#‎AGDoCGotY
American Girl, keep giving us Dolls of Color for Girls of the Year.

Monday, March 4, 2013

Clothes Reviews: AG Exclusives (Part 1) and the White Tank and Brief Set (2010)

Kaya shall join us on this excursion into exclusives.
American Girl has several boutiques and physical stores where people can buy AG stuff and clothes, other than ordering online or through mail order (do people still do that?). It's the only way to get some hands on touchy feels for AG things before you buy 'em. While it's marketed as an "experience", I tend to go to mine often enough that it's like any other mall trip. In that I go maybe once a month--two times a month if something comes up. Anyways, they have exclusives--clothes, accessories, and shit one can only get at an AG store.  This has been true since the first AG place opened up in Chicago in 1999. Thanks to the magic of the eBay Resale Shop and Orphanarium, AG place visits (I might have fell all over AG Dallas the first time possible, and I plan to stalk the fuck out of AG Houston), and buddies who know what will make me happy as a souvenir when they're near a store, I have a lot of exclusives. This is Part One of who knows how many.

Oh, Kaya? Yeah, around here we don't keep our Native people stuck in the Braids Beads and Buckskins life. She's 90% moddie in that she wears the old shit, but she loves the new shit.

A few of the things we'll be reviewing today.
Today we shall go with reviews of the LA exclusive Red Starburst Tee, the current Star Cargo pants, the Summer Accents and the second issued Doll-Sized Tote. Also a bonus underwear review. 

Doll underclothes. Important, and yet not important.
Let's start with underwear, so that everyone starts out squirmy: the White Tank and Brief Set. This, like several AG underwear sets, is important in that you might buy dolls that have no draws and would like a set to cover their butts. Kaya only wears underthings when in more modern stuff. Otherwise she just goes naked and free.

DRAWS.
For the purposes of the words "tank" and "briefs" being annoying to me, we're calling this a camisole and panties. There were two other sets like this in pink and purple, but I hated both of them and so never ever got them. I got this set for the original cost of $10.

Camisole/Tank: It's a camisole. It does what it's supposed to and fits under doll clothes. Mine has thread pulls, in that I've tugged on it and popped some threads. This might happen, if you're a person who tugs doll clothes, so be warned.  It's plain white so it's not likely to stand out or be visible under thinner clothes.

Straps. No muss, no fuss, no velcro.
The thing that gets this the plus is that there is no velcro on the camisole. Most AG clothes have velcro to close the tops or jeans or skirts or whatever. Since this is designed to go under clothes, there's no velcro and thus less bulk. The entire top is made of stretchy knit and has lace elastic straps, so just tug it over the doll's head and go on about your life.

Embroidery, so everyone knows where your underwear comes from.
There is pink embroidery at center front. Small and unobtrusive with a freeform flower and the American Girl logo. Like real underthings, it's neat enough that it's not likely to bother. It would probably peek out in lower cut clothes.

The camisole gets a B+. It's smooth under clothes, and shouldn't stand out. As for mix and matchability: if it fits under the clothes and doesn't stand out, it's done its job. It'll fit under damn near anything. Yes, even some historical stuff. And with some shirts, it might work as an accent under them.

Panties. Who's weirded out now?
Panties: The panties are white with elastic lace and no velcro. I don't think any AG panties have velcro, because who wears velcro on their underwear? They, like any other pair of panties, pull right on. 

Purple Bow Trim. Never a bad thing to accent your clothes.
They have a little purple bow as a center accent. Nothing too big, but adds a spot of color on otherwise plain panties.

Coverage is available in your network.
And as you see, they cover the butt. Good underwear, you're doing your job. Have an A.

Overall Feel: Uh, they match each other and anything you put them with/under. That's generally how this works. The camisole might need to be left out some times, but the panties are fine. 

Cost Value (for the outfit at the time, and current running prices): 10 bucks for doll underwear is pretty sensible. That's five bucks a piece. There is no reason to pay 20 bucks or more, even if they are retired.

Timeliness/Datedness: They'll carry from the 70s right up to today.

Mix and Match Levels: They'll fit under ANYTHING. Go hog wild.

Final Grade: A. It's underwear, what do you want? As long as it's there, it's good.

Now, having unnerved my entire audience, let's move on to the actual clothes. By the way? Kaya is wearing this set the entire time, thus proving its versatility and success as wear. 

