Post by Wickfield on Sept 23, 2010 11:03:03 GMT -5
Okay, update to say that I recently acquired a PM version of this on Ebay. Wow, big difference! The fabric in the PM version is very thick, thicker than most of Josefina's camisas (whereas my late Mattel version is quite thin, see above)! It's a better version but I think it's too big for my Mattel doll. Just thought I'd add this for information's sake.
Post by Wickfield on Sept 20, 2010 19:04:51 GMT -5
Here's an early Josefina I just received in a lot - she's fully PM, soft lashes, fat body, lack of body tag, the whole thing! She must be from between 97 and 99.
She shares the exact same face mold as my 2004 version - they have the same tiny-lettered PC neckmold. Apart from the usual PC/Mattel differences, though, I also noticed that PM Josefina has a slightly yellowish/olive skintone in comparison to Mattel but a pinker body fabric, that her eyebrows are angled differently and are actually thicker, and that her wig is different. My Mattel girl has a defective wig anyway that snags like mad, but PM Josefina has fewer strands of coarser hair, which doesn't tangle at ALL and which makes for a nicer braid. The part is also slightly different.
Last Edit: Nov 9, 2010 16:25:46 GMT -5 by Wickfield
Here's another item I've had since March of this year and have just now gotten around to reviewing here!
Josefina's table and chairs are made of real wood. As you can see in the picture, they are stained much the same warm honey color as our hardwood floors. I thought they were going to be much lighter than this and so was a bit surprised by their color, but no less pleased. They're scaled to Josefina's size, more like a child's table set than a real adult-sized one.
The furniture has a lovely "cornstalk" carving design, which looks like it could have been done with one chisel. The carving lends a simple elegant feel to the set!
Pic of the little panel that slides out to reveal that the table is hollow. I was surprised by how little you can fit in there - don't expect to store her dishes underneath! - but her silver platter and bizcochito cookie recipe slide in for safe keeping.
I don't yet have the dishes that accompany the table set - I will someday! - but for now I have it decorated with pieces from her Christmas and herb gathering sets. I'm not sure that having a chicken on the table is the best idea, though...
The shoes in this set aren't identical to Sam's Lawn Party shoes - as Princess Emily said, the heels on Rebecca's pair are different, and the toe is rounder and there is only one bow on each, rather than two as on Sam's pair.
I think I'd have to give these ribbons a B. I did get them for retail which I don't regret since I'm a completist when it comes to Josefina. As the others have said, 11" is really too short. You can see this in my picture below - especially with the thicker ribbons (red and orange) the bow comes out more stubby than flowing! You can only tie these in one bow around the end of Josefina's braid; if you wanted to do other hairstyles, though, you could maybe tie the ribbon around a ponytail holder.
Since no pictures like this have been posted, I thought I'd show the ribbons in comparison to some of Josefina's outfits. I do think it's a bonus that they match Josefina's wardrobe so well!
Teal matches Josefina's birthday skirt, orange coordinates with her summer dress, and yellow is very versatile, matching her Christmas, Fiesta, and summer dresses:
I don't have a comparison picture, but the red grosgrain ribbon matches all of Josefina's red pieces and I think the trim in her fiesta dress, also.
Last Edit: Nov 24, 2009 16:16:36 GMT -5 by Wickfield
I got just the hat yesterday from a board member - it's another one of those pieces I really wanted when it came out but never got until now! I wasn't really missing much, but it's still nice to have the hat that completes this outfit. Here's a picture:
It's made of thick plushy velvet which attracts dust like mad, lol. The velvet must have matched the velour pants on the first runs of the outfits, but my pants are cotton and I prefer the contrast in the two fabrics. The brim can be folded up or down and it fits the dolls head snugly. It would probably be a bit more stylish (they do still sell crush hats) w/o the fleece bows. But the bows are a nice detail, and I like the beads sewn in the center. The hat tends to make Amanda look kind of dorky but in a very cute way. Shall give it a B.
