Friday, September 30, 2011

BFC Ink Kaitlin Doll Review (including a Comparison with BFC Ink Gianna)


Now that Kaitlin's hair is more presentable and I finally found her some clothes, I thought it would be fun to do an official review post! :) 

Many of you mentioned the fact that the Disney Princess and Me dolls look very similar in body style and in the face to the BFC Ink dolls.  Sadly, there aren't any Disney Princess and Me dolls in our house, but we do have the next best thing:  my oldest daughter's toddler Rapunzel doll from Walmart. 

I was curious to see if her clothes would fit Kaitlin, and they did!  Doesn't Kaitlin make a lovely Rapunzel stand-in?  She even has the right hair color and eye color. :)

For those of you who don't know, the toddler Disney dolls sold at Walmart are much lower quality than the Disney Princess and Me dolls, and they are only 14" tall.  This explains the length of Kaitlin's Rapunzel dress. :}

As I stated in an earlier post, my local Walmart had a few BFC Ink outfits on sale.  There were two bikini sets and the one I purchased, the "Bright and Beautiful" set.  Ordinarily, it's not an outfit I'd choose, but I was desperate for Kaitlin to have something to wear (and I knew my oldest wouldn't want to give up her Rapunzel dress for long). ;)

Here's Kaitlin in the entire ensemble.  The set included a sundress, an orange shrug, some plastic purple sandals, and a brown fake-leather purse. 

The purse was cute, but didn't really go with the rest of the outfit, in my opinion.  I'll probably use it as a handbag for my AGs instead. :)

Here are the sandals a little closer.  Not the greatest quality, but I don't mind them.

Here's a closer look at the material of the sundress.  It's not terrible, but something about the pattern makes it look like cheap material to me.  Especially when you compare it to the picture on the back of the package:

I would definitely have preferred this dress!

Here is the sundress with the shrug...

...and without it.

Overall, it's a cute little outfit.  I definitely wouldn't pay more than the $7 I paid for it.  I would have been more comfortable with paying $5.  I liked the fact that it had easy Velcro closure on the back (especially since this was marketed to younger girls).  It's a cute, simple little outfit.  I didn't care for the fact that it was a bit plungy in the bodice and the pattern on the material wasn't as nice as the one shown in the picture.  Also, it's a little short for my taste, but I figured a short dress was better than nothing at all! :} 

I must confess, even though Kaitlin looks cute in this, I don't think orange is the best color for her, especially after seeing her in Rapunzel's dress.  Lavender is much more flattering for her skin tone.  Maybe I'll have to take advantage of that free t-shirt pattern from Liberty Jane Clothing and find some lavender material. :)  I'm seriously considering buying the jeans pattern, too.

Kaitlin is one of the earlier versions of the BFC Ink dolls, so I thought it would be interesting to do a comparison between her and Gianna.  There were 2 different 18" BFC Ink doll body styles that I am aware of.  The first ones to be released came in the long boxes and were sitting down.  The newer releases came standing up in a tall box filled with photos and messages emphasizing their super poseability.  The newest dolls I've seen appear to have the same body style as my Gianna doll, but are in smaller packages.  I'm sorry I don't know the official release dates on these...that would be more professional.  I figured I could at least share the little I know for now. :}

So here are some side-by-side pics of Kaitlin and Gianna.  You'll notice that Kaitlin has a much simpler body.  Kaitlin has movable arms, a movable chest, hip joints, knee joints, and a movable head.  Gianna has all this as well as elbow, wrist, and ankle joints.  You'll notice from the pics that Gianna's hip joints appear to be slightly different, presumably to give her more articulation.  Her chest joint is a little different, too.

Here they are from the back.  In these pics you can definitely see the difference in the chest joint, as well as the differences in the knee joints. 

Here is a closer look at Kaitlin's arm.  It's got very simple articulation at the shoulder, and no other joints.

Kaitlin's knee joints are rather...interesting.  She looks like she had a surgery gone wrong or something. ;)  The knees have to look like this for her to stand.  If you try to line them up, they're in the wrong position for her to stay upright. 

One big disappointment about her knee joints was their lack of poseability.  The above picture shows the absolute farthest they can bend.  I was expecting them to be able to bed a lot farther.

She is still poseable, though.  I love how this pic turned out. ;)

It's interesting.  One of the concerns I had about Gianna was the weakness of some of her joints.  I wondered how long they would hold up to normal play.  At the same time, I loved being able to pose her in all sorts of different positions.  At the time, I wondered if one of the earlier BFC Ink body styles would be more durable. 

Now that I have Kaitlin, I'm wondering the same thing.  The nice thing about having fewer joints is that she's a little sturdier.  However, I find myself really missing Gianna's poseability, especially since Kaitlin's knee joints are so difficult.  And there are still issues with loose joints on Kaitlin.  Granted, I got her used and have no idea how heavily she was played with.  Still, I almost find myself preferring the possibility of worn out joints in the newer dolls because they're so much more fun to pose. 

 One other change I wasn't expecting is that Kaitlin's head only moves from side to side, while Gianna's could move slightly up, down, and side to side as well.  Because of this, Gianna had a lot more potential for expression in photography. 

So, some final thoughts.  I love Kaitlin's sweet face and pretty eyes, but find myself disappointed that I can't pose her nearly as much as the newer dolls.  I think there are durability issues with both body styles. 

Depending on how roughly your kids play, I would recommend holding off on these dolls until your girls are at least 7 or 8, or an extremely careful younger child.  If I was getting a BFC Ink doll for my oldest daughter, I'd probably go for one with the older body style, like Kaitlin, simply because with fewer joints to move, there are fewer parts to break! ;)  I think my daughter would probably be frustrated with Kaitlin's knee joints though, especially since they look like they should move farther.  

