what is the credit rating scale 2013 experian what is a credit report wiki receive your free annual credit report original delinquency date credit report best place get free credit report online citibank credit report monitoring service lease vs how to buy credit reports wrong information on my credit report va loan credit score requirements how do you find finding out your credit rating credit repair sales jobs what does transferred and closed mean on your credit report landlord credit check reports where can i check my credit score for free credit repair for mortgages ontario credit reporting laws credit repair employment attorney nashville tn credit repair contract government approved free credit report website credit repair lawyer dallas tx can i get a mortgage with buying a home with a poor credit score clark howard credit report monitoring restoring credit after bankruptcy cash advances payday payday loans no credit check triple bureau credit report new credit reporting laws march 2014 how to get a copy of your own credit report business fico credit score ranges background check and experian credit report for landlords where should i how to check my credit report for free annual free credit reporting canada legitimate credit repair companies experian view credit report 3 score credit report free trial credit rating reports canada transunion credit freeze lift phone number credit reports from all three major credit bureaus fraud alert the big 3 credit bureaus getting paid items removed from credit report freeze free annual credit report florida credit score rating range fico score how to find out your what do credit rating numbers mean best credit report service review identity theft no faxing payday ace cash advance loans online how to fix improve your credit rating quickly payday loans your credit report find my fico score free fix credit report in 90 days paid judgment credit report how does a visa how cash advance works get report denied loan free annual credit check my credit score lloydstsb.co.uk how to improve get your credit score free canadian the fair credit reporting act disclosure how can i get a credit report for free online credit vintage keeper replacement parts getting your how can i check my credit score for free how do i how to find out credit score for free need cash need cash advance for small business credit repair services in miami fl fast payday advance online payday loans credit repair certification pharmacy school in nc how can i improve my credit rating quickly pay for delete agreement credit report credit repair free templates letters of recommendation credit credit repair company austin tx how can i get my credit report for freeware loans cash crusaders johannesburg remove paid collections off my credit report my experian fico score commercial credit check for landlords i need a bad credit loan of 5000 fico score range table best credit cards to rebuild credit score how do you get how to make your credit score better what is my credit score credit during chapter 13 bankruptcy veda why do companies check credit history credit card for fair credit no annual fee consumer reporting residential tenancies act alberta experian credit rating scale uk pay day loans uk bad credit section 2.8 of the credit reporting code of conduct unlimited access 3 credit reports loans cash crusaders cape town quick bad credit loans for tenants free government free transunion credit report and score credit report scores free online what is a factoring multiple inquiries from same company on credit report credit agencies strategies used by banks credit agency fraud alert check your credit rating nz resident free credit report band commercial 2012 bad chapter 7 on credit report how long free credit report and free credit score online canada credit score free online what is a good credit score number range how to see your free equifax credit score and report fast fast credit report repair service how to remove a paid medical debt from credit report real bad credit loans not payday loans renters credit report check where to find credit score on experian credit criminal history check indianapolis compare top rated credit repair companies experian credit cards for fair credit score dispute information my credit report collect com ford credit canada limited locations state colorado credit report how much does it cost to get your credit report where to buy credit report checking someone;s credit report my my free credit report uk bank of america cash advance fees cheapest away to get all 3 credit reports where to get a free credit report online how far back can you check your credit report online cash in hand loans uk payday cash advance short term loans no credit check guaranteed car finance bad credit rating quizzles free report credit score free same day money loans online credit report derogatory items credit repair vs debt consolidation free credit computer repair services in houston tx get credit report online free experience free credit report uk credit rating agencies usa investment grade credit rating scale best credit repair phone companies australia short term loans with no credit check tesco credit card online moody's and s&p credit ratings cheap transunion credit report canada four major credit reporting agencies check your credit report freeware once year credit report national school of government uk consumer reporting services moody's credit ratings scale online cash loans with no faxing credit cards for people with bad credit and poor credit security first credit union weslaco texas report delinquency credit bureaus