EAH Bunny to Bunny head swap

Bunny Blanc re-headed

Not long ago I bought one of the recent dolls from Ever After High – The Archery Club Bunny Blanc. I did it specifically because I liked her reboot face more than the original:

Signature Bunny Blanc (left) vs Archery Club Bunny Blanc (right)

However, I found everything else to be far superior on the original release, and that including her body…

My intention from the start was to swap the heads on these two. I had never swapped heads before, so I was certainly a little nervous! I tried finding some advice online. I did find a few photos and videos, but all in all, I feel like nothing out there can thoroughly guide you through the process. You need to feel it for yourself to judge how much force you need to apply, and wiggle things around until the head comes off.

Nonetheless, here are a few tips that may make the process a little easier:

  • Carefully heating the head will soften it – some people recommend using a hair dryer, or putting the doll in a plastic bag and dipping her head down in very warm water (I went with the latter method)
  • Try removing the head from the ‘bad’ body first – the body is more likely to break (the parts inside the neck) than the head, so you probably want start with the poorer body for practice
  • This is what the neck peg looks for Ever after High. See the plastic getting white from the strain? These are the most endangered parts. Also, it is these thin prongs that you will need to somehow wiggle out through the narrow neck hole, probably one at a time.

 

EAH neck peg

I make it sound scary, huh? It was a little scary for me, but many people do this regularly with no casualties ๐Ÿ™‚ Pulling the head off is the difficult part. Slipping the new head on isn’t much of an issue.

Overall, everything went well for me – hurray!

Personally, I feel like this Bunny face-up is the prettiest and the most true to her character so far. I was expecting to see lots of head swaps with it, but I couldn’t find a single photo online. I do have a theory now why it may be so. Unfortunately, the skin tone match between the two dolls I used isn’t perfect:

Her body has a peachy undertone, and her face has a cool bluish undertone. The difference is easily noticeable when you look for it, but I feel like it isn’t particularly distracting otherwise. She kind of looks like some of us look like with make-up on, maybe? The difference is also less clear when she has her arms down, the white fluff of her vest obscures her neck.

Another thing worth taking into account is that her new head is slightly smaller, and her headband sits more loosely. If you move the doll it may slide off, but it stays on fine on display on the shelf.

Finally, the Archery head doesn’t have her ears pierced. I have seen a tutorial suggesting that it is possible to pierce them yourself, and I’m considering it. Frankly, though, her earring were never all that visible to begin with, so I’m not in a huge rush.

Overall, the re-headed Bunny is not perfect because of the slight colour discrepancy. It also bugs me that I reward the manufacturer’s mistakes with both releases by buying not one, but two dolls! But all in all, I feel like the resulting doll looks very much like the doll we deserved in the first place – both sweet like her character and properly articulated. A slight mismatch or not, I do enjoy her in this form way more than any of her official releases.

P.S. I almost forgot! This is what she would look like in her Archery clothes:

 

 

 

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Holly’s Journey

Today I have a couple of photos I took this very morning. There will be trains, tracks, a suitcase, and the beautiful Holly O’Hair from Ever after High.

Holly O'Hair

The idea for these photos started with this little tin suitcase. I found it in a variety shop – anything doll sized is a great find! There were many designs, but this one in particular looked kind of realistic. Its colours reminded me of Holly.

I for one did not have to travel far to find the right spot for the photos. I live so close to railway tracks that I hear train sounds at home – but don’t worry, you do get used to it ๐Ÿ™‚ I have passed the bridge over the tracks countless time and knew exactly where to head for a nice railway-themed autumn view. I was only a little embarrassed as people passed me by…

I must admit I was a little tense letting her stand free on the railing so far above the ground, but thankfully, no dolls were harmed today.

I originally made this dress for Cerise last year,ย but I think it suits Holly very well too. I did have trouble finding the right shoes – all these richly embellished EAH shoes may look stunning with their original outfits, but paired with something more realistic they look over the top. I settled for Apple White’s basic shoes, but I do wish I had something a little simpler.

Thankfully, a misty autumn morning turned out to complete the picture rather well. Full-on sunlight tends to tint doll complexion garish orange, but I managed to avoid it.

Isn’t Holly absolutely stunning? I have had the O’Hair twins for nearly a year, but by some terrible neglect, I have only had them in one Christmas photo shoot before today.

