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Thursday, June 19, 2014

Historical Clothes Reviews and Historical Accessories: Addy's Meet Outfit and Meet Accessories

Addy meets the world! And runs this joint.
Did you miss me? I'm sure you did. I'm pretty awesome. I got back home about a week ago, but circumstances got in the way of my posting. I'm sure you still love me, and I'll try to get back on a regular weekly schedule. Anyways, enough chatter from me, and more posting. I'm here to both review and educate, and I plan on doing both.

If you didn't know--and how could you not?--now you know: BeForever is coming down the pipeline. This is a revamping of the Historical Characters Line that will be resulting in a lot of changes to appeal to a new generation of children and the return of the doll Everyone Loves to Kiss the Ass of, Samantha Parkington. Some changes I've seen the leaks of include new Meet Outfits, redone Central Series books1 that will be bundled into two-book volumes, and new outfits and accessories. This has also resulted in the official retirement of the Best Friends Line (with Ruthie Smithens the first doll to drop out of the race and end up out of stock). While not every Historical will be getting redone clothing--Caroline, for one, will be keeping her current look--several are getting a whole new Meet. Including my favorite girl, Addy Walker.2 So I'm likely going to go over her and several other Historical Character's meet sets in some reviews.

Before we talk about her meet outfit, let's have some history education, Today is actually a very historically significant day in Black American History: Juneteenth. Juneteenth marks the last day that slaves in the US learned that they were free. Everyone knows about the Emancipation Proclamation, which announced the end of slavery. But that was just in the Confederate States--and only in places not already under Union control. Plus it didn't apply to the border states--states with slavery that didn't secede. Hell, Delaware and Kentucky still had slavery legal until the Thirteenth Amendment was ratified. The Emancipation Proclamation was less a "Lincoln freed the slaves" moment of equality and more "Lincoln wanted to cut off a major part of the South's production and fuck them up" war maneuver. But given the circumstances, black people took what they could get.

Anyways, freedom for slaves! In theory. The Confederacy--Texas included--didn't give a single fuck what those Yankee bastards had to say, and ignored the shit out of the news. And unlike nowadays, news didn't move very fast, and if you didn't tell someone news, they just didn't know. So as the Union Army worked its way south and west and took shit down, they would tell the slaves "oh by the way, you've been free since January first, 1863, get on that." Also, travel was slow as shit, not helped by the fact that there was, you know, a fucking war on. This all led up to the fact that Texas kept its slaves for practically the entire war and a few months afterwards.

It wasn't until June 18th 1865--over a month after the official end of the war on May 10th (and three days before the final shot was fired on June 22nd by the CSS Shenandoah) that a Union General, Gordon Granger, and federal troops showed up on Galveston Island. They took Texas back for the Union and enforced emancipation. On June 19th, General Granger got up on the balcony of the Ashton Villa and let the black folk of Texas know that they were free people and that this was the way shit was. Celebrations started immediately and were formally done the next year in 1866--and have, in some way, been happening ever since. This makes Juneteenth one of the oldest Black History celebrations in the US. In Texas it was made a Texas state holiday in 1980--the same year I was born--and in the 80s and 90s when my black ass was growing up in Texas the celebration was in major revival and spread across the nation. So yes, Addy would have likely participated in Juneteenth celebrations at some point.

Back to her meet outfit. Addy Walker's debut in 1993 added the first doll of color to the AG lineup and the first girl with earrings--permanent as they are. She came with her first three books illustrated by Melodye Rosales and a lot of neat shit that I absolutely coveted and now pretty much have all of--including the desk. Addy's meet outfit--until the relaunch--consists of a pink and white dress, white drawers, black stockings, black boots, and a blue hair ribbon. Her accessories--for $20 originally and bumped up to $24 as prices rose--are a straw bonnet, half-dime, kerchief, water gourd, and a cowrie shell necklace. You've got til August 28th before the revamp to get her in original form; after that, you're looking at eBay prices which range from "that's not so bad" to "you're getting ripped off, honey." But you'd probably still be able to find them for respectable costs since she's been around for over twenty years. Addy was a Giftmas Gift to me in 2005 and my first AG ever, so I paid "ohmigawd I love you in-laws you are the best" for it. Unlike several meet outfit and accessory sets, Addy's entire outfit is given major significance in her books: the outfit (and hat) is the first outfit she is given by Miss Caroline on her way running to freedom in the north, and the accessories are all mentioned in her first book.

