While "Waiting for Grace," the upcoming GOTY 2015, my own GOTY 2014 took a tumble. She took a face first dive off of the piano and landed poorly, scuffing her face in several spots. Now I was faced with a dilemma. The scuff marks on her face were extensive enough to show up in direct light from certain angles, but still slight enough to escape notice in most other lighting situations. While I might be able to use micro-mesh to even out some of the marks, I would not be able to fully erase the marks without sanding off some of her face paint.
After several days of agonizing and with the blessings of my husband, I decided to purchase a new Isabelle while she was still available at AGPSF. My reasoning was that Isabelle would be gone soon and if I wanted a replacement doll, now was the time to act. I wanted to hand pick my doll in person, something I could not do if I sent her to the AG doll hospital for a head replacement. I also did not want to deal with secondary market dolls for this replacement.
I reasoned that my first Isabelle (Isabelle I) could go to a good home to someone who wanted a doll at a deep discount who would be happy to overlook a minor flaw.
So first the very best part of my story--I went to AGPSF on Monday in the middle of the day--and my husband surprised me by meeting me at the store! He happens work a mere three miles from the AGPSF and had asked me to text him when I was heading out that day (knowing my first stop was the AG store). I had no idea he wanted to surprise me. Now that is romance, my friends!
At the store my husband helped me with sorting through several Isabelle dolls before I narrowed it down to three dolls. The doll on the left had a slight left head tilt, the doll in the middle had almost no head tilt, and the final doll had a very pronounced head tilt to the left as well as slightly off-centered lip paint that gave her an extra whimsical appearance.
So which do I choose? The doll on the left with a slight head tilt? I already knew she would not be the "same" Isabelle if I brought her home. The middle doll seemed most like my original Isabelle, but even I had to admit my original Isabelle was a bit aloof, even though I fell in love with her as she was. Could I do it again? The doll on the far right, with her extra whimsical head tilt and off-centered smile seemed darling in the store, but how would I feel about her once at home?
I chose the girl on the left! My new Isabelle II had most open and relatable expression of the three, though all were darling.
At home I removed Isabelle II from the box and surveyed her hair and face. All my dolls are renamed (isn't naming the best part about having dolls and children and pets?), including GOTYs and Historicals. My original doll, Isabelle I, went by the name Ingrid, but this new doll already had her own personality and her own opinions. What would I do?
With her head tilt, rosier face paint, slightly darker hazel eyes, and perhaps most noticeably the extra wave in her hair, Isabelle II was her own girl. And her name was Astrid.
In almost no time I was informed that Astrid and Ingrid were twin sisters! I was somewhat excited as well as feeling a bit sheepish about this news. How would my husband take the news that our household census was actually going to increase by one girl? Had I lost my mind?
I told my husband and he chortled! He told me he already knew I would be keeping both Isabelle dolls when I was selecting the new doll in the store. My husband is the best.
As I mentioned, I can tell the dolls readily apart. Astrid (Isabelle II) has a wig that is more silky with more of a wave or flip. Her wig is also a shorter than the one Ingrid (Isabelle I) wears by at least half an inch.
I am excited to be able to experience some twin doll play. I have had American Girl dolls in my life since 1996, but never twin dolls. Having two dolls from the Isabelle line will give a new twist on the "mix and match" aspect of her wardrobe and I look forward to coordinating outfits for them outside of their canon line.
Welcome Astrid and Ingrid!