Review: Lottie Dolls

Lottie Doll Review

Today I’m reviewing a play doll I’ve come across recently and thought worth sharing (because they are adorable and the attention to detail is fabulous!)

What are Lottie Dolls?

Lottie are adorable play dolls developed with a positive take on childhood in mind.   She does not wear makeup, jewellery or high heels. She loves to dress up in pretty clothes but is equally happy to be active, outdoors and getting muddy.

The creators of the doll worked with influential British academics to create a doll body that is realistic and based on the actual proportions of a nine year old child.   It’s great to see a positive doll like this come on the market for the 3 – 9 year old age group.

Inspired by strong characters like Jo from Little Women, George from The Famous Five and Hermione Granger from Harry Potter, Lottie dolls encourage girls to enjoy their childhood, in all its facets.  The message behind the Lottie Dolls is be bold, be brave, be you

There are currently 12 dolls in the range and I’m showcasing 2 in this review.

English Country Garden Lottie Doll

Lottie Doll - English Country Garden

Pirate Queen Lottie Doll

Lottie Doll - Pirate Queen

Key Features

  • Launched in August 2012
  • Niche age group: 3-9
  • 18cm tall, portable and easy for little hands to carry around
  • Childlike body – doesn’t wear makeup, jewellery or high heels
  • Stands on feet (with shoes)
  • Finely detailed clothes
  • Easy to dress and undress
  • Hair is soft and doesn’t tangle and knot like other doll hair
  • Bendable knees with ball socket hips and arms
  • Presented in a giftable, illustrated and collectible doll box bag, with minimal plastic packaging.
  • Won 19 international awards, including 5 Oppenheim Portfolio Platinum Awards.
  • Recommended Age: 3 Years +
  • Dolls RRP $24.95
  • Accessory sets and outfits RRP $14.95

Accessories

I was impressed by the Lottie Doll accessories (sold separately). They are fantastic additions to play and I was thrilled with the quality of the items.

English Garden Lottie Doll

The English Garden Lottie Doll accessory pack is a picnic basket with rug, 2 plates, 2 cups and 2 cupcakes.

Lottie Doll - English Country Garden Accessories

Lottie Doll - English Garden Queen - Accessories

Pirate Queen Lottie Doll

The Pirate Queen Lottie Doll accessory pack comes with a treasure chest, coins, flag, map. (The sword, hat & books come with the doll)

Lottie Doll - Pirate Queen Doll -- Accessories

Lottie Doll - Pirate Queen Doll -- Accessories

Box

There is an attention to detail quality with these dolls that goes right down to the collectible play box with minimal plastic packaging.

Lottie Doll - Box

Size

Lottie Dolls are 18 cm in height.  They are a lovely size for small hands to hold and carry around. To give an idea of where they sit in terms of height compared to other popular dolls, they are somewhere between a Skipper Doll and a Kelly Doll.

Lottie Doll - Size

Hair

The Lottie Doll hair is of high quality and it feels lovely and soft.  There is less rooted hair per cm compared to some other dolls of this head size, however the hair is beautifully glossy; so shiny! — which means it sits straight and it doesn’t seem to tangle easily. 

I absolutely love the fringe on the Lottie dolls. If you look closely, you can see that it’s feathered and not exactly straight which gives it that carefree quality.

Lottie Doll - Hair

Face

Sweet-sweet face with big eyes reflective of classic Japanese anime.

Lottie Doll - English Country Garden - Face

Lottie Doll - Pirate Queen - Face

Clothes

The attention to detail in the clothes is just WOW.   For example, on the English Country Garden Lottie Doll, there is a bow at the back, on the socks and the front pocket. Adorable! The clothes are easy to put on which is another plus. Another thing that stood out to me with the clothes is the interesting colour combinations and mixed variety of textiles (like chord) – wonderful!

The only negative I found with the clothes is the velcro details (particuiarly on the English Country Garden Dress) don’t appear to be very strong. The flowers/strawberries on the front of the dress are actually removable (which is fun) but I found them not to attach very strongly to the dress.  The back velcro holds fine, but I would have liked it to be made from a little stronger velcro.