Oh, and the background isn't my usual fully backed green for the most part; it's the wall of my mom's place on top of one of her display tables, and the images are a little yellow in places because of the lighting at the time. I meant to make this post while in Texas, but so much came up that it didn't get posted. And with my scanner in WA State, I couldn't give you all the beautiful data I like to give with my historical reviews so it all works out.

On with the show!

Cinnamon pink dresses are the bestest.
Dress: Addy's meet dress is a one piece cinnamon pink dress with fine white stripes throughout. Simple in style, but rich in details. Addy gets this as a gift from Miss Caroline--it's her first nice dress and it's seen throughout the series in several places. While not as frilly or decorated as some dresses seen in the era, it is simple and urban. Cinnamon pink--also called double pink--was a very sharp color of pink and a respectable, popular color for a girl's dress in the Civil War era. The same fabric is used throughout, a sign of the dress being less complex than most dresses. However, it is tailors neatly so that the stripe pattern adds to the design. When you are putting together doll dresses, take into account how the outfit will look put together--stripes and one way designs shouldn't just go any damn where they please.

Collar.
The collar is a simple small round collar with no trim. Nowadays this would likely be called a "Peter Pan collar" but seeing as that particular play hadn't been written yet in 1864 we will simply call it a rounded collar. I will also take the time to point out the stripes of the dress are woven into the fabric; they are a squiggle and dot pattern that from a distance look like plain stripes.

Bodice and buttons. 
Down the front of the bodice is a placket with the stripes running horizontally for contrast. The placket is simply a strips sewn down the front of the dress to the skirt hem and is not a separate piece. On a person's dress this might likely be where the fasteners went; alternatively, these would just be for show and the back would be where hook-and-eye or button closures would be. Down the front are small white translucent buttons that are equally placed and start under the collar and go fully to the hem; there are three on the bodice, one at the waistband, and six on the skirt for a total of ten.

Waistband.
The waistband, like the placket, is cut on the horizontal; unlike the placket, it is not sewn on top of the dress and is integrated  between the skirt and bodice all the way around.

Drop them sleeves.
The bodice sleeves are what are called "drop shoulder sleeves." If you haven't heard about these before, lemme sum up: fashion at the time from about the 1840s until the 1870s had sleeves attach to the bodice below the shoulder, which made for a boxy style top. These are still seen today in things like t-shirts, and all of Addy's well done clothing has this on it. Doing this with fashions of the time makes them a lot more authentic--so get on it!3 

Sleeves.
The sleeves also follow a fashion style of being wider at the top and narrowing tightly at the wrist. There's no major trims or fancy stuff.

Wrist.
The wrist has a simple hem and, because doll clothes, velcro on the underside to close the dress up.

Skirt.
The skirt is a simple skirt of multiple pieces attached to the the buttons--as I stated--go down the front placket. A lot of skirt designs for the era done today will tell you to cut a full rectangle and just gather around, because they are lazy. This is a bad idea. Cut to the triangle swooping shape and pleat them in or you will cry when the skirt comes out bad.

Pleated. Also that's my mom's tv in the background, whatever.

The skirt is not gathered to the waist. It's pleated in multiple spots all the way around, which was very much the style of the time. With skirts as hugely wide as they were in the mid 18th century, gathering would have added stupidly huge amounts of bulk and ruined the smooth look over your petticoat and crinoline hoop. So you pleated. You pleated like a motherfucker, and you made it smooth all the damn way around.