Last Edit: Oct 27, 2009 7:07:51 GMT -5 by Wickfield
Remember folks, AG actually sold GIRL CLOTHES just like this at the same time. And apparently they weren't abhorred, they sold, too, because they come up fairly frequently on Ebay and they sold at AG until 1998. Even if you look at covers of the old AG magazines you see stuff like this. It may not have been what the common girls were wearing but it was being worn in 1996-1998.
I fell in love with this outfit way back when it came out in 1998, but inexplicably never got it. UNTIL NOW! And it has promptly become one of my absolute favorite outfits for Amanda.
The blouse The blouse is made with a satin bodice and sheer gauzy sleeves woven with gold threads. It is a very elegant piece in clean bright white. The bodice is decorated with three gold beads stitched to look like buttons (although the neckline is a little odd as the hem is very narrow and plain). The sleeves are nice and blousy, similar to Josefina's camisas, and surprised me by snapping at the wrists. I bought my set used so the satin on the back was pretty beat up by the velcro which is very heavy and could snag anything, so it may not be the best for younger collectors. But for looks it gets an A.
The jumper - I like this piece because it looks nearly identical to some of the outfits I had at the target age in the late 90s. The velveteen is so THICK! It is plushy and soft and because of its weight it drapes beautifully. I really like the gold edging which dresses up the jumper and gives it a finished look. I had always been under the impression that the snoflakes had jewels for their centers but they are embroidered from gold and white thread. The pattern on mine is a bit odd because where the waistline is stitched it cuts off one of the snowflakes. :/ It's also nice that, though the outfit is formal and wintry, it doesn't scream holidays. A+
The headband - another quintessential 90s piece. This one is hard but flexible enough to get on the doll's head, and is covered in black woven nylon. It's decorated with individually-stitched beads that match the ones on the jumper and shoes. It's very cute on the doll's head although it doesn't sit quite right without going in the middle of her ears, not like a real headband. I'll give it A-
The tights - These are very similar to the tights that go to the Holiday Dress, but in black/gold instead of all gold. These are thicker than the usual tights but thinner than the similar gold tights; they seem to hold up pretty well. I like the jazzy sparkles and I would have adored these things at this age. They make the dress seem a bit appropriately younger. A
I don't have the shoes but they are just plain black patent flats, with two of the matching gold beads stitched on top. I have found that Nellie's Holiday shoes look really great with the set, and also the black velvet flats from the First Day outfit. I highly recommend this set!
Detail of the headband:
Showing the bead "buttons", embroidered snowflakes, and threaded sleeves:
And just a portrait of Amanda, lol:
Last Edit: Oct 12, 2010 10:13:21 GMT -5 by Wickfield
My cousin got a pair of these back in 2002, but her Mattel pair was not made of wire, nor was it thin like those shown here. Hers were made of sturdy, transparent tan plastic colored like tortoiseshell. I thought they were really great and wanted a pair of my own. A-
I got my sweet PM Asian Bitty, Jennifer, in early 1997. She was my first AG doll, period, and my mother picked her out because she looked the most like me when I was born (even though I'm not one bit Asian). She's absolutely darling, nice and squishy, with her skintone darker and more golden than blond Bitty. I love her soft babyish eyelashes and minimal facepaint!
I agree with the other reviewers in that her head paint does scuff fiercely but it's easy to color with marker or paint. (My doll's hair seems to be differently shaped than the Mattel dolls - a widows' peak, if you will - and it is very shiny.) She's also had some eye problems - they stick, and one has a rim of silver around the brown iris which doesn't seem to be silver eye, but rather some of the metal workings of the eye showing. Don't know if this is due to a problem with the doll or the care I gave it.
She came in the first version sleeper which has pilled over time, but it's been nearly 13 years and I didn't take particularly great care of it. The diaper was just a piece of flannel with a bit of serging around the edges and velcro to fasten.
I really need some better pictures but these will do for now.
Showing the scuffs on her head:
And the markings on her neck:
She's the only baby doll I was ever interested in. A
Last Edit: Oct 12, 2009 7:34:58 GMT -5 by Wickfield
It's about time I did the review for this set! I bought this as the Mattel "Christmas Accessories" set which included the lantern. (FWIW, mine is a very new version that came in the star box.)