This is in the nearby train station. As always, trying to make the doll look to scale is a little tricky. I lifted her up by standing her on a bench, but having nothing to lean on, she needed a stand. Luckily, Holly has more than enough hair to hide its clamps ๐Ÿ™‚

I kind of like this next photo, because it’s something different. The only downside is that people sleeping on benches in train stations is not usually a positive picture… She is a princess, though, maybe she can pull this off.

I’ll be the first to admit the colours here are perhaps a bit odd:

I was going for a ‘vintage’ and ‘filter’ look, but its definitely an arbitrary mixture of tints ๐Ÿ™‚ I may have to wash her hair, too. It was sweeping the train station all morning… I like to keep myself and my belongings clean and hygienic, but sometimes you need to get a little dirty to get things done.

Enjoying a little snack ๐Ÿ™‚

I did not plan ahead to try to capture an actual train, in fact, had I known the schedule, I would have probably tried to avoid any departures and presence of people they tend to attract. In the end, I managed to keep up my work despite two pairs of travellers’ eyes in the vicinity, watching, and was rewarded with the appearance of the train that they were waiting for.

Taking photos of dolls in the public always makes me a little tense, but I endured. And I am glad I did – I must say I am happy with the photos. I hope I will be able to take advantage of this beautiful autumn weather again before the world turns into Novermber’s muddy greyness.

EAH “Archery Club” Bunny Blanc: Review & Comparison

Archery Club Bunny Blanc

Archery Club Bunny Blanc with her bow

Signature Bunny Blanc was my first Ever After High doll. She captivated me with her unique design, colour scheme and personality. A lot of time seems to have passed since then, and a lot seems to have changed in Ever After High. Let’s see what the latest release of this character has to offer!

Shall we start with the packaging? It is in many ways similar to the older one:

Bunny Blanc box

The common themes are the purple-to-red gradient and peach-toned background. What’s different is the background print – now featuring an archery target and arrows. Neither packaging strikes me as a masterpiece, but the original looks perhaps slightly more finished. Another difference lies in the shape. While the former was more boxy, the new one is more of a blister with a slanted front:

The back of the blister introduces us to other characters in the line:

I have seen some beautiful box art with EAH, but this is neither really good or really bad.

The important part is of course the doll – straight out of the box:

Note that there is no stand included in the set. This one was generously lent by another Royal.

Her strongest aspect is probably her face, arguably the best one on Bunny so far.

EAH Archery Club Bunny Blanc

I do think she looks sweet and friendly, much like she does in the show, and she is not cross-eyed! For me, that’s a straight up upgrade ๐Ÿ™‚ However, having red and watched numerous reviews, I am aware that this point is up for debate. Some think it’s great, some think there is too little resemblance to the old one. Some even think she looks like an elderly lady ๐Ÿ™‚ Which release does it better? Will have a look at both later ๐Ÿ™‚

There is a very slight smudge of dark paint near her left eye.

The hair is gelled stiff. I’m not particularly bothered by that – unlike the ‘glue-headed’ dolls from a few years ago, the hair can be easily restored to full glory with a simple wash – and I certainly will do just that.

Her headband has a fairly nice sculpt, unfortunately, it is lacking any painted details whatsoever ๐Ÿ˜ฆ The details resemble a wreath of leaves and a pocket watch.

Next up is her outfit. Unfortunately, I can’t that I’m impressed this time around…

Her dress is the plainest piece of fabric I’ve ever seen on an Ever after High doll. It is very loosely in-keeping with Bunny’s theme, but only through the general minty colour. The floral design looks un-inspired and the cut is nearly the simplest it can be. As an amateur sewist I can confirm that sleeveless dresses are one of the simplest options to make, so, whenever I can, I like to buy toys with more elaborate clothes. Even I can make something that looks like this.

Worse still, the pattern only goes halfway to the back!

I cannot be persuaded to believe that Mattel is too poor to make a dress with pattern all over it. The dolls are not at all cheap enough to make up for this, too. This does upset me. Not even knock offs do this, to the best of my knowledge.

If there is a positive, it would be this chest-piece. It could certainly use some paint, and the choice of colour is questionable, but the sculpt itself is very intricate. I do see a decent design with a lot of potential for customization. As it is out of the box, it isn’t enough to help the overall impression by a lot, though.

We now come to perhaps the most hated aspect of recent EAH releases – the infamous moulded on leggings. I must say I agree. Not only are they the same garish, un-Bunny colour, they also have protruding sculpted details. This means it would be extra hard to cover them up with fabric tights or leggings. I think I could potentially get over moulded tights if they were smooth and a more gentle colour, but the real stuff is of course the best option.

I’m conflicted about her shoes… They are not what I wanted to see, and not something I needed in my collection. Once again, they lack any painted detail. On the other hand, I guess they aren’t ugly…

I think they are fine in themselves, but they do not really fit the character or the theme. I mean, yes, there are many floral accents in the outfit, but I’m not yet convinced they make sense.

The shoes may still see some use from me in a more fantasy-themed stylisation. Even in that case, I still have one point of criticism for them: while they are overall floral and delicate, the heavy wedge detracts from the dainty feel.

The shoes feel soft rubbery, perhaps slightly more so than the signature Bunny’s.

Bunny’s bow completes her collection of light pink, unpainted accessories:

They certainly tried to give it some style with intricate carvings. The hourglasses and the cute bunny tail do indicate that this is Bunny’s own property. This time around, I wish it was a little simpler and more versatile, but this is totally just my inclination to re-use and share accessories between dolls speaking.

Are you curious what her pink-purple legs look like, all clothes removed? I sure was.

It looks odd, given my knowledge of how tights and underwear work, but I suppose it’s best not to dwell on this.

As far as articulation goes, this doll has a reduced number of joints. The legs don’t bend, and they have a smaller range of motion to the sides. They do move all the way forward and slightly to the back. The arms and elbows move all the normal ways you might expect them to. The wrists are an exception, with no joints they obviously don’t move at all.

The joints in the arms were a little stiff, but overall functional. The head is as usual,with movement to the sides as well as up and down.

She can also hold her bow:

Before I got started on my comparison section, I thought it was only fair that I wash her hair, since my signature Bunny also has had hers washed. In the process I noticed that she looks absolutely adorable when wet! ๐Ÿ™‚

I also noticed she looks very pretty, and somehow more mature, with her bangs swept off her face:

I really like her in this style!

With a little shaking, patting and waiting, she was soon all dry & ready. Despite the wash, the hair maintained the general shape and style, and that’s probably a positive.

Archery Club Bunny Blanc vs. Signature Bunny Blanc

Let’s see how the new Bunny compares to the original.

Looking at both doll side by side, there are two major things that strike me. First, the colours on the new one are more saturated and toy-like. The second observation is that the Archery bunny’s face is much easier on the eyes…

I had always known that signature Bunny has a problem with her eye print, but until I had another to compare, the problem was somehow less striking. Now there is no escaping the fact that she is wall-eyed.

Signature Bunny Blanc vs. Archery Club Bunny Blanc

The two dolls do have quite a different appearance for being the same character. The eye-colour is the same and even the make-up is almost identical – even though it didn’t have to be. It’s like they want to stress the continuity in the face of the new developments. The eye shape and the face-shape are very different, with a different expression, in a way that almost suggest a different personality or attitude. Personally, I think the changes are for the best. The new Bunny may be unlike her previous doll selves, but she seems more true to her character from the series.

Notice also that there is a slight difference in the skin tone. The Archery doll has more blue undertones.

Neither doll is flawless when it comes to rooting, but I think that the archer girl (here on the left) is looking a little better:

Her hair is also more shiny. It is also a tad more soft and overall very nice to touch.

Moving onto their accessories, let’s have a look at their hairbands. They are quite similar in the general shape. The older one obviously looks more finished with four colours vs. just solid pink for the new one. Both have a nice sculpt: the top hat suits Bunny’s style perfectly, but the simpler and more organic band on the right also has its place – it will go better with a different kind of outfit. I plan to paint in some details and use both as appropriate.

Next up I intended to compare their dresses, but their isn’t much room for comparison…

Not only because of the far superior design on the left, but also because the one on the right isn’t much of a dress to begin with ๐Ÿ˜ฆ

The shoes are very different too, but I do not hesitate to say that the black and white boots are far better. They are designed to suit the doll’s personality. They complement the outfit. They have painted details (but note that I painted in the bunny tails myself). They were actually a big part of why I wanted to own this doll. The pink shoes do little more than prevent the doll from hitting her toes on rocks and furniture, and perhaps providing hope for a better use in the future with a different outfit.

While the dolls share the same petite figure, there is a big difference in articulation (with the original having full number of typical Ever After High joints).

Interestingly, both dolls have one irremovable item of clothing each. While the gloves are smaller, they still can get in the way of designing new looks. On the other hand, they are overall a positive accent in the original design, as opposed to the garish leggings that don’t even work that well with the doll’s out-of-the-box look. Bottom line, the hands are removable – did you know that Draculaura’s hands fit & match Bunny Blanc just right?

