Saturday, February 22, 2014

Disney Store Toddler Anna and Elsa Review

I've been looking forward to reviewing these two cuties ever since Middle Gal and Little Gal brought them home at the beginning of the month.  And thankfully I had the foresight to do a photo shoot shortly after we got home.  These dolls have received a lot of love, and Toddler Elsa in particular (Little Gal's doll) is not quite as "mint condition" as she used to be. ;)

Anna and Elsa, sisters from Disney's Frozen

We were thrilled that the Disney Store we visited still had these in stock (as well as my DAC Kristoff doll).  Frozen merchandise has been selling like crazy with the huge success of the film, and I had been told when I called ahead of time that all they had in stock was Toddler Anna.  Little Gal wanted an Elsa doll of some kind more than anything else for her birthday trip, so it was great that they still had some available.

Let's take a closer look at both dolls.  I'll start with a review of Elsa, then move on to Anna.

Here is Elsa, still in her box.  Sorry for the lower quality of these pictures, but I wasn't about to make Little Gal wait to open her doll until we got home just so I could get pristine review photos. ;)

The front of the box has the Frozen logo and a picture of grown-up Elsa.  

I love all of the extra details they added to the box artwork.

Side view...

...back view...

...and other side view.

A look at her cute little shoes.

Once we got home, with the girls' permission, I did borrow Elsa and Anna for a photo shoot. :)  Here is Elsa, free from her box and home from her long journey.  

Back view of Elsa

She has a sweet face with a few freckles and a sideways glance. 


Elsa's profile.

Her black satin headband is attached with thread (Little Gal managed to loosen one of the threads before the photo shoot.

The headband has Velcro closure underneath Elsa's hair, and is removable if the threads on her head are carefully cut.

Unfortunately, the dark material of the headband left quite a stain on Elsa's head.

Her identifying markings on her head.

Here's a closer look at her dress.  As far as I can tell, it appears to be based on the dress Elsa wore in the beginning of "Do You Want to Build a Snowman", when both girls were at their youngest.  The only difference is that in the movie, Elsa wore a blue jacket over the dress.

There are some fun details to the dress, especially on the bodice...

...and around the edge of the skirt.

Much like the outfit on the fashion doll version of Anna, the dress has the appearance of a shirt and a jumper, and even has layers of material, but it is all sewn together and comes off as one piece.  

The dress has Velcro closure in the back and a satin ribbon (which is just for show and not functional).


She has blue tights and black plastic shoes.  I love the extra details on her shoes.

And in my mind, when the undersides of a doll's shoes are more than just flat plastic, that's a definite bonus in the detail department. ;)


Here is Elsa undressed.  Like the dolls in the Disney Animator's Collection series, Elsa has painted on undies.

Back view

Elsa had a few stains on her shoulders and waist...

...and some small, light stains on her chest and tummy.

Her arms can move up, down, and out to the sides:

Her head works better than my Kristoff's.  This is her normal head position.

She can tilt to the right...

...tilt to the left...

...look down...

...look up slightly more than her original position...

...and she can turn from side...

...to side.

She sits in the same funny-looking sprawled position as the DAC dolls.

Now that we've gone over the basics of Elsa, let's take a look at Middle Gal's Anna doll.  Here she is in her box (once again taken at the hotel).

Box artwork featuring Anna as a young woman.

Side view...

...back view...

...and other side view.  She also has nice detail to her box, but I guess I got lazy taking pictures of her.  Either that, or I didn't remember all the pictures I'd taken of Elsa (Middle Gal and Little Gal bought their dolls a day apart). :}

Adorable Anna out of her box.  I absolutely love her sweet little face!

Back view

While Elsa is cute too, Anna is definitely my favorite of the two dolls.  I love her expression.  

Anna in profile.

She has little pigtails tied with black satin ribbon.  While her high pigtails are really cute, I kind of wish they'd stuck with the low pigtails of the movie.  I also thought it was interesting that they chose not to include the white streak in her hair.  Maybe this was supposed to be pre-snow accident...

...although her dress is very obviously the one she wore in the beginning of "Do You Want to Build a Snowman".  Just like Elsa's, this dress is made of satin.

It has Velcro closure in the back and a bow that is "just for looks".

There are nice detail on this bodice as well (although the bodice is a bit wonky and off-centered).

And just like Elsa's dress, while there are layers of material on Anna's outfit, it is all sewn together and comes off in one piece.

Anna has light yellow tights and nicely detailed shoes like Elsa as well.


Here she is undressed.