As a collector, I think I would prefer a Kaitlin with the newer body style.  I'm not in the habit of playing roughly with my toys ;) and most of my dolls are on display for the majority of the time, so the joint durability would not be as much of an issue for me.

I'm still hanging on to Kaitlin for now despite my preferences.  She was such a splendid find and she's an incredibly beautiful doll.  She may eventually be a doll for my daughters...I'll just have to see.  I'll keep you guys posted, though. :)

I hope you found this post helpful.  If you have any thoughts you'd like to share, feel free to leave a comment below.  Please be aware, though, that tonight is my party, so I may not be able to publish or respond to comments until sometime tomorrow. :) 


Allie M. said...

Hi beasts'belle! Thank you for the info on these dolls. I love my dolly, I really think dolls are real. Don't you? Anyways I have to go back to school. See ya!


beast'sbelle said...

Hi Allie. :) You're welcome. Glad you enjoyed the post.

I've always liked to imagine my dolls are real. Some of them have such strong personalities, it's hard to imagine them otherwise. ;)

Have a great day at school!

Elliebob said...

I love Kaitlin!! He is the cutest doll there is at walmart or target I think. :)

Bama said...

Thanks for the review! I like to find out as much as I can about dolls I'm interested in. Gianna has always been my favorite of these, with Kaitlyn a close second.

beast'sbelle said...

Hi Elliebob, hi Bama! Thanks for commenting.l :) Glad this was helpful. :)

Jen said...

Question time! Since toddler-Rapunzel's dress worked nicely on a BFC doll, do you think BFC clothes would work on a toddler Rapunzel? (The Pie has fallen in love with "baby Rapunzel" and she will be under the tree at Christmas. It'd be nice if we had alternate clothing choices, there's not a lot out there for the Disney toddler line!)

beast'sbelle said...

I think the dress sets should. The pants would be too long and skinny. I have a BFC outfit, so I'll try it on my daughter's Rapunzel and let you know in a later comment. :)

beast'sbelle said...

Hi Jen! I tried the BFC Ink sundress on Rapunzel and it did fit, although it was a little plungy in the chest. ;) I took some pics for you, too, so I'll try to get those up in the next couple of days. :)

Jen said...

Thank you so much! It's good to know there's other clothing options - or I can adapt the Liberty Jane BFC patterns if Baby Rapunzel needs a new dress!

beast'sbelle said...

You're welcome. :) It's always nice finding other options when you don't have much to choose from. I'll try to get your pics up soon, but it may have to be next week. I'm going to my church's Ladie's Retreat at the end of this week, and since I'm speaking, I really need to focus on that. :)

Unknown said...

I love these dolls, they are getting hard to find Luckly I have all of the club girls and CJ the new boy and I have all but one Pen Pal girl she's from France Nicolet There are Britt Carmen and Elsa they are MGA entertainment pen pal they have the same malti joints as the BFC and they have the same cute faces. I have the older style Kaitlin with the strait arms but I am going to buy the Kaitlin summer splash she has the joints in her arm wrist ankle and knee. Lynn

beastsbelle said...

Hi Lynn! I'm a big fan of these dolls, too. And I agree with you: they are getting a lot harder to find, especially in stores! I just recently found a lot of them on eBay, including Addison, Yuko, Calista, and another Kaitlin, all with the multiple joints. I also have Britt and just recently added Nicolette from the Pen Pals dolls. I'd love to find a CJ eventually! :) I have a blog post in draft with lots of pics of my newer dolls, so stay tuned! :) Thanks for commenting!

jilflirt said...

Hi! I know this is an old post, but I only just discovered the BFC dolls a few months ago! I became obsessed with them and have acquired used and a few affordable new dolls off eBay. But I can't figure out where to find their clothing. No one sells the clothing on eBay, and I've bought what I can find in Amazon. Do you have any tips on where to find the BFC clothing?

beastsbelle said...

Hi jilflirt! Glad you enjoyed the post. I really love the BFC Ink dolls. It's a shame they're no longer being made.

Finding clothing for them can be tricky. If you're not set on actual MGA Entertainment BFC Ink clothing, you might try searching "BFC Ink" on I know there are some nice handmade things there.

I've found two eBay sellers in the past that had some great handmade items for the BFC Ink dolls, cottoncandy1288 and suzyb-creations. Neither one of them have any current listings, but you can check out my reviews of their clothing here:


...and here:


You might consider adding them to your favorite sellers so you'll be able to see their new items when they come up. :)

If you're into sewing, Liberty Jane Clothing has some fabulous patterns for adorable outfits.


My Froggy Stuff on YouTube also has some great tutorials that I used to make some no-sew dresses. You can see more about that in my post here:


Another great idea is to look for similar-sized porcelain dolls at thrift stores with removable clothing. One of my favorite BFC Ink dresses came from a thrift store porcelain doll:


I hope this gives you a good starting point! :) Feel free to comment again if you have further questions. :)

beastsbelle said...

P.S. I'm still getting the hang of leaving links in the comments, so I'm not sure why they all say "home". :} If you click on them, they'll take you to the places they're supposed to. You might consider right clicking and opening them in a new window, though. ;)

beastsbelle said...

Okay, did my research. I was supposed to insert a word for each of the links so it wouldn't say "HOME". I'll know better next time. ;)

jilflirt said...

Thank you so much! I am following the sellers you linked to now. I had noticed that Liberty Jane has some really cute clothing patterns; maybe it's time for me to learn to sew! I also did find some clothing for sale on Amazon, so at least my dolls (bought used and w/o clothing on ebay) have something to wear. Thanks again for all the information. I really enjoy your blog.

beastsbelle said...

No problem, Jill. Glad to help. :)