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Sunday, January 20, 2019

Sunday randomness: snow day!

Well, actually I would've gotten off anyway since it's Sunday, but here's the view I get when I step outside.
We got two inches of the white stuff this time, not as much as other storms we've had in the past, but enough to make the roads slick.  The copious rain that came immediately before the temperatures dropped didn't help matters.  Part of my front stoop is sheathed in a thin but slick layer of ice.
My driveway isn't much better.  It had about two inches of rain gathered in a big puddle, and that froze over.  I could play hockey on my driveway now if I knew how to skate!
As nasty as it was yesterday I'm surprised we only got two inches.  This is what it looked like at two-o'clock yesterday afternoon.  The roads weren't bad yet but the visibility was terrible.  It got worse than this, too!
My mother was in Kennett and had to drive all the way back to Malden in that mess.  Our boss let us go an hour and a half early so Mama and her coworker wouldn't have to drive in the dark, but Mama says it was still pure hell getting home.  The wind was high and the road she chose to take was very slick, and what normally would be a thirty-minute trip stretched into an hour and ten minutes.  She got back in one piece though, and I'm thankful to the good Lord above for that.

Could've been worse, though.  This is what my sister was facing in Burlington, Vermont yesterday...
...and this is what it looks like today.
Sister's car is the one on the far left.  It's uncovered for th most part.  The barely visible car in the center has NOT been dug out and it's all but covered.
Blick, they can keep that, thank you!  

With the roads slick, the snow blindingly bright, and the temperature around twenty-three degrees I have been keeping my fat white rear parked in bed with raw cookie dough to eat and old episodes of The Wrath of God and Seconds From Disaster to watch.  Yep, I'm going on a disaster history binge!  Oh yes, I've also been piddling around with the subjects of my next too doll blogs, seen below.
Their names are Tea Blossom and Dawn, and they're both excited to meet y'all.  Well...Tea is excited.  Dawn, I've already learned, is a pretty chill little gal.  Dawn is one of the new #SNAPSTAR dolls, and I've been tinkering around with the accompanying green screen and phone app that come with these dolls.  The results, as y'all will see, have been interesting.

Now I'm off to watch Kobe, Japan get rocked by a magnitude 7.2 earthquake.  For some strange reason, that's one of my favorite Seconds From Disaster episodes.  Cheers!

Much love and warmth to all,

Friday, January 18, 2019

Pink shoes!

This is for my blogging buddy Xanadu, who has at several times vocalized a fondness for pink shoes.
I bought these with the hope that they would work out for any Pukipuki that decides to move in, but these look WAY too big to fit a Pukipuki, despite them being advertised for Pukipukis.  My Ai Dolls wear Realpuki shoes, if you can believe that, even though they're supposed to be able to wear Pukipuki shoes.  Look at the size difference!  I doubt Marzipan and Hope will be wearing these!
Lemonade from lemons though, as Kohaku-chan can wear the pink shoes.  Pukipuki shoes in general are worth trying on Licca-chan bodies, by the way.
These don't slide effortlessly over Kohaku's thick socks, but they do fit.  The laces are waxed cotton and are thus easy for a butterfingers like me to tie.

Sometimes I grow weary of pink being used in doll clothes, largely due to Barbie's obsessive fondness for the color, but I do love little touches of pink here and there.  I prefer soft pink like this dress that my S.I.S. doll Chandra doll is still wearing, and I LOVE pink when it's paired with yellow or green.  And of course, I like pink shoes just like Xanadu does.  Pink clothes are relatively easy to find, but pink shoes...well, they're not hard to find, but you have to know where to look to find them.  I don't fancy looking and looking and looking for myself, so I just shoe my dolls in pink and call it a day.

Kohaku's pink sneakers came from DollMars on Etsy.  DollMars sells shoes and other apparrel for small dolls like Lati White and Blythe, and they come in other colors besides pink if any of y'all are looking for something else.

