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Wednesday, July 31, 2013

La Dee Da Sunflower Burst Cyanne review

This will be the last review I do before the LASIK surgery, so you may not be hearing from me in awhile.  But y'all are used to that, right?  LOL, anyway the doctor said I have to keep my eyes closed for at least twenty-four hours after the surgery, and after that I may have some problems with blurriness and sensitivity to light.  The blurriness should resolve on its own, but it'll still be hard to see.  Either way I'll probably be out of commission for awhile.  But for now, I'll distract myself (and hopefully entertain you) with this review of my new La Dee Da doll, Sunflower Burst Cyanne.
The La Dee Da dolls are by Spin Masters, the same company that used to make LIV dolls.  Right around the time that the LIV dolls were being phased out, these were being released.  So it might be safe to say that these are LIV's replacement.  The line consists of four characters that have banded together to form a fashion line named "La Dee Da," hence the name of the dolls.  The four characters are leader Dee (whom the "La Dee Da" label is named after), girly-girl Cyanne, wild child Tylie, and glamorous Sloane.  Each character has a brief biography on the La Dee Da website; these reveal a bit about each character's personality and fashion style.  Cyanne is fifteen, and confides to us in her bio that she loves spicy tuna rolls, the color aqua, cute shoes, "flouncy" skirts, and "over-the-top makeup," among other things.  Hmmm...I don't have as much in common with her as I did with Daniela (a music-loving brunette), but she still sounds like she'd be a fun person to be with if she were real.  LOL

Here's what Cyanne looks like up close.
She is a little goofy looking with that huge head and those equally huge eyes.  This doll definitely won't be everyone's cup of tea; my sister hates La Dee Da dolls, for example.  I'll admit that I wasn't a huge fan in the beginning, either; I guess I was expecting them to be more realistic like the LIV dolls are.  However, Cyanne has a sweet, approachable expression on her face, not haughty or overly vampy like some teenaged dolls look.  If you give her a chance, she'll grow on you.

The top and sides of her pumpkin-orange hair are pulled back, and the whole shebang is then tied back in a single, neat ponytail.  The ends are uneven.
There is a very, VERY conspicuous cluster of plastic sunflowers sewn to the top of Cyanne's head.  The leaves are fabric.
This decoration was sewn on; I thought it would simply clip or snap on, but it was sewn into Cyanne's hair.  I cut it off so it wouldn't clash too terribly with other clothes she might wear, and now I need to figure out how to put it back on!  Not a difficult task, but first things first.  I've learned from the Toy Box Philosopher that La Dee Da hair tends to be sparsely rooted; this proved to be something of a problem with Viva la France Cyanne, while Dots of Style Dee had better hair.  Let's see how my Cyanne fares.
Yep, that's pretty thin rooting, alright.  It's not quite as thin as Viva la France Cyanne's hair, but it comes pretty close.  The hairline is thickly rooted, however.  Said hairline renders the rest of Cyanne's thinly rooted scalp invisible, so she looks pretty good with her hair tied back.  She also looks good when her hair is down:
This hair is a very nice texture, by the way.  It's smooth and silky, just like LIV doll wigs.  Oh yes, and I love the color.  It's close enough to red that I just love it.

Now, eyes.  La Dee Da dolls have fun eyes.  They're not the stunningly beautiful inset eyes that LIV dolls had, but they're still fun; they all utilize bright colors and garish makeup, and sometimes the two eyes have different styles of makeup.  So it is for my Cyanne.  Here's what her left eye looks like.
Her left eye is pretty plain for someone who loves over-the-top makeup.  Just some very pale yellow eye shadow and long, dark eyelashes.  The eye itself is an aqua color (hey, Cyanne's favorite color!) with a flower petal design around the pupils and sparkles of light in the pupils themselves.  Hmmm...she's got stars in her eyes.  Maybe she's got an alter-ego as a rock musician.  LOL!

Classic rock jokes aside, Cyanne's right eye is more interesting.
It has the same paint job as the left eye, but with the addition of some long yellow...I'm not sure if those are supposed to be flower petals or stamens.  Either way, it looks like it's supposed to be some sort of flower part painted above her eye.

The rest of Cyanne's makeup is fairly minimalistic.  Her lips are a lovely shade of glossy orange.  There are a couple of chips, but as small as the mouth is the chips are not noticeable to the naked eye.
I wore lipstick like that in high school.