Storytime with Neth's mom! When she was pregnant with me--in the early months, when I wasn't showing much--and taking a costuming class at Milwaukee community college, she had an assignment due for sewing a Civil War style dress. Mostly by hand. In 1980. And it was due the next day to have the skirt attached to the bodice. She was the only black woman in the whole class, and she was poor and struggling in the class and none of the other white students would even give her the time of day practically because Wisconsin has some super racist motherfuckers, so she had to figure out things herself while they helped each other out and worked together. She stayed up late that night, night, crying and hand sewing pressed, tiny pleats to a very tiny waistband all the way around, and finally got herself home on the buss late to the house she was staying in, and got some sleep before she got back to class.

She walked in class the next day and her dress was at the front with the teacher. It was the only one up there, and my mom was horrified that she'd fucked it up and her head just dropped. Once she sat down, the teacher went "good, now that Mary's here, we can talk about her dress up here." Mom sunk lower.

"Because she's the only one who did it right."

Mom's head popped right up, and she just glowed as the teacher pointed out how she had pressed and tucked and knife-pleated and tightened and sewn that shit down right, pointing out all the ways it was perfect to make And then she asked Mom to help her show everyone else how to fix their mistakes which my mom did without being a twat like all the other girls had been to her.4

So yes. There's a way to put a skirt to a bodice for the Civil War look, and gathering is generally not it. Press and pleat and do it nice.

Skirt hem.
There are no trims on the skirt hem either. Just tucked under and simple.The skirt comes to just below the knee, which was a respectable length for a girl in the ten-year old range.

Up the back.
And like most AG things, velcros up the back over the bodice and part of the skirt.

Like I'd give Addy's beautiful dress anything less than an A+.

Draw em up and on.
Drawers: Addy wears plain white pull on drawers. (Also you can see Addy's petticoat which I made years ago to avoid our girl wearing a goddamn red plaid petticoat.) I went into the history of white underthings in my Historical Underwear post, so I won't do it again--just know they're white because white could get the stains bleached out easier than any other color in the time of sun bleaching. But I will take this time to talk about split drawers, which Addy does not have.

Most drawers for women in the mid 1800s were more of the style of two tubes made separately and attached to a waistband together, leaving a gap between. But it wasn't like you could just take a glance under and see all of the Garden of Delights; there was a design element leading to overlap that helped cover the crotch for the most part. Split drawers weren't for titillation in flashing men--they were practical, because in a corset and chemise and all that you couldn't reach under and scoot your clothes down to take a whizz or a dump. So when you squatted over the privy or your chamberpot, the drawers separated (or you pulled them apart to prevent too much staining) and you went about your business and then went about your business.5 Still, children's drawers often skipped that since they could still reach under skirts to scoot clothes down. If I decide to make Addy some historically closer under drawers, I will likely leave them as closed crotch just because.

Addy's drawers have a v-front panel that is gathered to the front that I did not get a close up of. It's how you can tell hers apart from others. Underwear for centuries was not a fancy thing--most people weren't looking at it.

Elastic.
The back is elastic to aid in wear.

Lacey edges.
At the edge of the drawers is hemmed on lace with small square eyelets and a scalloped edge. A. They look nice peeping out from under her skirt.

Stockings are separate.
Stockings: First of all, there is technically a difference between stockings and tights. Stockings are separate tubes; tights are attached together. (Pantyhose are a sheerer type of tights.) Addy is wearing black over the knee ribbed stockings. They stay up on their own because of the elastic at the top; however, historically they would have had garters to stay up.

Ribbed for her warmth and pleasure.
 The stockings are ribbed all the way to Addy's toes.

Heel.
However, the heel and sole are not ribbed. That would be uncomfortable to walk on. Having knitted doll socks and people socks, I do not rib or pattern the bottom with texture.

From the side.
The stockings are very simple and go with a lot of Addy's clothing, including her meet shoes. B+. They do what they're supposed to and look very neat and respectable.