Think pink,

Thursday, January 17, 2019

Throwback Thursday review: Li'l Lollypops and Li'l Gumdrop

It's the one and only RagingMoon1987, and I want to start things off by bidding Miss Emily a fond farewell.  Last week she posted a very brief post, stating that she'd sold off most of her dolls and was "moving on."  Fine, we all have that prerogative, but the suddenness of this hauled off and shocked me.  I knew she was selling off some of her dolls, but her quitting the blog totally floored me.  Furthermore, I am left wondering what became of some of the dolls that featured more prominently in her posts.  Did she sell her pretty little Tonner Cinderella, whom she loved so much?  Did she part with Saskia, whom she worked so hard to reborn?  Or did they stay for sentimental reasons?  Either way, I'm saddened to learn that Miss Emily is throwing in the towel, and I hope she's not doing it because something is seriously wrong.  That makes two of my favorite bloggers that are inactive now; Hannah/beastsbelle gave it up about a year ago.  BUT...I still have Tam and Barb and my buddy Talolili, and plenty of other awesome bloggers out there!

As for me, well...to be honest, I too will be making some changes to the blog for the new year, as posting weekly gets tiring for a lazy bum like myself.  So these Throwback Thursday posts will be coming every other week now until I run out of stuff to review (which won't be for awhile now).  That being said, not too recently (about a year ago, I'd say) I joined a group on Facebook that focuses on Strawberry Shortcake and her friends, and for fun one of the admins made up a series of categories that we all fall into.  These categories are based on what we collect and how we collect it.

*The Perfectionist constantly struggles to find every item in perfect condition.  They're very picky and are constantly upgrading, and the collection is stored with protection in mind. 
*The Obsessor is addicted. They scour the internet and lose sleep until they find every piece they're searching for.
*The Purist hates anything made after 1985 and won't tolerate repairs, replacement parts, or anything that isn't completely original.  The Purist often exhibits characteristics of the Perfectionist.  I am definitely NOT a purist.
*The Hoarder buys up multiples of every doll available, regardless of condition, and never parts with any of it.
*The Dreamer either doesn't have a collection and wants one, or has a few things and isn't actively buying at the moment.
*The Competitor chases rare items but may not have examples of easy-to-find stuff.  An example might be someone who has a full set of factory-sealed Berrykins but nothing else.
*The Overachiever has all the main line of dolls...and everything else Strawberry Shortcake themed.  Stuff like pincushions, the original greeting cards, cake pans, bedclothes, undergarments...yeah, anything is game.  The Overachiever often exhibits characteristics of the Competitor.
*The Child at Heart has a collection of this and that, consisting of vintage, modern, and knock-off stuff.  People in this category will even throw in small dolls and accessories that are not related to Strawberry Shortcake at all.  A good example of this would be Plushpussycat's Hello Kitty dollhouse, which was once used by a Sweet Sleeper Strawberry Shortcake and a Lemon Meringue.  Indeed, Plushpussycat is a very good example of a Child at Heart, as several of her other posts deal with Strawberry Shortcake...right up to their eventual departure from her blog (sad face).

Though I do not go to the extents that Plushpussycat does (yet) I fell quite easily into the Child at Heart category due to my fondness for knock-offs and dolls of a similar size that are NOT Strawberry Shortcake.  I'd also classify as a Dreamer since I've got a few pieces I'd like to score.  I never got over my love for Orange Blossom for example, and since my last SSC-themed post I've taken a shine to Raspberry Tart with her adorable little lopsided smile, and with purple-haired Almond Tea, who happens to coordinate with next week's doll.  I've even discovered a cute line of knock-offs called Pickaberry Circus that I may have to dig into a little further (they're clowns).  But today I've got knockoffs that are NOT clowns instead, specifically two members of a line called Li'l Lollypops, Luscious Lemon Pop and Sweet Orange Pop (I call her "Sweetie").
I also got a doll from a line called Magic Candy Tree Friends, named Li'l Gumdrop.
The Lollypops are interesting in that they don't have a maker listed.  Ghost of the Doll suggests that AG Toys (whom I've never heard of) produced these for the American market, but they added the disclaimer "may" so no one apparently knows for sure who made these dolls.  A crew called Dynatoy (whom I've also never heard of) made the dolls for Canada; I'm not sure if they're the same as THIS Dynatoy or not.  Anywho, the Li'l Lollypops went by a couple of other names like Sweetie Pops, Daisy, and Susy, but they were the same regardless of what the name was called.  There were six characters, all flavored and all dressed in similar outfits, but with different colors.  The Magic Candy Tree Friends are a little more straightforward, being made by yet another toy company I've never heard of called Eugene.  The line consisted of Gumdrop, her little sister Jelly Drop, and their best friend Peppermint Kid.  Gumdrop and her sugary pals must be pretty obscure since there's not a lot of information out here about them, just this blog post by Dolly Bricked Road and a few random pictures online.  One of these images reveals that Sears carried the Magic Candy Tree Friends at one point.  I also found a few more examples of Li'l Gumdrop on eBay, and these showed that Gumdrop came in several different colors (green, orange, red, blue, purple, and possibly others), and two skin tones.  Lastly, I discovered that there's a reason why my particular doll is called Li'l Gumdrop:  the original dolls were bigger than Strawberry Shortcake.  The original Gumdrop and Peppermint Kid were about nine inches, and even Jelly Drop was bigger than Strawberry was.  My doll is the miniature version of the larger Gumdrop, thus Li'l Gumdrop.

