Friday, December 31, 2010


And a very special thank you for all your support in 2010!

May you have good health, much wealth, and supreme happiness playing with your dolls in 2011!!

Hold on to your hats in the New Year - we'll be taking you on a Fast Road to Fashion - watch for the kick off next week with our Fantasy Meets Couture Challenge!!  All will be able to vote, but only those who sign up for our FTK list will be eligible for prizes - sign up by clicking here!!

If you are looking to take the plunge in 2011 and open your own shop we welcome anyone who already has a website, AND we are still giving our free lessons for those who have yet to build their website, just contact our Manager!  

Friday, December 10, 2010

Merry Whatever You Celebrate........

...and a Happy New Year!

I have to admit I'm far from being politically correct; I  love the winter holidays no matter what they are called!

At every age I have reached through my life some new, wonderful experience has been added to my memory cache. My travels have taken me from the cold winter blasts of Virgina where I would harvest and sell mistletoe as a teenager to the sometimes summer-like temperatures in the winter of my present, southern Texas home. But no matter where I have been, sharing holiday greetings with the people who are important to me has always been a big part of celebrating the holiday season!

Here at Couture Doll Shops we value our clients and followers. We appreciate it each and every time you shop with one of our merchants just as much as we appreciate our followers who spread the word about us, and vote or give comments when we ask for them. So, from Couture Doll Shops itself, we send out a very special Happy Holiday greeting and also wish you a Prosperous New Year!!

Also, some of our shop owners who have Holiday or Winter items available have pitched in to help us salute you as well as show you an item appropriate to the season you may. find in their shops. So, let's go -- on with the greetings!!

The white feather wig sets the tone for this Frosty Fashion!  Add the details of the lace choker, crystal accented wrap for a high fashion look, or play it down to just a pretty party dress!

Either way, your Monogram will look her festive best this holiday season!  We specialize in beautiful things for beautiful doll divas!

The Olive Martini Bar is proud to serve the very best in champagnes. And your name will look devine on our free personalized label on your bottle!!

Whether you are needing custom cast bottles, champagne flutes for parties, or a complete champagne tray set, we can oblige. Standard or larger scale cocktails are available for the size doll you have - and it may not be too late to commission a customized miniature or even an OOAK creation. Contact this proprietor for all your party needs today! 

The Original Olive Martini Bar

This may or may not be a different take...for you... on Winter with an outfit aptly titled Black and Gray Winters seems quite appropriate to those of us who collect and love Ms. Ellowyne and her friends!

Winter melancholy weather brings Ellowyne and friends dressing down for the Holidays. She can be found wearing her Winter black and gray that reminds her of the gloomy winter clouds and  rain,.  It is, indeed, a Winter outfit that is most appropriate for both writing poems and wrapping presents in front the fire!.
Celebrate the holidays with one of these chic and festive cocktail dresses!

Black net lace with taupe embroidery is paired with silk dupioni in your choice of purple, black or green.  This is an ultra limited fashion, and is available for most 12" size fashion dolls.

This year pull out all the stops with this  Iced Daggers Necklace/Choker!

Hand-crafted of Swarovski Crystals and Clear Glass Daggers, this Choker will stop them in their tracks!  And don't worry about losing it as it comes with a secure Hook and eye clasp. 

Top off your fashion-forward 16" Fashion Doll's new gala outfit with this very appropriate neck jewelry.

The tree has been sprayed black and the ornaments are hand made “jewels” in crystal and various tones of purple and red. (It would look great in  a “Goth” style Christmas diorama.)  The tree skirt is a rainbow of colors with a dominant emphasis on the purple tones.  The print has an emphasis on cats, but also includes sun, moon, and  stars, some parrots, and lots of colorful wrapped packages.  

The dress is purple holographic lame’ with black beaded Alencon lace trim.  It has a center back invisible style zipper and has white underlining.

LaPetite Fashion Promenade

 Red cotton print with candy canes makes up this adorable dress.  Topped off with a 100% green wool felt hooded jacket with embroided rick rack trim; available for Bitty Bethany and Riley.
This shop owner loves little girl dolls so there are several lovely offerings for them at any time, including some specifically for bjd littles! Right now there is also a charming girngerbread outfit!! But rest assured, there is always something available for your bigger dolls too.

The Butterfly's Wing 

Special Holiday Edition Sasha is the first introduction of the Character Sasha, a very special doll indeed.  Made of the same fine JAMIEshow Resin, with a fully articulated (19 points) strung body, she is the first BJD to come with ROOTED HAIR!

Sasha comes with a rooted head cap, so you can style, comb and design her hair, or you can change her rooted head cap to a smooth cap (both caps included) so she can wear any of our fabulous JAMIEshow wigs.

She comes dressed in a fabulous Red Silk dress right off the runway, with No Heel Leather Boots, Hose, and an incredible little Faberge Resin Egg purse, which opens to reveal a mirror compact with eyeshadow.
Sasha had brown lustrous hair and brown eyes and is adorned with brown and gold eyeshadow.    She is avaiable with 2 mouth options; closed or open - you'll select one when placing your special order for this doll. Doll also includes stand. Limited Edition of 50 pcs Worldwide; begins shipping 12/16/2010.

