First up is the Ribbon JSK. The bodice seems reasonably well fitted but the overall shape is a bit simple. Despite there being lace on the outsides of the straps and along the neckline, it doesn't really draw you in or look that exciting. The straps are an okay width and look quite supportive. The bodice features a gift ribbon design, with ribbon going across and down the bodice to make it look gift wrapped. This works really nicely, even though the ribbon is a bit shiny. These lines of ribbon are lined neatly with lace. The bow that tops the ribbon has an interesting shape and I think it looks really pretty. So it is a shame that the rest of the dress looks so plain in comparison. I feel that more could have been done to this dress, without it looking overwhelming. Some simple changes, like a different lace choice, could have really helped. The back is fully shirred, which means lots of size flexibility, but also means the shirring has nothing covering it. The stock photos show that the skirt is very full and it flares outwards a lot. There is the potential to create a great shape. The simple skirt design means the print is displayed beautifully. The bottom hem is then finished off with a line of ribbon and a thin line of lace. This bottom hem does at least match the ribbon on the bodice, but I still feel more could have been done with this dress design overall.
This is the Napoleon JSK. The bodice seems very well fitted and the shape is interesting, although I think the scoop neckline sits a little too low for my personal tastes. The straps look a good width. There is no lace at all lining the straps or the neckline. I do get that this is meant to be a military inspired design (perhaps AatP felt that lace was too frilly) but I feel some sort of trim is needed. If the right choice of lace had been used, it wouldn't have detracted from the military style. The bodice features 3 double lines of braid, which have fancy swirly bits going around the buttons at the ends. The braid has been used quite well and the details look well spaced out. I like that the buttons have a nice emblem design to them.
And just when you think AatP have made this dress all about the sharp military details, there is a secret bow on the back! I am not a fan of this bow to be honest, as I feel the design looks too cutesy. It looks really out of place and I am glad that it is hidden away at the back. Trouble is, I worry that bow it going to look a bit bumpy hidden underneath a bolero. As we can see, this dress offers a panel of shirring, which is topped neatly with a ribbon corset.
The stock photos show that the skirt is very plump and rounded. I think the skirt shape looks a bit ridiculous (and photoshopped) in the photos, but it is good to know that you can potentially create a very full shape, and that it should hold lots of petticoat. The skirt is again kept simple in design, so the print is displayed brilliantly. The bottom hem is then finished off neatly with a pleated trim, so at least some effort was made with the trim here.
Finally, here is the print. This series comes in ivory, bordeaux, green and black. I think the gold looks a bit too bright and gaudy on the bordeaux version, but otherwise the colour choices are pretty good and work nicely. As for the print itself, I like how having a slight Christmas theme to it, it doesn't scream 'Christmas Print'. The theater seating and stages are set out beautifully. I especially like the detailing on the gold bits of the curtains. There is the odd snowflake, nutcracker and gingerbread man flying around, but the Christmas theme is mostly kept to the scenery in the back of the stages. The scenes on the stages are interesting and drawn well, with lots of little details to them. I really like the sweet, gingerbread props hiding away in the background.
I feel this print could have a lot of potential, but I am not sold on the dress designs. They are not bad dresses, but they could have been better. Overall, they are just a bit underwhelming. I am at least impressed with the balance of the Christmas theme though. I would say this was more of a Winter time print, rather than specifically Christmas, which makes it a bit easier to wear. Sadly though, I would not buy this series. If I did, I think I would choose the Ribbon JSK in green. I would just have to liven it up a bit with my accessory choices.