Lottie Doll - Clothes

Lottie Doll - English Garden Queen - Clothes

Lottie Doll - English Garden Queen - Clothes

Love, love, love this outfit! I took the green sash off Grace, the Pirate Queen Doll, to show the cute little buttons on the cord shorts. The textures are fantastic! I didn’t have the same issues with the small amount of velcro on this outfit.

Lottie Doll - Clothes

Posing

One of my favourite things about these dolls is they can stand on shoed feet without assistance so kids can pose them in play.

Lottie Doll - English Country Garden - Posing

Lottie Doll - Pirate Queen - Posing

Movement & Flexibility

This is something I look at carefully in dolls.  In my experience with buying dolls for my kids to play with, too much flexibility and the dolls don’t tend to be durable for play and then not enough flexibility and they aren’t as fun to play with.  The Lottie dolls have a good balance of flexibility.

  • Head moves side to side (not up and down)
  • Arms are fixed and move up and down (no jointed elbows)
  • Bends at waist (to sit down)
  • Legs splits easily front to back
  • Legs open side to side
  • Bendable knees (a click bend)

Lottie Doll - Movement and Flexibility

Just look at those boots!! Gorgeous!

What do my kids think?

Here’s a few snaps of what my girls got up to playing with the Lottie dolls.  They are captivated by them and the dolls have been a catalyst to many happy hours of play. I noticed how the dolls fit to beautifully in the children’s hands; they held and played with them like the dolls were special treasures.

Lottie Doll - Play

Lottie Doll - Play

Pros & Cons

Below are the pros and cons I noted down about Lottie Dolls

Pros

  • Adorable looking
  • Age appropriate 
  • Great quality
  • Durable
  • Body shape represents the niche age the doll is designed for
  • Positive message about childhood
  • Great size for play and travel
  • Cute quality accessories
  • Glossy and soft hair that doesn’t tangle easily – excellent quality
  • Stands up without assistance 
  • Good flexibility
  • Easy to dress

Cons

  • Velcro on clothes not overly strong
  • Less hair / cm than some other dolls (but this doesn’t affect the look / play quality of the doll)
  • Some branding/style noticeably not Australian (eg. English Country Garden, Branksea Festival) –  not an issue in itself but possibly not as relatable with the stories of the dolls.
  • Lottie dolls are available to purchase in Australia however, not widely. Many Toys R Us sell them (instore and online), you can get them online from Amazon. Find a full list of all retailers here.

Range

There are currently 12 dolls in the range. They are available from Toys R Us (just search for Lottie Doll on the website), Amazon, and from selected stores.

Lottie Doll Range - Review

What I’d love to see

I’d love for Lottie to include a boy range too!

http://www.lottie.com

The Lottie dolls are a wonderful addition to the play doll range with the focus on encouraging kids to enjoy childhood in all its facets.  The attention to detail and high quality of the dolls is what makes them stand out to me.  Lottie dolls have that collectible quality and yet the neat size, quality accessories and good design makes them a fun play companion. Last word: Adorable!

More detail can be found on the website www.lottie.com

Other Be A Fun Mum Reviews

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Disclaimer: The Lottie Dolls were sent to me for an honest review. I was not paid and all views are my own.

Why do My Kids love the Octonauts so much?

octonauts abc kids

Never, has a children’s television series captured the imagination of my children more.

“Get ready before the Octonauts start,” has been a wonderful motivator on a school morning. HA! As the familiar music begins, I hear their voices chime in.

“Barnacle!”

“Kwazii!”

“Peso!”

“Explore!”

“Rescue!”

“Protect!”

octonauts

Why I like it

What I like most about The Octonauts is it lights up my children’s imagination. It’s like I can see the creative sparks flying; quite remarkable really.    Below are some of the things I’ve noticed:

  • My children laugh and interact with the characters 
  • It translates into their imaginative play times
  • My children often draw and recreate scenes on paper
  • They learn about the ocean, sea animals and looking after the environment.
  • Our family loves to explore the outdoors, and look for ways to make connections with what we see around us. Many an Octonaut fact has helped us do this.

I don’t know what they are doing behind this program, because Turnip creatures like this seem weird, but it totally works!