Back view

Anna doesn't have as much staining as Elsa (probably because her clothing has lighter colors), but she still had stains on her shoulders.

I tried to take the exact same pictures of her head posability:
Regular

Right tilt

Left tilt

Down

Slightly up

Side 1

Side 2

Her arms move the same way, too:

I realized that I forgot to take this shot with Elsa.  Their arms can also rest quite close to their sides.

And speaking of forgetting, I wanted to mention a little detail before I forgot.  Their arms are quite squeaky when they move.  It's not difficult to move the arms, they are just rather noisy.  Just in case that detail is important to anyone. ;)

Anna sitting.  Not very ladylike, Anna. ;)

Here's a front view of the two dolls together.  As you can see, Elsa is just slightly taller than Anna, which I thought was a nice attention to detail.  I love that their eyes are painted in such a way that they can look at each other. :)  Also, notice the slight difference in skin tone?  Elsa is just a shade paler, which is accurate to the movie.

At first, I thought that Anna had the standard Disney Animator's Collection height, but now that I've compared both Frozen dolls to my DAC Belle, it appears that Elsa has the same body height.  I'm wondering if they made a special mold for Anna's body or just modified one for her.  The difference is very slight.  

Here's a closer look at Anna and Belle...

...and Belle and Elsa.

"Wanna come out and play?"  

Anna was very excited that there was a Kristoff in the house, too.  My original plan was to keep him in the box, but as you know from my last review post, that plan didn't last for long. ;)

Here he is with both girls. :)

Since it's standard procedure for me to have a comparison picture of the doll being reviewed with an American Girl doll, I thought I'd continue the tradition. ;)  I've stated this before, but I find the DAC and AG dolls pretty incompatible because of their vastly different styles (although I love having both in my doll collection). :)

Yesterday, my own Toddler Anna doll came from my nearest Disney Store. :)  I loved that they put her in a bag as if I'd actually purchased her there. :)  I was a bit surprised to see that there was absolutely no protective material around her in the box.  Thankfully, I was planning on deboxing her anyway (and her display box was pretty sturdy).  Still, I probably wouldn't order one of the classic fashion dolls from the store this way unless I was willing to face the possibility of a crushed box.

My Anna in her box...

...and next to Middle Gal's Anna.  I thought it was interesting how different their face paint was.  Next to Middle Gal's Anna, my Anna looks like she's sunburned...or maybe really embarrassed. :}

I have to say I prefer the subtler coloring of Middle Gal's Anna, but I'm just grateful to have one of my own. ;)  Hmm, here you can really see how crooked their bodices are...in different directions. :}


Both of these dolls are adorable and are great additions to any Frozen fan's collection.  I think I enjoy all three of the Frozen Toddler sized dolls even more than some of the DAC dolls since we actually see these characters as children in the movie.  Having the dolls is a fun way to remember our first glimpses of Kristoff trying to get a block of ice with the ice harvesters, or Elsa and Anna playing together in the middle of the night.  And of course, seeing the little sisters together brings to mind the beautiful and touching "Do You Want to Build a Snowman". 

I think that Disney did a wonderful job capturing these two in doll form.  Their sweet expressions, colorful clothing and affordable price make them a fun doll for children and collectors alike.  My girls have spent hours playing with Elsa and Anna and they have held up considerably well.

I'm giving Anna a 4.5 out of 5 and Elsa a 4 out of 5.  Part of the deduction for both is the material of their clothing.  While satin has a pleasing look, it frays and snags easily.  I know from experience that it does not hold up as well to normal play as other sturdier materials, especially when Velcro is involved.  (Little Gal's Elsa already has some wear on her dress after just one month of play.)  Both Annas in our house also have some minor clothing flaws (crooked bodices).  I'm also taking deductions for the staining.  Elsa has a lower score because her staining was more extensive than Anna's.  I would love to see the Disney company figure out a way to produce these dolls without the staining problems that seem to be the norm for the line.

Aside from these minor issues, the dolls are wonderful.  I would recommend them to any Frozen and doll/toy fan. :)  If you're particular about face paint and such, I would recommend buying them in person if you have the opportunity.  There is obviously some variation between dolls (as demonstrated by the two Annas we have in the house).  There were several readers who mentioned that their Kristoffs have some differences from mine, too.

Unfortunately, these dolls are no longer available on the Disneystore.com website.  If you have a local Disney Store, I would definitely check it out, just in case they are still in stock there.  And hopefully, with the release of Frozen on Blu-ray and DVD next month, some of the stock will be available again.  If not, I'm sure there will be more new Frozen releases in Disney's doll line.  Frozen is such a big hit, it would be in Disney's best interest to create more merchandise for the film.  I know I would buy it! ;)

So which is your favorite, Toddler Elsa or Toddler Anna? 