Angelic Dreamz

"Dance with me" she says.  What gentleman wouldn't want to dance with Ellowyne in this stunning new silk gown designed especially for her?  This lavish ball gown pattern features fitted princess bodice and full flowing skirt with optional gathered ruffle at the hem and a back zipper closure.

It is a design for Ellowyne by Gary Fletcher that is also available in sizes for the 22" American Model, DeeAnna Denton, and the Cami/Antoinette dolls.

A scarlet red silk dupioni was used.  Facing the bodice pieces is suggested with lightweight woven fusible interfacing.  The gathered ruffle at the hem is created using the same fabric and a ruffle foot.  Using a gathering foot creates perfect gathers.   Notions are available as well as the pattern.

Designs by Jude

Christmas Cheer Chic is a custom designed OOAK outfit for SD dolls. This outfit includes dress, bra, necklace, hat, and wings.

This is the kind of haute clothing fit for your angel!  The dress is made from red velvet, faux leather, lots of white lace, and tulle underskirt with red lace.

Golden has a full repaint and reroot in gold with gold sparkling threads.  She has a removable costume, shoes,  and a present for her new home!  She's available now as are her friends.

Her friends include a very Victorian girl named Burgandy who has a full reroot, a hat, and a lovely ensemble.  There's also Holly Day who is dressed so sweet - yes, this is THE place on CDS for all your Kelly needs, and there's even a Holiday section!!

Wreath and other holiday jewelry sets are ready for your holiday wearing or gifting!
Necklace is a handmade chain of gold metallic, and square sequins are connected with gold plated jump rings.  The beadiing is glass, foil lined, red and green seed beads on gold plated hoops.

The earrings are beaded to match.  The clasp is an "S" hook designed for safe wearing.

Mike's Creations

A Holly Jolly Holiday is a stunning flesh colored dupioni silk tea length gown with a black sequined lace overlay and a holly leaf and berries design on the bodice.

This newest design from this shop is sure to delight any Holiday Party goer.   However, this one was made specifically for the smaller (11.5-12") doll divas.

This red velvet is lined in a butter-soft cream fabric to create this luscious holiday gown!  A pattern from Gary
Fletcher’s 2008 holiday collection was used.

This pattern features a scrunched bodice and straps that cross and snap in the back. The skirt has 7 gores and is hemmed with a sheer, sparkly red tulle fabric just right for those holiday parties. A tiny scrollwork pattern dances around the hem! This will fit most Tyler-type dolls.

Chandra is the model and is for sale separately as a Tonner Shinyuu Repaint who has experienced a complete makeover in a smoke-free studio. Her original paint was carefully removed and new features were handpainted with artist grade acrylics. All paint was sealed with UV protective sealer.

I better scurry off now - lots of eggnog drinking, shopping, and human as well as dolly doings to get done!  But please know just because everyone didn't get a chance to do a holiday or winter offering,  each and every one of the shop owners of CDS think YOU are important enough for a holiday salute.

We're blowing you a kiss and sending good holiday vibes that all you do will be special - and especially fun!  We all hope you'll visit us when you have time, and that all your dolls will be dressed wonderfully for 2011.

May you sincerely have a wonderful Holiday Season and may you be Happy and Healthy in the New Year!!

Friday, November 5, 2010

DOLLS FASHION NIGHT OUT ........Navigating Fashionably!

I hope you are enjoying/will be enjoying Dolls Fashion Night Out through the weekend - November 5 - 7! We've updated the Couture Doll Shops website so you may have to refresh your browser to see the new face.

When you get on the site there is a big red navigation bar at the top of Main Street; just click on it to go see DFNO.   Each page has a way for you to go to a shop or return to CDS.  For your convenience, here's the navigation information on the front page of DFNO:

Use the drop down menus at the top of the page to go to the mini presentations for each shop.   Just hover over a street, then click on a name to go to an individual shop!  Here is a  directory of the shops participating that shows both the shop owner and  the name of the shop they own.

Designer Drive:
A Mathews      Aurora Originals                   
K Jeffrey     Shooz by Kaz
A Castanes    Somethings Old, Somethings New
L Turk        Doll Couture by Lana
T Barner    Off the Wall Terrkat               
G Lock        Madame Rollniks
M Watson    Green Thread Design Studio           
K Cermak    The Butterfly's Wing
K Kilmer    Click Designs by Kevin               
M Adrian    Goldifrocks   
T Quintero    Mystical Rose Designs   

Main Street
C Casteel    Sweet Creations                   
E Cetera    Petra Elise Fashion Doll Couture
WL Kinnie    Wyckedry                   
A Nardone    Gothic Illusions
D Beaudin    Deni's Doll Designs               
D Brown    Chic Indulgence
M Friend    Facets by Marcia               
P Lyngard    BW Designs
C Green    Claudia Green Designs               
P Burney    Creative Couture
P Stoughton    Petite Moonbeams

Couture Court
GeoG - all 3 - Shops, Wigs, Dolls is Angelic Dreamz
S Graves    Rochelle Originals               
L Lyon        Angel Rose
G Chavez    Ooh La Laz
K Kilgoar    Karen's Elegant Stitches               
T Casey    Designs by Jude (featuring Fletcher Patterns)

There you will find pictures of new items; be sure to click on each photo to get a better view. And, at the bottom of each page is a link to go to that shop, as well as to CDS!!