Her cheeks have some faint, reddish-orange blush, so faint that it's next to impossible to photograph.  Not tremendously over-the-top makeup, but then again that might be a good thing.  The theme IS Garden Tea Party, after all.  Folks don't normally wear a lot of makeup when they're out of doors, particularly during this time of year.  Besides, overly flashy makeup would've detracted from that cute outfit!
The dress is supposed to resemble a sunflower, and it achieves this goal nicely.  To me it also resembles a costume like a ballerina would wear.  Something like this maybe, but in a different color?  Anyway, let's get to the nitty-gritties.  The top part of Cyanne's dress is made of aqua sateen.  It has transparent rubber straps to keep it from falling down.
The waist is embellished with another plastic sunflower.
The skirt has four layers.  The top two are made of glittery yellow tulle and are cut to resemble the petals of a sunflower.
The third layer is orange tulle and has an even hem.
The bottom-most layer is a smooth orange fabric and has an even hem.
Note to parents:  Cyanne has painted orange panties underneath this dress, so you don't have to worry about her flashing her bare hiney when she bends or falls over.

For footwear Cyanne has blue knee-length knit stockings that are constantly falling down,
...and these cute shoes.
These shoes don't stay on too well, a problem common to a lot of the La Dee Da dolls I've seen in reviews.

Oh yes, there's also these!
Cute little leaf earrings that add to the flower theme.  These are removable and can be swallowed, so if you are a parent with small kids, wait a few years with these dolls.  The earrings are the only pieces of jewelry that Cyanne came with.

Cyanne comes with four accessories.  She has this booklet:
The booklet has four pages.  The first introduces Cyanne and her friends and explains the reason for the tea party theme (one of her friends got a new apartment with a rooftop garden, which served as an inspiration for the clothing).  The second page breaks down Cyanne's outfit, highlighting her favorite parts.  The third and fourth pages have instructions for a cute craft idea.

Believe it or not, the most revealing part of the book was on the back cover.
Remember earlier when I said that Cyanne's dress had a ballerina vibe to it?  It turns out that Cyanne really IS a ballerina...or at least, she was during her childhood.  That explains the appearance of the dress!

In addition to the booklet Cyanne came with this cute little teacup and saucer, both of which echo the flower motif:
And this stand.
The stand is a piece of crap, by the way.  Cyanne is so top heavy that she has a hard time standing anyway, and the "stand" does little to help.  Cyanne is usually either standing like this...
Wardrobe change!

...or like this.
Nine times out of ten she falls over after starting to tip like that.  Forget tightrope-walking, getting this doll to stand is enough of a balancing challenge!

Cyanne herself is no help, by the way.  As I mentioned above she is top heavy; she has a big head and a very small, very dainty body, so staying upright is a real chore.  The body isn't very flexible, either.  She has joints, but they're small and not particularly mobile.  Her hips are a hybrid ball and peg.  She can kick forward very well, but cannot kick back at all.
These hips also have some rotational movement.  Cyanne can turn her toes in...
...and out.
The knees are a hinge joint.  They bend almost to a right angle, but not quite.
The shoulders are your classic ball joint.  They have both lateral movement and back-and-forth movement (my particular doll has loose shoulder joints).
Cyanne and her Garden Tea Party pals each have one arm bent and one arm extended, unlike the prior La Dee Da lines.  When I saw this in the promo pics I thought "Maybe they have jointed elbows like the LIV dolls!"  They don't.  That's something of a letdown, but I can understand why these arms would not be jointed.  They're already thin enough as it is; a joint would probably not be feasible on such a small limb.

Lastly, the neck.
Cyanne can turn her head left and right but can't look up or down, which is a shame.  With those expressive eyes Cyanne could definitely benefit from a head that could tilt.

