Sunday, January 5, 2014

Kawaii Crush Mandy's Candy Shop and Thoughts From the Resident Experts

Well, I thought I was done with Kawaii Crush reviews, but I have one last one to start out our week. :}  After my review of Jamie's Sunglass Shop, I was curious to see if the other accessory set I'd purchased (Mandy's Candy Shop) was any better. 

Another rather unexpected thing happened when the girls and I took a trip to Target last week.  Well, I suppose I shouldn't have found it all that unexpected. ;)  The girls had watched me take my pictures for my other Kawaii Crush reviews, and they completely fell in love with the line.  So when we ended up in the Target toy clearance aisle, and the girls had a bit of Christmas money to spend, guess what came home with us? ;)  In spite of my rather mixed reviews, the girls have had a great time playing with their Kawaii Crush toys this week.  I thought since they're now more acquainted with the line than I am, at the end of this post I'd let them share their thoughts.  So this time around, you'll have my perspective and the girls.  I hope you enjoy it. :)

First, let's take a look at Mandy's Candy Shop.

The front of the package...

...and the back.

A few box details:

Here is the set completely deboxed.  My set came with the candy shop, a candy scale, four pieces of candy, a piece of play money, a cash register, a bag for candy purchases, and Mandy Candy Dot Dot. 

Interestingly enough, I happened to watch My Froggy Stuff's review of the Kawaii Crush line with the girls the other day, and I noticed that her set also came with a candy scoop.  At this point, I'd already opened the box, and wondered if I'd somehow accidentally thrown my scoop away with the packaging!  I checked the back of the package, and it had the scoop listed as one of the accessories.  The picture on the back also showed the scoop.  But when I took another look at my first picture (you can click it to enlarge it), I couldn't see a scoop anywhere.  I ended up running back by Target yesterday, so I checked the clearance aisle to look at the other Mandy's Candy Shop sets.  Sure enough, the scoop was there, resting inside the shopping bag.  The smiley face hadn't been painted, so it was just a clear scoop that blended right in with the packaging.  It is there in my first picture.  I can see it now that I know what I'm looking for.  Which means it somehow got thrown out with my packaging.  Fiddlesticks. :(

The missing scoop isn't a huge deal, but the "mint condition" part of me is just a bit bothered. ;)  I can live without a candy scoop, though.  Honest.  ;)  (Must resist spending another $4.98 just for a measly candy scoop...must...resist...)

So here is Mandy Candy Dot Dot.  She comes with a hat, skirt, and boots.

I had no problems getting her to stand on her own.

A closer look at her skirt and boots.

Her hat looks like a big piece of candy on the top...and also has the obligatory smiley face. ;)

She has this outfit underneath.  

I realize that I forgot to test her sitting ability, so I just went to check.  Her hair does not interfere as much as Jamie's, but it still makes her rather top-heavy, so sitting unassisted is difficult.  However, she probably sits better than any of my other Kawaii Crush dolls.

Now for a closer look at her shop accessories.

Here's the candy scale.  It's all one piece.

The cute cash register.

A view from the back.  It has a few very minor paint flaws.

The cash register drawer opens.  (Ick.  I apologize for my extremely dry fingers.  Too much housecleaning this week.) :}

The set also includes a piece of play money.  Green on the front...

...pink on the back. ;)

The money fits nicely in the cash register drawer.

Here's the front of the shopping bag...

...and the back.  As you can see, it is transparent.

The shop comes with four types of candy.

First is the pink caramel apple.

All of the pieces of candy have a small hole in the back, which I'll explain later.  My caramel apple also had some minor paint rubs on the back.

Next, we have a pink ice cream cone...or perhaps it's cotton candy.  The loop on the side is there so that the dolls can hold it.

The back of the ice cream/cotton candy.

I love the cute little peppermint.

Back of the peppermint.

There's also this cute little lollipop, front...

...and back.

Now we come to the candy shop itself.  Here's what it looks like when it's closed.

The peppermint on top of my shop has a few paint rubs on one eye.

The doors open when the candy shop is ready for business.

This candy display in the center rotates.  As far as I can tell, you just rotate it by hand.  It strikes me as a bit fragile, so a gentle hand is best.

There's a piece underneath that allows it to turn.  

The candy display has little knobs on it which fit the holes on the back of the candy.

Customers can pick out a piece of candy and put it in the shopping bag.

The shop has storage underneath for when playtime is over.

Here's Mandy with Hannah and Jamie.  Hannah is still my favorite, but they're all cute.  