We have a lot of new things in the established shops as well as the new shops that have just opened today!  The pictures here show just a few things you might find!

 Any questions, email the Manager.  Now on with the show - Sit back and enjoy!

Thursday, November 4, 2010


Have you heard about Fashion Night Out??  It's a magical night in September when designers, new and established, parade their latest creations down the runway.  It is a true celebration of talent!  And it was the inspiration for Couture Doll Shops to create our own Dolls Fashion Night Out.

The challenge went out for the CDS designers to stock their shops with one to three new items.  We had a stellar response and are so happy to present our own Dolls Fashion Night Out. 

Join us on the Couture Doll Shops ( website Friday, November 5, and continue to look over and shop with all our merchants as our presentation will be available all weekend long.   There is a red button there to make it easy for you to get in.

I hope you'll find that special "it" item and have fun!!  Rock on dollinistas!! 

Friday, September 10, 2010

Take a stroll on Designer Drive

When the idea was presented to me to manage Couture Doll Shops I had no idea how far this venture could progress in such a short time.  Was it really just January when we started taking applications for Main Street?? Since then the response to our Doll Mall has been incredible, and I've had to  hang on to my hat, fashionistas,  because no fat ladies have been singing at our Mall!!  Instead we have progressed to the point of opening yet another STREET!  And, what better street name for a place where designing rules than DESIGNER DRIVE!!

Designer Drive, the smallest of our streets, was put together primarily to satisfy the large number of requests we've been getting from people who want a doll shop but don't have a website.  But we don't anticipate it will stay small very long!  We will begin our last website classes of the year mid-October, and then more shops will roll out.  So, if you've ever wanted to do something like this - don't procrastinate - you really will be walked through this process step by step.  And, if you have a website, we will be happy to hear from you, too. With or without a website, contact us here.

But today we are here to celebrate Designer Drive's Grand Opening!  And for this Grand Opening our promotion is the Just Japanese Challenge.  Our designers could make a garment representing any Japanese style from any time period.  Of course, this is one of my faves, so boy was I excited!  Our sponsor, George Gonzalez, teased me that he thought this round of beauties might be styled something like this
Wow, I squealed, "Send her to ME!:  Of course this is the beautiful
And we are happy to be introducing Mayumi to you; a beautiful doll from a new Exclusive collection by JAMIEshow for Angelic Dreamz.  She is a 16"Resin Ball Jointed Fashion Doll.   But Mayumi is  a little different than your other BJDs; you see she is made of a new resin that George says is the finest ever made!!  Mayumi is dressed in her couture scalloped silk dress with Hobi tie, and she sports Kabuki Make Up.  Traditional Japanese wooden shoes also complete the look perfectly  Mayumi sports a removable wig, has pierced ears, and includes her own doll stand.  Be sure to visit Angelic Dreamz on Couture Court to view the entire line of these wonderful dolls.

Okay, now on to reality!  The designers for this challenge did have some very interesting entries; but they definitely took a very different design position for their entries than George suggested!!  This was a judged challenge.  Judges for the winner follow, and, of course, our FTK group picked the People's Choice.


Tamara Casey, Designs by Jude
I've admired the work ethic it must take for Tamara Casey to produce as much doll eye candy as she does.   From repaints to pattern making, this industrious woman does it all in the doll world, and does it very well.  You have only to peek in on her Designs by Jude  Yahoo Group to see the fun contests, camaraderie, and pattern specials going on over there.  So we are quite lucky she had a little time to dedicate to judging the winner of our Just Japanese Challenge.  She's a member of the Couture Doll Shops family as a cornerstone shop owner on Couture Court, and she is always up for promoting both this community while also serving as a sponsor for our sister site, Couture Doll Design Challenge.

Larraine Elcock, Couture Doll Shops
 To say Larraine Elcock is the consumate doll collector would be telling you something you might think you already know - but unless you have looked over her website which features her rather extensive collection, you cannot begin to fanthom how TOTALLY addicted Larraine is to everything doll!!  I first met Larraine when we were competing in the original Project Dollway at Home competition, and am so glad her interests in such competitions has led to her immensely popular Couture Doll Design Challenge.  Along with this enormous undertaking, she serves on the CDS Board. is the Tech for our website. and has a shop of her own on Main Street.  How she gets it all done is a mystery!!

George Gonzalez, Angelic Dreamz
The driving force and lead designer for Angelic Dreamz is George Gonzalez, someone we at CDS are happy to say is our good friend as well as a dealer member  Located in Canandaigua New York, in the Finger Lakes, is his stunning store that is rumored to have an awesome friendly staff (and that is the truth!).  And since we can't all travel there in person, we are quite lucky to be able to shop for all the many dolls and gifts Angelic Dreamz has to offer in the privacy of our homes online.  I don't know about you, but for me there is something wonderfully evil in being able to buy my dolls in my jammies! Be sure to visit them through their shop on Couture Court if you feel the same way!  Thanks, George, and the staff of Angelic Dreamz for taking the time to judge our entries!!

And now for all the winners.  All the winners will be revealed by following the instructions below.  They include our FTK drawing winner, the overall winner of Just Japanese, and our People's Choice for Just Japanese!. So let's go check it out - and then be sure to check out our new street - Designer Drive!! 

