Ever After High is a line of dolls by Mattel that focuses on the sons and daughters of fairytale characters. There was an online series of webisodes which followed the characters as they struggled with if they would follow their fairytale destinies or choose their own paths for the future. I first found out about Ever After High dolls when I was reading through several doll blogs. I thought they were really cute dolls and when I looked up the different ones that were available I was instantly drawn to Briar because I thought she was so pretty. I ordered Briar and Dexter and when they arrived I was really impressed at the amount of detail that went into the dolls as well as how their fairytale origins influenced their looks. I loved all of their accessories and how much thought went into their outfits, such as Briar's pillow shaped purse and thorn covered tights, or Dexter's royal emblems and pins on his backpack. When I was younger I was really interested in fairytales (Cinderella was my favorite), and this series is fun because it adds a different spin on the stories.
In addition to the dolls, I also really enjoyed the webisode series. I initially didn't plan on watching any because I didn't think they would appeal to me, but they were actually really cute and well made. I found the royal vs. rebel dynamic interesting and I liked the message it presented in that you don't have to follow the path that is set out for you if it isn't what you want for yourself. I also really enjoyed the friendships between the characters and how they supported one another even if they didn't agree with the choices that were being made. Apple and Raven's story in particular was really interesting, especially watching Apple's character grow and change as she slowly came to realize that getting her happily ever after would end in unhappiness for her friend. I also felt that the looks of the characters in the show translated really well to the dolls.
One thing that I really dislike about this line of dolls is the clear decline in quality. I don't have that many dolls but I do follow the fandom and it has been really sad to see what this line has become. When I first got into it the dolls were all detailed, and although I felt a little paint on the accessories and styling of the hair was needed, it wasn't anything that couldn't be fixed. However, they have since re-released the signature series with a startling lack of care, including the removal of their earrings, rings, accessories, and even patterns on their tights. New releases also feature strange new facial expressions, molded on tights, and an increasing lack of articulation. I have not really liked many of the new characters that have been released and since there is such a noticeable decline in quality I am very happy that I got the dolls that I have when I did.
For my EAH doll collection, it started with Briar and Dexter. I had a lot of fun fixing up their hair with the straw curler, bobby pin, and hot water method, and I also enjoyed painting their accessories to bring their looks together. I loved Cerise's character on the show, but when she arrived I was disappointed because her sticky hair had left stains on the hood of her cape. I contacted Mattel and they sent me a replacement doll, but that doll's hood was even worse. My mom was able to make Cerise a new hood and I ended up restyling the second Cerise by changing her outfit and hairstyle. For the Hunter and Ashlynn two-pack, I painted a few of their accessories and took off Ashlynn's earrings, headband, and braided her hair to make her look a little less made-up. The two of them look so cute together on my shelf sitting there holding hands. While I disliked Blondie's character on the show, I was really drawn to her Enchanted Picnic doll because she looked so different than usual, so I got her and she sits with my second Cerise. One day I was so frustrated at how sticky and gross Cerise's hair was I cut it to shoulder length, where it is now much more manageable. I also bought Cerise and Blondie new clothes off of Etsy and I am really happy with my customized pairing and also my canon group.
Cerise Hood (x2)