I have to say that I was much more pleased with this set than with Jamie's Sunglass Shop.  The doll stood unassisted, the candy pieces were cute, and the concept worked.  The main complaint I had were the few paint rubs on some of my pieces, and they were fairly minor.  The doll also did not sit unassisted, but she was much more posable than the others.  Also, the candy shop did not really latch when closed, so that might cause some slight frustration for kiddos.  Overall, though, I thought it was fun and cute.  I'd give it a 5 out of 5.   This is definitely the set to get if you want something from the  Kawaii Crush line.  Just be really careful opening the packaging so you don't lose your candy scoop. :}

So, on to some of our other Kawaii Crush goodies!

One of the items Oldest Gal decided to purchase with her Christmas money was the Hyper Happy Mall.  This was not something I was planning on adding to our doll stash, and I did point out a few things to think about before she spent her money, but Oldest Gal had her mind made up.  In all fairness, we had spent two days going through her room and reorganizing it, and she had an empty shelf just waiting for something new. ;)

Here's the mall in its box.

I think Holly Molly Shop Shop is adorable.  She only comes with this set.  Unfortunately, she's a doll that none of us have been able to get to stand on her own. :(

It was originally $29.99, but Oldest Gal got it for $14.98.  In my opinion, this set is not worth $30 because of the quality.  (It's not like it's horrible quality, but it's not $30 quality.)  Personally, I'd be willing to pay about $10 for it, but Oldest Gal is deliriously happy with it, so it was worth $15 to her. ;)

The back of the box.

A closer look at the mall.  We actually cut this part out so Oldest Gal could use it as a reference when setting up her mall.

Details about the mall shops.

Holly's bio.

I'll let Oldest Gal share her thoughts on the mall in a bit. :)

So here's all of our Kawaii Crush collection so far.

Mandy's Candy Shop is ready for business.

Hannah Banana Nom Nom is checking out the pet shop.

Chilly Milly Yip Yip and her penguin are relaxing at the food court.  My girls all mentioned that they didn't think they'd be able to eat in "Kawaii Crush land", because they couldn't eat things that had cute smiley faces on them. ;)

Little Gal's Hannah Banana is riding the elevator (which has a few design flaws, but still works for the most part).

Owleena Hoot Hoot (renamed Owleena Cutie Pie by Middle Gal) and her pet are enjoying the photo booth.

Holly Molly Shop Shop is ready to run the boutique.

Jamie is ready to sell her sunglasses...providing that none of her customers want sunglasses that actually fit them. ;)

The girls spent most of the week playing with these every single morning when they first got up.  I also let them watch some of the webisodes on the Kawaii Crush website, and they loved them all.  They literally said "Cute!" at the end of every clip (and sometimes during the clips), so obviously the line was aptly named. ;)  They also got really excited whenever their characters made an appearance. 

To end the post, I interviewed each of the girls and asked them to share, in their own words, what they liked most about the Kawaii Crush and what they would change.  These reviews are typed exactly as they dictated them to me.  I hope you enjoy hearing the perspective of the target market. :)


Oldest Gal:  I think it's really cute with all the smiles.  It's cute with the Kawaii Crush, the meaning of Kawaii (cute in Japanese) and with Crush, how they don't have a crush on people, they have a crush on things.  Animals or something.  

I bought the Hyper Happy Mall with Holly Molly Shop Shop, the exclusive doll you can only get with the mall, and Chilly Milly Yip Yip with her cute little penguin.  The mall is really cute because it has the four rooms and the elevator.  It has small rooms.  There's room enough for all the pieces in the food court and the pet salon, but the boutique is kind of crowded.  

Chilly Milly Yip Yip is really cute.  She has a cute blue penguin winter hat.  Her pet penguin has a cute little pink penguin hat to coordinate.  The earmuffs are cute and so are both of her dresses and her boots.  Therefore, I want to get lots of the Kawaii Crush sets.

What I would change is, like I mentioned before, the boutique is a little crowded, so if they had either made the boutique larger or had less pieces, I think it would have been a little better. The other thing is the mall itself has so many pieces that sometimes I put one last piece on and all the pieces fall down.  

I think that the whole Kawaii Crush thing with all the smiles everywhere on everything is "kawaii" ;) but they put so many smiles on everything in the mall that they forgot to paint the smile on my shampoo bottle.  Also, Holly Molly Shop Shop, who is really cute, can't stand up because of her side ponytail.  Chilly Milly Yip Yip can stand up because she has two braids, but Holly Molly Shop Shop has only one side ponytail and due to this, she can't stand up at all.  Zelfs can stand, so I think on that point, I like Zelfs a little more.  They're both cute, so it's hard to choose.  I love Chilly Milly Yip Yip, but I wish she had a matching hat with her penguin like my sisters have with their dolls and pets. 



