're made in a really interesting colour; it's a pinky-purple with a shimmer to it that looks pink and almost blue if you turn the shoes under the light. They have very high platforms and the heels are wheels, as if Toralei was not simply going to walk on the tightrope, but in fact skate on it! On the toes, there are large cat faces, and the rest of the shoe wraps up her legs in a way that looks like string or yarn, complete with a ball of yarn on the back, just above her ankle. I really love all the details on these shoes, as well as the colour. They're just eye-catching and fun!

As you can see from this picture, Toralei has the clawed hand mold. All of the other Toralei's that I personally have use the flat hand mold, so I like finally having one with this variety. It also makes it a heck of a lot easier for her to hold things, including her umbrella! However...

While taking the photos for this review, I noticed something about her right wrist. It doesn't actually bend at all! It's hard to see in this picture, and honestly it's hard to even seen in person, but it's noticeable in the complete lack of motion in the joint. The section in the blue square is how it should look, with the mobile piece of the join free from obstruction, but srrounded by red, you can see what's preventing the joint from moving. The joint is completely covered by plastic, and it's not the kind I can pick at and pull away. It's also the same on the palm side of the hand. I would probably have to use a craft knife to cut away the extra plastic, but the thought of that makes me a bit nervous, because I don't want to damage the hand at all. I did contact Mattel, but they actually don't have any extra hands for Toralei to send, so I'm just going to keep her as is. In the grand scheme of things it's not really that big of a deal, but it is always frustrating to get a doll that just isn't quite right.

As you can see, it doesn't prevent her from holding her umbrella at all, and actually, it might help a bit because her hand doesn't flop over. Regardless of any joint issues, this Toralei is simply stunning! The colours are so striking, and she's just so much fun!

Is this my favourite Toralei ever? It honestly might be...I have the original basic Toralei, which I bought secondhand mostly because she was a really good deal, and the Power Ghouls Toralei that I bought because I loved the whole line. I have Freaky Field Trip Toralei, who was a gift, and while I do love her, this is the first Toralei that I feel like I NEEDED to own, just because she is so beautiful! Yes, I bought her because I love the line in general of course, but even on her own, she is a truly stunning doll.

What do you think of Freak du Chic Toralei? Is she going to tightrope walk her way into your collection, or will you be passing on her? I can't wait to review the rest of this line for you guys, because really, it's kind of all winners!

Also, I'll be going to FanExpo again this year, and that's coming up this weekend! We're just going for one day, but I'm hoping to see a lot of fun stuff, and maybe share some cosplay photos here again with you guys, plus any cool toys I find! So, until next time, thanks for reading!


  1. I would love Toralei and Frankie from this line even though I don't usually like these characters!

    1. Frankie's doll is really cool, tbh. I think I'm going to do Jinafire next, but I had a lot of fun photographing Frankie!

  2. Nice review! She is totally gorgeous with those big green eyes. Have you seen the promo photos of the new line of Scarier Reef dolls that are coming out? The Torelei looks just as gorgeous so I can wait to see her! I wish I had the original one as well and hope to get her on Ebay one of these days. I can't w a it to see your photos from Fanexpo. :)

    1. Yes, the Scarrier Reef Toralei looks great! I'm not super sure if I'm going to be getting that line as of now...but we'll see when they're actually out!

      I kind of failed at FanExpo and didn't take very many photos this year! But I will put up a post with what I did take!