The first from Mandarake: Yoko Littner (Doll Profile #2)

In the fall of 2009 I made my very first trip to Japan. Since I had never been, I never really knew what to expect. There was so much to see, so many things to experience, and most of all, SO MANY THINGS TO BUY! I didn’t have any expectations of going doll shopping or bringing one home, so what happened next was completely unplanned. After picking up a fair amount of figures from various stores, I made my way to Nakano Broadway, where my second doll was waiting for me.

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Where it all began: Tohsaka Rin (Doll Profile #1)

Way back in 2008, I was just starting to Follow Danny Choo’s personal blog, where he largely posted pictures of figures and wrote about Japan. One day, he started posting pictures and stories about something radically different and unique: a curious object made by a company called Volks. It was bigger than any figure I had ever seen, was fully poseable, and featured various clothes and accessories. I’m talking, of course, about Dollfie Dreams: Volks’s line of 1/3 scale vinyl dolls created to bring in a new audience. Danny’s first DD was an original Saber (Artoria Pendrangon), complete with armor and sword. He published all of the details about her, including how he got her and how much she cost. At the time, the conversion rates had her value at just over $1000 and I laughed that I’d never spend that much on a single item. After all, the figures I was buying at the time were barely cracking $100!

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A new outfit

This Christmas, my mom decided to work on some doll clothes for my girls. Her first attempt was inspired by a traditional China Dress and some fabric she found at the fabric store. The outfit was originally designed to fit an L bust DD2, however I found it also fits well on an M bust!

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The dress fits Sakura perfectly and gives her something new to wear aside from her default. Since she’s the only L bust in my collection, I don’t have much that was custom tailored for her… Sad smile

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Setting up a monitor stand

Recently, I went from a two monitor setup to a three screen setup using a set of Samsung 2343bwx panels. This presented a problem since my dual monitor stand no longer fully met my needs. Enter Tyke Supply! They have a large selection of stands and mounts to fit different configurations, from a single monitor to six monitor (3×2) configurations!

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Before

The existing dual stand is in the left corner holding the center and left monitors. The right monitor is sitting on the original base and a few volumes of manga. XD

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2011 a year in review

It seems that I’ve once again neglected a blog. No matter, here’s a summary of what happened in 2011 (and bits and pieces of all the content I never got around to writing). Picture heavy post ahead!

In February, D’Ann got her first doll. She’d been wanting one for some time so I hit up Volks to see if they still had any in stock. Fortunately, they still had a Miu available after the DP event so I picked her up. Even though it was still a few months before D’Ann’s birthday, I let it slip that I already had the present. Here’s what happened…

Early birthday present

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Extending range of motion with Cool Cats Neck joint

A couple weeks ago, I decided to try out the neck replacement part from Cool Cat. Similar to the one sold by Dollfie World, this joint promises to be more durable than the Volks default and provide a larger range of motion.

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You can choose from pink or silver for your part, as well as for DD or MDD. They’re also reasonably priced at about $40 and ship from Taiwan.

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Packaging is also very simple, all that comes with it is the joint and a spare set of screws for if you lose the original ones. So how does the joint compare to the Volks original joint?

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Going Wide (Tokina 12-24 AT-X Pro)

It’s been quite awhile, hasn’t it! A couple weeks ago, I picked up a new lens to add to my collection. Introducing the Tokina 12-24mm f/4.0 wide angle!

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I’ve been lusting after a wide angle for some time now and I’d been considering this lens. At an MSRP of $399 for the initial AT-X Pro version ($499 for the AT-X Pro II) seemed a bargain compared to the $1000+ price tag of the Nikon equivalent. Even better, I got mine used from a local camera shop for less than that! A sucker for a good deal (and even nicer glass), I went ahead and picked it up. This would be my second piece of glass from Tokina, the first being the 100mm AT-X Pro Macro lens.

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