Now that that's all out of the way, my trio is currently mint-in-box...but they won't be staying that way!  One of my viewers (I forget which one) suggests that being MIB was what caused Rosa Lee Linden to fall apart at the seams, so I won't be doing the NRFB thing much...and frankly, I never did it much anyway.  Here's a picture of the backs of the Lollypops' boxes though, before they hit the dumpster.  The backs merely have large pictures of the doll inside and a rudimentary description of the joints.
The bottom left corner of Sweetie's box reveals a possible maker:  some crew named Agglo, who is apparently still in existence...if it's the same Agglo, that is.
Wait a minute...Agglo...Ag Toys...must be the same crew!  There's that little conundrum out of the way.  The corresponding corner of Luscious's box reveals some water damage, plus the handwritten number "1982."  The year of production, maybe?  If so then these dolls are older than I am!
And here's the sides, which show the other characters in the line.  There were six all told, with green-haired Tutie Fruitie Cutie being my favorite.
Gumdrop has a blister card rather than a box, and the back of her card has some info and a basic backstory.  It describes the original Gumdrop as nine inches tall and also claims that other 5.5-inch doll clothing will fit Li'l Gumdrop.  In other words she should be able to share clothes with my Lime Chiffon and possibly with the Lollypops too, but I've yet to verify that.
The front of the box has the maker listed, printed on a background of rainbow gumdrops...
...and the price sticker says Kmart, something that I've only seen one other time (again with Rosa Lee Linden)...
...and the plastic holding Gumdrop in place is shaped like a candy jar.
Yucko, just thinking about gumdrops makes me nauseous.  I haven't eaten a gumdrop since the day my sister was born back in 1991, and even then I didn't like them so why I was eating them that day I'll never know.  They're too sickeningly sweet for me.  Anywho, these packages all say that the dolls inside are scented, which does not fill me with enthusiasm since scented toys can be anywhere on a spectrum from delectable to disgusting.  With that in mind, let's unbox these gals!
In the end I lucked out with Luscious and Sweetie, as their smells wore off after thirty-plus years in their packages.  They smell vaguely like old, stale cardboard, a smell that brings back some bizarre but pleasant memories, but otherwise their scent has faded away.  As for Gumdrop, she does retain a bit of her original scent, which is a combination of cheap hard candy and cheap perfume.  Rather sickening, just as I'd feared, but fortunately also rather faint.  Likely it will fade over time.

Unsurprisingly this crew is close in size to Lime Chiffon (who still retains vestiges of her original smell and thus wins the sniff test).  I also threw in Whimzee since she's close to the same size as these dolls, and Cherry Merry Muffin since she was a Strawberry competitor of sorts. 
This is your classic Child at Heart grouping, with one honest-to-God Strawberry Shortcake doll, two Strawberry competitors, and three knockoffs.  Cherry is the tallest of the lot (by a smidgen) and the Lollypops are the shortest.

