About a week ago, Integrity Toys posted on their Instagram account that they were looking for someone to interview live Chris Stoeckel, the immensely talented designer of East 59th line of dolls, whose latest collection was quite the success! Not only that, they would also give to the person chosen for the job, an incredible OOAK Della Roux doll! I would have entered even without the doll offering, but this was even better. And yes, as most of you already know, I was the one chosen to conduct the interview through the IT Instagram account.
We had so much fun - I had sent my questions to the company beforehand, to make sure they were OK with them and that the time allotted would be covered. I also made sure that I could ask questions that the people watching would have - and that was even better! Chris told us a lot about his inspiration, his background in design and his growing up in a really diverse family, which is also his main inspiration for East 59th. Many of the dolls have names matching those of dear family members (Della is his mother, Evelyn his grandmother etc). I was lucky enough to guess that Christian Dior, Cristobal Balenciaga and Charles James are his three favourite designers - out of which he picked James as the one being that bit more favourite because he was a tortured artist, living for his passion, i.e. the clothes he created. I did not even notice how fast time passed! There will be a Fall collection for the line, of which the only definite things we know are that it will not be in autumn colours and it will not be holiday themed. There was also a moment when Chris kind of admitted (not directly though) that we are getting an Asian character for the line. He also said he might re-purpose again unused sculpts for new characters. We discovered that Eugenia and Kyori 1.0 are his favourite FR characters. Could we see Kyori 1.0 as the new East 59th character?
And then the doll: this OOAK Della is so beautiful! I missed the chance to buy the first Della at retail, so getting this OOAK doll is even more incredible for me. Chris has done an outstanding job of making both a beautiful doll, with a lovely fave and hairstyle and also a stunning gown for her to wear. The fabric of the gown is from an actual 1950s dress and the ruffle layers have a total length of three yards! This is one of the reason that this outfit could never be recreated for production. If you check her hands, you will see that the gloves have individual fingers as real ones do, and they are not the typical solution given to production dolls. Chris said he always makes them like this for his OOAK dolls.
If you want to watch the interview, it is up on the IGTV tab of the Integrity Toys Instagram account here. I hope you enjoyed it as much as I did!