You knew I had her tucked away, right? Princess of Japan is an unusual and very beautiful Lea, and no Lea/ Kayla collection would be complete without her. Having said that, she was a long time coming. These dolls are pretty easy to find, but I just kept seeming to miss her. In the end, I managed to find a still-in-the-box example for the bargain price of ten quid.
Princess of Japan dates from 2003, so she’s now ten years old. I was interested to find that the box blurb featured a little bit of educational background about Japanese custom too (and Hanami in particular):
The doll itself is quite beautiful. Now and again, I have slagged off the DOTW range for producing Vegas-style jazzed up versions of national costumes, and as I am not Japanese and have only a limited understanding of the complex and subtle phenomenon that is the kimono, they might be doing it again here for all I know. But God, its nice to look at.
I love her pallor and the face painting is perfect – she has a porcelain kind of look that reminds me of the beautiful Midnight Moon Princess. The kimono pattern is very detailed but the material feels rather nylonish. However, I think that this is probably intended to minimise creasing rather than to save on cost, and it doesn’t look cheap. I also love her tiny geta – if only she had proper toes to go through them!
Another interesting and attractive feature of this doll is her painted-on hair, which is beautifully done. Its nice to see display dolls that look as good from the back as they do from the front: