Diana Collection, EuroGirls

About the brand: 

From the company website:

The all-vinyl EuroGirls are 18" tall and have synthetic hair wigs which can be played with, combed and beautifully styled. Bright, realistic acrylic eyes with long lashes make them irresistible. Meticulously crafted and hand-painted right to their manicured finger and toe nails, they're the cutest girls in town.

"Just arrived in America, the European doll sensation EuroGirls™, 18" dress-up dolls." This is the tag line for the advertisement in 2003 for a new type of 18" all-vinyl play doll from The Doll Factory.

The dolls are very reasonably priced at either $29.95 or $34.95 depending on the outfit. I ordered one soon after seeing the advertisement appear in Doll Reader magazine in November 2003 and she arrived in mid-December, fresh from the first shipment from the factory in China. She is part of the Diana Collection from the Doll Factory, which so far has only been made up of baby dolls.

The dolls are all vinyl and are almost exactly the size of the Magic Attic and Carpatina dolls. This picture shows the doll with Magic Attic Megan for comparison (note that the arm and leg sculpt is basically identical to Magic Attic). The EuroGirls dolls are not named by the manufacturer, but you can buy 12 dressed dolls in various eye/wig combinations and you can buy the 12 outfits separately. All of the dolls all have a medium, "international skin color" (as the certificate puts it), and the same face mold, which (I learned from the Doll Reader article, I believe) was sculpted by Jose Andres Martinez (from Spain).

The dolls are slightly slimmer and a tiny bit narrower in the shoulder, but not significantly different. The dolls are a bit "hippier" than the Magic Attic but this did not seem to be an issue with clothing fit.

The EuroGirls eyes are fixed and they have applied eyelashes which is a nice change from the painted of most other dolls of their type. They have inset acrylic eyes which have good depth. My doll looks slightly Asian because of the hair and the Chinese style blouse, but her eyes are the same as all the others.

The face mold is not bad, better than I expected from the pictures. They have a very open mouth with the tongue showing -- I think mine looks like she is starting to say something. She looks much more like a little girl than the Magic Attic, Just Pretend and Carpatina dolls, almost like a toddler.  Not my favorite but not unpleasant or bland either. Doll faces invoke such a personal response that some are bound to fall instantly in love with her and others will be unimpressed. The company has plans to introduce more variety in the faces, perhaps with more ethnicities. [2016 update, this never happened.]

The doll's hair is wigged, rather than rooted, and the hair appears to be decent quality synthetic. My Chinese outfit girls' hair is shiny and full, but some of the dolls' wigs are bizarre and not playable (see the Toy Box Philosopher's review for her denim overalls doll). All of the dolls offered so far have bangs, which I find unfortunate. I would love to see one of these dolls with long dark hair with no bangs and I'd certainly like to see more ethnic features.

Her vinyl is a nice, natural shade with well done though minimal face paint. She does not have a lot of color on her cheeks but instead she has a blush on her nose like she has spent too much time outside without her hat. The vinyl is less heavy than that of the Magic Attic doll but seems to be of decent quality. She has nicely molded hands and feet (and no belly button). She is flange-jointed, which means her arms and legs are attached so that they can only go in circles -- not in or out at all, so she is not strung. This does cause some problems with getting her to stand well and makes her a little harder to dress. Still, some sacrifices must have been made to produce her for such an affordable price. The limbs do appear to be firmly attached so I suspect (and hope) they will not be prone to pop off like a cheap Barbie's.

The Euro Girls box is an exceptionally nice carry case. There is a plastic handle on the top and a ribbon tie to hold the doll in place. The window lid will work well when she is being displayed for sale in doll shops. There are metal hinges and clasps for the lid. The box will make a good trunk for holding clothes, perhaps with the addition of a large ring at the top to hold hangers, and is convenient for girls to take their dolls on play dates.

The dolls have no identifying markings on the back of their neck or elsewhere that I could see. There is a Certificate of Authenticity in her box. She has two paper hangtags, identifying her as part of the Diana Collection and manufactured in China for The Doll Factory. One of them says "Diana Collection dolls are carefully crafted to be the play doll you can depend on. If this doll should fail because of defects in materials or workmanship please call us and we will correct the problem without charge." She also has a plastic, circular hangtag with stars in a circle logo of the European Union.

My doll has some red staining on her neck and torso from her blouse. This staining was also reported by a friend who bought the same doll. Since I own a jar of Twin Pines Remove-Zit cream, I can remove the stains myself but I am afraid that many will be returning the dolls, taking the company up on their offer to "correct the problem without charge".

The clothes are very nicely done. The blouse is completely lined with a satiny material. The shirt and skirt have velcro closure and no tags. The material is good quality though, as noted above, this particular outfit is not color fast and does bleed onto the vinyl. This outfit and the others with dark colors should be rinsed in a vinegar solution if they're going to stay on the dolls. The sandals are unremarkable but cute and stay on her feet well. The only thing I did not like about the outfit was that the "frog" closures on the front are glued on and one is loose on one side. She has panties (almost bikinis). Based on the quality I will be ordering a few more outfits since they are a bargain at $9.95 to $15.95, all including shoes (or ice skates in one case).  I tried several Magic Attic and Just Pretend outfits on the doll, such as the one in the picture on the left, and they all fit beautifully, including the shoes.

The Doll Factory sells a trunk set (sturdier trunk than the one that comes with the basic doll) with the doll and three extra outfits for $79.95 and they sell the trunk separately for $36.  You can order the dolls on their website (www.dollfactorydirect.com) or using their toll-free number: (800) 430-2213.

As doll companies seem to fail weekly, it is good to see a fresh face entering the doll world. The company seems to have not reordered this line as the dolls and outfits started to sell out in starting in 2006 and items just disappeared from the website. There were excellent sales (outfits as low as $5.95). Bottom line, these dolls are medium quality but they are great for the price. I do recommend the EuroGirls.

Thank you to CarolL and Linda for the use of some of their photographs.

Details
Height: 
18.00 in
Doll types: 
Play dolls
18 inch vinyl play dolls
Primary material: 
Vinyl
Hair type: 
Wigged
Eye type: 
Fixed/Inset acrylic
Doll ages: 
Child dolls
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