Have you ever been to Manitoba in the winter?
My brother moved to Winnipeg, and the following February I flew out to visit him. At the time of my arrival he ended up being away for work, so he had arranged for some of his friends to pick me up at the airport and show me around the city. Winnipeg is a beautiful city with so much history and culture, I was enamoured by all the small antique shops, the variety of restaurants, and ornate downtown buildings. That evening my new friends took me to the Festival Du Voyager, it was an amazing event! Unfortunately we didn’t last long as the weather was SO cold! There is a reason why Winnipeg has been nicknamed “Winterpeg”.
This frosty Manitoba experience came to mind when I first saw Maplelea’s “Shear Delight”, a retired Maplelea outfit that had been part of Brianne’s closet. Manitoba winters are notoriously cold and long, so this sheepskin ensemble would be the perfect choice to keep this prairie girl nice and warm.
Here is the official Maplelea tag found inside the coat, this outfit was made in 2012.
Here are all the pieces to the outfit, a sheepskin coat with matching boots, and mittens. Original retail price was $35 according to the Maplelea October 2011 catalog.
This is the back of the coat.
A close-up of the collar.
I was disappointed with the inside of the collar. I thought it looked unfinished, with the clips made on the seam allowance visible. I would have preferred the seam allowance to be either hidden with another piece of fabric or tucked under. (Clearly I spent too much time in the fashion studies classroom in high school.)
The coat has three wooden buttons down the front, however these are for show only and are not how the coat fastens…
…there are four metal snaps hidden inside.
There are two pockets on either side of the coat.
I was disappointed to find that the pockets were not functional, and merely for show.
The cuffs are fuzzy like the collar of the coat.
I thought that the mittens were a bit of an awkward shape.
This is the view of one of mitten from the front.
This is the mitten from the back.
As you can see in the photo above, the mittens have a thin fabric coated elastic on the inside. They are also lined like the coat with a faux sheepskin.
These boots remind of the classic UGG boots.
The bottom of the boot is flat and quite smooth. There is a faint pattern on the bottom, the same as Brianne’s starter boots.
Here is a view of the boots from the side, once again very similar to UGGs.
Here are the boots from the back.
A close-up of the stitching detail.
On closer inspection of the boots it appears that the boot is glued to the sole. You can see a bit of glue where the base of the boot meet the sole.
The boots have a side velcro closure, which helps them slide onto the doll’s feet easily.
Soft velcro is used as opposed to the rougher style that tends to snag.
Here is a shot of the inside of one of the boots, as you can see the boots are also lined with the faux sheepskin. The faux sheepskin is not used on the insole of the boot, instead there is a white leather-like fabric used. (The same fabric is used on the insole of Brianne’s starter boots.) So now that we have seen all the pieces in detail, let’s see how it looks on Brianne…
It doesn’t look too bad, it just seems a bit too 1970s for Brianne’s style. Wait!!! I know the perfect doll to wear this coat… American Girl, Julie Albright!
This coat is perfect for her and her 1970s theme! Let’s see how it fits…
The sleeves of the coat were a bit long for Julie so I had to roll them up.
The boots slid on, and fit Julie like a dream.
Doesn’t she look sweet? Already for a 1970s San Francisco Winter! (Or summer, seriously I was there one year in July… Brrrr! If you go be sure to bring warm clothing.)
When I first received this ensemble I thought that it wasn’t my thing, however once I put it on Julie I was in love! My only complaint was that there are a few details left out on the coat that I have come expect from Maplelea. Clearly this is an older outfit as the current Maplelea clothing quality is second to none.
If you are ever headed to Winnipeg in the winter months be sure to bring your warmest clothing, and take time to visit the vintage shops, and taste the cuisine in Little Italy.