It suddenly has occurred to me:  if I manage to land Orange Blossom I'll have three dolls of this size dressed in the same color.  With that said, let's get this show on the road.  Luscious and Sweetie both sport rooted fiber hair.  Luscious has a shoulder-length bob while Sweetie's hair is a little longer, possibly due to her hat having a wider brim.
Since these are knockoff dolls I was fearing stiff, poorly rooted tresses similar to those sported by Katya, one of my Barbie clones.  In reality both Luscious and Sweetie have soft, smooth hair that I love to comb.  It's a teensy bit greasy to the touch, but otherwise it's fine.  Sweetie sports a rather unnatural shade of orange for her hair, while Luscious has faded yellow hair, not terribly unlike the lemon bars that we sometimes get to eat at our library's annual Christmas party.  The root job is meh, not great and not bad either.  There are big gaps between the rows of plugs, but the plugs themselves are thick and well-rooted.  I tugged fairly hard on this hair and it didn't give a micron, so these dolls won't be going bald at the drop of a hat like Bandai's Strawberry Shortcake dolls apparently do.
As an aside, y'all see that little black bit that's sticking out of Sweetie's head, the black circle in the bottom center part of the picture?  That is the remnant of a tack, if y'all can believe that.  Both Luscious and Sweetie came with their hats tacked to their heads, but the tacks gave way easily when I pulled so I figure they were supposed to be temporary.  Seriously, they broke when I gently pulled, no busting out of scissors or nail clippers required.  Thus if any of y'all find one of these mint-on-card and decide to open them up, keep in mind that the hats will likely be tacked to the dolls' heads.  Plastic tacks are clearly not a new thing, though they are frustratingly more common now than they were in the days of the Lollypops.

Gumdrop takes a completely different path from the other girls in the hair department.  Her hair is made out of a medium that I don't often see on plastic dolls:  yarn.  Orange yarn, done up in pigtails, with bangs in the front.  Some MIB dolls have little daisies adorning their pigtails, but my doll has none.
I have no idea what the rooting here is like.  Gumdrop's cute little pigtails are so perfect that I don't dare take them down.  I love dolls with yarn hair though, as yarn seems somewhat less likely to tangle than fiber hair.  The yarn is acrylic as far as I can tell; it's slightly fuzzy to the touch and feels like the cheap stuff that I used to buy nonstop at Wal-Mart.  It gets the job done, though.

The Lollypops' heads are made of vinyl, and these faces look a little bit like china when the lighting is just right.
In truth that shine appears to be caused by some sort of oil leaching out of this vinyl over time.  I hate it when this happens, but it happens to both brand-name and cheapo dolls so I can't blame shoddy work at the factory.  This leeching makes the heads feel a little sticky, but a rub with a Clorox wipe will probably take that gommy feeling away.  Unfortunately this leeching has also led to some greasy hair, so I'll have to fix that in the future as well.

Check out these eyes!
Never in my life have I seen doll eyes like these!  Instead of circles or ovals (or squares like Boxy Girl Riley's eyes are) they're little starbursts, and the light brown shadowing underneath is the same shape.  I know that Agglo or whoever was trying to simulate eyelashes in general, and Kenner Strawberry Shortcake's spiky little lashes in particular, but they didn't do a very good job.  These dolls' eyes remind me more of sea urchins or of jagged little holes that are ready to suck my soul out than they do the eyes of some innocent little dolly.  But hey, at least these eyes have light clusters, and at least their eyebrows aren't black like their eyes...or stark white-blonde like my Jem doll's eyebrows are.

The rest of the Lollypops' paint is average.  Pink lips and blushed cheeks, with a copious amount of dirt that I need to clean off.
On to Gumdrop's face now.  She is generically cute like Sweetie and Luscious are, but she still manages to have a radically different face.  The vinyl feels lightweight and slightly rough to the touch, but not greasy like the Lollypops' heads are.  The Japanese aesthetic is surprisingly strong here, even though Gumdrop is a western entity as far as I know.
Gumdrop's eyes look like eyes rather than sea urchins, and they have the unusual addition of some orange eyeshadow, something that none of my other dolls in this baked good category have.  Strangely, even Gumdrop's male comrade Peppermint Kid has eyeshadow like this.  Her eyebrows are set askew, and they're slanted in a way that makes Gumdrop look frightened or sorrowful.
I'm not a huge fan of those eyebrows and I'm glad the bangs cover them.

Moving down, Gumdrop sports a little button nose like the other dolls do, and she has a dimpled chin as well (another thing that I've yet to see on any other Strawberry doll).  Her lips are a strange shade of orange that doesn't match her eyes or her hair, and her cheeks are both blushed and freckled.
I never have cared for this kind of paint job with both blush and freckles, as it makes the doll look sunburned (this is especially true for some Maxie dolls).  In general Gumdrop's paint is a little hit-and-miss; her eyebrows are off-kilter and her left eye is missing some paint.  I also think that orange lip stuff is weird.  I know why Gumdrop has orange lips, but I think in this case the lips could either have been a bit darker or...just a different color altogether.  Not everything has to match!  Gumdrop is cute, though, and those eyebrows give her an air of vulnerability that I haven't seen in the other dolls.