Instructions for viewing our promotion - Read all instruction and just do them in order. First CLICK HERE  Then when you get to the destination it takes you to, just click on read book.  The book page you go to will be very big.  Adjust the page size to your liking with the + and - buttons above the page.  Then use the right and left arrows to go through the book!  When you come to the first blank page you are done! Enjoy!!

Friday, August 27, 2010

Does harajuku come with an eggroll?


Couture Doll Shops has issued a delightful challenge to its shop owners!  For our next presentation, which is also considered a contest, they will be vying for the Overall Winner along with a People's Choice award which will be determined by our followers on our FTK list.  If you are interested in this fun promotion and the possibility of winning a prize for yourself by voting on our new street name, rush on over and join our FTK list today!  Just click here!

I'm predicting seeing some beautiful, well made outfits coming down this Oriental runway!   Here’s the details!
The Project and The Theme:

CDS' Phase 3 will have its Grand Opening September 10, 2010, and the promotion/challenge for this will use the theme of  Just Japanese.  This theme was chosen because it can expand to cover any period of Japanese fashion you might want to explore. So, if you've been hankering to make a kimono, a Lolita-style outfit, or something in between, now is your chance. Be influenced by what this fashion-forward country has to offer. Do your research, and make an outfit that is definitively yours......but within the guidelines of Just Japanese. You are free, Madame Buterflies, to spread your wings and create!! 

The Basics:

You will work alone this time - no teams allowed . This is your chance to show us your style. You will design and execute the most fabulous accessory, diorama piece, or outfit YOU are capable of!

You may use any doll you desire - this not only means a doll of any size may be used, it also means the doll can be a child, man, or a lady. Sorry, gang; I am drawing the line at using animals although there is always a certain charm to Miss Piggy.

The Photographs

You will be allowed to submit 3 Digital photos that are 600 pixels in height and the correct corresponding width. See our article on resizing pics here:  .You also need to be sure to keep in your files a 6x4" copy (approximately 1200 pixels wide by 1803 pixels high) at 300dpi of each picture you enter! Please afford us a true picture of your work; do not overindulge in photoshop - but you may cut a doll stand out of any picture. 

Also, .suitable, in scale diorama items may be used sparingly in any of your photos, and diorama and accessory people may feature a doll in their pictures.  Just remember the word sparingly, please, because pictures with an overabundance of "stuff" will be rejected. Also, please use a plain background for this presentation; but the color can be whatever you think fits best with your entry.
The Prizes:

George Gonzalez, of Angelic Dreamz will have his own Japanese beauty to present during this challenge, although he won’t be given consideration for winning any prize. Why, you might ask? Because Angelic Dreamz will be providing all the prizes for this presentation!! And, oh what prizes they are!! Here is the rundown:

Grand Prize Winner:

Our grand prize winner will be chosen from a team of cracker jack judges TBA. They will be judging you on originality, fit, and best use of the theme. This lucky winner can lay down their sewing needle for awhile, for they will be dressing one of their delicious divas in:

Enchantment Gown

by JAMIEshow for Angelic Dreamz

Enchantment is a couture dress in silk crepe and golden sequin floral overlay. Gold Lace up High Heels complete the outfit. Made specifically for our models but will fit many other 16" Fashion Dolls. Modeled here by Jamie with glass eyes.
LTD. EDITION 30 Pieces Worldwide

People’s Choice Winner:

This winner will be determined by the members of our FTK list. Audience members wishing to vote for thie People's Choice will need to belong to our FTK list by 9/9/2010 to do so.  One exception is that NO ONE affiliated with CDS can vote.

And, for their effort, the winner of the People's Choice will receive a stunning new model to add to their collection. 


Fully lined stretch lace teddy with ruffled lace trim and molded plastic shoes; includes display stand. Fully authorized by Warner Bros.

16" DOLL, LE 200

NOTE:  ALL ENTRIES DUE: 9/6/2010 by 10 p.m. CST - Firm.
And we haven't  forgetten our audience members – Angelic Dreamz has a special prize for the winner of our drawing to pick the street name for Phase 3, too. To be eligible: you must not be affiliated with CDS, belong to CDS FTK list prior to 9/3/2010, and vote on our new street name between September 4 - 9, 2010. All will be entered in a pool, and the winner will be drawn from this pool. 

The prize??  Since many FTKers buy their doll outfits from CDS merchants,anyway, this should really make the winner happy: They will win:

Lotus Gown

by JAMIEshow for Angelic Dreamz

In Iridescent Silk this lovely Lotus dress with floral brooch is a perfect compliment to any of the JAMIEshow dolls and can also be worn by most 16" Fashion dolls. Complimented with high heel shoes.  LTD. EDITION 30 Pieces Worldwide

Will your fashion be in or out, dear designers?  I, for one, am expecting definitively IN - so sit back, customers and followers - and enjoy the fashion view, and don' t forget to vote!! 

Oh, and btw, this will be our last promotion/street opening of the year - so don't miss out!!  Good luck!  And, don't forget to visit Couture Doll Shops for all your dollie needs!  Oh, and yes, I know - harajuku most definitely doesn't come with an eggroll - but it could be fun to wear when you go out for one! 