Boots, capped on the toes.
Boots: Addy completes her meet look with a set of cap toed black boots. These have actually changed over the years a little bit, as I found out when I ordered the third set of her meet shoes from AG. When I first got Addy, I wrecked a pair of her shoes by accidentally dragging her in the back of a rolling backpack; her feet were fine but her shoes were wrecked. I got a second pair, which held up fine for the most part except for the part where I pulled the eyelets out.  I taped and mended these a lot but became irritated by this, and recently ordered a new pair of shoes for her. This is when I found out they had changed--and in one major way, for the better. The ones she wears are technically hybrids as they have old style laces with new style shoes. I'll show details of her current hybrid shoes and among them, since I took the pictures after I got home, images of the older shoes I still have around and the newer laces.

Old laces in new shoes.
 The older style laces are very much like a tube with black slim aglets.

New laces on standard backdrop.
The newer laces are more like modern laces and flat, but still with the tube aglets.

From the side.
The shoes are put together with a high ankle vamp, cap toes, and a simple side and tongue. These are simple style boots and would have been worn by many working class people in either black or brown.

Shoes off.
The shoes are laced so that at the bottom the laces are out and at the top they lace outward, so they can be tied. They are slightly longer than they would be for people tying. The toes are called cap toe because there's an extra layer of shoe "leather" over the toe.

Eyelets.
The way I knew these were newer shoes were because of the eyelets. Addy's current and likely future shoes have buttonhole style eyelets that are sewn into the top vamp. People who are PC Suckers will likely whine that these are "cheaper" (read: more terrible) than the original PC and older Mattel shoes. I will tell you right now that these are much improved. Why?

Busted ass grommets.
The older shoes--seen here and PC--had grommets punched into the vamp. And while the grommets were precious metal, they were also weak as hell. I'm what's called heavy handed, and so I pulled the eyelets out hard. I'm probably not the only one, which is why there was the switch to embroidered on eyelets. Damn those grommets sucking ass.

Back seam.
The back of the shoes have a center seam. The shoes are also top-stitched around the top.

Inner lining.
The inner lining of the shoes show that these are likely vinyl instead of leather. The ones Addy came with in 2005 were black inside, as were the PC ones. However, still likely vinyl.

Inner sole.
The inner soles are plain white on both old and Mattel; the PC ones are black inside.

Outer sole.
The new soles are a plain brown plastic sole with a slight heel; while I didn't take a picture, the older shoes have a darker thinner leather style sole but with a heel still.

Wrecked em good.
Just so y'all can see, I wrecked the first shoes good.

God damn.
One got rubbed all the way down; I'm surprised I didn't fuck up her feet.

The side that didn't get screwed.
With the screwed up sides down, you can see the grommets and the thinner, darker soles.  The grommets didn't get pulled out only because I scratched them up first. 

B- for the old shoes because they're nicer overall, but the grommets pulling out suck. B+ for the new ones because of the laces are terrible, but the shoes have much better eyelets.

Ribbon. Well, close enough.
Ribbon: Okay, technically I don't have the original ribbon, it unraveled on me or got lost. So my Addy wears a wider navy blue ribbon. Close enough.

French braids.
 Intermission: I don't twist Addy's hair; I French braid it back. It holds longer.

Earrings.
Addy's earrings are permanent gold loops in her ears. I believe that the revamp will still have permanent loops.

Bonnet blue and straw.
Bonnet: Addy gets a simple straw bonnet in her meet accessories; it's the "hat" of the hat/necklace/coin/purse that was the tradition up until Kaya.6 For centuries, ladies and girls in Western Society wore hats or head coverings out in public to show themselves as respectable, so Addy wearing a bonnet would have made her feel that much closer to a free girl. While straw wasn't the most fancy of bonnet materials--felt would have been the best--it was still rather nice when trimmed up. This is rather simple; a super fancy one would be made of smooth straw and be lined with lace, ribbons, and flowers and cover up a good part of the straw base.