Now just for kicks, here's what Sweetie and Gumdrop look like together.
Sweetie and Luscious have a better paint job overall, but those eyes...those eyes are FREAKY!!!  Gumdrop's eyes could also be considered freaky by some, particularly by the community that fears dollies in general (like my sister), but her eyes are tame compared to those of the Lollypops.  I also prefer Gumdrop's expression; when her eyebrows are covered her smile suggests a serene, placid personality, and when the eyebrows are uncovered she has a vulnerable side.  I love the Lollypops' vinyl though; as I said above it looks like porcelain, and when clean it feels nice and smooth in my hands.

This vinyl has more problems than just leeching oil, though it's not a huge problem like melting vinyl or anything like that sort.  When I disrobed Luscious and Sweetie for the body review I discovered that their heads have faded.  See how pale they are compared to their pink little bodies?
I knew that Mod-era Barbie dolls could fade like this, but they're closing in on fifty years old.  I guess thirty years is enough time to develop a pallor too.  See how well this vinyl cleans up after being washed, though?  Oh, as an aside, when I was trying to clean these dolls up I...er, well...I kinda, sorta LICKED Luscious's face to try and get the gom off.  Shudder...that was arguably the nastiest thing I ever tasted.  DON'T lick your dolls, kids!

Now to the bodies.  I'm not expecting to find Nirvana in terms of molding here since these are both knockoffs and little girl dolls, but let's take a look anyway.  I also disrobed Lime for the sake of comparison.
Hmmm...Gumdrop's package said she'd be able to share clothes with other dolls this size, but I'm beginning to have my doubts.  Gumdrop is a little chunk compared to spindly-legged Lime.
Gumdrop has the best molding of the bunch, with a visible bellybutton and a bit of a potbelly sticking out.  Her limbs are thicker (and shorter) than Lime's by quite a hair...
...and her hands are bigger...
...but strangely, her feet are smaller.
Luscious and Sweetie have very small bodies with tiny feet and flat hands.  These bodies remind me quite a bit of my Moondreamer Whimzee's little body, in fact, though Whimzee is a little taller than the Lollypops are.
Actually, now that I think about it Whimzee might be a better match for next week's doll.  She's too tall to share clothes with the Lollypops.  Anyway, Luscious and Sweetie are made out of vinyl and don't have a lot of definition in their molding.  They have indentations for fingers, but nothing else.  No toes, nothing.
Their seams are smooth, though.  Gumdrop, being made out of hollow, hard plastic, has seams that are a little rough.
Oh, Gumdrop's seams aren't terrible like the seams on some of my other dolls.  They're just more visible.  Gumdrop makes up for this by having relatively nice molding on her fingers and especially her toes.
Posing is predictable for the Lollypops, just rotational motion in the necks, shoulders, and hips.  They can sit, stand, turn their heads, and wave.
Sweetie's hips are VERY loose, and thus she usually has to sit.  I was able to prop her up in a standing position for the above image, though.  Gumdrop's posing is about the same, but she ekes out Luscious and Sweetie in one crucial way:  her neck is ball-jointed, so she can tip her head a little in all directions.  Not much, but a little is better than nothing.
On to clothes.  The styles are predictably cutesy, but there are a few surprises here.
One of the interesting things about Strawberry Shortcake dolls from this era is that NONE of them even try to be stylish.  Later lines did go more trendy, but back in the eighties these dolls were going strictly for the cute factor.  Nearly all of the girls wore dresses, and thus Luscious's ensemble is particularly noteworthy in that it's got pants.
Pants are not unheard of in Strawberryland, though the only characters I can name who wear them are Almond Tea, Huckleberry Pie, the Purple Pie Man, and a couple of the babies.  Few of the clones wore pants either, and thus Luscious is anomalous in that she is wearing an ensemble with pants.  She's even an oddball among her Lollypop cronies; Tutie Fruitie Cutie looks like she might be wearing a long pantsuit, but I can't tell from the pictures so I'm going to tentatively say that Luscious Lemon is the only one not in a dress.  So let's start reviewing these pieces.  Like most (but not all) Strawberry Shortcake clones, the Lollypops wear hats.  These hats are of varying sizes and styles, with Luscious's hat being a simple mob cap.
I find it interesting that Luscious is a lemon-flavored doll, and yet her cap (and her whole outfit) is printed with...what appear to be cherries.  There are also a lot of blossoms in yellow and pink, neither of which are accurate for lemon blossoms, which are cream-colored with touches of lavender.  The hem of the brim is decorated with yellow trim (ewww, corny rhyming!!!).  This hat is surprisingly well-sewn, especially for a clone hat; remember that clone doll clothes can sometimes be half-a$$ completed.  Not so in the case of this hat!  There are very few loose ends, and all of the raw edges are turned under.  The interior even has a band of elastic, though the elastic doesn't stretch much anymore due to age.
Luscious's top is a tunic top with long sleeves and a smocked bodice.  It too has a lot of references to flowers...but except for color there is little to make one think of lemons.
The front of the bodice has an embroidered applique that looks to me like a cluster of roses.  Sometimes these decorations are only loosely sewn on, but the sewing here is solid as a rock.
The neckline is an eensy bit sloppy around the back, but I can let that slide since this fabric is open-work fabric and thus hard to hem.  The neckline is also trimmed with this unusual ric-rac that...doesn't really match anything else that Luscious is wearing.  It's white with red slubs and looks cute but doesn't want to lie flat.
The sleeves are full-length and are made from the same flower-and-cherry print fabric that the hat is made from.  There are a few loose ends hanging out at the cuffs, nothing I can't trim off.
Interestingly, the back is only held closed with a single bit of Velcro, located at the nape of the neck.
I carelessly neglected to photograph the interior of the top, but except for the loose threads at the sleeves and the slightly raggy neckline the stitching is fine.  Interestingly, the interior of the top contains a "MADE IN HONG KONG" sticker; usually I see these on a doll's foot, back, or butt, but Luscious wears her sticker inside her blouse.
 Now to these pants, that I made such a big deal of.  In truth there's not a lot to say; the pants cover Luscious's everything from waist to ankle.  The main parts are made of the same buttery yellow open-knit fabric as the blouse and are gathered at the waist with elastic.  The cuffs are neither gathered nor flared, but they do have some nice trim in the form of more flowered fabric.  The stitching is alright here too.
Lastly, shoes.  These shoes are made of pale yellow soft vinyl, and the shape is...interesting.  Instead of little mary-jane-style shoes like Lime Chiffon and the other Strawberry Shortcake girls wear, Luscious wears little trainers that cover her whole foot.
These have molded laces and some detailing on the toes, but no treads on the bottom.  Being over thirty years old these shoes are a little sticky, something that I remedied with a Clorox wipe.  Yep, I kept my tongue to myself this time!  DON'T lick your dolls, kids!

