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Repaint Story: Disney Animator Dolls

I’m not a huge fan of toddler type dolls but I made an exception when I found out about Disney Animator dolls. What are they you ask?

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They’re all so cute! CUTE!

These dolls are part of Disney’s princess franchise and they do not disappoint. What I loved about these dolls were their cartoon style and just how adorable their face sculpts are. I actually like the way their faces are done “as-is” but as as repainting goes… those face sculpts! They’re so cute! What kind of adorable variation will emerge once you give them a personal touch?

Meet Snow White…

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I did not realize until I got the chance to see them in person how severe the eye sculpts are. The eye lashes are jutting out and the top of the eyeballs create a sharp dip inwards. Most dolls have a wall-eyed look with severe sculpts like this but she generally looks fine from most angles.

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Get ready for a make over, Snow White!

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See how deep those indents on the eyeballs are? She might actually look cute with real glass eyes but due to the nature of the vinyl used for these dolls, I wouldn’t recommend it. The doll is well made but I don’t think it can handle the weight of inset eyes.

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Working on a larger scale doll is a whole different experience than a 1/6th scale variant. Although the process is essentially the same, there’s more room to add more accents and details. Although I could’ve used larger brushes for her, I ended up using the same brushes I use to paint 1/6th dolls because I don’t like to see brush strokes and thinner applications meant no paint glops!

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You’ve got blue eyes now, Snow!

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Because of the jutting eye lash sculpt, these dolls can use disposable eyelashes and they look great.  I’m not sure if more characters are going to be released for this line in this style but I hope so!

This Post Has 22 Comments
  1. I’m hoping to makeover an Ariel for my daughter, into a toddler version of Sally from the Nightmare Before Christmas but, I’m wondering how I should go about changing her skin tone from healthy fair color to a bluish pale. Are there any tips or tricks you would recommend? Any help or ideas would be greatly appreciated!

    1. If you don’t mind being experimental and risking damaging a doll permanently, the most effective way to change skin color appears to be dyeing a doll. This seems like an ideal method for Disney Animator dolls since the entire doll is made from one type of plastic. Another way of going about it is staining the skin by applying several coats of blush until you get the desired look.

  2. I have a vexing problem. I’m an American living in Australia where toys are pretty rare compared to back home. Since you are the only person that I trust to ask doll questions… well here goes. I’ve managed to acquire 3 of these adorable dolls which I had hoped to customize. I am in love with all the beautiful faces. My problem is that the dolls that I have appear to have plastic glued in eyes! WHY? Is this something peculiar to “Oz”or has Disney perhaps changed their design to stop us from our art? So, other than just doing a faceup leaving the plastic eyes in place, or trying to cut out the plastic eyes and replace them with round acrylic.. what can I do?

    1. I’ve never seen Disney Animator dolls with insert eyes. It could just be a regional difference too. Do you have a link to an example of one of these dolls?

      1. And I’ve only seen photos of the painted type… I was SO hoping to be able to do a faceup… In Western Australia there are very few toy stores. I’ve checked them all but the photos aren’t clear. I would think I was crazy if I didn’t have three all with the same eyes! Mine also seem to have different mouths. Here are pix I took for you to see.

        https://www.facebook.com/pg/theartfuldoll/photos/?tab=album&album_id=782959515204063

        1. I can’t believe how depressed this is making me…. My husband suggested that I sell them and get the one I want… but I love my Rapunzel with her off center widows peak, even though her hair is STILL not as silky as I think I can get it. Armor all can only do so much I suppose. And I would cut out the eyes and replace them, but there is the mouth and the idiot grin that I can’t change… But if anyone is interested in the other two, let me know… I feel so cheated. >deep sigh< <3 Pam

          1. I’ve never seen these types of dolls stateside. I’m so sorry they have the insert eyes. If you still want to experiment with them, I’d suggest covering up the eye inserts with painters tape but you have to be super careful about erasing the factory paint and making sure it doesn’t ever pool inside the eye inserts. Thanks for sharing this and good luck!

          2. Periwinkle my dear! I believe that I’ve found the answer to my own question! Here is a link to a blog by a pattern maker who explains much better than I ever could. https://dollydelicacies.com/2014/08/09/the-differences-among-disneys-toddler-dolls/
            It appears that I have 3 of the “My First” dolls, and they’re of a different body size as well as plastic eyes and idiot grins. And there is still yet ANOTHER version! So I thought since I was caught unawares, others might be too. Cheers!
            Pam

  3. Is the vinyl of the Disney Animator dolls similar to that of monster high? Do you think it would take well to dyeing with RitDyeMore or idyePoly?

    1. The Disney Animator dolls to seem to have a similar vinyl material to that of Monster High dolls (the squishy parts) so they would be easy to dye. Both the head and body appear to be made of the same type of material so it might be easier to maintain a more unified color tone.

  4. Actually the Disney animator dolls CAN have eyes inserted but ur right glass eyes would be way too heavy but acrylic eyes work well (as found in the BJD hobby) http://monieeart.wixsite.com/moniee/single-post/2015/10/06/Disney-Animator-doll-restoration-customisation-part-2-Cutting-eye-holes. I found this while googling custom dolls. If you ever try to reroot one of these dolls please post ur process, I’m having trouble finding blogs about customizing these dolls even though there are many beautiful customized dolls on etsy with reroots done and they’ve been around for a while.

  5. Did you use the same sort of paint for this makeover that you use for your Monster High dolls? I have an ELSA doll begging me for a repaint but I’m unsure about which materials to use (never done this before) …any help would be greatly appreciated!

  6. hi! I LOVE the animator dolls, and they came out with the frozen characters including Kristoff. He is currently the only male in the line, and I would really like to buy an extra one and re-paint him to me Alladin/Flynn/Charming/Eric/etc. I have never attempted anything like this, and I just saw your post of the Snow White re-paint. I was wondering if you wouldn’t mind telling me what kind of paint you use? and will it last? will it chip off if the doll is played with?

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