Middle Gal:  I love the whole Kawaii Crush thing because they made it look super kawaii.  I bought Owleena Hoot Hoot and I changed her name to Owleena Cutie Pie.  I like Owleena because she can match her owl with (as I call it) her sun hat.  I also love her kawaii little owl and I love the kawaii little owl sun hat (as I call it).  And I also discovered that Owleena's sun hat can be used as a suction cup which I thought was really cool.  

I do want to get Katie Cat Meow Meow and Jamie's Sunglass Shop because I like Jamie.  

Ever since we got our Kawaii Crush dolls, we've been playing with them in the mornings because we are happy with our purchases. 

I think that Kawaii Crush beats Lalaloopsy by 100% (and that is a lot because I love Lalaloopsies a lot).  I love the colored hair thing.  It's kawaii.  Thank you for making Kawaii Crush, Spin Master!

What I would change with the mall is the chairs in the food court because Owleena cannot sit on them because of her braids.  And the chairs are too short.  

I would also change Owleena's dress that she came in because it does not stay on very well and it is hard to put on.



Little Gal:  I like Kawaii Crush because all the cute little sets, especially the car, which we didn't get.  I also like the mall because of the cute little shopping booths.  I especially like the photo booth because it's the only photo booth in Kawaii Crush so I like it.  

I changed Hannah Banana Nom Nom's name to Hannah Banana Yum Yum and I like it and Kawaii Crush beats LalaOopsies by 10,000% because Kawaii Crush is better than LalaOopsies.  Kawaii Crush is better than any toy in the world.  And Kawaii Crush is kawaii because of the kawaii little pets.  I like Hannah Banana Yum Yum's pet.  I love Kawaii Crush more than Zelfs.  I love Kawaii Crush because they are soooooooooooo cute.  

What I would change:  I don't really like the fact that the top button on the monkey's hat isn't painted yellow and Hannah Banana Yum Yum's is.  I would change that. 

I especially would change the fact that some of the dresses are sleeveless but I'm glad they have underclothes so that they have sleeves to go under the sleeveless dresses.  

I would change like the fact that it looks like they have dyed hair because we don't do dyed hair but I would also change, more than that, the fact that it seems to me that their heads are WAY too big for their bodies.  And I would change the rubber hair so the four-year-olds wouldn't break the hair.  

I would change the theme of crushes because it's kind of like they have a crush on people.  I also don't like the fact that their hats can turn inside out because if we do it too much, we'll break them and we'll go on boo-hooing.  


Me again.  I don't know where they get their wordiness from! ;)  It was really fun to have them dictate their thoughts to me.  They really enjoyed it, too, and took their job as toy reviewers very seriously. :)  We went in age order, and they got to listen to each other, so you'll notice that Little Gal's review borrowed a few concepts from Middle Gal's (which is pretty typical of her in other things, too). ;)  I hope you enjoyed hearing their thoughts as much as I did. :)

So, the jury has spoken.  Kawaii Crush is 100% better than Lalaloopsy!  (I have to say, I beg to differ on that particular point.) ;)  Kawaii Crush is better than any toy in the world!  Do you agree? ;)  (Sorry, Lalaloopsy, My Little Pony, and Zelfs still beat Kawaii Crush in my book for cute small toys...but these little wide-eyed dolls have grown on me, I must admit.)

More fun reviews to come later in the week, so stay tuned!! :D

10 comments:

Juliet XD said...

They are very cute, and I love hearing about them! Do the single dolls become part of your 18 inchers collections? You and the Gal's have quite a collection going! If I may ask, ow old is Oldest Gal? (I totally get it if you don't want to tell me, you most certainly don't have to, I'm just a curious little kitty ;)
Thanks for another great review!
Juliet

Nina said...

Aww! Your daughters are adorable! I think Little Gal is around the same age as my cousin.

I still love the Kawaii Crush line. I haven't gotten to Target yet, so I hope they are still having the sale at my local store!

Ampy Moh said...

hehe...seeing kawaii crush always reminds me of powerpuff girls...
one question though...does the candy from the mandy candy playset work for 12 inch dolls?

anyways I have some good doll news..
first,There are soon to be released mattel dolls of cinderella, snow white and ariel that are dressed in fabrics,have new head molds and arm articulation. Their called disney classic princess..
here's a link for them
http://www.target.com/s?searchTerm=classic+princess&category=9975708%7CAll%7Cmatchallpartial%7Ctoys&lnk=snav_sbox_classic+princess

there are also two disney villains in this collection,evil queen(snow white) and ursula(but she looks really weird)

also, there is a new frozen toddler playset from jakks pacific,they have a toddler verions of anna,elsa,kristoff,olaf and a baby sven .

