Fashion Boulevard – Christina and Felice

Fashion Boulevard has a very good name for producing well-made and reasonably priced outfits for 12″ and 16″ dolls. But they also have their own line of dolls.

The first incarnations

Christina St Clair was first introduced at IDEX 2001. Check out pictures here: http://lareba.com/idhs.htm

Under the aegis of Doris Mixon, several doll artists participated in her creation that were already famous as customizers, repaint artists and/or designers for Gene and Tyler.

This is what the box credits say: 

“FASHION BOULEVARD Presents Christina St Clair In “California Sun” By Doris Mixon, FB PResident

Fashion Blvd http://www.Fashion-Boulevard.com 11170 Spanish Hills Dr. Corona, CA 92883 909-277-4529 Christina’s Story

Christina Sculptress Helen Skinner

Christina Face Painter Debbie Sprouse

Designers: Harry Klein Charles Josef Anne Marie Burns Patricia Cronin James Bogue Elizabeth Rolins

 Introducing Christina St Clair

Christina was born into wealth and privilege, and lives in Beverly Hills, California. Her mother Cassandra Deomonte is a world famous actress and father Giles St. Clair a wealthy English businessman. Christina at a young age showed talent in art and sewing, and loved to design and sew for her many dolls. So after she graduated from high school, her parents sent her to the best design schools in Paris to learn fashion illustration and design. After graduating, Christina worked along side some of the top designers in their field, but she wanted to do something more with her talents. So in 1993 she and her sister Leah pooled their money and bought a small boutique called Fashion Boulevard from an older lady that was retiring and moved it to Beverly Hills. Christina soon built a reputation for her glamorous and elegant style and cutting edge fashions. So with Christina designing and Leah managing the boutique, it did quite well, especially with the rich and famous of the area. Eventually they were able to open boutiques in New York, Paris, Milan, and London. Christina also hired some of the world’s top designers to bring her wealthy and famous clients nothing but the finest in fabric and design. We invite you now to travel the world with Christina and enjoy the lifestyle of the rich and famous.”

The first three dolls were issued in 2002: California Sun (auburn hair), April Violets (raven) and Shopping Elegance (golden blonde).

They had straight arms and legs and were made of a heavy, sturdy vinyl.

Unfortunately, there were some troubles in manufacturing. Some dolls came without eyelashes, and Doris related in one doll board how she sat up all night glueing eyelashes to all the dolls that needed some. Also, two of the sample dolls for the facial screening arrived smudged at the factory, so there was only one sample to reproduce and all the dolls ended up with essentially the same facial screening (only with color variations). And although Deb Sprouse´s face-up was beautiful in the prototypes, in the production dolls it had lost detail. In short, the overall reception was lukewarm. People liked the outfits that came with the dolls, but few cared about the dolls themselves.

The same year, a second doll in the line was announced. Felice LaRouch was to be Christina´s “bad girl” friend, a dancer at the Moulin Rouge. She would have shared Christina´s sculpt with different facial screening. But the line was put on hold before Felice came out.

 

I regretted that since I had really liked her – the short-haired prototype reminded me of Brett Ashley from “The Sun Also Rises”.

 I was disappointed – until I realized that the Felice prototype shared Christina´s sculpt. I had originally only bought one Christina, California Sun, because it was priced lowest and reminded me of our trip to California, but had gotten the other two somewhat later at a fraction of the original cost. So I touched up the face of my April Violets Christina to recreate the Felice prototype for my own collection. While I was at it, I also touched up my Shopping Elegance (named Leah) to resemble the Christina prototype a bit more. California Sun remains original. I am quite fond of my trio.

The second incarnation

Some time later, the line was relaunched with completely new dolls. The new bodies were much lighter and had bendable knees, the heads were completely new, too. This time, Felice was issued first. Christina followed some time after.

The third incarnation

Yet some time later, around 2006, Felice (not sure about Christina) was offered on a ball-jointed resin body. The head was that of the vinyl doll and some people used the bodies with other fashion dolls.

The fourth incarnation

In 2007, a resin ball-jointed version of Christina was produced. There was now also a male doll in the line: Robert Bandacourt. Both were very limited.

Here´s an article about Doris Mixon and Fashion Boulevard.

http://www.dollsmagazine.com/fashion-dolls-ball-jointed-dolls/189-doris-mixon-fashion-boulevard.html

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