Ashlynn’s Beach Holiday

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Doesn’t everyone look forward to summer, the time when the weather is great, when you can take a break from everyday chores and… pack your dolls for holidays? I sure did, and months ahead.

I imagined I would be taking one of the Animators’ girls – they would be adorable posed in the sand, doing whatever toddler things toddlers do on the beach. Alas, my imaginations were confronted with reality – the reality of my suitcase which couldn’t possibly hold a 16 inch doll – not if I also wanted to take a sweater or two, anyway. And when you’re looking for the highest concentration of summer beauty per inch, Ashlynn Ella is the perfect pick. In the end, I wasn’t even disappointed with this sudden turn of events.

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Ashlynn Ella from the Mirror Beach line (with my polymer clay ice-cream)

All Ashlynn Ella dolls seem to share a few pleasant characteristics – a lovely golden complexion, green eyes and cute, natural-looking strawberry blond hair. And yet it was the Mirror Beach version that stole my heart. It all comes down to, I think, her perfect coral lips. I just love this lip colour, on her and overall (I’ve been trying to find a matching lipstick for myself, but nothing has measured up to my expectations yet).

Coral accents appear all throughout the doll’s outfit, brightening it up and holding it together. There is also a skirt, which must be made of pure magic, otherwise I don’t know why I’m so bedazzled with it. It’s light, translucent and oddly tutu-shaped for a beach cover-up, but something about its ballerina-like charm speaks irresistibly to a girl’s heart. Let’s not forget the equally magical filigree print.

I mentioned earlier that I was only able to find this doll second hand, and even so I considered myself lucky (they were long sold out everywhere). Not having much choice I had to settle for one without the sunglasses that came with the original set.

I gave her some other beach accessories instead, such as a beach towel and binoculars. The binoculars date back to my original toy collection from my childhood. They came with a confused mishmash of knock-off Barbie accessories which included an arbitrary number of shoes per type, hats, permanently closed umbrellas, golf clubs and other beauty necessities.

Also, it was my idea to braid her hair – I like her with her hair undone, but this is cute too, and makes way more sense to meย  ๐Ÿ™‚ We wouldn’t want to get seaweed in her perfect hair, would we now?

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The doll’s swimsuit is very pretty. I would definitely wear it, only perhaps without the frills on the straps. I also appreciate the fact that it is separate from the skirt and can be used as a top to mix and match with other doll clothes.

Photographing the doll at the beach was great fun, but it turns out that not even sand is quite to scale. The ripples in the sand look more like dunes in comparison to her, and at the wrong angle the landscape takes on the appearance of a doll desert. Which could be interesting, but that’s an idea for another time.

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At least the Baltic Sea was kind enough to produce a seashell small enough for Ahslynn to enjoy ๐Ÿ™‚

Unfortunately, the Baltic doesn’t perform quite so well when it comes to the colour of the water. But I love it anywayย  ๐Ÿ™‚

Apart from the binoculars, golf clubs and such, I was also able to unearth an old Barbie photo camera. The shape was very nice, but it was one solid colour (you’ll never guess which colour ;)). My husband was nice enough to repaint it for me at 9pm the night before leaving for holidays. Because that’s when I remembered I didn’t want it (spoiler alert) pink ๐Ÿ™‚

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Sand everywhere…
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…and twice so, because I couldn’t make up my mind on the photos.

Somewhere at this point I was reminded that sand is the enemy of all cameras, toy ones and real ones alike. I briefly lost the tiny one altogether, but was able to miraculously find it by feeling in the sand in the spots I had visited. As for my real camera, I may have gotten a few grains of sand into the lens mechanism :S In the end I got it out without any permanent damage, but it was a scary moment.

…but since it was still on and open anyway, I proceeded to take these last few photos:

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Basking in the summer glow.

Even the doll has sand in her hair. And probably joints. But don’t worry, she was alright after rinsing a few times with tap water.

I enjoyed posing Ashlynn Ella at the beach – she does seem to belong there. As for the Disney dolls… maybe next year ๐Ÿ™‚

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Pretty in pink – Ashlynn Ella

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Ashlynn Ella was the second the second Ever After High doll that I set my sights on after Bunny Blanc. It so happened that the one that really charmed me was the Mirror Beach version and, alas, it seems they are all sold and gone everywhere that’s in my reach (unless you want Apple or Maddie, I saw plenty of those). I was fully satisfied when I finally I found a second-hand one online.

I decided to skip any reviews and introductions and jump right into a ‘custom’ photo shoot – I believe that a beach doll is best photographed in her basic clothingย  on an actual beach, and I’m hoping that I will be able to do this in the upcoming summer months.

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In the meantime, Ashlynn is wearing a little something that I put together and enjoying spring in the local rosarium.

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The dress is based on the first pattern I’ve made from scratch. My aim was to create the simplest t-shirt pattern possible – no shoulder seams, no separate sleeves, all from one piece. Then I added the skirt part.

I like the result visually, but the back is a work in progress. The flaps are small and do not close comfortably. It sounds like a small problem, but in my one-piece pattern there is no space left to add more fabric in-between them, if that makes sense. I hope that I will sort it out and end up with a pattern worth sharing ๐Ÿ™‚

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The shoes came with the doll, though the mold was originally used for Briar Beauty. Briar definitely isn’t the only girl who appreciates roses and rose-inspired designs.

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Ashlynn is such a beautiful, sweet doll. I’m so glad some kid out there grew out of it so that I might have it ๐Ÿ™‚

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