Online Newsletter #7

September 2002

American Girl is rolling out new products, and you can find out about them here, in The Society of American Girl Collectors online newsletter!

Lots of Hallmark Information

Society member Barb of shares a lot of new info about the upcoming Hallmark-AG line. She reports:

Hallmark Gold Crown stores (only) will have an intro 9/21-22. There will be free gifts, Register to win, bag stuffers (?), and FREE Kaya charm w bracelet ($20 retail value) to first 50 customers who present invitations to event. [Society member Sue M. says that Hallmark Gold cardholders are getting these invitations in the mail.] There are also Gift premiums when an AG item is purchased (I'm not clear what the premium is). 9/21-29 - Kaya doll with her dog (I didn't pick up on a dog before)and the first book ($130 value) will be prize in Register to Win event. (Kaya is to premiere 9/1 at American Girl Place per this info.) 11/10 - 12/24 - Girls write an essay about their favorite AG experience for a chance to win one of eight Grand Prize trips to AGPlace (for family of 4). There will also be one winner per store of a $20 gift bundle - winner drawn 12/26.

Here's a description of the items Hallmark will have for sale, with prices: Stationary & note card sets w/ all dolls pictured - $40, Memory Book ($25), Snapshot Album ($10) & Friends signature book ($10) - all dolls pictured, Sliding pens - $5 - w/ one AG pictured on each, Thank You notes (can't tell what the photo is) $8, Kirsten Postalettes Stitch & send $12, Note cards (ea with a different AG pictured) $12, Notepad & pen $10 (all pictured), Rubber stamp set (ie of 8 AG) $15, Stickers - 4 sheets, ea of one AG $6.00, Purses with notes - Kit, Josefina & Kaya - all purses different $15, Jewelry box $60, AG Charms - silver color - each AG as in Meet book - $10 each (Come in cute little box w/ Meet picture), Charm bracelet - silver color - comes with an AG medallion - 6.5" long $10, Kaya Pillow $15, Photo Frame - white wood $15, Message door hanger (star shape) w/ blank cards & 8 cards with quotes $15, Addy's trinket box - blue ceramic $9, Samantha's Purse Bank - ceramic $9, Samanta's tea set for 2 - dishwasher/microwave safe $45, Molly's Hot Choc mugs - 2 dishwasher/microwave safe $15, Figurines - one each of 8 dolls (Meet photo) Resin 2" at $16 (come in cute box), Bookends - resin -one ea of 8 $25, Short Story Collection - $15, Three book sets - soft cover (Meet, School & Surprise) ?price, Table white wood -$89, Bookcase White wood - $99, Bookmarks (fabric) w/ charms & book excerpt $4, Keepsake Ornaments - one ea of 8 plus one mini set of 4 (Kit's Treasures) Girls 4" high - Resin- $30, AG Water Globes - just Kirsten, Samantha & Molly - $30, Christmas Card Making kit - $16, Everday cards feature one AG - 32 designs - $2.49 - 4.99, Holiday cards feature one AG - 8 designs $2.99 (stores may also include in open stock card selection), AG Gift Bags in 3 sizes, AG tissue with AG names, Burgundy ribbon, curls & bows, Gift enclosure w/ envelope - each AG, Roll wrap w/ all AG pictured - Christmas flat wrap w AG pictured & 2 sizes Christmas gift bags, Christmas AG Seals & Tissue, Party things w/ AGs pictured - invites, napkins, plates, cup, tablecloth, treat box & Thank you notes, Favors & decorations include napkin rings (1 AG pictured), Goody bag & disposable camera, Foil balloons w/ individual AG, address book w/ 5 AG pictures $5. Also, in 2003, Hallmark will carry the mini AG dolls.

Wow! Thanks for all the info, Barb!!

Sneak Preview Pics from AG Place

Society Member Susan R. came up with super pics for us this month, courtesy of a lady in another AG group to which Susan belongs, who had attended the Kaya preview at American Girl Place. The lady was not supposed to take pics, so that is why the pics don't show many of Kaya's accessories. There are also pics of the Bitty Twins and new American Girl Today outfits and accessories. Here is what the lady had to say:

