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SIDESHOW COLLECTIBLES X DC COMICS

We are excited to announce our collaboration with Sideshow Collectibles and DC Comics, which debuted at pop culture mecca SDCC 2016. Being long -time comics fans it's a thrill to interpret the DC pantheon and Batman's world. We created a collection of 9 doll's which will debut 2017 for mass market. Check out our full interview at SIDESHOW where we talk super hero history, process and the evolution of the super hero's costume.

Elements Premium Accessories

Inspired by the prints, textures and colors of the moment, we've taken the dynamic ease of ready-to-wear and the grandeur of couture for our Elements premium accessories. We've created 2 styles of luxury, silk maxi-print scarves, evoking the beauty and playful best of fashion. Giving you a timeless, fun ready-to-wear and go piece that you can cherish through the seasons.

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Valentine's at 5th Ave Chocolatiere

This season we share the love with 5th Ave Chocolatiere. In Japan, Valentines day takes a very special turn, as gifting to friends and love ones has a it's on unique tradition. Finding the very special piece starts in January with the beginning of the Chocolate Festival. Check out our Valentines collaboration in department stores throughout Japan for our very special packaging and our one of kind Valentine's Kouklita. 

BEYONCÉ x KOUKLITAS

Life imitates art! Beyoncé and her McQueen Kouklita featured in her recent video! It was a very happy surprise seeing this on stage. Congrats on the amazing performance and new video release!

Bringing the AY Touch to Nancy Drew: Codes and Clues

Teaming up with award winning video game creators, HER InteractiveAY Collective was tapped for character concept and redesign for the beloved super sleuth Nancy DrewIn the new Nancy Drew: Codes & Clues, HER Interactive debuts our new young Nancy Drew with a modern, tech-savvy look, introducing the fan favorite Nancy, to a whole new generation. Nancy and friends launch via digital shorts, unveiling the game release for spring 2016. Check out her debut here:

Current Obsessions: REDBERRY DOLL

I discovered REDBERRY DOLL on Instagram a few weeks ago and knew I had to have one-- they are brilliant little 1:6 scale dolls completely created by Chinese artist Qing Xiao. REDBERRY DOLL is part of a movement of of Asian doll makers who redefine the meaning of an art doll. They utilize traditional mass techniques, but do everything themselves, from creating original sculpts, facial screenings, outfits and packaging design in extremely limited quantities-- and then basically 'customizing' their own work.  These beauties capture the essence of a vintage Licca doll with the charm of Blythe and the nostalgia of childhood. 

The dolls are currently only available in Asia right now and I was lucky enough to be here for him to send me a few-- and now they're sold out! Keep up with this great artist as he continues on his dolly quest. 

A quick snap I took of one of my Redberry Beauties at Hong Kong's SKY 100. 

A quick snap I took of one of my Redberry Beauties at Hong Kong's SKY 100. 

  

Resurrection of Monstress: A Love Story...

Before Monster High gingerly captured the minds and loving hearts of the masses, there was another line of lady monsters, descended from the iconic Universal Monsters with an anime twist...

Released in the late 90's, Resurrection of Monstress featured a bevy of hyper sexulized female versions of the Classics: Franken Stella! Curia the Vampire! Wolfinica the crescent moon Werewolf! Gilleala of the Black Lagoon! A Rave Witch and the Masked Phanteana of the Paradise! (plus 2 un-produced ladies: Death and the Mummy)...

Riffing on the McFarlane level of detail and anatomy, they are created to close-of-the-century perfection by Character designer Yasushi Nirasawa and sculptor Kenji Ando. Both artist are steeped pretty deep in beloved anime franchise work (collectively) Ghost in the Shell, Vampire Hunter D, Kamen Rider, Hellraiser, Iron Man, and many more projects with toy giant Bandai.

These girls SLAY Monster High in depth, detail, design and accessory volume. Each girl is equipped with a back story tying them to their respective monster lore, sometimes even written diary-style in the first person (suspiciously close to Monster High packaging stunts…) This Halloween season i'm thrilled to have found this entire collection in an after market , cherishing the bride of frankenstein redux as goth adjacent teen, it gives me complete  new adult satisfaction to unbox this mysterious and forgotten line, just in time for the spooky festivities….


The Doll People: Pat Henry

The Doll People is a regular feature that highlights individuals in the doll community.

Patricia Henry is well known within the doll collecting community as the creator and editor in chief of one of the industry's top doll publications, Fashion Doll Quarterly. She was an early supporter of my work, and works aggressively behind the scenes to keep doll collecting relevant, exciting, and innovative.