Now, extra outfits.  I love dolly clothes, and I'm eager to see how La Dee Da outfits compare to LIV outfits.  I never bothered to count how many extra outfits were made for LIV dolls, but there were a bunch.  My Daniela dolls must have over a dozen.  The La Dee Da dolls don't have that many outfits available...not yet, anyway.  Currently there are seven outfits available for Cyanne and her colorful friends...or fourteen, depending on how you count them.  Each of the outfits come with different layers, pieces, or accessories that can give the overall ensemble a new look, so one could say they're getting two outfits for the price of one.  The nautical outfit above has a red romper underneath the blue dress, for example.  It's cute, but of the four outfits I have my favorite one is the picnic-themed outfit (I took this picture before cutting her hair ornament off).
The hem has a string running through it that can be pulled tight or let out.  This changes the style of the dress.  When the string is pulled tight (see above) the dress has a bubble skirt.  When the string is untied the dress has a circle skirt.  Untying the string also reveals a line of ants along the hem.  So cute!  I would advise discretion when letting a small child play with these, though; those shoes are extremely tiny and come off easily, and the evening gown has pieces of jewelry that can also be swallowed.  Keep these outfits (and the dolls themselves) away from young children and pets.  Also keep in mind that these outfits will probably look different on another doll.  Cyanne's orange hair clashes with this pink dress somewhat, but the same dress would look terrific on a doll with pink hair (and several of these La Dee Da dolls have just that).

So...bad news and good news time.

*Cartoonish features.  There's currently a push for more realistic dolls (check out this hideous hunk of plastic that overly-realistic parents are trying to ram down our throats), and this doll is about as realistic as a three-legged unicorn.
*Very top-heavy; this doll has a big head on a small body and is thus very unstable.  If you've ever tried to balance a lollipop on its stick then you know what I'm getting at.
*The stand is very little help in keeping her upright.
*Shoes fall off.
*Low level of articulation, and the joints that do exist have a poor range of motion.  Cyanne's neck and knees could definitely use improvement.
*She feels flimsy in places.  I definitely would not subject her to my "throw-her-across-the-yard-and-see-what-happens" test.
*Not very versatile.  Cyanne is supposed to look like a sunflower, and even when she is wearing another outfit that sunflower vibe comes through.
*Not for small children.  Pieces can be swallowed or lost, and this doll can break if treated roughly.

*Nice hair.  Very smooth and silky.
*Well-painted face.  This is undoubtedly not the case with other La Dee Da dolls, but my Cyanne is nearly perfect in the face paint department.
*She's very colorful.  If I were a little kid these colors would definitely have pulled me in.
*Cute!  Not overly vampy or seductive like a lot of other modern play dolls.
*Outfits are cute, well-made, and can be changed around some.  This also applies to the extra outfits that are available for these dolls.
*She does have a stand.  It doesn't always work, but it's better than no stand at all.
*Cute little accessories.
*She sticks to the theme.  She looks like a sunflower, just as the package says she should.
*Possibilities for imaginative play.  The Toy Box Philosopher noted this when she reviewed her Dots of Style Dee.  She said she could envision some little kid pretending that these dolls are magical little fairies or sprites, and I agree with her..
*NOT PINK!!!  One of my pictures does show Cyanne in a pink outfit, but thank God, it's not the only color she and her friends wear.

So this doll isn't perfect.  She falls over easily (even with the stand), she feels a bit fragile, the shoes can fall off easily, and there are tiny accessories that can get lost, eaten, stolen, or broken.  And lastly, she's one of the LIV doll's successors.  The discontinuation of the LIV dolls left a void that's difficult to fill, and these new girls have a long way to go if they're going to fill it..  However, Cyanne and her splashy friends are fun dolls.  They're colorful, they have cute outfits, they're innocent for the most part, and they have the potential to inspire a lot of creative play.  I can easily picture a little girl picking one doll from each series and assigning different personalities and attributes to each one.  Suppose a little girl has Sunflower Burst Cyanne, City Girl Dee, Lollipop Swirl Sloane from the Sweet Party line, and Kabuki Cutie Tylie from the Runway Vacay line.  An imaginative child could cast Dee as the street-smart, real-world city girl, Sloane as an otherworldly being made out of candy, Cyanne as a sprite that lives inside a flower, and Tylie as an anime star.  Well...okay, maybe they won't get THAT creative, but you never know!  It's never safe to underestimate the imaginative abilities of a child, and these dolls could definitely help build on those skills.  Based on the pros and cons, I would recommend Sunflower Burst Cyanne to a girl between the ages of seven and eleven.  The box says "ages five and up," but if you have a five-year-old I'd hold off unless she's careful with her things.  If Cyanne didn't set your world on fire, do some shopping with your kid and see if there's a character she likes.  There are PLENTY of options to choose from.

I don't know when my next post will be, but it's already in the making.  I found something unusual at a local junk shop, and I'm chomping at the bit to share it with you.  When my eyes are healed I will post it.

Cordially Yours,

1 comment:

  1. Hello from Spain: I really like this doll. Pretty dresses. Keep in touch