*~*~*

The  Red Starburst Tee. L.A. Exclusive.
The Red Starburst Tee was an LA exclusive that went for $8. I got mine with a lot so I paid near retail cost. 

The Stars!
Something to take into account with AG stuff: they love stars. It's their logo. Therefore they tend to throw stars on everything, especially the exclusives. This shirt has a spread of silver star rays and dots that end in the AG star.

Knot and Text. Get used to the text.
There's a knot on the left side that is just tacked on, and the AG text on the waistband. Another thing: AG puts their name all over the exclusives. (With LA, Chicago, and NY they also tend to slap "Place" after it since those were the first big stores and are still the biggest, prettiest ones.) They also put the location as well. I think it's an awesome touch. Makes it feel a lot like a souvenir. This is done in the same silver as the rays. The waistband is a really cute touch.

Sleeves.
The sleeves are generally billed as 3/4th but I'd call them more half sleeves since they come down to the elbow.The shirt velcros up the back.

Overall Grade: A. It's a cute little shirt, and once I learned it existed I had to have it. It's going to match a lot of jeans and skirts all by itself, and seeing as I paid just about original costs, I feel it was worth the value. The knot might add a touch of odd, but I don't intend to clip it off. I wouldn't pay more than $10-12 for the shirt. Do note, if you're looking on secondary markets? Make sure that you're getting the doll's shirt. This also came in kid's sizes.

*~*~* 

Star Cargo Pants. Beep Beep.
 The Star Cargo Pants were recently released--just last month, in fact. I'd have to double check, but I'm pretty sure they're going for $12. They're white lower calf pants--not all the way to the ankle, but not quite capris. Highwater, sort of.  The ends are tack-cuffed up. I could probably pop the threads and lower em, but nah don't care to. Maybe if I buy a second set. 

The pocket that makes these cargos.
 On the left side is a cargo pocket with the AG star in red.


And on the right are two bias topstitched stripes. Just on the front, though. I honestly am not feeling them, and think pockets on both sides would have been so much cuter. Ah well.
 
what does it's gots in it s pockets~
If there is one thing I love, it is functional pockets on clothes. Yes, even doll clothes. Both hip pockets and the lower cargo one work. Time to hide dolly money! 

Button--or Velcro--your fly.

The fly is velcro--both on the main fly and on the end of the waist closure. They close up nice and tight, though a little tugging might be needed if you've got a chubby PM1 girl. 

Patch logo.
And on the back right hip, the AG logo patch. Gotta know who made em >.> It's not likely to show with most shirts. Or maybe that's just me tugging shirts low.

Overall Grade: A-. The minus is because of those stripes. But they're a clean white color that should match a lot of AG tops. The red star might feel limiting, but I think it can be skimmed over if, say, you want to pair this with a pink or blue or green top. With AG souvenir shirts, though, it's perfection. They were worth the 12 bucks. I don't think they'll end up too dated in the future.

*~*~* 

Le tote.
There have been a few AG doll sized totes. They're intended to mimic the full sized ones that people are supposed to carry dolls around in. This one is the second issued one, for $8 bucks. Black main body, with butterfly and word blurb text trim of a nylon slick fabric. There's a velcro closure at the top.

 Now with Mini Ivy.
The people sized tote will hold two dolls, in theory. This one will only hold one. Also it took a while to get Kaya to hold the tote with a doll in it.

Also with Mini Miss AG Bear.
I was also able to get the Mini Miss AG Bear in the tote, but then Kaya couldn't hold it.

Final Grade: C-. I'm not honestly impressed with the tote. It can hold one doll, or maybe some accessories, but that's it. I'm not much for doll totes, and a doll sized tote, while cute, isn't much for carrying around or putting with outfits. It doesn't tote dolls, is what I'm saying. I tend to keep mine holding other stuff in the storage drawers.

*~*~*

Glasses, headband, socks and shoes. Ta da~
The Summer Accents are extra accessories for the AG girl on the go--a headband, sunglasses, shoes and socks. For a little bit, it was sold through the site for $10. I bought it full cost at $16 because at the time I didn't want Mellie to debut in the Star Hoodie outfit and stripped her out of it and into some AG exclusives, which meant new shoes.