1. Name, and where to find you! Pat Henry -- website: www.fdqmedia.com / instagram: pathenry14/ Twitter/pathenry14

2. Where are you based - New York City

3. Dolly Career Title - Collector/Artist/Photograher/Blogger/Teacher/Student/Author/Critic

4. Day Job- Publisher of FDQ, a fashion doll collector's magazine/Adjunct Asst. Professor of Photography @ The Fashion Institute of Technology in New York.   

5. Current Doll Obsession - Kingdom Doll

6. Current Non Doll Obsession- Old Fashions (The cocktail), Wolf Alice (The Band), Vintage Dior, Game of Thrones.

7. Name something you're doing tomorrow - Photographing a select group of one of a kind dolls from a Gene collector's estate.

8. Name and type of your first doll you remember loving- Titian Swirl Ponytail Barbie Doll.

9. How do you get to sleep - Lay down. Done.

10. When I play with my dolls I draw, shoot, write, obsess. Repeat. 

11. Name 3 past doll obsessions - Gene Marshall, Tyler Wentworth, Volks Super Dollfie 16.

12. Greatest Dolly Extravagance - Selling exclusive dolls through the magazine.

13. Favorite TV show of the moment- "The Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt"

14.  Favorite Era of Barbie- 1964-1968

15. Social Media of Choice- Facebook...moving quickly to Instagram.

16. My Friends and Family think my hobby is my passion and my job.

17. Favorite way to find/discover/buy new dolls - The interwebs!

18. Music of the Moment - Triple J "Unearthed" radio show from Australia.

19. Describe your dream doll- Kingdom Doll's Brighton and Brunel are fulfilling my "classic" and "edgy" needs in my collection.

20. Do you collect non doll things? - Film, Fashion, Photography, & Books.

LOVE, HATE, or MEH

 - Monster High- Love--very clever concept!

- Doll Customizing- Meh, so few do it well.

- The Kardashians- Hate

- Ever After High- Meh

- Selfies- Hate

- Barbie- Love, always will.

- Game of Thrones-Love.

- BJDs- Love, jointing has made dolls work on an entirely new level.

- Beyonce-Meh.

- Tonner- Love, Marley has been a wonderful surprise.

- Ebay- Hate; I prefer selling directly on my site.

- Integrity- I loved the early years of Fashion Royalty.

- Disney Princesses- Loved them on film. Memes and dolls, not so much.

- Cats Allergic; I am a doll Person.

- Blythe- Like.

MARKETING TO ME: SKELETOR'S LAIR at COMIC CON

Being a huge Masters of the Universe Fan, I was thrilled to see SUPER7’s Comic Con pop-up “Skeletors Lair. ”

This pop-up offered nostalgia rich merch that few people could say no to. By bringing us “What-if” Collaborations that hit home with the adult consumer, they breathe continuing life to the Masters line. 

This year brought us amazing pieces such as “Mossman Chia Pet”- a terracotta recast of the classic Mattel figure, ready to blossom into your very own Chia Master of the Universe.

Also a riff on Mattel’s pocket sized M.U.S.C.L.E figures, little guys I would trade and throw at childhood friends/enemies. By adding “M.O.T.U.S.C.L.E” they gave us pint sized versions of classic characters.

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If you’ve moved beyond figures, but still hold that boyhood candle, they offered a sensible and AWESOME glassware set featuring the original painted figure art of Skeletor’s league of goons.

Super 7 first hit my radar with their ReAction collection, a partnership with Funko. This line of toys riffs off the beloved Kenner 3 ¾ scale figure that found it’s way into my heart with the original Star wars figures.

ReAction re-imagines 80’s, 90’s and contemporary TV franchises in this traditional toy scale, giving us toys from basically EVERY film that Funko has a license to. This really hit a special note for me. Brands like Super7 play the fanboy’s heart strings with precision by offering would-be-never-was products and then some.

This bodes well for toy lovers:

In the 21st century, there is nothing too childish. But will your interest eventually grow up?

-Danny

Cabbage Patch Quandaries

Like many children of the eighties, I owned many a beloved Cabbage Patch Kid. The signature on the back, "Xavier Roberts", meant many things-- mainly, that there was a little boy out there who grew up and made a line of dolls that affected American culture in a very big way. Little did I know, the little boy was actually a grown man who was appropriating the work of another artist.