Sweetie Orange sports a different getup, consisting of a huge bonnet, a dress, and a pair of shoes.
The bonnet/cap/hat/whatever-you-want-to-call-it has a wider brim than the yellow one, thus why I call it a bonnet.  It's floppy, and thus it's a little hard to place on Sweetie's head.
The fabric is mostly white with a sparse print of orange flowers and black polka dots.  Once again the blossoms do not look like the blossoms on orange trees, but this print is more effective in evoking thoughts of the namesake fruit.  The back of the hat is trimmed with a yellow sateen ribbon, and the brim is plain orange fabric.

The dress is a simply made little dress, consisting of the same materials that the hat is made from.
The orange fabric trims the waist to make a faux sash, and it also adds a bit of extra flair to the skirt.
Like most dolls of this era, Sweetie's dress has no sleeves.  The armholes are trimmed in shiny white lace.
A small yellow ribbon at the neck ties the whole look together.
Or rather, it tries to tie the whole look together.  The ribbon on the dress is not the same shade as the ribbon on the hat.
Sateen can fade, so I suppose it's likely that the ribbon on Sweetie's hat did just that.

In lieu of the pants that Luscious wore, Sweetie wears plain white knit tights, the type that like to snag if caught by Velcro.
And what would the dress fasten with???  Velcro.
My biggest gripe with this particular outfit is this Velcro, not because it could potentially snag the tights, but because it does a lousy job of holding the back of the dress together.  If there were two bits of Velcro that wouldn't be a big deal, but there's only one and thus Sweetie's butt would be shining through if it weren't for those tights.  That's...pretty cheap.  It's the only shortcut I've found on either of these Lollypops, but it's still pretty cheap.
Luckily that's the only major shortcut that I found.  The seams inside look a little rough, but they're holding together nicely and only have a few loose ends.  The inside of the hat looks worse than the inside of the dress, but that's largely just an aesthetic concern, easily overlooked if one doesn't turn the hat inside out.
The shoes are the same as Luscious's shoes, but in orange.
Now, Gumdrop.  Since Gumdrop is of a different maker her clothes will be a bit different from the Lollypops.  Her outfit is layered like the original Strawberry Shortcake outfits are, consisting of an orange dress, a pinafore, and the most of the prerequisite accessories.  Most, that is; there is NO HAT THIS TIME.  The girls from the Magic Candy Tree line did not wear hats, which is highly unusual for doll line from this era.
With no hat to review, let's jump into the dress...figuratively, not literally (LOL).  It's got...TA-DA, POLKA DOTS!!!
Yes, white polka dots on an orange background, with a white pinafore that's sewn on.  The skirt is a separate piece sewn on at the waist, but the upper part is part of the dress.  The pinafore has a cute little insignia on it that one could easily miss if not looking closely.  It has this multicolored flower printed on.
Reminds me of the NBC peacock!  LOL, pretty darn cute.  The hem of the pinafore is trimmed with lace...
...as are the cuffs of the sleeves...
...and the neck and the front of the pinafore.
The waist sports a band of orange ric-rac, which I'm always happy to see (I love ric-rac).
The back fastens with a snap, like I wish the other dresses did.
Gumdrop is the only one of these three to wear undergarments of any sort (unless Sweetie's tights count), in the form of simple white panties made from white gauze.
The shoes are white flats with a vague leaf design printed on.  Doesn't look like they're smiling???
LOL, I didn't care much for these rather plain little shoes until I noticed that!  The right shoe has a slight molding defect in the toe, but I can handle that, especially considering that I originally thought that defect was a hole!