Profile and ribbon.
From the side, the bonnet has a very simple profile that conceals most of Addy's face. This is closest in design to a cottage bonnet, which was still fashionable for young girls into the 1860s.

The non-ribboned side.
The bonnet is smooth on both sides, with blue print ribbon tacked on both sides only at the edge. It's pleated--again, not gathered. The ribbon is a blue circle, square, and floral calico print that is unique to the bonnet. While it doesn't match Addy's clothing, not all trims matched everything and still don't.

Ribbon neatly tied.
The ribbon ties under Addy's right side. Not the left. For the love of gods, don't tie it over to the left, it looks terrible. The edges of the ribbon are v-cut and the ribbon is hemmed on the sides. Tie it neat with even edges.

Ribbon down.
With the ribbon down and loosely tied to the right, the ribbons have an even edge.

Uneven ribbons.
With the bonnet fully off, the ribbon is clearly seen as uneven. This is why you tie it to the right, people.

Hat off and inside.
Inside you can see the spiral of the straw inside. A fancier hat would have been lined. The straw is spiraled around and then the bottom edge cut off and trimmed with the same calico as the ribbon. The AG tag is on the inside left.

Back.
The back shows the full spiral as well.

Profile off.
The bonnet keeps its shape very well. Not to mention, the hat looks good with other outfits, not just the meet set. A+.

A necklace with meaning.
Necklace: Addy's necklace in-story has tons of meaning. On the run away from North Carolina, Addy's mother gives her a cowrie shell that came from her great-grandmother when she was kidnapped and brought across to become a slave. It's tied to a black cord that was one of her older brother's shoelaces. Cowrie shells have been tied to Africa for centuries and were even used as currency. The front of the shell has a jagged toothed appearance and a drilled hole to run the cord through.

Back of the shell.
The back of the shell is smooth with a dark ring. The cord is hitch-hooked through the hole. While nowadays the shell is plastic molded, it originally was authentic. Likely to standardize the size, it went plastic.

Necklace alone.
The necklace alone is just the stone and the cord. No fancy stuff for Addy.

The sliding adjustment.
No clasp either. To put the necklace on, it's looped over Addy's head and then the knots at the side are slid to adjust the necklace up. It should sit best at about mid chest; don't have it all the way down at her hips, you lazy bastards.

A+. Cowrie shells mean a lot to the African Diaspora, and thus to me; I have a cowrie shell necklace in my many necklaces. I love the look of cowrie shells and I hope that when her meet set is changed this remains a part of it.7

Follow that Drinking Gourd.
Gourd: Addy's meet accessories include a drinking gourd, which in story she and Momma take to have fresh water to carry on the run away to the North. Originally, Addy's meet accessories included drinking gourds made of actual small grown gourds. However, a crop failure led to AG--wisely, in my opinion--switching to plastic gourds. That shit won't rot to death and grow mold, s'all I'm saying.

The originals also came with corks; while mine currently does not have a cork, I can always cut one down for it. The gourd is slightly lopsided and a little hard to stand up on one side, and painted to look like a realistic yellow dried gourd--specifically, likely a calabash.

Opening.
The opening is smooth, round and neat. B. Not anything exemplary, but having it included adds to the details of the story.

Half a dime is not a nickle.
Coin: The only money Addy has with her when she and Momma run away is a half dime Uncle Solomon gives her. She manages to hold on to it all the way to Addy's Surprise, whereupon it gets donated to the Freedmen's Funds. Still, I like to think she didn't donate it or managed to get another one and like Scrooge's Number One Dime,8 it's a lucky coin for her.

Addy's half dime is based on the 1864 Seated Liberty Half Dime, which was printed from 1860 to 1873. Why not a nickle? Well, nickles weren't minted for the first time until 1866, partially due to the loss of silver and gold from the Civil War. Their creation and eventually popularity made half-dimes redundant; the last ones were minted in 1873 after being around for pushing 90 years (the first ones being minted early in American History.) So no one before Addy historically would have used nickles. They wouldn't have even had them.