In today's social media ready culture, this kind of appropriation would be hard to pull off. It's quite easy to imagine artist Martha Nelson Thomas, selling her original "Doll Babies" on Etsy, and a traceable email exchange between creator and thief that could be used in a copyright lawsuit-- but this was long before the era of the internet. How many more beautiful ideas out there do you think are actually stolen works of art? 

Interestingly enough the feverish popularity of The Cabbage Patch Kids birthed even stranger progeny-- The Garbage Pail Kids-- grotesque kiddie characters that were a reaction against the cutesy sweetness of the 'originals'. Xavier sued and settled out of court, when the Garbage Pail Kids agreed to alter their appearance and logo-- but by then it was too late, the trend, for everyone, had passed.

- Andrew 

The Patchwork Girls

“Whee, but there’s a gaudy dame ! Makes a paint-box blush with shame.  Razzle-dazzle, fizzle-fazzle !  Howdy-do, Miss What’s-your-name ? “

-L. Frank Baum, The Patchwork Girl of Oz 

We love a little OZ! When we re-discovered this little gem of a character, while cleaning my childhood room, it made our cogs turn.

The Oz books have long held their place as the penultimate American Fairy Tale, creating a mythology that has lived on stage, screen, and a myriad of doll interpretations and merchandise opportunities. The Patchwork Girl, however, a much beloved character by those who know the series, has never found her spotlight in any of the genres outside of the books themselves--even though she is said to be the inspiration for Raggedy Ann and Sally from A Nightmare Before Christmas. Only appearing in modern media by way of an original Mickey Mouse club CBS Walt Disney special, “The Rainbow Road to Oz”, and a title film directed by Baum himself in 1913, it would take until this moment for the Patchwork Girl to shine again in a stand alone light.

L. Frank Baum was leagues ahead of his time with his creation. She is a proto-feminist, independent woman, kaleidoscopic counterpart and love interest to the Scarecrow. Imbued with an abundance of magic, life, creativity, the Patchwork Girl is loaded with brains and sass for plenty of adventure.

Designed for self-expression and play and riffing on the classic rag-doll, the AY Patchwork Girls infuse the essence, vibrant look, and girl power attitude of OZ into a re-imagined, high-end take on up-cycling. Taking form from Andrew’s classic couture, clothed bodied fashion dolls, the Patchwork Girls repurpose lustrous printed fabric remnants and reimagines them into modern, pose-able art objets, in a playful, chic and totally hands on fashion doll. We want you to style, design and get in touch with that inner play. The Patchwork Girls can fit in most 1/6th scale clothes and wear 16” doll sized shoes for virtually endless re-styling and play. Their yarn hair has the perfect body for hair styling, braiding and clipping. Or take a note from Andrew’s style notebook and create your own clothes from your choice of materials that are ripe for a new life!

--Danny 

- For the complete set of images of the debut collection of The Patchwork Girls, click here. For available Patchwork Girls for purchase, click here. 


Heroes & Villains : Masters of The Universe

A few years ago I was invited to contribute some artwork to a charity event hosted by David Mason Chlopecki and Bradford Shellhammer called Skeletor Saves. I was knee deep in dolls for Galeries Lafayette at the time, but I couldn't resist doing something- He Man & the Masters of the Universe and its sister show, She-Ra, have long been one of my deepest points of reference and inspiration. 

I decided to create a series of illustrations based off a selection from the wide cast of villains and heroes, but since I have always drawn more women than men, I wasn't sure if I was up to the challenge. To my surprise, once I started drawing I couldn't stop-- all I had to do was find the softer side of these hypermasculine beasts, and in a strange way-- many of them feel like portraits of many young men I have known. Look forward to more in this series, as well as some Etherian beauties in the future...and Danny won't let me rest until I make a muscle doll who can live in some of these costumes! Which hero or villain from your favorite show would you like to see re-imagined AY style? 

-- Andrew 

Adventures in Action Figures

Falling in love with old favorites. There's nothing more satisfying than pure nostalgia in your hands. 

- Danny 

Fabrizio Viti's Dollspiration

Fabrizio Viti is the Shoe Style Director at Louis Vuitton. A few years ago LV made this video as an homage to his 'dollspiration'. I don't know how I missed it! Apparently he has a massive Enchanted Doll collection, and the Popovy Sisters just posted a thank you gift he sent them on Instagram-- I bet it was good! It looks like this video stars a lot of his 16" girls-- and their shoes of course ! 


Spring Blossoms

Spring is upon us! It is a time of transformation. Many of my friends know, that I look at my own body like a canvas, and have been known to turn myself into a living doll-- usually with the help of my very talented friends. 

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