I can be quite forgiving when reviewing doll items. I cut OG, for example, a lot of slack because if I was the mother of a target aged girl I would have absolutely no problem buying accessory packs and large items to make my doll dollars stretch farther, especially as AG keeps going more and more plastic in their items. Not everyone can afford to keep 100% canon AG and I honestly don’t think anyone should have to limit themselves to one company’s products, especially if their children are very young and the products themselves are priced on the high end. These are, at the end of the day, toys for kids and not museum pieces and I try to keep that in mind. Even if I am disappointed in the set, I will try to find at least ONE thing nice to say about it or that it has going for it.
That being said:
The Gombe Rainforest Sets that I ordered from The Queen’s Treasures is the absolute biggest disappointment, waste of money, and hands down the absolute WORST accessory sets I have ever had the misfortune to handle throughout all of my decades of doll collecting. I don’t usually return stuff–this is all going back. I was planning to order the Rainforest Tent and the Covered Wagon set but unless I see pictures from another collector as detailed as mine showing good quality–I will not be purchasing from QT again. These sets are that terrible. So terrible, in fact, that I had to drop everything grad school related I was doing this weekend to document it.
The most infuriating thing as that these pieces are way overpriced at what I bought them at–50% off the list price! I wouldn’t pay 75% of the list price for these two sets, they are that poorly made. I was amazed–I’ve ordered their Singer-esque sewing machine and liked it–but this is absolute garbage.
Let’s look at the table first:
The QT product description calls the table and chair “sturdy”. I wouldn’t. They are both made of a composite wood (per the tag on the chair, you’ll see it later) feel very light and flimsy and while the website claims that they are Forest Stewardship Council Certified, there is no such certification on the product. (I am seriously skeptical about products made in China with this quality level being certified for good stewardship of anything.)
Your standard TV tray design. I found my table to rock back and forth quite easily.
The chair. This one has legs are not even and it rocks back and forth. One back leg is roughly 1/4 inch shorter than the other three.
You can see how sharp those edges are and how the bottom of the legs look broken and chipped (I had just taken it out of its shipper). You’ll be able to see the layers of composite clearer too.
Not all of these holes were this rough, but most of them were. Hasn’t even been sanded down.
I will say it was a little hard to position Lea because of the bum leg in the back of the chair. I was really excited to see the Gombe rainforest set and planned to buy every product for my Lea collection–I decided to take a pass on the rainforest house this year–and build most of her collection from scratch. I am SO GLAD I passed on buying the Gombe tent.
The biggest disappointment by a mile is the Gombe Rainforest Research Set. The crate looks pretty neat, but the edges aren’t sanded here either and it was a little tough to get the top off.
…what is this.
Well, here is my Nice Thing to Say About This Set: the lantern and pencil are okay.
The camera is poorly painted poured plaster (say that three times fast). I don’t even think it’s proper scale either–it’s way too big.
I actually already had a camera–I read a thread on one of the doll forums where someone posted that Amazon had tiny USB drives shaped like real cameras. Since I shoot with a Canon, I immediately bought this. I think I paid $6 for it including free two day shipping (thanks Prime!), and its scale is much more accurate IMO. You tell me which one looks nicer.
For some bizarre reason WordPress won’t allow me to use the Look of Disapproval in a caption box so it’s going here instead: ಠ_ಠ
Another chunk of poured painted plaster (I’m assuming it’s some sort of poured material, you can see the popped air bubbles and a fingerprint on the underside of the typewriter.) $55 for a set with a typewriter that has dots instead of letters for keys. Since this is one chunk of plaster(?)/whatever it is, the keys of course do not press down or work. That white spot on the front that looks like bird droppings is a gauge in the gray paint. The paper is also painted. If you already own Kit’s typewriter…
…as I do, you will probably be even more annoyed. Sure, the Gombe entire set is $55, and Kit’s typewriter new from AG is $50, but…come on. The keys move, and work, and you can really put paper through it and it dings.
Here’s a comparison shot…
I like this one much better. I’m even willing to accept the poorly made table and chair because I have to find something to salvage out of all of this.
The typewriter may be bad, but it’s not even the absolute worst piece of this set. That award goes to…
You can click on the mosaic to bring up a slideshow of the Failscope. (or at least you should be able to. I’m experimenting with new ways to display images. If something goes wrong please drop me a line.)
I sure hope you can find a Phillips head jewelers screwdriver or you aren’t going to be able to set the tripod or hold up the scope. There’s no eyepiece, just a painted black end, and the ends of the feet are sharp. Don’t set this on your dining room table or any antique furniture especially if it will be used for play–I guarantee this will scratch it. The telescope is poorly painted and mine had more damage on it to boot (now that I think about it, it was probably the feet of the telescope stand that gauged both the scope and the typewriter. The pieces were not individually wrapped in the crate). I saw a telescope made out of paper and cardstock (I am pretty sure it was on AGPT) and even that was far and away better that this (even if you can stomp on cardstock and crush it).
Really, the telescope is the part that makes me the angriest because it’s so obviously cheaply made and badly put together. I’m angry that I spent $27.50 on the research set, and the full retail price is $55 for this junk! To pay $55, and get that. Holy cow. I paid $20 for the table and chairs; full price is $40. Like the research set, even at 50% it’s still way too much. I am pretty certain I could find something comparable at Hobby Lobby for $5-10, probably less with one of the half off coupons.
I would like to use stronger language to describe these sets, but will refrain from doing so. A major, major disappointment and this has set me off Queen’s Treasures, most likely for good.
We are going in to the final days of the semester. It’s been tough, but I’ve been hanging in there (being on enough anxiety medication to drop a horse doesn’t hurt). I’m going to have to finish strong from here on out or I’m going to be in a world of trouble. I’ll probably see you all next on the flip side, so until then…over and out.