Friday, July 23, 2010

TWO doll lovers claim two delish dolls!


Fridays are sometimes special! We leave work early, play hooky, and our daydreams turn to what the weekend will bring. But the events that will make two doll lovers happy this Friday don't require them doing anything today!!. Their actions have won both of them a beautiful doll!

We had a great turnout from our voters/customers. You were all so nice joining our FTK list, and you were also very definitive about your choice for the winner of our Haute Couture contest.  Some of you even took the time to give some feedback about our Doll Mall. And to each of you we say thank you!!  We put your name in our drawing wishing everyone could win the beautiful Tonner Company Cinderella sculpt.  But in the end  it came down to the luck of the draw. And, the lucky lady on this particular Friday is Nan Scott. Congratulations Nan; we hope you will really enjoy your new doll! Begin making plans for her NOW!!

The other lady is one of our designer/shop owners who read over the rules and ran with them. From the top of her hat to the tip of her cane, her design won the hearts of our public. Representing Madeleine Rose Couture and channeling Christian Dior cinched a win for Lori Lyon. Lori features high end OOAK & Limited Edition gowns plus ensembles for 16" fashion dolls. Madeleine Rose Couture resides on Main Street.  Lori also makes exquisite couture for Asian ball jointed dolls she sells in her other  store, AngelRose, located on CDS' Couture Court. If you want to know more about Lori you can check out her profile in a past issue of this blog.  Also you can view a picture of one of her latest designs in a recent article about CDS on FDQ! Congratulations, Lori Lyon!

All of the entrants made wonderful entries for the challenge and you're all  invited  to see the entries.  Just visit CDS and click on the blue banner at the top. You are not going to want to miss all this talent - demonstrated both individually and in teams. Follow the links and see them all. It's fun to settle back and enjoy eye candy on lazy Fridays!

And when you finish checking out those entries be sure to check out a wonderful doll dealer who will be joining Couture Doll Shops next week!! I'm sure Angelic Dreamz, Inc.™ is no stranger to most of you! But now they will reside in their brick and mortar store in the town of Canandaigua, New York as well as having an online presence in a beautiful shop on Couture Court. Drop in and take advantage of their marvelous 19th anniversary sale going on through August 1, dahlings; you know you need another doll!! And, while you are there be sure to check out their incredible JAMIEshow and JIE-doll!!  Both are fully articulated bjds that are mahvelous to sew for. They stock these items and many qualify for free shipping, so a cagey doll person should be able to find a sweet deal in this shop. Angelic Dreamz, Inc.™ is a true Collector's Paradise! Their expected arrival on CDS is July 30, maybe earlier - just join our FTK list for all the news about new items and new happenings at CDS

Finally, heads up divas! We will be opening our Phase 3 in the Fall, and we're taking applications right now!  Get your application in and your paperwork done!  You will not want to laze away the rest of the Summer - instead put your talent into making merchandise you feel will impress!  

Then on August 15,  if you don' have a website, we will begin your lessons!  Building a website is no longer hard with our proven system of developing one -  so don't be a scaredy cat!  We will help you all along the way! And if you do have a website, you're ahead of the game, and we go forward with developing your shop and other necessary items for you to get started!

We welcome all kinds of merchandise for all kinds of dolls at CDS.   And we are only an email away if you need more information and an application.  Let's do this together!

Friday, July 2, 2010

What's so haute about our couture??

 Everything!!  At least we hope YOU will think so!

Wow, has it really been over a month since we've talked?  Well, I hope you'll forgive me, because over at Couture Doll Shops we've been busy with convention doings, restocking our shops, and adding more fabulous store fronts to Couture Court!!  But now I am happy to say we have something new going on that involves YOU, our audience!!

We have a new competition for our shop owners/designers!  And the BIG news is this time YOU will pick the WINNER!  Yes, there will only be one - the People's Choice - chosen by our audience.  We don't know of any 100% way to ensure this, but we would love to only receive legitimate votes. This means we'd prefer to have doll people vote - not someone coming in to just vote for a family member or a friend!  We want people who would love to win a doll in exchange for voting!  Therefore, anyone who gets to vote will have to do a couple of things. Well, you did want  to add a little interest to your day, now didn't you?  Here's what you need to do!

First, you will need to join our First to Know Yahoo group.  Then you'll need to wait for your instructions and follow them completely; they will appear one or two days before the entries are revealed. That's all!!  Easy enough, don't you think??

And what will you get for your troubles?  If you follow the instructions. you will be eligible to place one valid vote.  When you place this vote your name will be put in the drawing .for this beautiful Strawberry Cinderella!!  Isn't she pretty??  So hurry over and sign up!

I'd also like to note that our FTK list will not only be the place for this contest; it will also be the place for contests and challengss in the future.  And, as requested by some of our customers, you will also be privy to new items our shop owners put in their stores there.  Some of our shop owners have elected to post new items as they become available!!  I cannot wait.  While it is still nice for me to stroll leisurely through the mall via my mouse; sometimes I want to go direct to the source of new merchandise!  Well, now we all can!!

Now let me tell you about the challenge!  This challenge will feature fashions imagined as haute couture by our shop owners.  In the real fashion world, only a few fashion houses in Paris are deemed worthy of even creating something that can be labeled as such - not so in the doll world.  And some of those fashions could cost as much as an automobile or even a house!! Oh my!  Let's just say ours won't!