21 comments:

Isabelle said...

My favorite is Anna. She has such a beautiful complexion. By the way, I am obsessed with belle's bulletins. I just found out about it, and am reading all of the archives!! You are one of the best blog writers!!

beastsbelle said...

I love Anna, too. :)

So glad you're enjoying Belle's Bulletins. :) I had so much fun with that! There are times I miss writing for it, but now I'm trying to focus my story-writing time on my novels. ;)

Dot said...

Definetly Elsa. I don't like Anna's short hair. I have a DAC Ariel doll whom I found at Goodwill for three dollars! Major squee right? Her new name is Tess and she is the cousin of my BFC Ink Kaitlyn doll and Mattel toddler Belle doll (another Goodwill squee). I find it kind of sad that we find mint condition dolls at Goodwill. (But it's awesome if you find one)

jami said...

Just went to Target and saw the cutest baby Anna. I won't buy these dolls, but I think they are adorable, and I almost gave in with that one. She has to be the most precious looking baby doll I've yet to see in the Disney line and is cuter than any of the other babies offered there.

Mark Patraw said...

They're both adorable, but I like Anna the best out of the two (I usually prefer redheaded dolls over blondes). I haven't seen the film yet, so I don't have any attachment to one or the other from that perspective.

@Dot: I saw a Disney Princess & Me Rapunzel in the baby doll bin at one of our local St. Vincent de Paul Society thrift stores recently too and was surprised (those things cost around $50 brand new I believe). I was tempted, as I really like the Tangled film, but, she wasn't wearing her original outfit, and I generally prefer adult or teen dolls to toddlers or babies, so, I left her there. She was gone the next time I visited that particular establishment, so I'm sure she found a good home with someone else.

beastsbelle said...

Hi Jami. :) The baby Anna doll is really cute. I'm excited to see if there will be more Frozen merchandise with the release of the DVD and Blu-ray.

beastsbelle said...

Oh, Mark, I hope you get the chance to see the film soon! It's one of my all-time favorites. :)

It's amazing what you can find in thrift stores. :) I'm always thrilled when I find a special doll I've been looking for. I'm sure that Rapunzel found a good home, too. :)

lunacee said...

Thank you, Beastsbelle, for this informative review, and the delightful pictures. Somehow I missed reading this when you first posted it and here it is, over a month later, but better late than never, I say. :)

I was fortunate to get one each of Toddler Anna, Elsa and Kristoff the second time around, when the Frozen DVD was released. They are still in their boxes because they are part of a display I have in my living room, but I'm hoping that once Frozen has receded into the past and some new hit movie hits the screens, they will join the general Animators Collection, as Merida has, and I can get some for play. It's nice to find out what I have to look forward to!

My little Anna has a noticeable flaw quite apart from any staining...one of her little pigtails is almost twice the size of the other! It looks like there was an explosion on the top of her head, but it's rather endearing and I love her all the more for it....

beastsbelle said...

Hi lunacee! Thanks for stopping by. :)

I'm so glad you were able to get one of each of the Toddler/DAC Frozen dolls. They are some of my favorites. I love their beautiful detail and adorable faces. :)

I wouldn't be surprised if Elsa and Anna join the regular DACs. I heard that some of the newer ones were in DAC boxes instead of Frozen boxes. :) I'm looking forward to seeing what else they release from Frozen at the Disney Store. I just wish we didn't have to wait so long to see more dolls! :( Little Gal is still waiting for her Barbie-sized Elsa, and Oldest Gal is hoping for a Kristoff.

Manta said...

My computer's not acting up today-awesome;)

My favorite is Elsa, but only by a tiny bit. Anna is awfully cute too! I think they photograph well since they can look at each other.:)

I'm hoping to try to find Elsa and my sis wants to find Anna...do you think there's any remote possibility that they'd be at our local Disney Store?? (Our "local" Disney Store isn't very close by, so I don't want to convince my mom to go and then they're not even there.:P)

Random comment: I agree that the American Girl dolls and DAC dolls don't really 'go' together, but I have a thrift store DAC Ariel ($1.98!:D) and she sits with my AG's. I found out that if you don't mind dresses that are too big, Ariel can wear AG clothes. Not pants or skirts though because those fall off.;)

beastsbelle said...