Let’s wrap it all up.

Neither Bunny is perfect, both of them have their strengths. The signature doll is definitely a richer and more sophisticated design. The Archery Club doll could perhaps be excused for being simpler, since she is supposed to be a budget doll, but I’m not even certain it’s fair, since the prices so far are very close (at least in my area). My conclusion on the price point aspect will be that I can understand a reduced number of accessories, but I do think the ones she does have deserve more attention than this. Finally, looking back to older budget lines, like the Mirror Beach, the ‘budgets’ in the past have been altogether more interesting – unless of course you’re an avid archery fan.

Signature Bunny Blanc was a great doll with a major flaw – a distracting face-paint defect. She was overall an imperfect doll worth having. The Archery Line Bunny can proudly claim decent execution of an unimpressive design. Her biggest strength is her lovely, show accurate face, and frankly, that’s why I bought her… to be a head-donor ๐Ÿ™‚

What do you think about the latest releases from Ever After High? Also, stay tuned for the upcoming Bunny-to-Bunny head-swap ๐Ÿ™‚

EAH – “Getting Fairest” Apple White

Today, I’d like to share a few photos of one of my favorite Ever After High dolls, Apple White, as seen in the “Getting Fairest” line:

Apple White Getting Fairest

I was in love with this doll since the earliest days of my EAH collecting, but for the longest time it seemed I would have to do without her – the doll was nowhere to be found, certainly not for a reasonable price. Finally, she popped up for sale – second hand, sure, but evidently from a very careful first owner, and it was good enough for me. They even sent her strapped back in her in her original box!

After I bought her, as it often happens, a few other ones appeared online – even a new one, for roughly the same price. Oh well. I’m just glad to have her.

While the doll came with every single one of her original accessories – and even a few extras – her hair had undergone some significant changes. This line, as beautiful as it is, suffers from the ‘glue head’ syndrome. Having had since 2013 to slowly leak out, the glue had thoroughly soaked her hair. The previous owner had also redone her curls, but there was no saving the hairstyle while trying to remove glue.

I washed her hair with warm water (not hot – heat might loosen more of the glue in the head) and when the hair dried, I combed in some cornstarch. The hair is nice and dry, but the original curl is all gone. The gentle waves above have been created by simply storing her with her hair in tied in a braid.

Because of the changes to the original appearance, I thought it wouldn’t really be fair to hold her up to review scrutiny. While taking the photos I intended to rather enjoy her beauty – but for anyone considering to purchase her, the pictures do show her in her original outfit and make-up.

It’s perhaps a little odd that the only Apple White doll that I own doesn’t have her signature red lips, but if I’m at all bothered, it’s only in principle – I think she looks gorgeous with the soft make-up. The design of her outfit is lovely and mature in taste – meaning it doesn’t overwhelm an adult beholder with excessive colour, glitter and silly print. Although, I suppose it is also mature in another sense of the word. Perhaps unintentionally, the doll looks kind of… suggestive.

It’s in the ultra-short red nightie and in the stare…

On a different note, that’s a well made nightie. The print goes all the way around, the hem is decorated with real lace, and the sleeves are sewn-in tiny separate pieces! They don’t make them like they used to… Things like this are the reason that nearly all the dolls on my wish list are releases from a few years ago.

Perhaps I should point out that the above dress wasn’t a part of the set, but it still suits her nicely.

This doll is extremely graceful. I do think it’s my favorite rendition of Apple White, and that’s quite an accomplishment for a pyjama-themed line. Other “Getting Fairest” doll did not capture my heart on thesame level, but were all fun and well-designed: I loved Briar’s romper so much I had to find a (similar) life-sized one for myselfย  ๐Ÿ™‚

I will have to see what other clothes I could make for Apple to bring out more of her beauty. But even in her jammies, she is ‘Fairest’ indeedย  ๐Ÿ™‚

Winter, Hats & Scarves

 

 

 

I am impatiently waiting for the day when I have so many doll clothes, handmade and otherwise, that I can effectively create new looks by only mixing and matching, no sewing required. But even though my collection hasn’t yet reached this point, I have been able to create a new winter look for Ashlynn Ella with minimal effort. Yay!