The Challenge:  Haute couture is the creation of exclusive, custom-fitted clothing.  Clothes that fit to one person's precise measurements are the norm.  It is also defined by the opulence of fabrics used, the fabulosity of cuts performed superbly, and/or the rarity of the elements used to develop it.  Haute couture is definitive; it is something you just know when you see it.  And, haute couture’s exclusivity makes the privileged few who can afford it go mad!   Hum.......Could haute couture also drive doll collectors this crazy? Well, we hope not - at least that isn't our intention at all, dahlings!

Our intention was two-fold - 1. to come up with a unique challenge for our designers, and 2. to try to develop something new and interesting for you.  What we asked our participants  to do was to research some of the many articles and watch videos (specifically runway showings) available on the internet that present Paris Summer 2010 Haute Couture Collections.  They were advised to pay special attention to all aspects of a collection of their choosing.  They were asked to consider all; even  the stylings of models used to pose such wonders.

Then, they were to develop an outfit from their collection inspiration, and to pose their creation on an appropriate model.  BUT, of course there was a twist!!  Each outfit had to include black, gray, and one color of their choosing.  We felt they needed the neutrals to make their special color pop!!!

Special consideration was given to the fact that some of our shop owners do not design or produce fashions - such as our dealers who make accessories of all kinds!  Therefore, the option was given for teams to be developed between a fashionista and an "other"  - and, oh, what interesting teams we have!  So we have individuals and teams vying for the same prize - the wonderful Cami red head pictured!!  Who will get your vote?

Well, we'll just have to wait until the reveal.  And you can find out all about that in one of 2 ways - join our FTK group mentioned above, or watch this blog every single day for our announcement of where and when the entries will be shown.  Anyone wanna follow me over to that Yahoo group??

Friday, April 30, 2010

Couture Court Opens TODAY!!

....and we name our Winner!

Today, Friday, April 30, is a great day for Couture Doll Shops - we open Couture Court, and our name is courtesy of all of you who took the time to visit us at CDS and cast your vote. And, it's also a great day for Janice (Jan) Fitzsimmons, winner of our beautiful, brunette Ellowyne, Too doll. Congratulations to you, Jan, and big thanks to all who participated!!

Today we'll roll out the Red Carpet for the second street in our online Dolly Mall - can it just be about a month ago we revealed Main Street? And will there be a whole town in our future?? Well, if not it won't be from a lack of trying!! Couture Doll Shops has a group of some of the most dedicated and hard working artists I've ever had the privilege of being associated with, and I feel so happy being in such marvelous company!!

The presentation below feature some of these artists who had the time to not only tweak or build a website, but who also had the time to make a beautiful featured item. Our items run the gambit from lovely fashions to accessories to neat items for making dioramas. From coffins to patterns to jewelry - it's all here in our latest presentation I've put together through the generosity of an online service called Slide. The process used in this slide is called morphing, and I used it because I thought it was symbolic that each picture morphs into the next. It reminded me of the teamwork of this wonderful crew who take time from their busy day to pass on tips and suggestions when we have a new topic in our Merchants group. But don't think we are all business all the time in our group - we do work hard, but we always manage to remember we're playing dolls - so we do have fun!

The music chosen is by Seal. Well, dahlings, we emulate Heidi's television show in our competitions, so why not "borrow" her husband for one song. He's belting out a beautiful blues song called A Change is Gonna Come. It may not seem appropriate at first listen, but if you take the time to really hear the words, perhaps you'll look at it the way i do. Like the song, we started small and we've been running ever since - running to make Couture Doll Shops a really special place for doll lovers of all kinds; and we'll continue running as long as we continue to be appreciated by our clients.

But an overall change in the way doll businesses have been available on the internet has been a long time coming, coming up with an affordable alternative to the high listing fees and final value fees that we have suffered through other venues. They've made it hard to make a living, and at times we've been afraid that dollie commerce may die off or be less available. So we're happy to be a part of CDS - and we're definitely looking beyond the sky - we're looking forward to the day when we'll have all your dolly needs available under one roof !!

If that sounds haughty or self centered we don't mean to be - because we're really not! Most of us have become your friends by participating on Yahoo groups or Doll Boards where we all talk about our favorite dolls. Many of the artists here have also graced your coffee tables, tucked inside the doll magazines you frequent. You see, Couture Doll Shops is merely a collaboration of like minded doll artists who choose to sell their wares online together; doll artists who are all proud to fly the CDS banner and to work towards a better way to run their doll shops.

As we travel from Spring to the dog days of Summer, we'll be concentrating on getting the word out to even more doll collectors about our online mall, and we'll also be working really hard to get our shops fully stocked. We'll still add a few select shops for Couture Court, but we will wait to surprise you with another lovely street of shop owners in the Fall. We need to be ready for everyone's dollie needs for the holidays for sure!

What will you be doing? Hopefully shoppers will be checking in occasionally to see what or who is new, and making their friends aware we exist - it's fun to share neat things with a friend. And, what of you shop owners?? Is your year all planned out? If not, maybe you might want to make some plans with us?? Remember our goal is for all who desire to have or grow their doll business to succeed; and we'd really love it if you'd choose to succeed with us!!