Link : http://www.amazon.com/Disney-Toddler-Collector-Exclusive-Kristoff/dp/B00HP3QWX4/ref=sr_1_38?s=toys-and-games&ie=UTF8&qid=1389010949&sr=1-38&keywords=kristoff

BlackKitty said...

It's so interesting to see how different children's priorities are. My first thought when I read Emily's review of these dolls was that they need to have short hair. However, your girls aren't bothered by it at all and they mostly focus on the play value and aspect of the set as a whole. I feel so shallow :-S

beastsbelle said...

Hi Juliet! I'm still deciding if I'm going to "share" my Kawaii Crush dolls with my 18 inchers or if I'll just keep them to myself. ;)

Yeah, the collection kind of exploded. It's amazing how quickly you can acquire a doll line when it's really inexpensive! ;)

Oldest Gal will be ten in April (I don't mind you asking at all). Middle Gal will be eight next month, and Little Gal turns six in March. I suppose I should have shared that in the post to give you a better idea of their viewpoints. ;)

Glad you enjoyed the review! :)

Thanks, Nina. I think they're pretty cute, too. ;)

Hope you get a chance to find your Chilly Milly! Oldest Gal loves her! ;)

Hi again, Ampy. :) Lol, the KC dolls do kind of look like the Power Puff Girls with their big eyes. ;)

I think the candy pieces would work pretty well for the 12" dolls, especially since some of them are a bit oversized for the Kawaii Crush dolls.

Thanks so much for the link to the Classic Princess dolls from Mattel. It will be really interesting to see how these look in person, and to compare their articulation to the Disney Store dolls' articulation. I hope they bring out a Belle or Rapunzel! :)

Oh my goodness! The toddler Frozen dolls are so cute!! And six inches is a great size, too. It actually looks like they're from the Tolly Tots line, the same line that has other toddler princesses in Toys R Us. If this set comes to Toys R Us, I just might have to add it to my collection! :D

Thanks so much for the great links!

BlackKitty, I had very similar thoughts. Some of the things that bothered me most didn't bother them at all. ;)

I don't think you have to feel shallow, by the way. As adults, we'll naturally pick up on things that a little one might not notice. It's not necessarily a bad thing. We just have a different perspective. ;) I do think, however, that as toy collectors, sometimes it's good to step back and get a child's perspective on a toy, because it reminds us of the whole purpose of toys: to be playthings loved and played with by children. :)

Thanks for stopping by. I always enjoy hearing from you. :)

Ampy Moh said...

Beastbelle
I love the fact that you answer the comments from your followers!
anyways I agree on you about how mattel should add both gals(or maybe all of the princesses). Mattel really needs to have a belle doll with a really good quality dress like these ones.I sure hope they stop the painted on bodices for their regular play dolls(recent barbies have the same issues to)

sailingmartha said...

I just bought the candy shop myself today, not realizing you reviewed it a couple of days ago. I couldn't pass it up on the clearance shelf at Target. I also bought Chilly Millie Yip Yip (I feel silly typing their names). I agree that they are very cute sets despite their shortcomings. On clearance, they are a pretty good deal, but I won't be buying any more. I cannot get my Millie to stand up on her own at all, although her penguin will stand by himself without his hat on. The candy shop is adorable, I think, and more detailed than I expected. Sorry your scoop got thrown out by mistake :( I enjoyed reading your daughters' comments on their purchases and I'm glad they are enjoying them so much. Loved reading about the mall especially!

beastsbelle said...

Hi again, Ampy. :) To me, that's part of the fun of blogging: conversing with my followers in the comments. :) I also know that when I leave a comment on someone else's blog and they respond, it's encouraging to know that they actually read my comment and care about what I said. I want to extend that same courtesy to my readers. :)

I agree that the painted-on bodices can be an issue. Of course, my daughters (and Hubby) like the painted-on bodices because the dolls are always modest. ;) It does make it rather difficult for dressing them in other clothes sometimes, though. :}

Hi sailingmartha! Thanks for stopping by. I'm sorry your Chilly Milly Yip Yip (and yes, they are goofy names to type, aren't they?) doesn't stand. :( Have you tried moving her at the neck? My Hannah Banana Nom Nom didn't stand until I changed the position of her head.

I'm sorry about my scoop too, but I'll live. ;) Glad you still have yours!

It has been fun seeing how much the girls enjoy their sets. :) I'm glad you enjoyed reading their comments. We all had a lot of fun while I was "interviewing" them. :)

Tilde said...

I get the name - "Kawaii Crush" - as that you have a crush on the concept of kawaii. :)

beastsbelle said...

:)