"She is very pretty--we were not supposed to take pictures, but I got a couple of her. I also got pictures of the new bitty twins and their outfits and stroller and the new AGOT outfits and bike. I got to preorder Kaya and she will ship to me on August 29th--her clothes are pretty cool--the dresses are real leather or else ultrasuede and so close to real leather you can't tell the difference. Her accessories include a tote-bag kind of thing and a belt pouch and a hat. There is a jungle outfit in 2 forms--the type Kaya would have worn with shells, and the type worn now with the metal trim made from a satiny fabric. There is a winter set with a fur hat, cape and boots. That is all the clothes available. The other items include a teepee, horse and colt with a very different type of saddle, dog and travois, a craft kit, and a few other little things that I can't remember--it was sure a bummer that we couldn't take all the pictures we wanted. The reps also told me Kaya will not be in a catalog until October! Anyway, if anyone wants to preorder Kaya for 8/29 shipping, you can call Ronni Stern at AG Place (she is a personal shopper there and very helpful!!) at 312-787-3883, ext. 2086 or email her at ronni.stern@p... and she will help you. The doll is $84 with the paperback book and $90 with the hardcover. There is a set with Kaya, the hardcover book, the accessories and the dog and travois for $140--I guess that's about $10 off. Please--they do not believe or realize the number of people who are on-line and interested in the dolls, so tell her I sent you and that you read about this on a doll list!! We need to get them believing in our shopping power and then hopefully they will listen to us when we make requests!! The new twins are much cuter in person than I expected--they have a deal on that, too--$149 for the twins in their sleepers, their play outfits, 2 books and the stroller. If I was more into baby dolls, I'd have to have them!"

Kaya Pictures: Kaya Closeup | Kaya doll and large illustration (presumably from one of her books) | Kaya and a few accessories

Bitty Twins Pictures: Bitty Twins in their sleepers | Bitty Twins all dressed up | Bitty Twins in more casual outfits

American Girl Today Pictures: Bike | Oriental style snowflake pajamas | Swan Lake style ballet outfit | Stylish winter coat, hat, pants, shoes, and mittens | Baking outfit and accessories (looks like Coconut has some baking accessories too)

Society Member Sarah found an event listing on the official American Girl site about Kaya's general premiere at AG Place:

Saturday, August 31
8:30 - 9:30 a.m.

Meet the newest addition to The American Girls Collection! She rides like the wind on her horse, and her hero is a bold warrior woman. Be one of the first to see her and all of her beautiful accessories, and hear a synopsis of her exciting story.

Free of charge. Reservations required. Space is limited.
Call now for your reservations 1-877-AG PLACE

Felicity Status Information

Sarah also compiled some Felicity information for us to bring us up to date on discontinuations and back orders. Many of the discontinuations we already know about, but there are some new ones:

Sold Out (discontinued): undergarments, extra shoes, dressing table

Currently on backorder: Summer gown and cap: Oct 10th, Cardinal cloak: Oct 8th.

Other retired items include: travel gown, travel trunk, special edition town fair gown, Noah's ark, shrewsberry cake kit, winter activites, plantation play, embriodery kit, guitar, riding breeches and hat, reading and writing set, nightgown, marble paper kit (pastimes activity)

Discontinued girl sized clothing: garden party gown, school jacket and petticoat, blue ball gown, spring gown and apron, nightshift and cap, summer gown, straw hat, cardinal cloak, muff and mitts, coral necklace.

Thanks for keeping us up-to-date, Sarah.

I also now have some official confirmation of some news from last month's newsletter. After posting a letter on protesting the AG discontinuations, and Felicity in particular, I received a reply from Pleasant Company that confirmed what an anonymous AG employee told me last month. That is, a misunderstanding of the word "retiring" in the AG catalog led to a stampede on Felicity items, and stocks of items meant to last years were depleted. The letter cited Felicity's nightgown in particular as something that might return in the future.

Kaya Online Article & Kaya Book Sales

Sleuth Sarah found an online USA Today article about Kaya. The article discusses Kaya release dates. According to the article, she officially debuted August 15th in Lapwai, Idaho, on the Nez Perce reservation, and will be debuted generally on September 3rd. The article also contains a picture, similar to the one we have seen before. Additionally, it explains why Kaya's books have different names, and that Kaya will not have some of the accessories all the other dolls have.

It depends on your local bookstore, but Kaya books are already shipped to some stores, and even on sale in others. Several people posting on the message boards have bought and read Kaya books. If you want to get the Kaya books, you might call your local store to see if they are on sale yet. They might be!

Samantha Shows up in Macy's Ad

Society Member Sharon reports that a Macy's furniture ad featured Samantha and her clothing as props in a picture of its "Caroline" furniture. She was kind enough to send me a scan of the ad. You can view it here. Thanks Sharon!

Monthly Membership Update

This is a new segment in our newsletter. Every month I will report the number of members that joined and the new states in our membership directory from the previous month. I'm getting really excited at the Society's growth! (We still need people write Pleasant Company about historical AG discontinuations though!!) Here are the stats for August:

New Members: 31
New States: Texas, Wisconsin, New Jersey, Nebraska, Indiana, and New Hampshire
New Country: Germany

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