The chicken and eggs - Here's where AG's scaling is very poor. This whole chicken, which in the book is a full-sized one and not a guinea, is smaller than Josefina's head! She looks very out-of-proportion if you pay attention and take her out of her cage! The chicken herself is actually very cute, with both painted-on feathers and two kinds of "real" feathers glued to her tail and wings. She fits easily inside of her cage. Her eggs are small too, but very darling. They are made from a clay-like material that has been spatter-painted. They are ridiculously small and they do roll out of her cage. B (for scale reasons)
The chicken cage - I didn't find the cage to be particularly cheap - it is made of real wood with a string handle. The string is tied on at the diagonal, and I can't tell if this is clever or annoying, though Josefina can hold it easily. I love the touch of "hay" glued to the inside of the cage! B+
The chiles - I can't tell if these are too small or not but they are very cute! Chiles are such an important part of Josefina's Christmas story and her books in general and are great for setting up scenes. These are made from red paper twisted around green string stems and Josefina can hold these, too. A
The lantern - I actually don't think this is as "crappy" as the other reveiwers have mentioned. It's not fantastic but not horrible, especially considering that it is included in a set with lots of other goodies. It is made from plain wood, stamped with a gorgeous Spanish design. I love the little candleholder inside! The leather straps are glued in knots (again, Josefina can hold this). The windows lower the effect a bit - they seem to be made from layers of plastic and mine are separating, plus the door of my lantern was warped so one of the windows is threatening to pop off. A- (I really like it, except for the windows).
In short, I think this set is worth its original price but wouldn't pay more for it!
Last Edit: Nov 24, 2009 16:27:49 GMT -5 by Wickfield
I just got the silver tray and five bizcochitos which someone sold me from a Josefina lot they received. I'm quite pleased with it, although everything seems a bit off-scale - it looks more like a plate than a platter, and why are there only five cookies? Maybe this is the platter after everyone at the Christmas fiesta took their share. The platter itself is heavy and apparently real silver as it tarnishes like mad. The cookies are sweet and look just like the book cookies. It gets an A- for scale issues.
Seems I'm part of the majority in that I think Sombrita is DARLING! Everyone in my family, even my parents really love her. I got my brand-new from AG so she's a white-faced version which I prefer, since book!Sombrita is all black and white. She's very very heavy material, with fur glued on her body and flocking on her face and legs. I noticed the black parts are stiffer and rougher which leads me to believe they've been spray-painted. I do think she could be hard to clean so keep that in mind for younger collectors. Sombrita's little bell ties to a pleather cord and is removable if you slide it over her nose and then ears. The bell is actually metal and very loud! It has a sweet sound but rings constantly so we eventually had to tape the clapper down. All in all I think she's precious and looks great with Josefina. A+
The dress - The dress is good and bad, and I'll start with the bad first. It is quite tight! I hadn't heard of this particular outfit being tight but it is, and rather short too even with the pantalettes. The fabric also feels kind of cheapy, like a bedsheet or something and not the usual soft fabric of Josefina's other dresses. So that's a bummer. HOWEVER, I love the design, colors, and pattern! I think it is a really unique dress in Josefina's collection and I honestly prefer it to her canon Christmas dress. So I wish it was longer and different fabric but I'm still glad I got it. B+
The stockings - These are also smallish, but not like I couldn't get them on her feet. They are actually very nice and even though they are thinner than her Christmas stockings, I like to imagine they are a fancier pair Tia Dolores brought from Mexico City. A-
The shoes - I don't know why everyone seems to have trouble with these - I didn't. Yes they are small (and make Josefina's feet look very small!) but they are squishy leather which you can easily shove her foot in. Then again, I have a 2004 girl for a 2009 outfit so maybe that makes a difference. I really like these shoes - possibly better than her Christmas shoes - and the bows are nice detail that you see on a lot of real shoes from this period. A
Last Edit: Aug 25, 2009 7:22:23 GMT -5 by Wickfield
The loom: This was so much nicer than I was expecting! I knew it was plastic and thusly was awaiting the worst, but it is actually very weighty; it feels more like resin to me. It's also realistically painted to look like wood. The loom comes pre-strung (mine was a tad crooked, unfortunately, but it isn't awful), with the shed and heddle rods already attached and ready for weaving. It seems quite small next to Josefina but is a really neat display piece. A+
The yarn: The yarn is real wool and very pretty, complimentary colors. However, my yarn is THICK. It's quite off-scale. I can't tell if it's really a difference from the others' sets (it's definitely thicker than AGR's, it might be the same as GCSupergirl's), but regardless it looks odd when it's on the loom and next to Josefina. I think it's so that the girls who are actually wanting to make the blanket can get it done quicker. But I would have preferred to take my time and get a finer weave. B- UPDATE: I was looking at the yarn and was really discontent with the result, and then I decided to unravel it into two separate pieces like embroidery thread. That can be tricky but it makes your weaving look so much better if you have a new set!