Okay, enough talk; it's time to enjoy the show! And then you'll want to run along, my pretties, and check out Couture Court. Our friendly shop owners are standing by to fulfill your purchases and answer all your questions.

And, what a fun weekend to shop and celebrate for all the wonderful Mothers out there!!! Happy Mother's Day to all of you! Hey, today might just be the right day to "accidentally" leave your computers open to a page on Couture Doll Shops that features an item you'd really like to receive on your special day!!! Do more than dream about it, dahling - give your significant other a nudge!!

Okay, we're all set - on with the show!! Please note: Our video that was previously on the blog can now be found HERE - take note there is music in the video!

Tuesday, April 20, 2010


....AND you'll have a chance to win an 
Ellowyne Too!

She'll be the one with rooted brunette hair and blue eyes. Her outfit includes a designer two piece set, striped stockings, and lace-up shoes. And, a new designer saddle stand is also included!  

All you need to do is go over to CDS' Main Street  and click on the CDS Forum.  There you will find the topic Name Phase 2.  Just follow the directions to sign in.  Then simply post your name, your email, and your choice of one of these street names:

Couture Court, Fashionista Way, Muse Boulevard, Imagination Road or Rue de la Paix.

Entries accepted Tuesday, April 20 through Tuesday, April 27. All entries will be put into a pool and one winner will be drawn.

The winner will be announced on both the CDS website and this blog during the Grand Opening of our newly named street on Friday, April 30, 2010.   Good luck!

Couture Doll Shops' Members and Management not eligible. NO Purchase Necessary to enter.

Take a moment while on Main Street to look around if you have time -  several of our merchants have promotions running during this contest!  You really don't want to miss out on any of the fun!!

Saturday, April 10, 2010

Featured Artist - Claudia Green

Claudia Green is a newcomer to the artistic venue of sewing and painting fashion dolls.  She was introduced to it by her sister, Peggy Quade.  Peggy had been sewing for dolls for several years, and telling Claudia about her experience.  Try as Peggy would to encourage Claudia, she just had no interest in sewing for dolls at that time.  In fact, she hadn't even seen some of the fashion dolls in personPeggy mentioned.

In fact, Claudia didn’t even have Barbie dolls when she was a little girl, and she hated Home Economics in high school.  Her Mother did teach her the basics of sewing, though, and she had sewed for her two children when they were young.  And she did come from a large family (7 brothers and sisters) who are all artistic in one way or another - even her Dad taught photography and her Mom was a closet fashion artist. She did at least have a love of art, and  always had some kind of arts & crafts project going on at any given time…painting, cross-stitching, clay, etc. 

Finally, when Peggy brought a few Tonner Tyler-type dolls to one of their family gatherings and told Claudia the prices artists were getting for repainting the doll's faces, that's when she finally became interested!   And, when Peggy bought her a head off eBay and sent it to her along with some paint and brushes, she had to try it.    Although Claudia admits her first attempts were really awful, she kept at it.  After all, the nice thing about repainting is, if you make a mistake or don’t like it, you can just erase it and start over!

Practice, practice, practice was Claudia's mantra!  She also got a DVD set by Laurie Leigh and those techniques helped her tremendously.  She felt once she got the basics down, she was more comfortable in her work, and she actually began to know her own style. Together she and Peggy became a team - Claudia repainting and Peggy creating the fashions, taking the pictures and putting them on eBay.  What a thrill she felt making that first sale!  They continued this way for awhile with Claudia even "graduating" to repainting other dolls such as Ellowyne.

It was when Claudia's passion for repainting exceeded more than Peggy could sew clothes for, that she decided to buy a simple MHD pattern.  She figured she could make a simple dress to go with her repaint for that overall look for the dolls she had been creating with her sister.  Once she got past the lining procedure in the MHD patterns, she worked on photographing her dolls, and writing descriptions.   Claudia was then confident enough with what she produced to start featuring her own dolls on eBay!   Slowly she went from total dressed doll, to making clothes to sell separately, and it has been that way ever since!  Being a good sister, though,  Claudia does do a few faceups for the Unoa girls and Kish Chrysalis dolls her sister has gone on to create fashions for.

As Claudia looks back she realizes although she began this artistic venture to produce an income that would keep the venture going, she has also found a very enjoyable hobby for herself! She always  credits her sister with everything she's done getting her started - from that initial introduction, to her praise and encouragement along the way, to the tremendous amount of promotion to get Claudia's repaints in the public eye.  She also wanted to mention her really close but anonymous friend who gives her unending support; Magalie Dawson's MHD patterns that have been a big influence in her ability to create nicely finished fashions, and. Kerri of Liquid Sunshine for inspiring her both initially and today on her Ellowyne repaints.

Today's work is influenced by the large stash of fabric and patterns she's accumulated.  Both seem to tell her what will go together as she browses them for an upcoming season or event.  When new patterns come out, she can usually associate fabric in her stash that would be perfect to use for it, too.  Also an Evangeline Ghastly a friend sent her to sew for has been Claudia's most recent inspiration..  It sings to her love of  Victorian, gothic, and vixen - style.  This friend also encouraged her to make jewelry with all the outfits she makes for her, so that has opened a completely new medium for her to work in!  It doesn't sound like Claudia intends to stop growing and creating - she's surely hooked on these fashion dolls now!!