The obverse--or face--has a seated Liberty figure on a shield, the words "United States of America," and the year 1864.

Obverse- and a note that it's a copy.
The reverse side shows wheat and grains arched around the words "HALF DIME." Underneath is also the word "COPY." All AG coins say "copy" so you don't get any ideas about reselling them.9

Envelope.
The half dime comes in a small white envelope that just says "Addy's Half Dime" and shows the obverse. Since I'm lazy and don't want to dig out my envelope to take a picture, I've swiped an auction picture.

Carry your shit in a kerchief.
Kerchief: Addy doesn't get a neat purse like everyone else. Instead, she comes with a calico print kerchief that she carries all the way North. (Momma loses her in the river.) It can hold her half dime and gourd; I have it set up here to see both but in actuality it would have been in the center to not fall out.

Knot the corners.
 To tie it up into a tote, tie the opposite corners together, and then tie the other opposite corners together. Ta-da! Kerchief tote.

All untied.
Fully untied, the kerchief is about fourteen inches on each side. The print is a small beige oak-leaf calico print.

Other side.
The back side is not as brightly printed, but it looks all right. The kerchief is hemmed all the way around. 

B+. While I like the kerchief and it means a lot, I think her having a full-on purse would have been nice. But I do like that it's not sewn-knotted together.

*~*~*

Tying this to the books and media, hell to the yeah.


Addy's meet dress is on the cover of every copy of Meet Addy since the beginning, along with almost all her accessories; the gourd and dime are likely in the kerchief. Her bonnet is tied the other way, though, and it won't work.

For a while the dress was available for girls as the "Striped Pink Dress" for $75.


 "Addy's Cowrie Necklace" was available for $20. It was beaded and had a clasp at the back.


Addy had a prototype dress with solid white buttons and a cream floral print. It shows up here and there on eBay in the $40-70 range; I much prefer what they went with.


Addy's meet dress and accessories is seen in both sets of paper dolls released for her; she didn't receive any Play Scenes and Paper Dolls. Here, her bonnet is tied directly under her chin. Still wrong. Also but not shown: Addy's kerchief is a component of her Pattern set, so she can have multiple kerchiefs if you're feeling that.


And in Addy: An American Girl Story, Addy has both the pink meet dress (and shoes and stockings) and cowrie shell necklace; other than her Tartan Plaid Dress, Addy has no other clothing changes. It's been seven years, so I'm not sure but I don't think she had the bonnet. Image is sourced to Seattle Children's Theatre.

ETA 7/4/14: Now that I think about it, she wore the bonnet in her outside street scenes. 

 *~*~*

Overall Feel: Addy's pink dress is an iconic dress for her, and the accessories only add to the outfit. I'm not sure I can say more than that without gushing all over the place--I love it, given that the second ever image of her I saw was full length centerfold in the full set. Every AG doll comes with underwear that they use with pretty much every outfit they have, so they're good. The cowrie shell necklace is likely my favorite accessory and Addy almost never takes it off here; my least favorite would be the gourd. And while the half dime isn't super exciting, the authenticity is appreciated. The whole set comes together well and looks gorgeous on her. When in the books Addy says it was prettier than anything she could have imagined in freedom, I have to agree. I'm hoping to like the new set just as much. At some point I will make a cosplay to dress up as Addy Walker and no one will be able to tell me shit.

Cost Value: From MiL and late FiL, therefore priceless. Current cost for others is the cost of an Addy doll: bundled, the set is about $129. Once BeForever changes Addy's looks, I have no idea where prices will be and they might spike a bit on the 'Bay. But I'm sure it will be wholly possible to find her clothes and accessories at a sensible cost. And only get them for Addy to wear. I'm a hardass about Addy Things for Addy only and if you don't like it, suck a fuck.