Sunglasses. That weird square wrecks 'em.
Sunglasses: The sunglasses are generic pink plastic sunglasses with black ear pieces.For some reason the molding resulted in this square in the middle that really wrecks the look of the glasses. Also, the pink color is hella annoying.

Sunglasses, Headband style.
They can be tucked on top of the head, as Kaya has decided they look best. The square makes them look dwoppy when on the face.

I give them a C. If they had been solid black, I'd have bumped that to a B but they're not so there.

Headband, top view.
Headband: The headband is hard red plastic, with the AG logo on one side and three stars on the top. The plastic is very inflexible.

Headband, side shot.
I can honestly say I have only used this headband for these shots. It's really stiff and I feel like I could break it trying to get it on my moddie girls, and the stiffness makes it look like it's not quite on the doll's head. Plus it doesn't look very realistic. Who wears a headband with a big logo on the side like that? D-.

Sock it to me. Or some other sock related pun.
Socks: Now we get to parts that don't suck. Socks! They're simple white ankle socks with red trim on the top. Stretch and fit on the feet, and work under outfits well. I might not pair them with something that would let the tops of the socks show unless it was red as well, or didn't majorly clash.

Stars on the sole are super cute.
How cute is this? There's little stars on the soles. I love little accents like that. I guess the red trim isn't so bad, if they match the accents. I have used the hell out of these socks--mostly under jeans because of the red trim, but they still have tons of versatility.

The socks get a B+. The red trim sort of  kills the versatility with skirts or any jeans that don't have matching red trim, but they match the damned adorable stars, so it works.

Barefooting is only done by my dolls in small doses. Shoes make the set.
Shoes: And now we get to why I wanted the set: the shoes. They're slip on canvas shoes with stretch elastic, top stitching, and rubber soles. There's two shades of red: a berry red, and a sort of darker true red.

Top stitching~

I adore the top stitching. It adds enough of a contrast that it brings the whole thing together. Also the elastic closure is really nifty. Any time I don't have to tie laces is a plus in my entire book.

Stupid stretching!
However, I did get pissed that the elastic overpulled and it won't go back once it's out of place. How utterly annoying.And I can't properly hide it because the elastic is attached at the heel. Fuck.

Soles. One sole. Fillet.
The soles have a simple waffle pattern. Nothing to write too deeply on.

The shoes get an A-. Stupid elastic knocks off a point, but damned if theses aren't cute shoes.

Overall Feel: It's an accent set. The headband is the most annoying piece of the set. I can do something with everything but that piece. Even the glasses can work with some things. If it had been thinner and less inflexible, maybe. But the shoes and socks at least make up for it because they are hella cute--as long as the shoe elastic doesn't get warped.

Cost Value: $16 was a little high at the time. The $10 makes more sense, given the utter uselessness of the headband and the hit-and-miss of the glasses. I would not pay e-bay prices for this--they're as high as 30 bucks. Fuck that shit. If you didn't get it for $10, then at most I'd look for the shoes and socks. The glasses and headband are not worth that high ass cost on secondary markets.

Timeliness/Datedness: They're pretty modern. They could work for a look for a while. But fuck that headband.

Mix and Match Levels: The The sunglasses work, but I am seriously debating spray painting that pink out of the glasses. The shoes and socks are beautiful, the socks even more so if you can cover the red band  with jeans. The headband can go sit in the corner and think about what's wrong with its existence. I hate everything about it.

Final Grade: B-. The headband isn't worth being there, and the glasses are meh. But the shoes and socks are wonderful. The sunglasses could use improvement. I think I might spray paint them black.

*~*~*

More AG exclusives down the road, including such exciting things as: Shirts! Jeans! Hats! Fashion Show Sets! And more shirts!

Seriously, the shirts are the biggest exclusive sold and I have tons of them.

--Neth

1 PM is short for Pre-Mattel. When Mattel--makers of Barbie and other shit--bought Pleasant Company back in 1998, they transitioned the dolls to a slimmer look and feel. PM dolls are fatter, with less face paint and softer lashes, to name a few traits. I honestly don't give a fuck who is who, but some people aim for PM girls.

2 comments:

  1. YEAH, t-shirts! When AG SF opens, I think that's going to be about all I buy for a while (provided the shirts are cute and they haven't released a not-Kanani or medium Sonali with hair).

    ReplyDelete
  2. I give this review an A+ soley on the fact of seeing Kaya-butt.

    ReplyDelete

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