The tools: The tools include a fork to push the yarn down, a batten (is that what it's called?) to separate the warp threads, a big plastic needle which I didn't get in my picture, and the shuttle. They seem a little large for Josefina but I don't know if they're supposed to be to her scale anyway. Except for the batten, which is wood, they're made of thick matte plastic and look like bone or something. Interestingly, they are stamped "Pleasant Company", I guess because of the mold. Oh, also there's a clamp to hold the loom onto a table which was a very nice addition! They do their job. A
The booklet: Normally I wouldn't have included any info on this but I wanted to mention that my set (which I just bought new from AG) has a different booklet than AGRescue's. Mine is printed entirely in black and white with a different cover; this must be a change from 2007 (that's the copyright date). Anyway, it's written in English, French and Spanish and is pretty easy to follow, with some interesting information on Navajo weaving. I didn't have any difficulties (and shouldn't, I'm 18), and I doubt I would have had trouble when I was younger. The only tricky thing is sliding the batten through the right way, but after you master that you're set. NOTE, though, the booklet does NOT tell you how to rethread the warp, so keep that in mind. A-
Last Edit: Aug 25, 2009 6:45:45 GMT -5 by Wickfield
The housecoat - Our housecoat - which is a Mattel star-box version - is made of a medium weight cotton in a cranberry and cream tiny plaid print. As qnpoohbear mentioned, it is not lined except for the collar, which features a tiny floral calico print (you can see it in my second picture). Like most of Kirsten's pieces this one velcros at the wrists but it really buttons up the front; the buttons are just like those on Josefina's spencer jacket, but are harder to button here because of some very small button holes! This piece looks absolutely darling over the nightgown, and might look nice as outerwear over some other dresses. A
The sockor - the sockor are made of real felted wool and even though we have a very recent set, the box said they were still made in Sweden. Bonus! Unlike the other reviewers, we had absolutely no trouble getting these on Kirsten's feet, and these are Mattel for a Mattel doll. In fact, they seem like they could slip off; because these are handmade though they likely vary. They fit nicely and complete her whole bedtime ensemble. A
Last Edit: Jul 19, 2009 6:56:18 GMT -5 by Wickfield
The nightstand- I just got Josefina's nightstand and I really like it! It's lighter weight than I expected and the wood feels a bit cheap, but it looks really nice so I don't mind (however, the joints aren't really mortise-and-tenon, just made to look that way). I love the rust-colored stain, although it seems that the finish is different from earlier versions - unlike AGR, my nightstand is not shiny, it looks more like the picture posted by savannahjane; it seems to be stained rather than painted. Also, the leather handle (very cute) is darker like savannahjane's - I really like that it has a drawer that's big enough to really hold things. It seems to be a very authentic piece and looks very nice next to Josefina's bed. Plus the distressed finish means it won't show if you ding it up. A-
Last Edit: May 15, 2009 15:48:20 GMT -5 by Wickfield
Okay, so here are some comparison pics as this set has evidently changed a good deal over the years.
