New AG releases…my wallet is safe!

American Girl released some new stuff this week.  I was less than excited about it.  Not that the stuff isn’t cute, but too many repeats.  I have a gymnastic outfit and a ton of swimsuits, I have a cheerleading outfit and I even have the same Pomeranian from when they were selling them at Sam’s Club.  And lots of clothes/jewelry for girls.  Swing and a miss!  The only thing that interested me was Lea’s Celebration Outfit, but the price is too much, I will wait and see if it goes on sale.

The biggest disappointment to me was Lea’s picnic set.  Not really too much to it, and $34?!?!?!?!  Uh, no.  And as I sat and looked at in in disbelief over the price, it occurred to me that I already had just about everything in it already!  Are the people behind developing these sets not paying attention to what is going on with their competition?  And what is the deal with everything being made for just one doll?  Don’t these dolls have friends?  Or are they all a bunch of loners who sit around and play on their cell phones all day?

Annoyed by this whole thing, I decided to show you how you can replicate this set for a lot less money and have a lot more to play with!  Here is a picture of Lea’s picnic set from AG:

picnic setLea’s Beach Picnic Set includes: mat, basket, a plate, a journal, empanadas, truffles, a coconut drink and a pineapple.  All of it is cute, except for the empanadas, they look like plastic.  Major design fail.

To make my set I decided to use Our Generation’s “Love a Luau” set pieces, a tote bag I picked up from the My Life As line at Walmart, some eraser muffins and a placemat I found at Dollar Tree.  I used a little notebook that a friend had given me to take the place of the journal.  The only thing I had to buy was the placemat, I had everything else.

picnic 1See what I mean??  The luau set retails for $16.99, the tote bag was $3 (I think, maybe less), a package of eraser muffins was $1 and the placemat was $1 as well.  For around $22 I replicated it, you could do it for even less if you catch the luau set on sale.  BUT WAIT, THERE’S MORE!!!!

Sophia decided to have an indoor picnic.  It’s rainy and cold here today, not exactly a day when you want to go to the beach.

picnic 2

As she sat and contemplated on what to write in her journal, her sister Rebecca showed up.

picnic 3

“Hey sis, what’s up?!”  “Not much, just having an indoor picnic.  Care to join me?”

“But there isn’t much food there!”  “Oh, hang on, there is more in the bag…”

picnic 4

“Oh wow, it sure looks yummy! Sure, I’ll join you!”

picnic 5

Yes, this all comes with the Luau set as well (excluding the additional muffin) along with a grass skirt, poster and ukulele.  Way more  play potential.  The pen is from another set I have.  Seriously, how are you supposed to write in a journal without a writing instrument?

As for the crappy empanadas, I think these would be easy to make, either from clay or felt.  I’ve also seen placemats that were more of a bamboo look that would work, I went with this one so I can use it as a rug in the dollhouse as well.  The journal would be easy to make if you can’t find a similar item.  Something tells me that this might be one of those sets that we see turn up in the clearance sales for a long time, kind of like the one they did for Saige.  Definitely not one of their better deals.

26 thoughts on “New AG releases…my wallet is safe!

  1. I didn’t really like the releases either but I did like that they finally made a professional bathing suit with googles and swim cap. Being a swimmer I am really intrested in the suit (but not for $34)

    • Yes, it’s nice to see them make one for those who are competitive swimmers. I’d keep an eye on Ebay, I got the last swimsuit (2 piece with flowers) all by itself, I only wanted it and not the cover up that came with it.

  2. I agree, the best of the lot was Lea’s celebration outfit. AG seems to be doing a lot of sales so I will wait and see before buying.
    I have the OG Luau set too. I agree much better deal and a lot more play value. I think AG may think they can put out anything and it will sell because it is AG. You could buy 2 of the OG Luau sets and have a large doll luau for the price of 1 AG Lea picnic. AG insists on lumping the food together without even one piece to serve!!!
    At the AG store they also came out with a special addition mini Lea doll in the hiking outfit for (drumroll) a whopping 34.00!!!!! I am not sure what the inflated price is for (maybe the packaging). I think that a lot of people might like the outfit (me included) but do not need a second mini Lea, especially for that price. The first mini Lea is on Amazon right now for 14.81.

    • Unfortunately, there is a contingent of people who will buy just about anything that says AG on it, even if it is crap. Not this cookie! I have certain criterion it has to meet, and this one didn’t cut it.

      Yeah, what is with that Lea mini? I think she might have had a tree with her, but not sure, that was what I heard was supposed to come with her. I get annoyed with the stuff that they only sell in the store too, not everyone lives close or has a personal shopper. I think they are missing the boat by not coming out with a line of clothing for the mini dolls.

      • I just found a photo of the back of the box online. It says it includes “1 mini doll, 1 stand and 1 foliage set”. And yes, it does look like cardboard, what a rip off!!! Not worth the additional money at all.

