Falling out of love with the Grail

Jun 2, 2016

    1. Have you gotten your grail, then fallen out of love?

      I had two grails, Soom Ender and Volks F-16, and I managed to get them both after several years. At first, I adored them both. Now, I'm afraid I'm falling out of love with my Ender, and I hate it.

      I fell in love with him when he was first released in 2011, but I didn't like the huge Mega Gem body. In 2013, I acquired the head secondhand as a gift from my husband and after a lot of research, was informed that DikaDoll tan matches Soom brown tan, and I really liked the look of the 73cm body, so I ordered it for him. Welll......it does not match. Not even close. Apparently the person who said they did match didn't have the brown tan skin, they had the tawny skin and didn't realize it. Also, the neck fit is much worse than I realized. Looking at him head on, it's not bad. From the side, it is. So that is a problem that has existed from day one.

      Next issue---clothing. The character is an 18th Dynasty Pharaoh, and I want everything he wears to be accurate or at least close. It's impossible to find anything premade for him, so everything he owns has been commissioned and cost a fortune (rightly so, I'm not saying artists shouldn't be paid fairly!), but he still only has one real outfit. It's beautiful, but I like my dolls to have a full wardrobe, and it's been very very difficult to clothe him. Finding someone who can sew for his size is hard enough, but finding people with the skill and historical knowledge to do what I want satisfactorily is so much effort and I cannot afford it most of the time.

      Anyway, I've had him for three years, the hybrid doesn't look good, getting him clothes and jewelry, especially on my budget, is next to impossible, and all of this combined is seriously making this doll feel less like a grail and more like frustrating money pit of hopelessness. I have spent weeks trying to make things for him myself and getting upset when I fail, and I have sunk well over $1000 into him, and I'm still not satisfied. I don't want to keep sinking more money into him, especially when I don't even have a steady income in the first place!

      I feel horrible for waiting so long to get him, even longer to get him all put together, and not loving this beautiful sculpt. Not only because he was my grail, but because he was a gift from my husband and I was so ecstatic over him at one time. I do not want to sell him, I just want to find a way to fall in love with him all over again.

      So, my questions for you:

      -Have you ever fallen out of love with your grail after getting them?

      -Did you end up keeping or selling the doll?

      -If you sold the doll, did you regret it later?

      -If you kept the doll, did you ever love it the same again?

      -If yes, what did you do to fix the problem and love the doll again?
    2. I so hear you & empathize.
      My semi-grail was Volks Isami Kondo. I found the head for a great price new right out of the box. Got his clothes too. But when he came home, I didn't like him. Don't know why.
      I had an SD Gou body he could share. Didn't even put him on the body.
      I put him here in the MP. No interest for months. Put him on ebay .no sale.
      Then a doll friend & I started a story online & we needed a hero. I repainted Isami - who is now Axel. Blonde, blue-eyed, freckles. Surfer/Oceanographer Aussie.
      I love him!
      Sometimes the doll has his own ideas. Your guy might not be who you think.
      Follow my blog link for pics.
    3. LLT's Ludwig. Replaced him with another grail: LLT's Ahaz - and hopefully, he'll be released later this month so I finally can get him! :)
    4. It's good to know a little change may save the love for the Grail, @petiteballerine! I do still love his head very much, and he has a gorgeous faceup by Buff, who captured his character perfectly, and I do still love his character. Maybe I do just need to try taking him in a slightly different direction.

      @Khell i hope your new grail works better for you! I had considered something similar. I thought maybe changing my Ender to a Chalco would help, since I do like the Super Gem body and that size would be more manageable. But as much as I do love Chalco, the sculpt still just isn't quite on par with Ender for me.
    5. I think your situation is a bit difficult because it's not that you don't love the doll, you just dislike the circumstances surrounding him.
      Having a difficult concept that is expensive to realize can really lower your enthusiasm for a doll, I had this happening to myself (in some cases ending with me selling the doll because of that).
      I actually stopped a whole project because of this now, because I also felt it was just an ungrateful pit I burned money in without getting happiness and satisfaction in return.
      So, maybe change the concept? Sell the body and try to get something different?
      Islanddoll has the big Norse body AND offer custom colors for a good price, I got one myself and love it to bits.