Hi Manta! Elsa and Anna are both really cute, especially together. :)

There's a possibility that the Elsa and Anna dolls might be at your "local" store, but no guarantees. It seems like the Frozen stock is slowly starting to come back in and stay there for a while. I would recommend calling the store before you go if you don't want to waste a trip. You can go to disneystore.com and click on the "Find a Store" link, and you should find the number there. They're usually really sweet about checking stock for you. They might even hold it behind the counter for you...but I'm not 100% sure on that. ;)

Congrats on your thrift store DAC Ariel! Isn't it great finding goodies like that? ;) I'm sure she looks very cute with your AGs.

I'm glad your computer is letting you comment today. Thanks for stopping by! :)

Manta said...

I think this post is why my sis and I decided to finally check out Frozen.:P We weren't very interested at first because of all the hype (I think too much hype makes us NOT want to see something), but then we saw toddler Anna and Elsa and we were like 'OH WOW THEY'RE SO CUTE!! MUST SEE THEIR MOVIE!!' (Plus we can't watch the princess movies with witches/dragons/etc in them {Sleeping Beauty, The Princess and the Frog, Brave, etc} so it was nice to have a princess movie with the only "magic" being Elsa's snow/ice powers.:) It seemed like Elsa's "magic" was more of a "superpower" though to us, so if you think of it that way, then there's not really any magic at all. Although it's kinda funny, we can have princess dolls from those certain movies but not actually see the movie...anyways...:P)

Oh awesome!! That sounds at least a LITTLE promising.:) I guess my sis and I will do that before asking to go, so's we don't go out to the store for nothing.:P (Although it would be fun to go anyhow.:))

Thank you! Yes, I LOVE finding stuff at thrift stores. My sis and I have found clothes (for us not dolls;)), Lalaloopsys, H4H Dell, and a lotta other stuff at different thrift stores.:) Yeah, Ariel looks cute, but she sure does stick out since she's a different scale!;) (Then again, my sis and I put the big Lalaloopsys with our AG's, so I guess we're not really that picky on who sits with who.)

I'm glad too!:D Normally my computer won't even pull up the comment window.:/

beastsbelle said...

I can understand being hesitant about something that has so much hype. I'm still amazed at how Frozen took the world by storm so unexpectedly. In this case, though, the movie is worth the hype...at least in my humble opinion. ;)

We do some movies with magic, but my husband and I try to be very cautious about what movies we let our girls watch. The thing I loved about Frozen (aside from the absence of a lot of overly magicy stuff) is that it's not nearly as scary as some of the other Disney movies. This is the first Disney movie that my youngest has been able to watch all the way through without getting scared. I hope they continue that trend...

Thanks for stopping by! :)

Manta said...

So, yesterday morning I GOT MY TODDLER ELSA!! YAY!!:D My mom took my sis and I to the Disney Store right when the mall opened. (my sis called the day before around 6PM and asked what they had) Luckily we got there that soon because there were only two Elsas left (my Elsa and another little girl took the other about a minute after I picked up mine:P). There were no toddler Annas, but there was one plush grown-up Anna and my sis got her.:) Thanks so much for the tip about calling the store first!

beastsbelle said...

Congrats! Glad I could help. :)

Annalena Chan said...

I love Anna! Elsa for me is too pale and sickly looking while Anna looks cute and curious. Honestly I wish I picked those frozen dolls when I had the chance!

beastsbelle said...

Hi, Annalena! Thanks for stopping by. :) I know what you mean about wishing you had picked up the dolls when you had the chance. I think just about every Disney collector is feeling that way right now! :} I would have picked up the mini doll set and would have been highly tempted to get the super expensive set of the Classic dolls in their coronation outfits. I was going to wait to get those until they went on sale. Little did I know... ;)

Patti said...

Great review of both Anna and Elsa. Anna is definitely my favorite, but they're both adorable. I managed to buy both dolls just two weeks ago in Branson, Missouri at the Disney Store. They had a lot of them. I also noticed that they're now online at the Disney Store. I'd like to make additional clothes for them. Do you know if there are any patterns for this size doll?

beastsbelle said...

Thanks, Patti. :) I'm glad you enjoyed the review.

I haven't come across any patterns for dolls this size yet. You might try checking Etsy.com. I've found numerous patterns for different play dolls there in the past. Perhaps by now someone has patterns for the DAC dolls, too. :)

Patti said...

Thank you so much for your note, BeastsBelle! (Love your name. :) ) I'll check out Etsy and anxiously await the smile of glee on my granddaughter's face Christmas morning!

beastsbelle said...

You're welcome, Patti! :)