  3. I grabbed that tote bag from Walmart for the exact same reason LOL I’m planning on picking up a couple of the Luau sets from OG too because with the exchange rate, that picnic set of Lea’s is a lot of money for not a lot of items or play value. Now, her celebration dress is GORGEOUS and that will be coming home for my Fina at some point this year (and hopefully the hiking outfit and the Bahia outfit), but I’ve barely been tempted by anything in Lea’s collection (or Lea, that’s money I’d rather spend on Melody)

    • I didn’t think about the exchange rate, but yeah, for some of the foreign customers it becomes an outrageous price. I scratch my head a lot at their pricing, it’s high to begin with, but also very inconsistent in what you get for your money at times.

    • Rebecca’s jeans are AG, but yes, the rest is from If Dolls Could Dream! 🙂 I had Maggie make the shirt that Rebecca is wearing for Kanani, but Rebecca decided to borrow it.

  4. Wow, that Luau set is such a bargain compared to the AG version! I completely agree with you on all points..I’ll also keep on the lookout for a sale on that Celebration outfit as well. I need to spend that kind of money on real clothes and not doll clothes, lol…but you’re right, there are people that pay it so I guess that’s why they charge it! I am still holding off on buying Lea until there is a ‘free shipping sale” again…I was tempted by the bundles they recently did, but the time was not right and all I really want are her and her PJs (and the new outfit.) 🙂

    • You make a point that I’ve thought for quite a while–since when do doll clothes cost more than human clothes?!? Granted, you usually get shoes and perhaps another accessory, but it does seem a bit crazy.

      Hopefully there will be another free shipping soon, or even better yet another sale on Lea stuff. She is such a pretty doll, her eyes are so unique. I am waiting on the hiking accessories, I ordered them a while ago but they have been on backorder. Once I have that and I get the new dress, I am done with what I wanted out of her collection. I actually bought more of it than I had originally planned!

  5. I had to work right across the street from AGP Chicago and had a chance to look inside. The Lea picnic basket is even poorer quality than Walmart’s or Targets! It’s total plastic and barely even looks real! I also have the Luau set and the coconut drink looks way more real than the Lea set. The palm tree that comes with the mini doll is basically very strong cardboard.
    I will for sure buy Lea’s new dress but only if it goes on sale. I also MIGHT pick up the hiking t-shirt for girls in X-large and the doll swim set if they both go on a major sale. It would be cool to have the doll swim set for the Olympics this year.

    • Wow, that is interesting! What in the world is going on with this stuff? Are they trying to alienate their customer base with poor quality?

      Interesting to see how many of us like Lea’s dress, but agree that it is overpriced. AG, are you reading this???

      • Yup, that’s exactly what they are hoping for. And unfortunately, based on reviews I read on other sites, many people do. If I have to read another “oh, it’s so wonderful!” review on a piece of crap, I might puke. Sorry, I don’t buy into the just because it’s AG, it’s better con.

        I remember when Barbie stuff used to be awesome too. 😦

  6. There is nothing in the new AG releases that interests me. I’m excited for Melody’s release and I’m waiting to see what that brings. I wonder if the bedroom accessories will be separate from the bed? Will the card table and chairs fold up? What music will the radio play? Will there be another record player (and not just the recording studio)? I’d rather keep my money for that stuff, (if it’s affordable).

    • I’m anxious to see Melody’s collection with more detail, I hope it’s not a disappointment. I was so excited about Maryellen and her stuff and I’ve only bought one thing, it was such a let down.

  7. You know I have been feeling the same way about AG offerings. They are very expensive and the OG and My Life sets are very cute and very reasonable in price. I think AG has almost out-priced themselves. I have fallen in love with Melody, but I am struggling! I am really out of space! rrrgghhh

    • It’s a shame, they used to be the benchmark for this kind of stuff and they have gone backwards while at the same time, raising prices. Doesn’t take a rocket scientist to figure out that somewhere along the way that is going to cause problems, and I think we have reached that point. I’m still deciding on Melody, I have the same issue, but she is so cute. I definitely want to get a few of her items though.

  8. I totally agree! We are in Canada, and with the exchange rate, there is no way that we can afford anything AG. That means that we make practically everything ourselves. We don’t mind though. Like you, we find that a lot of the time, handmade is better. 🙂 This set is a prime example. You did an awesome job recreating it, and I like your version better! Besides, making something is half the fun! We do save up for the dolls though. We are currently saving for Lea. I will probably sew her celebration outfit myself. I mean, really it’s just a ruffled dress with some ribbon trim. We’ll see how it goes. 🙂

    ginnie /

    • Yes, I don’t know how most people afford it to begin with and throw in the exchange rate and it becomes ridiculously expensive. I love looking for other things to use instead, it is a lot of fun. I like the “thrill of the hunt”! I dusted the doll house this past weekend and sometimes even I’m amazed at how much I’ve found that isn’t AG, but someone would be hard pressed to have a doll house that looks as realistic using just AG stuff!

      Good luck with the dress, I look forward to seeing what you come up with. I did a re-creation of a Grace outfit last year that was a lot of fun, and I didn’t even sew it from scratch. I made it from baby clothes.

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