Not bad little outfits for any of these dolls, really, if one can overlook the crummy Velcro on Sweetie's top.  These are better than other knockoff clothes that I've seen and owned (Dollar Store, I'm looking at you and those threadbare excuses for Barbie clothes you have).  Now...remember back when Gumdrop's box said her clothes would fit other dolls in her size?  Here's a reminder in case y'all don't want to scroll up.
Actually, now that I look at the box, I realize it says other clothes can fit HER, not the other way around.  I'm beginning to strongly doubt the possibility of any of it, since the sizes of these dolls are all different.  To make things a bit more fun I'll toss in one of my little Ai Dolls and see if these Strawberry clones can wear her Nubanded dress.
Well that went surprisingly well!  The dress is a bit to big for the Li'l Lollypops, but Gumdrop looks presentable.  When the tables are turned Marzipan can't squeeze into Sweet Orange's little tights...
...but she looks adorable in Lollypops' clothes.  She can't squeeze her feet into those little shoes, though.
Gumdrop's dress fits Marzipan the best of them all, right down to the shoes.
Whimzee ran into a similar problem with Sweetie's tights and was in able to get them up due to her legs being longer than Sweetie's.  This problem was/ is exacerbated by her rubbery legs, which create a lot of friction.
When I finally got the Lollypops' dresses on Whimzee though, she rocks them.  Or rather, she rocks them as well as these outfits can be rocked!  These little dresses just seem a bit too tame to be rocked.  Whimzee comes close, though!  She can even wear Lollypop shoes and hats, despite her gravity-defying hairdo.
Gumdrop's dress also fits, though the shoes are a bit big on Whimzee's feet.
Not bad, but not great, really.  I like how Whimzee looks in yellow, but these cutesy little dresses don't fit her style.  When I switched roles I found difficulties with tights yet again, as Whimzee's pink tights are WAY too long for the Lollypops.
And Whimzee's pink shoes are too big...
...AND the overall look doesn't fit either Sweetie or Gumdrop.  Sweetie is drowned by Whimzee's spacey getup, and Gumdrop looks frumpy.  Gumdrop couldn't wear Whimzee's shoes either, by the way; her feet were too big.
Alrighty, so Nubanded's Ai Doll stuff is a yes for Gumdrop and a no for the Lollypops, and Moondreamer outfits are a no for both.  Now we get to the real test, with honest-to-God Strawberry Shortcake stuff.  I can rule out footwear right away since Lime Chiffon has bigger feet than any doll in this review.
As for the Li'l Lollypops dresses...well, they look pretty good.  Luscious's pants come up a little short on Lime's longer legs, but she looks alright.  Her green hair coordinates nicely with the green leaves on Sweetie's dress and hat, and I love how that yellow looks!
Gumdrop's dress doesn't jive as well with Lime's coloring, but she can wear the dress with no problems.
Okay, so we've established that Lime can wear both Li'l Lollypops dresses and the miniature Gumdrop's clothes, but not shoes.  Now let's turn the tables once again.  As was the case above, the Lollypops don't have a prayer of fitting into Lime's tights...
...or shoes...
...but to my surprise, Lime's dress fits Luscious perfectly!
Now the real test.  Gumdrop's box claimed that she can wear other 5 1/2-inch doll clothes with no problems.  Can she?
Well...I did get the dress on Gumdrop, but I also had to detach an arm to get it off again.  The Velcro didn't meet in back either, and the tights and shoes were VERY loose.  So even though I was able to get Gumdrop into Lime's dress, I'm calling BS on the box's claims.  Function will not be wearing Lime's dress again, but that's really no huge biggie since she can wear some PukiFee clothes like Marzipan's dress.