Authenticity: The color and design of the dress are very authentic, especially the dropped sleeves and pleated skirt. Calico was a nice print for trim if not extremely fancy. The bonnet is also simply constructed and Addy wears it often through the series with her outfits. While the set is not very fancy, this makes sense given that they were extra clothes that Miss Caroline had for runaway slaves. The underwear are appropriately white and trimmed well, the stockings are dark and basic, and the shoes are dark and sturdy. And seeing as slaves would run away with bundles to carry things, the kerchief is correct. The only non-authentic parts are parts that, by logic, are adjusted for a doll. Like elastic.

Appropriateness to Character: Well, duh. Addy's meet clothes and bonnet are a gift from Miss Caroline and are her first freedom clothes; the half dime, kerchief, and gourd come with her on the run away from slavery; the cowrie shell necklace is a gift from her mother and beyond that from her great grandmother Aduke. So, you know, don't put her shit on other dolls. That's a jerk ass move.

Final Grade: A for Addy! Of course. I don't hide my biases. Now, let's see how much I like the new set. I'm willing to go in without holding the old up to it.

--Neth

1 Rumors say there's not going to be much in the way of inner illustrations. I can live with that, since I have the old books in so many forms. And if you want the illustration copies, you can likely find the books secondhand everywhere. Caroline would probably be the hardest since she's only been out two years, so maybe you should get them now if you want them.
2 I am likely to get BeForever!Addy, compare her to OldSkool!Addy,  and then turn her into an independent character.
3 Need help? Follow these steps on Bean's site with the pattern you have. Add to the shoulder, subtract from the sleeve, even out the lines. Yes, this is advanced sewing, and I'll show it more when I do some designing posts.
4 My mom can sew like a motherfucker. And so can I.
5 Learn more about underwear here.
6 Josefina mixed it up with the rebozo, but that counted.
7 Since it's on the cover of her new books, I'd like to think yes!
8 DuckTales, Whoo-hoo!
9 And considering that Samantha used to come with an authentic Indian head penny and Molly came with a real steel head penny, I can see why they say "copy."

15 comments:

  1. Ohhh Addy's meet dress. One of my absolute favorites, perhaps because it was all the clothing my Addy had for a long time. I like the stripes though, because they are woven into the fabric. I can actually feel the design which is always nifty.

    Someday... someday I will find that cowrie shell.

    Also, alas, no original stockings or shoes or accessories, but my Addy does have the shoes and socks set.

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  2. Do you feel bad about Addy getting a new posh taffeta dress? and new books? I know I do
    Laura

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    Replies
    1. I am actually pretty excited for the new changes. Fact is the Historicals have been in kind of a rut, and the Best Friends didn't do it to kick the Historicals into better sales. Plus, Addy with new things is almost always a plus.

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    2. Its true! people havent been buying so much historical stuff because it wasnt promoted hard enough. I hope a historical movie comes out sooner or later. I also wish they braught back the craft books, looms, cookbooks etc. and new outfits for the children!
      Laura

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  3. they must make the historicals trendy and fashionable the way they did it with GOTY. AG did become a status symbol for kids, well I hope being geeky and quoting from the books will become just as fashionable as getting a spa chair or painted toenails for your doll. I am not a hater of MyAG or GOTY, I understand they are neccessary for the sake of diversity (you just cant push all american children of all racial backgrounds in the historical line at the same time) and they reflect modern day issues, but I just feel like many GOTY stories have been completed in a rush and are not as deep as the historical books, not as nurturing. so GOTY is a musthave for any kid now while historicals are being pushed in the background.
    I hope with the beforever line it will change. still heartbroken over retiriment of cecile and Marie grace. I know their collection wasnt moving arund well, but they could have spiced up the outfits, redone the weird hairstyles to make the dolls more appealing... cecile was the first and the only black AG doll that had fancy dresses like samantha and could have tea parties and all that stuff rich white dolls did. plus she was smart and beautiful. why didnt more black girls buy her? While I was still living in the US I babysat a few african american children and if some of them had AG, it was all MyAG dolls. it feels as if modern moms are no longer pushing the histoical thing on their kids instead they just get them an expensive trendy toy with a matching pink dress. so cecile wasnt selling well and now they got rid of her. too bad but I`ll survive.
    Laura