For people who would like to create their own fashion art, Claudia advises you to just keep practicing!  She was amazed at how quickly she got better, both at repainting and at sewing - and so so can you if you don't give up!  If you get frustrated, take a break and come back later.  Usually, if it’s repainting, Claudia can tell instantly what’s wrong and, if it’s sewing, she takes the time to think things through and figure out what needs to be done differently.  You, too, will learn so much along the way that will help you later.  She still can’t believe that she is now revising patterns to suit her style, when just a few years ago she didn't even want to sew.  Claudia's shop, CGreen Designs, is located on Main Street of Couture Doll Shops.  Visit it often as she is always busy, and you won't want to miss any of her wonderful creations.

Thursday, April 1, 2010

Featured Artist - Lori Lyon

Along with our events and announcements, we are going to be spotlighting our Featured Artists. We are beginning with our Couture Doll Shop’s store fronts on Main Street, but will do the same for store fronts on the new streets as they become available. Right now we are taking applications for what we are calling Phase 2 because we simply haven’t named that street yet. More information on that soon; but for now we will begin with our first Featured Artist!


Lori Lyon

Madeleine Rose Couture
Main Street

Lori isn’t really new to a spotlight. Her backgrounds in both dolls and fashion have prepared her well. She began designing and sewing for her Barbie dolls at age 7, and well improved on her art with an AA in Fashion Design from the Institute of Design and Merchanding in Los Angeles. Her work has been featured in Hautedoll magazine and the online magazine, High Maintenance.

As early as 2004 it was obvious that Lori Lyon was definitely someone going places in the doll world – just check out some of her earlier works!!

Her designs have also been seen in these popular magazines - Dolls, FDQ and High Style. And many of us were either introduced or reintroduced to her when she decided to join in the competition at our sister site,

Couture Doll Design Challenge. Lori did quite well there winning several challenges - she was definitely a contender! Eventually this led her to her new home with us at Couture Doll Shops! Here are a few of her current offerings. As you can see they are still beautiful and ever-improving, just what they have to be in order to be successful in any type of fashion-oriented industry!

So what else could an article about Lori Lyon possibly serve up you might say!?! Well, what we hope to do is give you a little peek inside the real person behind the store front we call Madeleine Rose Couture. Behind every store front on CDS there is not only a shop, there is also a person who developed that shop – and that’s what our spotlights will speak to – so let’s go!

A self described sidetracked home executive, Lori Lyon is an artist who came to doll couture through an interesting route. Her marriage and subsequent birth
of her daughter, Maddie Rose, resulted in her decision to be a stay at home Mom. For relaxation she turned back to her early days of Barbie collecting, and soon she discovered she wanted more – more even than her previous vintage delights; she now mulled over the idea of adding some of the new Silkstones to her collection. With her passion and very little extra cash, she didn’t think she’d be able to add much until her husband turned her on to our “industry” from his activities on eBay. He showed her how other fashionistas were adding to their dolly $$ or whatever through this online auction venue. Needless to say, she was immediately hooked. After all, if others could do it, why couldn’t she?

Lori offered her patterned outfits for Barbie on eBay, but from networking there, she began to see a whole new breed of artists joining the world of clothing Barbie-sized dolls! And, although pioneers like Matisse led the way in influencing Lori, she felt the market for the smaller fashion dolls becoming more and more saturated. Perhaps, she thought, it was time to look at fashions created for other dolls, but which one would it be?

The only big doll she had was Gene, and this doll seemed to have enough of her own wardrobe. So, Lori began searching out items made specifically for Robert Tonner’s Tyler because she felt this would be the next “IT” doll to design for! In researching Tyler, Lori also found artists who made incredible fashions for big dolls; specifically the designs of artists like Superdoll, Red Silk Thread, and Janis Kiker. Lori concluded that making fashions for Tyler would be a better size for her to design on, and she instinctively knew she wanted to be on these artist’s level, and was not afraid of the hard work necessary to get there.

Today Lori has achieved her aspirations, and designs for a variety of dolls besides Tyler. Drawing her inspiration from runways, current designers (Dior, LaCroix, McQueen, and others), Japanese culture, anime and Manga, vintage movies, fashion, and fabric – actually a combo of fabrics and textures – Lori continues to present her incredible visions on her website named for her daughter. Your journey will take you into a shop of incredible beauty where your can expect to find stunning One of a Kinds and Limited Editions as well as her MRC hosiery and Rose Room exclusives.

What you won’t find are any commissions open or new collections…..right now…she’s been rather busy developing new designs! But a fabulous treat Lori has had time to work on has been her blog. This has been such an interesting place to travel. Lori's latest offering is a "how to" on the beautiful gown she produced for the recent CDS fashion show! When you have a moment be sure and check out both Lori's storefront and her blog titled The Roses Couture.

And, for those aspiring to create your own doll fashion art, Lori had these comments: "Do what you love. Don't expect to become a success overnight, it takes a long time and a lot of work to make it. Be flexible, be able to take constructive criticism, find your niche and go for it!" Well, Lori definitely always goes for it -- and so can you! Be inspired today to start your own sewing project; it really is FUN!!