First comes the vest - . I have three versions of this - the early PM version, what I believe to be an early Mattel version, and a late Mattel version from 2008. The early PM and early Mattel versions seem to be real leather, or at least real leather with some kind of overlay, and are actually thinner than the pleather version. The color of these is extremely different, a dark reddish-brown compared to the tan of the pleather edition. Neither is tooled very deeply, but the PM one is deeper than the early Mattel one (this is really the only difference between the two and it may not be so much a PM/Mattel issue as just a batch issue).
Then we have the late Mattel version. The one I received in 2008 is imitation leather, and boy does it show, rubbery and generic light brown. Interestingly, though the pleather version is stamped more deeply than either leather vest. I really love the leather ones in either version but the pleather one is junk.
The fabric has also changed between PM and late Mattel. The thickness is the same, but the original material is a bit more of a burnt orange than my Mattel version, and the flowers and stripes are slightly different. Not sure when this changed, but it's not too big of a deal.
PM on left, late Mattel on right (and the Mattel is not so warm in color, I don't know why it was taking like that)
This is such a sweet outfit, not exactly "sporty" and a bit girly but Ashley still loves it and wears it a lot. My sister had the girl-sized set and it was so cute!
The jacket - both the girl and doll ones are very thick and so SOFT! The jacket is made of lavender-colored material with a pinkish cast, ribbed at the bottom with real pockets. Some of those reflective ribbons run the length of the sleeve and "AG" is embroidered on the left cuff. The jacket really zips up with a plastic and metal zipper, too! Also, you could probably pair this with other outfits. A+
The shirt - this is slightly on the thin side but it pulls it off well. Velcroing up the back as usual, the front as a wreath of flowers surrounding "AG", and chain stitching of different colors around the edges of the shirt. Again, not exactly sporty, but another one of those mix-and-match pieces. A
The pants - the pants are the letdown, thin and too short, and they come down in the back when Ashley's sitting. The velcro up the front and then snap with a round metal snap. The cuffs have flower embroidery and zip up the side. The girl-sized pants were much thicker and lined with fleece, I wish these were too. C.
The shoes - the shoes, to me, look like "doll shoes", although I think they were supposed to represent the sporty slip-on sneakers girls were wearing around that time. These are obviously purple pleather with pink and blue stripes. They have a band of elastic in the back so they'll actually stay on the dolls foot, which is a plus. Still, though, we like the outfit better with the gray sneakers. B
The barrettes - two rectangular metal barrettes complete the set, and I thought they held a fair amount of hair. However, they definitely tarnished badly. Maybe a silver cloth would fix them up, I know that worked with the 1998 cowgirl badge which was also cheap metal. B-
The PJs - you have to realize that, upon buying this set, it will ONLY really work for winter. I wish the design had been stars rather than snowflakes so it could work year round, but we knew it was snowflakes when we bought it, so... I love the thick, satiny fabric these PJs are made from, and the color - rich dark purple - is great. The snowflakes are printed in an elegant silver tone, and all is edged in a lighter purple trim. The pants pull up with elastic, and although there are frog loops on the top they aren't functional, instead the top velcros up the back. They look really nice on Ashley, I think overall I'll give them a B.
The slippers - these won't stay on the doll's feet, I wish they had those clear elastic straps the new AG slides have. They are a cute, realistic concept, and would probably look nice in a bedroom display, but for actual use I'm afraid they get a C.
We got this outfit for Ashley the year it came out. Though the colors are rather...bold, it works for a regular exercise/sport outfit, too, if you get rid of the harness and shoes.