      -Have you ever fallen out of love with your grail after getting them?
      I don't really have a grail, but I had this happening with some dolls I had really, really wanted.
      The worst was my Dollfie Dream Saber, I unpacked her and felt...nothing.
      Never had this happening to me before, but it was a horrible feeling, she went for sale an hour after I got her.
      I also own a Volks F-38 head I wanted to have for sooooo long, and when I got him he was....nice.
      Nothing special, he was put into a box and now I decided to get rid of him, nearly a year later, because I just lack any interest to work on his project.

      The other kinda grail was my Dollshe Saint, I always wanted to own a Dollshe since I entered the hobby in 2008.
      Unfortunately it turned out that I liked other people's Saints, but not mine.

      -Did you end up keeping or selling the doll?

      I sold all of them.
      With the Saint I had tried really, really hard for years to make things work, from new face-ups to expensive wigs and clothes, nothing helped.

      -If you sold the doll, did you regret it later?

      No, I didn't.
      I fear that I miiiight regret selling the F-38 a little, just because he's so hard to get, but oh well.

      -If you kept the doll, did you ever love it the same again?


      -If yes, what did you do to fix the problem and love the doll again?

    6. I think that perhaps what might help relieve your frustration is a new body for the head (and faceup) you love so much. It sounds like most of your negative impressions have to do with his existing body. (Improper colour match, neck fit, etc.) Obviously finding a different body will be a lot of work, but you will still have the head in your possession and will not need to seek it out again or have it repainted.
    8. I'd love to see photos, @CloakedSchemer. perhaps one of us might have ideas for you after seeing your man. He sounds fabulous. Too good to give up on.

    9. Sure!

      Here is, King Pain the Butt himself, Pharaoh Ay:


      I didn't edit the picture or use filters at all so the resin match is what it looks like in person. There are more photos of him in my doll profiles section if you're interested.

      Maybe he was cursed to be difficult because I chose to name him after a rather controversial Pharaoh. >.>
    10. AH! *falls over* He's gorgeous! the photo of him with the headdress is very nice indeed.
      this advice may sound strange, but have you tried putting him in jeans or a kimono or something so different that when you go back to his character's style, you may be able to see it with new eyes?
      that face is beautiful.


      Axel and his friends are rooting for the King! (why did I ever try to sell him???)

    11. @petiteballerine Aww, thank you so much! I get what you're saying, but I haven't tried it. He's my only doll in the 70cm range, so he doesn't fit in with the rest of the crew, which I liked because he's the grail and a completely different story line than the others. Which would mean I'd have to invest in clothes I don't really want just to see him in a different light. I suppose I could ask local friends to bring some 70cm clothing to the next meet so I can try them on him and see how I feel. Your crew is gorgeous, and thanks to them for rooting for Ay. :P
    12. I have a few "grail dolls" in my possession, but no, I haven't fallen out of love with any of them.

      Only one of my grails had a real pre-set identity to fall in line with. Getting him just right took time, but the things he needed were not impossible to get. (okay, when I first got him, there was no such thing as a decent short boy's wig). But I really could not imagine having a collection of dolls without him in it.
      The other three grails, I just wanted those sculpts in my life real bad, and their looks/characters came later. So they are exactly who they became, and because of that, I cannot imagine their characters as any other sculpt. No pressure to become something I already had in mind really helped a lot.

