~previously American Girl Imagination

~previously American Girl Imagination~

Tuesday, December 23, 2014

Molly and Emily's Black and White Christmas

So I took some photos of Molly and Emily in front of our Christmas tree, and of course, the coloring didn't turn out all the great because our tree is always far from the window and I always take the tree pictures at night... not a good combo...  and that's the same mistake I made last year... oops.)
But anyway, I made them all black and white, much to the girl's delight, and it turns out, they look much better that way!
 Whisperings under the tree...
 Christmas mugshots *cough* head-shots! In Molly's photo, I was experimenting with a different kind of lighting. My mom picked up some rope lights from the store, and when you pull them out of the package, they're packaged in a ring shape, and have a really strong, bright glow. So I held them up above molly to try and imitate studio lights.  What do you think?
 Molly's a little excited about Christmas.... just a little. She's mostly excited for the snow. That's the main thing she asked for this year, lots and lots of snow. We'll have to see about that, since I have no control over the snow.. hmm..
Emily's just happy to be celebrating with friends, and to be able to enjoy their company. 

What are your Christmas plans, if you happen to celebrate Christmas?
I hope your holiday is a good one, and if I don't get around to blogging before this Thursday, 
Merry Christmas!

Monday, December 22, 2014

Virtual Doll Christmas Card Swap: Download the Cards!

 Yay! Thank you all for such a successful Christmas card swap! I loved seeing all of your cards, and how they're all so different from each other, and so unique and individual... it's really, really neat.
I would like to apologize for taking so long to get these up. I just finished a release for my etsy shop, Zellawear (which I failed to tell you all about... again.) on Wednesday, then I had to ship everything out and that took up a lot of time... But now I can share with you all the cards that we got!
At the end of this post, I will link you to a .doc that you can print out, so you'll have your own little dolly versions of them!
For now, let's take a closer look at the cards, and see who made them! (since it'll be near impossible to read the credits when they're all tiny and printed out. 
From Treasured Friendships with a Flair

From Tea Time with Melody Q

From American Girl Collage

From Carrot and Claire

From Oh My Dollies Family

From Forever Love Dolls

From Photo AG Dolls

From Polka Dot Bee

Again, thank you all so much for participating! This couldn't have happened with out all of you hard work. Thanks for making this possible.
Here is the link to the document. Please let me know if there's anything glitchy about it, such as it won't load, or the doll cards are too big if you print them.
Merry Christmas Everyone!

Saturday, December 13, 2014

5 Tips on Saving Up for an American Girl Doll

Picture belongs to American Girl! I just put text on it. :)
Hello everyone. Since we're coming up to a new year which means new stuff, I thought I'd give you all some tips on saving for an American Girl doll since AG keeps hiking up the prices for no good reason Did you know that the dolls used to sell for about $82? Yeah. And I got my first doll in 2009, when she was only $95... it's only a $15 dollar different from dolls today, but the quality really hasn't changed much... at all...
But anyway, here are my 5 Tips on Saving Up for an American Girl doll!

1. Get a budget.
Seriously. These dolls are pricey. Make and plan, and stick to it. Calculate how much money you get in your daily life, allowance, birthday money, etc. Count it all up. G Get an idea of my much money you make. Do you have to buy the cat's food? Does the dog need flea medicine? Write it all down. Now's a good time to figure out how much your American Girl is going to cost as well. Go to the AG site and stick the doll in the cart, so you'll know how much the doll, shipping and handling and tax will all cost you in the end (shipping and tax can really catch you in the end.) Start putting aside a majority of your money for what you're saving for, and then some 'free money' to be able to spend on random little things occasionally. (personally, I think if you've got enough money, it's a good idea to set aside a chunk for emergencies)  and then...

2. Be smart!
As you save, try to spend as little money if possible, if not any. (I know this isn't easy, as some of us do have to pay for cat food and flea medicine) For your budget to work, you need to stick to the amount of money you've got set for different areas in your life. Do you really need a brand new pair of boots? If you do, maybe you can find a pair at a thrift store for a much cheaper price, but still good quality. Do you really need that brand new thing all your friends have? Most likely not. Do you really need a pack of gum, a 32oz soda, or anything else you see as you come to register? Be careful with this one, it's easy to spend all your money on trinkets and candy. If you really struggle with this,  give all of your money except for your tiny bit of 'free money' to your parents, so you'll be less tempted to spend it all on that shiny thing you just saw.

3. Earning the Money.
If you don't have an allowance, or any other steady flow of money, talk to your parents. Maybe you could work something out or do odd jobs that aren't just cleaning out the toilet, like painting the living room, or cleaning the gutters.
If you have younger siblings, (and of course, if you're the right age) talk to your mom and dad about babysitting, or possibly watching other peoples children. And especially this time of year, you can ask your neighbors if they need someone to shovel their driveway or salt their steps. If you're not reading this in December, mow lawns! Rake leaves! Take a look around a see what you can do. Remember not to be greedy about this, or nasty. If you like to craft, consider opening an etsy, or selling things that you make to friends.
4. Keep at it.
Don't give up. I know it's hard, and it might take awhile. It took me several months to save up for my iPad, and I had a job and ran an Etsy business at the same time! It took me six months to buy Kanani, and I still split the cost with my grandma. (she paid shipping while I paid for the doll.) This is a great life tool you're learning, something you'll be able to use for a long time to come.

5. Don't rule out Ebay and Craigslist as options!
Just because the dolls been loved by someone else before you, doesn't mean you shouldn't by them! You can often find great American Girl dolls for much, much lower prices than you can get them from American Girl. Be careful that you don't spend too much money on these sites though. A used $80 doll that's still for sale on AG for $115 can be tempting... but is it worth it?
 If if you're up for the challenge, you could even get a TLC doll that needs some fixing up. There are hundreds of tutorials you can find online for removing pen, cleaning up vinyl, re wigging and much more! And if it gets to crazy, the doll hospital is always an option.

So there you go, my five tips for saving up for a doll. I hope this helps, and these tips can be applied to almost anything... I've used these tips to save up for my Camera, tablet, etc. I'm not claiming to be an expert, just sharing stuff that's worked for me.
Just don't give up! :)
Have you ever save up to buy a new doll, or something else? Tell me about it below!