“ Brand: ELC / Type: Doll „
You get two dolls and 23 items of clothing. The clothes are magnetic so they stick to the dolls - no faffing around with paper tabs.
They are quite large and fairly solid so they are suitable for three-year-olds. My baby tries to get hold of them to chew them which they do not stand up to!
My daughter finds them entertaining for a while but it doesn't hold her attention for that long (she is 6 now). Some of the clothes are a bit too big so it is hard to get all the things onto the doll at the same time - for example jumper and trousers.
It is quite hard to fit everything back in the box (well, it is quite hard for my daughter - not too bad for me!).
It isn't bad for £7 but I don't think it is the best dress-up dolls toy around.
Still, when they get bored you can use the clothes as fridge magnets!
I remember as a child loving to play with 'cut out dolls'. These were paper dolls who have lots of different outfits which had little tabs which could be folded over the shoulders in order to attach them. In the 'good old days' we used to spend hours meticulously cutting them all out which was quite difficult if you weren't very good at cutting and quite often you ended cutting off at least soem of the tabs if not arms and legs s well. Also as they were only paper they were quite flimsy and were quite liable to tear if you weren't careful! Well the ELC Design and Dress kit is the modern day version of my cut out dolls and I can only marvel at how far things have come in about twenty years.
The principles are the same as the old cut out dolls. You have two dimensional dolls and a number of different outfits they can wear. The outfits are all drawn in the shape of the doll so they will cover arms or legs exactly. That, I think, is where the similarity ends!
Firstly the dolls (of which there are two) are magnetic and so are all their clothes and accessories. Because of this they are much thicker than paper ones and therefore much stronger and sturdier too. Also, there is no need for any tabs to attach the clothes because there is the magnetic attraction. This is reasonably strong so that you can stand the dolls up and their clothes won't all drop off, but it's not so strong that you can move them around and hold them upside down. There is also no need for any cutting as everything comes separately in the box. This is a good thing because the set is much more accessible to younger children and considering that my eldest daughter decided to try out her hairdressing skills on her younger sister this week, it will be a long time before I let her loose near a pair of scissors!
There are two girl dolls - a blonde and a brunette - and they both come in just their underwear and shoes! There are twenty eight different accessories and clothes ranging from a couple of 'posh frocks', skirts, t-shirts, trousers, hats and flowers. There is even a ballerina outfit and a fairy wand. The range is lovely because it gives little girls the opportunity to mix and match the clothes and to try out lots of different combinations. I'm sure that both my girls are becoming budding fashion designers!
Because there are two dolls it means that playing with this set can be a very social experience. My two girls often play together taking one doll each nd making up elaborate stories which mean that the dolls have to keep getting dressed in different outfits. I love listening to them playing together and they certainly use their imaginations when playing with these dolls.
The figures and the clothes do seem quite durable. We've had these well over a year now and most are in good condition. However, one of the dolls is a little worse for wear as it was left out in the garden overnight and got a little moist to say the least! Not a good idea! And off course we discovered that they don't want to get too wet although you can wipe any spills off them with a damp cloth but dry it straight away afterwards!
Overall, this set has given both my daughters a great deal of enjoyment and I expect it will continue to do so for a few years yet. The suggested age range is for between three and ten years so it has quite a wide age span. But just in the same way that girls of all ages love dressing up, they love dressing these dolls too! Also,as none of the outfits are ultra fashionable I don't think that this kit will necessarily become dated in a few years as so many toys do!
At the moment the design and dress kit can be bought from the Early Learning Centre for only £7 which I think is pretty good value! We definitely recommend this kit as it is fun, imaginative and easy to use.
Two beautiful magnetic dolls to dress up in a variety of 23 different dressing accessories.