Speaking of ball-jointed dolls, I have two little outfits sized for Pukipuki dolls, a little purple dress from Penny's Tiny Closet, and a Pac-Man set from Nubanded.  I bought these items hoping that they'd fit my tiny ball-jointed dolls...only to learn that my tinies all wear PukiFee stuff, which is a size bigger.  On a whim I tried the Pukipuki clothes on Luscious and Sweetie.
Well!  That whim turned out to be a wise one, because Pukipuki clothes fit Li'l Lollypops PERFECTLY.  Even the little booties that came with the dress fit with no fuss whatsoever.  What a nice surprise this is!  Now I don't have to hide these cute little clothes away and wait to land a Pukipuki of my own.  Before I wrap this up, I would like to point out that none of my other dolls can wear Sweetie Orange's dress without some sort of covering underneath, since it only fastens at the neck.  None of my other dolls could wear Sweetie's tights, so wearing her dress was a bit of a problem for Marzipan and Whimzee and Lime.

I reckon that settles it!  Good stuff/bad stuff time.

*WASH THE LOLLYPOPS BEFORE HANDLING THEM!!!  They get sticky, and that gom tastes really nasty.  Keep that in mind if you want to let kids play with these.
*The hair is greasy as a result of this same gom.
*All three of them smell nasty.
*The Lollypops have very freaky eyes!
*Sweetie Orange's dress has a few frustrating shortcomings.
*Gumdrop does NOT seamlessly fit into Strawberry Shortcake clothes like the box says she does!

*Wonderful little companions for Strawberry Shortcake, and for modern-day kids (just wash the Lollypops first).
*Sturdy.  Gumdrop can come apart at the joints if twisted the wrong way, but she can pop back together again.
*Hair is mercifully short
*Those nasty smells wear off quickly.
*Can wear and share clothes with several other small dolls, but not shoes or tights.

Final verdict?  These are okay for those eighties kids who might want to recapture a piece of their childhood, and they're great playthings for modern kids provided one washes the gom off the Lollypops' faces and heads first.  But hardcore Strawberry collectors can take these or leave them.  Someone on eBay noted that the Pickaberry Circus dolls were superior to both Li'l Lollypops and the Magic Candy Tree line in that they had their own little personalities painted on their faces, and I have to say that I agree.  Sweetie, Luscious, and Gumdrop are welcome in my mishmash collection of Strawberry Shortcake dolls, but there's not much to make them stand out.  Gumdrop stands there and looks worried/sad/shy, while Sweetie and Luscious threaten to suck out my soul with their little sea urchin eyes.  Clothes sharing was fun, though!  Gumdrop's packaging wasn't 100% accurate when it said she could share clothes with any doll her size, but there were some pleasant surprises along the way.  I never dreamed that the Lollypops could wear Pukipuki clothes, for example.  So while I'm not completely sold on these Strawberry clones, I won't scorn them too loudly either.  If for no other reason their clothes are good for sharing around.

Hugs and Oreos,