The jacket - I love fleece sweaters on AG, for some reason. This one seems sturdier, it hasn't pilled as much as some of the other fleece pieces. Edged in orange piping, it zips up the front with a red plastic zipper. There's a patch on the front with a mountain and the letters "AG". Nice all around, and Ashley loves red, so that's a bonus. A
The tank - as SailAway said, the tank is a simple shell made of spandex. It gets extra embellishment with red chain-stitching up the front. It velcros up the back with the thinner velcro, but it still tends to snag the fabric. Also, some might consider the bright orange rather garish. B
The shorts - these are a nice, athletic pair of stretchy biking shorts. These are thicker than the tank top and pull on with elastic. They look even sportier because of the orange and silver trimming. A
The shoes - though the flat, slick soles tend to designate these as specifically "rock-climbing" shoes, if you aren't really too particular you could disguise these as a pair of sneakers, too. The uppers of these shoes appear to be real suede dyed purple, lacing up with flat black laces. I think they are really cute. A
The ponytail holders - generic little hair elastics in bright red to match the jacket. They don't have a ton of stretch and one of them broke on my sister. B-
The harness & chalk bag- this is such a cool, unique piece! It consists of wide, woven, black nylon straps. They are decorated with designs in fabric paint which looks like some doofusy touch there would be at camp or a rock-climbing place. It goes on easily, with the help of a set of instructions that were included. The three metal carabiners are nice, I think ours were silver, pink and purple. A+ for accuracy. The chalk bag is a tiny little drawstring pouch made of slippery red nylon: B.
Last Edit: Mar 13, 2009 14:22:58 GMT -5 by Wickfield
Licorice - I got Licorice the year she came out, and am attached to her because she was a gift but am not devastated to see her go. My main beef is that she is WAY off scale! She looks like she could eat Kirsten's cats, and you just show me a normal kitten that is the same size as a Westie puppy. Licorice is made of a lightweight, heavy plastic covered in thin black and white fur in the pattern of a tuxedo cat. Her nose is plastic, and her eyes and whiskers are, too. Her facial fur gets messed up easily, and I don't understand why she has little "eyebrows". Also, the wire in her tail was very thin and broke, so now she looks like she has the Cat in the Hat's tail. B-
Her cushion - the darn thing sheds! Whenever I take out Josefina's school skirt it has little pink feathers stuck all over it! While it is a nice concept it's really rather cheap, made from stuffed satin with a butterfly pattern. B-
Her collar - I got the earlier, original version, stretchy with rhinestone diamonds. This piece is really nice and sparkly and looks terrific on the cat. [/b]A[/b]
Her toy...thing - I think it's really supposed to resemble a ball of yarn. Anyway, it is also pink with little sparkly strands woven in. It's magnetized so it will stick to Licorices mouth, too. For what it is, A.
Wow, got to be first reviewer for this, too! I'll just say that I really dislike how Coconut is the theme of this party, because if you don't have or like Coconut you're stuck with little Westie decorations all over everything. Also, it cuts down on versatility.
The balloons - while a nice idea in concept, the balloons are made of plastic and wire and are kind of hard for the doll to hold. The handle is made of thick twisted wire with a loop to slip over the doll's hand. The balloons to this set are pink and blue with "Happy Birthday" logos, and a silver one with Coconut. I do like the color choices and all the curling ribbon! B-
The tiara - another good concept but doesn't exactly work. The tiara is made of plastic and is not wide enough to fit on the doll's head! We have a doll from this same period but the tiara still sits strangely on top, leaving a gap between the crown and the head. As far as looks go, it is made of pearlized white plastic and silvery tinsel, with a holographic "Happy Birthday" sticker on top. B-
The gift bag - a cute idea, made of sparkly plastic-coated paper. It actually holds a lot, including all the favors if you'd like to use it as a favor sack. The strap is pearlized pink curling ribbon, and the bag is edged with shiny trim. A+
The favors - these look like real favors you'd get at a birthday party! The stickers are made of blue and pink candies and are really removable. The sketch pad are just like things my sister and I actually had, and I'm glad it came with the little plastic stick even though it's no big deal. The blowout is the best part. It really works! Or at least it did, until the paper got a rip in it. A The cake and platter - Coconut appears again, here he is in tiny plastic "candy" form on top of the cake. The cake looks pretty realistic with pink and lavender glazing, with the aforementioned candy Coconut and little silk flowers decorating the top. Even the glitter makes sense, I had sugar glitter on all my cakes at this time. The platter is plain pink, scalloped plastic, with a paper doily lining it. The paper doily is very fragile and crumples easily but looks nice when it is intact. A-