Tunip Vegimal

Benefits

The television series is based on the richly imaginative books by the award-winning design team, Meomi. Below are some of the educational benefits:

  • Octonauts encourages a creative and active imagination through the use of vibrant animated underwater worlds and seascapes.
  • Octonauts promotes the importance of team work and a sense of community as they key characters work together on each adventure.
  • Octonauts educates children about the world around them and specifically marine life. The show provides facts about different sea creatures, their habits and rituals and fosters a sens of caring for our fragile environment.

The Octonauts on DVD

meet the octonauts dvdMeet the Octonauts is now available on DVD

RRP $19.95

Running time: 77 mins

Octonauts follows a team of animated adventure heroes who dive into action whenever there is trouble under the sea. In a fleet of aquatic vehicles, they rescue amazing sea creatures and explore incredible new underwater worlds, and often save the day before returning safely to their home base, the Octopod.

Buoyed by the companionship of three leading characters — Captain Barnacles Bear, Lieutenant Kwazii Cat and Medic Peso Penguin — the Octonauts are always ready to embark on an exciting new mission!

Giveaway

You have to be quick here, but I have a fun giveaway. It’s “first in best dressed”. Just leave a comment below. I’m giving away 5 prizes:

1. Octonauts Swim Bag, Meet the Octonauts DVD and Octonauts and the Whale Shark book

2. Meet the Octonauts DVD and Octonauts and the Decorator Crab

3. Meet the Octonauts DVD and Octonauts and the Giant Squid

4. Meet the Octonauts DVD

5. Meet the Octonauts DVD

Terms:

1. Australian residents only

2. First 5 comments will receive the prize in order.

Who else loves the Octonauts?

Join ABC Kids on Facebook

Note:

Roadshow Entertainment Australia gave my family a complimentary Octonaut DVD (which I totally wanted — HA!). I was not paid for this review and all views are my own. Read more in my disclosure statement

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Microsoft Office 2010 Features: Giveaway

I’m writing a review of Microsoft Office 2010 from my own experiences.  Below are four of my favourite features.

1. SmartArt: I love you SmartArt!

SmartArt is an automatic graphic program.  In less than 5 minutes, I was able to create four different relationship charts in relation to my post on discipline.

I’m a pictorial learner and writer so I love this tool.  Due to the ease of changing graphics, I can test different graphics and then choose which illustration best visually represents the message I wish to convey. Hmmm, number two or four I think.

2. Text/Font Effects

Microsoft Word’s new word processing features are nothing short of fabulous.  In previous versions, fancy text was only able to be produced through Word Art.  Microsoft Word 2010 allows for design fonts to be inserted directly into the document and, as such, spell check is able to scan those words for errors. 

With a few clicks, I was able to create different font effects, literally in seconds.

3. Draft Saves: Hooray, it’s still there!

I’m a Mum: interruptions are part of my world. I can’t begin to tell you how many times I’ve left the computer without saving my work.  Microsoft Office 2010 features the ability to access unsaved work as well as draft versions of files that have been closed without saving.  Read recover instructions here.

4. Create a Blog Button, Graphic or Picture collage

Publisher is my favourite Microsoft Office application.  I use Publisher to edit pictures, create blog buttons and graphics.  There are many fantastic photo collage programs available; however, I like the flexibility and simplicity of using Publisher, especially with combining text and pictures.  For example for my Theme It and My Style posts, I’m able to place reference numbers over the picture products. Click the image below for a  step by step tutorial of how to create a simple graphic picture on Publisher.

Click the icon below to see how I created the I-love-you-my-readers button.

Summary

I’ve been using Microsoft Office 2010 for 2 months now and what impresses me most, is the usability factor.  I don’t waste time thinking about what menu to select, I just do it; it works and everything I need is — right there in front of me.

I’ve only highlighted some of many new Microsoft Office 2010 features.  To read more, click here.

Note: I was not paid for this review.

************************************

I’m offering Be A Fun Mum readers a chance to win one  Microsoft Office 2010 (RRP $379).

* To enter,  leave a comment below with the answer to this question:

If you receive a copy of Microsoft Office 2010, what features would appeal to you most and why?

* The competition is open to Australian residents only.

* Valid from Tuesday 6 July to Monday  12 July 2010.

* I will draw the winner by random number at 7pm on the closing date.

* The winner will be notified via email and a post update link on the Be A Fun Mum Facebook Page.

13.7.10: 8.oo pm: Congratulations Brigette