Your faithful correspondents have a not-so-secret fascination with dolls and steampunk. So imagine our surprise when we stumbled upon the Comic-Con Exhibitor booth for Jun Planning, makers of the popular Pullip doll series, and saw a group of posable, adorable steampunks staring straight at us.
Jun Planning's Scot Reyes told us that these dolls are set to come out early next year. But that isn't all we caught at the stall. The company's collaboration with Japanese sweet Lolita fashion company Angelic Pretty is a hot seller and their previous collaboration with the unreleased-in-the-US manga franchise Black Butler was so popular that a second wave of themed dolls is on the way. Later this year, Pullip will be releasing a series of hot, Jrock dolls that look like they're ready to hit up a Malice Mizer reunion show. Then there is the new Age Princess Pullip line, also set for a fall release, that's based on the incredibly popular himegyaru look in Japan, which features lots of teased blonde hair and tiaras.
But there's more than just Pullip on the doll front at Comic-Con. Over at Huckleberry's Toffee booth, we caught a glimpse of this new line of dolls that has managed to prompt people to stop in the middle of the aisle and shriek, "That's so cute!" every time. Created by Riri Fukuju, Toffee dolls mix plush, hand-sewn bodies with resin features. Each doll embraces both human and animal features for a whimsical look that's still fashion-forward. The line features both original designs and collaborations, as with the Hellboy and Witchy Poo dolls that seem to be a Comic-Con hit. We spoke with Hugo Stevenson, owner of Huckleberry, who acknowledged that there will be more exciting projects in the near future, including small-sized dolls and male dolls. Plus, Dark Horse has just licensed Toffee for a line of stationary.
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After hitting up the doll booths, we stopped for a visit with Grass Hut, a Portland-based studio and gallery, whose booth featured the work of Justin "Scrappers" Morrison, Mike Kelly, Martin Ontiveros and LA's own Kiyoshi Nakazawa. We were taken by the resin and vinyl collectible toys, particularly Morrison's centaur with Paul Bunyon's head and Babe the Blue Ox's body. We also dug the way that these pieces are often packaged like swap meet toys in plastic bags with a brightly colored cardboard seal on top.