      I have bought a few dolls that I loved in photos that I didn't fall for once I owned them. Much like Ara said about her Saint, I liked these dolls when other people owned them but not when they were mine. I never regretted selling them, and some of them, I can't even recall what they were anymore. >_>

      I do have a doll that vexes me, my AiL Bertram. He wasn't a grail doll, just a doll I liked and bought. I have played around with his style, given him different eyes and wigs, tried him on different bodies, and nothing has entirely jelled. He has a name, Djuna, and he finally managed to get the right eyes, lavender urethanes, but that's all I can say is right about him. I still like him, I still want this doll, but I am allowing him to come together in his own sweet time. And it's been like 10 years since I bought this head! So yeah, I do think I will some day get him together. @_@
    13. Are you out of love with the whole concept, or just your current Ender's embodiment of the concept? (if that makes sense)

      I have two Minimee heads that I ordered from DIM, back when they were still doing custom sculpts. I wanted them so much that I didn't even group order them. That was about 6 years ago. Since then, I've tried at least 8 different bodies between the two of them. I finally found the perfect one for the guy, but I'm still looking for the girl. The most recent attempt was a ClassyDoll toned body, which turned out to be all wrong. So I definitely feel your pain about the "money pit of hopelessness". :lol: But I'm glad I didn't sell the heads. I feel the perfect body will come along for the girl, just as it did for the guy eventually. Maybe you'll get lucky too. I hope so!

    14. I don't hate the head, or the concept of what he is. I want him to be that character, and I'd rather let him go than force a new character into him.

      The problem is that I'm so unhappy with the hybrid, and finding clothing and jewelry or even people who can be commissioned to do it that I'm losing interest in him. I'm struggling to decide whether to keep trying or give up. Maybe some changes would help, maybe it would just be a bigger waste of money. For now, I've put him away in a drawer to think about what to do, and see if I miss him or not and if any ideas to fix him come to me.

      Good luck finding a body for your head!
    15. That's understandable. It seems like the more specific your wants, the harder they are to find. Good luck on your quest!
    16. Are there other bodies out there that might be more suitable? The simplest solution would seem to be getting a different body but I don't know what you've already tried :( If nothing else, I'd have the head blushed to match the body (the faceup would have to be redone, obviously)

      As far as commissioning clothing, maybe rather than waiting for a seamstress who has knowledge of the period you could design and draw out detailed pictures of what you want and list which materials and colors you want each part to be, that way you could just get someone good at sewing that can follow your picture rather than waiting for an expert?

      In any case I wish you luck with your doll, It sounds like you still really love the grail doll, it's just the body and clothing that are not coming together as expected :(
    17. I am looking at other body options, just struggling because everything that matches or can be custom resin matched isn't a body I like, and the bodies I do like will have the same problems. I'm not interested in dyeing or spray painting a doll. I have tried to get him resin matched, but it still isn't perfect and with that much blushing, I'm afraid to handle and enjoy him for fear of scratching him. Minor blushing is fine, but it took 7 layers just to get it close, so one tiny scratch means redoing all of that again. So, it's kind of a dead end of finding out my grail head just isn't going to work with a body I love.

      I have sent pictures of what I want to a seamstress, and it did go well. The problem there is that prices are out of my budget now except when I save for a very very long time. I guess I got spoiled by so many ready-to-wear things at more affordable prices for my other dolls. I do understand the things I want for the grail and the quality I expect will cost a lot, as artists do deserve to be paid for that sort of thing, it's just the frustration of having to sink so so much money into him. I do sew, and have for years, I've just not been successful in getting the looks I want for him to work out, and I've probably wasted at least $50, maybe more, in materials alone.

      I do very much appreciate your suggestions. I think a new body may be in order, I just need to research more and see if maybe there is that 'perfect' body out there that I haven't found yet.
    18. Oh man, do I ever know how this feels. LOL. :...(