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  4. Part of me is a bit disappointed about the revamp, just because I remember what they did to Felicity (I still much prefer her first meet dress to the second). They better not ruin Addy. I do want her badly; Cecile is my only AA doll and feels a bit lonely (and a bit token-ish in the white girl's mostly-white doll collection). Fingers crossed that the new meet outfit and revamped books are as good as the old ones!

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    1. I'll likely be comparing Felicity's first Meet to her second--I don't have the first meet accessories so there will be hella knock offs. I actually like both, though I like the purple one better.

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  5. Thanks for the close-up photos. Does your Addy's collar have tiny piping around it? Or is that a bit of the under collar peeping out? Mine definitely has no piping. And the stripes on her collar are closer to horizontal than vertical. I recently bought Addy because I really, really wanted her in her double pink dress. I was planning to get the current one new, but instead I got one on eBay because she was one of those like-new, display-only dolls, and she came with all of her accessories. For some reason no one was bidding on her auction, so I was able to get her for very little.

    From your description, she seems to have the old boots with old laces. (I love your detailed clothing reviews.)

    By the way, since you seem to know so much about clothing of the period, can you tell me what "bronze boots" are? I've run across the phrase in L.M. Alcott's novels -- most notably in An Old Fashioned Girl.

    Thanks,

    C.B.

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    1. That's the other side of the collar peeping out. There's no piping. The stripes on her collar are cut in such a way that they look horizontal on the back but slanted on the front.

      I think the bronze boots, from what I can tell, are just a fashionable color. Sort of like a kid insisting they had to have red sneakers. Don't hold me to that.

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  6. I'm really glad you posted this because I never noticed that you can shorten the length of Addy's necklace. It always bothered me that it hung down to her waist!

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  7. Do you have any links to the new BeForever meet outfits and other outfits/accessories? Freaking love your blog, btw.

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    1. We've been talking about in on AG Collectors--one thread is here: http://agcollectors.boardhost.com/viewtopic.php?id=453

      (there is mad bicker going on but so rolls AGC)

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  8. Do you have any idea how different Kaya's new meet outfit is going to be? Not sure if I should buy her next or wait until the revamp.

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  9. Huh. I bought my Addy quite recently - December 2013 - and her boots have the plastic soles and embroidered grommets, but the "old-style" round laces. I wonder what the deal is there, whether they use both styles indiscriminately on new dolls and you take your chances, or whether the flat laces are a replacements-only thing, or some other reason?

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  10. I got my Addy in likely 2007, and her boots have the metal grommets and flat laces combo. Thank you for posting about which side to tie Addy's bonnet: I never realized it was something even -to- tie to one side. And the underthings for the 1800s historical girls confuses me endlessly; I have given up trying to remember if a given set of bloomers is Addy's or Josefina's, hah.
    I was later given a second Addy that was found at a yard sale, a PC Addy with the soft eyelashes. Her problem is that her earrings have given her green ear, bah. (and her hair was a fragile ruin, but a Downy Dunk worked miracles and saved the day. Her hair is now just as nice as the Addy's I had from new.) I may try the Remove-Zit method of stain removal, because if I send her to AG for a fix they'll just give her a new head, which I don't want.
    Re: Cecile: I am afraid I don't care for her face mold. If they had used Addy's face mold for Cecile, I would have bought her so fast my credit card would be whimpering, haha. But... idk. I just didn't like that mold. (Or Marie Grace's, either. Something about them doesn't seem quite AG to me; they look more like knockoff dolls.) I did buy some of their clothing I liked, but a lot of it seemed to be targeted at little girls (the pastel pink and green costumes) and... idk. I was left cold by it.

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