 

 

 

 

The only thing I had to craft were the winter cap and the scarf, and let me tell you that it was a piece of cake ๐Ÿ™‚ The cap is made following the brilliant idea from MyFroggyStuff . The scarf is of the infinity sort, and it is simply a ring of fabric cut off from the rest of that same sock. So easy and so fun!

 

 

I had made the coat for another photo shoot, starring Cerise Hood. The gloves come from a Draculaura (and are technically her hands… girls and borrowing stuff!) and the shoes are Poppy’s.

 

This last photo is my favourite, even though – it seems decent to mention – the snowflakes have been edited in in Gimp.

Ashlynn looks just as sweet in the snow as she does on a sunny beach โค

Holly & Poppy’s Christmas Preparations

Why wait until boxing day, when you can have an un-boxing day sooner?ย  ๐Ÿ™‚

I have long hoped to one day own the wonderful duo of the O’Hair sisters – Holly and Poppy, the daughters of Rapunzel, coming form the Ever After High. Not only has my dream true, I was even allowed to open the dolls before Christmas, allowing me to play with pose them for festive photos in time for the holidays!

Now I would like to share with you how I imagine the Holly and Poppy preparing for Christmas. There isn’t much to say, so feel free to sit back and watch their story unfold through picturesย  ๐Ÿ™‚

(The dolls are dressed as they were packaged, with minor exceptions. Poppy – the short haired one – isn’t wearing the scarf that she came with, because it limited her arm movement. She also isn’t wearing her ring in some shots because I initially forgot about itย  ๐Ÿ™‚ Holly needed to have her hair temporarily braided, because it was somewhat messy at the ends out from the box. That’s all. Enjoy!)

I’d like to wish you a Merry Christmas, lots of dolls and toys under your trees and in your stockings, a peaceful time spent among your loved ones and a little bit of sparkly snow outside your windowsย  ๐Ÿ™‚

A Little Yellow Coat

With the arrival of autumn, I developed a taste for warm colours. Combined with the desire to sew something that would complement Cerise Hood’s beauty, a whole set of tiny autumn clothes was brought into being. That, of course, was a few weeks ago, but it has taken this long for my colds to subside and for the weather to stop being wet, muddy, grey and altogether uncooperative.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The coat is based on a fantastic pattern by BFashions – apparently a fellow Polish doll sewist and collector! The blog is in Polish, but the pattern itself is annotated in English and the instructions are well illustrated, so I’m confident that anyone can follow it. It’s easily good enough to be sold on Etsy or so, but the author is kind enough to be sharing it for free – that’s really something to be grateful forย  ๐Ÿ™‚

I have strayed slightly from the original. I used felt and instead of properly hemming anything, I only added a purely decorative stitch at the edges – I find that felt doesn’t really fray.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The dress was also sewn especially for Cerise and intended to go with the coat. If you were to hold it in your hand you would know that it has some shortcomings, but I am satisfied with this creation. I believe that it fits Cerise in colour and style – it accentuates her charm by being girly yet simple and earthy. I really wanted something like this for her.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Given the season, I gave Cerise a scarf. This one – just like the real ones, coincidentally – is nothing but a square of hemmed fabric.The only difference being that this one wasn’t as shamelessly overpriced for what it is.

 

 

 

 

 

I had a lot of fun making the bag. It’s based on a free tutorial from http://www.howtoinstructions.org/how-to-make-bag-for-doll-step-by-step-diy-tutorial-instructions/ I had to shrink the pattern to make it the perfect size for EAH. I think I used 70% or 80% of the original size, but unfortunately I don’t really remember. I also skipped the lining. The bag opens and closesย  ๐Ÿ™‚

 

 

 

 

Finally, the bench is also my creation (but again, not my idea when it comes to the crafting procedure). When you’re taking photos of dolls, almost everything is out of scale, even the blades of grass. It helps to have a prop – like this bench – to reinforce the illusion that the doll is in a world of her own size.

If you’d like a doll bench of your own, grab some popsicle sticks and follow this great tutorial on YouTube. However, my bench is double the width of that in the video – if you’d like yours to be wider as well, you’ll need to glue together two sticks (trimmed on one side to remove the rounded end) for each plank.

 

 

 

Going to the park in December I wasn’t expecting dried leaves and grass, but I guess I shouldn’t be thinking about this too hard and just be glad that nature let me catch up on autumn themed photos. Hopefully there will yet be time for winter sessions too.

 

 

Finally, my favourite photo from the set:

 

See you in winter themed postsย  ๐Ÿ™‚