      It's been a roller coaster ride with my grail, Volks Williams! When I first got his head, I was beyond thrilled. When I got his first body (Dollstown 15), I was also thrilled. Then as I collected other dolls in that storyline, he started to look out of scale with them because he was pretty short. And I struggled to clothe him because he really needed to wear suits for his character, buuut... I hate suits. So I didn't put him in suits because I dislike them, but he didn't look right in anything else. Even though looking at his face made me happy for years, I rarely bought him anything or took pictures of him. So I bought him a new body (Feeple65) and was over the moon with how beautiful he was. I was really happy with him again! But... that body is even more difficult to clothe, so that brought me back down again after a while. I did take his picture more often, but I constantly felt annoyed about him not looking "right" because of his clothes. He felt like a never-ending work in progress. I tried him on two other bodies because of the clothes issue, but kept going back to the F65 because of how good he looked on it. In the end... I decided to scrap the entire storyline, but keep some of the dolls, Mr. Williams included. I was struggling with it as a whole anyway. But now that the slate is wiped clean, I'm going to try and make him a new character that can't fail. XD And part of that is being more laid back about its requirements. I gave myself too many restrictions with his previous character, and his inaccuracies are what made me unhappy. I want to be more chill about it this time around.

      That said, I never once considered selling him. But I think that's just because my friend helped me a lot in obtaining him, so I have these happy memories associated with him. F-16 was another grail of mine, too, and I did get one. Like Ara mentioned, he ended up being one of those dolls that I didn't love as much as ones owned by other people. And if the one you own isn't your favorite example of the sculpt, it's just not going to work out. I sold the F-16 and thought maybe I'd get another someday, since I still do love seeing other owner photos, but the desire never came. So that was the right decision.

      So, sometimes it's best to let go and end your frustration. But other times, it might be worth the effort! You've obviously tried really hard already. If I were in your shoes, I would try one more body and then give up if that fails. No matter what accessories you throw on him, if you don't like the doll underneath then it's going to be hard to love at all, you know?
    19. I have waiting for over a year trying to find my grail, being a Soom Dia. I know they are popular but as soon as i saw his mould it was an instant click for what i wanted. Being a perfectionist i wanted one in mint condition and because they were getting old and were no longer for sale all the ones i found were either modified, stained, old body - it just wasn't what i wanted.
      So for over a year i drooled over his pictures and wished they would release him again.
      They ended up releasing Lord Soom Dia which i bought instantly! As soon as i got him i couldn't stop staring, i still can't.
      I love him so much! Because i wanted, pleased with the company even and went through that emotional 'I need him' (i'm sure all us BJD owners have had a doll that has made us feel like that) I wouldn't even want to know what it would feel like falling out of love with your grail.
      But i suppose it can happen as you grow as a person and your interests change. I wouldn't see it as a bad thing. He/She made you happy at the time and that is all that matters :)
    20. -Have you ever fallen out of love with your grail after getting them?
      mine was the dollzone SD mo, i really wanted him in WS but that seems to be the hardest skintone to find him for sale in but i did eventually aquire two of them (cus i wanted to make SD versions of my MSD dollzone mos) one was normal yellow skin and the other normal pink skin.

      -Did you end up keeping or selling the doll?
      i wound up selling them both, as soon as i got them on bodies i realized they didnt look like i wanted from adult versions of my MSD mos who were supposed to be teenagers, they still had a bit of that juvenile look that the MSD sculpt did. i realized i needed to find a different sculpt with similar features but somehow more mature.

      i wound up re-shelling the SD versions of my MSD mos as little rebels sevens and they are perfect, still devious and pouty and easily recognizable as the same characters but with a more mature appearance, so truly 'adult' versions of my teens.

      (i encountered the same problem with my littlefee sleeping chiwoo, i wanted to make a teenaged version of him as an SD but the SD sleeping chiwoo still had that same baby face as the littlefee, so now the SD version of my littlefee chiwoo is actually a feeple sleeping karsh, different sculpt but totally looks like a more mature version of the same doll!)

      -If you sold the doll, did you regret it later?
      sometimes i regret the PRICE i sold them for, i let the go painfully cheaply ($30 each and they were in perfect condition) and i always think to myself "imagine all of the makoeyes i could have bought if i sold them for more LOL but honestly no, i found the perfect re-shell for them and i adore my seven versions of my twins and i never would have purchased them if i hadnt given up on making the SD mos work!