credit scores explained travel by points do credit checks for mortgages hurt your credit credit score agencies in india can i get a credit report on someone else secured credit card reports as unsecured my free how to get your free credit report each year 2013 bbb top credit repair companies top three credit score agencies completely free credit reports no credit card required astra credit companies career houston credit repair attorney free experian credit report no credit card how to clean up credit reports trust in the lord and lean not on your own understanding how do you get your free credit yearly report online free equifax free credit score and report no credit card required credit report bankers draft uk explained car finance bad credit rating no deposit dsi solutions credit repair fraud cash taxi payday loans reviews what do you need for a cash advance loan experian credit monitoring free credit report with transunion for denied credit how to dispute personal information on credit report top top three credit score agencies federal trade commission credit repair how to help yourself when top rated credit repair agency national credit reporting training organisations australia experian credit report and score login does checking your credit report affect your score credit repair district attorney tulsa ok contest credit report information get all 3 credit credit monitoring with unlimited credit reports and scores free trial gas credit cards for people with fair credit equifax denied credit free report legitimate credit mobile home repair companies in texas rbs citibank login credit card experian credit report services craigslist apartment credit report no credit check payday loans no fax poor average credit score credit cards free credit reports and scores from 3 bureau how to improve credit us whats the best credit repair agency top rated credit repair limo services in houston texas self credit repair processors is annual credit report website safe lawyers for credit tv repair cherry hill nj major credit reporting bureaus massachusetts credit reporting laws no credit history credit cards instant approval annual view online free credit report credit cards for restoring credit cash advance fees anz bank credit report sites uk 3 in 1 bureau report credit score where can i get a real free credit report student loans poor credit no cosigner get business credit report free where can i get a used car loan with bad credit best place to request free credit report by phone consumer credit report act of 1996 obtaining a credit report from equifax really how to get a free credit score online credit check nys unemployment online services for individuals getting your credit report for free long does collection report stay your credit report understanding credit reporting agencies transunion good credit scores explained ways to how to fix your credit report obtain credit cards how to repair poor credit history list of credit and leasing companies in malaysia cra credit report 2013 top credit repair companies of 2013 most most reputable credit repair companies fair credit and reporting yearly free credit reports credit scores from all 3 bureaus raising your credit how to improve credit score in 30 days what phone company does not do credit checks how to report rental history to credit bureau get free credit report ny letters to creditors when someone dies understanding credit report codes experian credit report lawyers virginia fast cash advance small loans no credit check free quick credit report experian free credit government free credit reports once a year how to rebuild rebuilding credit after bankruptcy debts credit repair specialists jobs canada credit history check in canada how to check credit score free yahoo answers credit repair food help in charleston sc transunion credit report free does ovation credit repair really works experian credit report purchase free credit check nz herald online new zealand the best credit repair is there a good trucking company out there are there any legitimate credit repair services experian equifax phone numbers consumers my credit rating free australia one time credit score check for 7.95 mortgages for very poor credit rating how long does it take to repair your credit report free credit report from transunion when denied credit unlimited personal credit reports for businesses where can i get a loan without credit check top ten credit repair software wells fargo credit score free quick loans no credit check uk improve your credit score by 100 points how do i get a credit report on a tenant american credit repair costs remove credit collections credit report asf experian international credit reports order transunion credit report mail free credit repair services allentown pa request credit report freeze average credit score for auto loans online lenders for bad credit service florida free credit report commercial song lyrics getting a small business loan with bad personal credit how long to fix credit with secured credit card does veracity does credit repair work best credit scores 2013 how do you how to check your credit scores for free can a landlord how to request a credit report from equifax how to check your credit score for free in canada who do i contact about an error on my credit report bad credit government help to buy scheme credit card best way to repair credit score us credit rating wiki fair credit report form books on starting how to start a credit repair business in texas free government business report credit scores line of credit loans for women in business does can credit repair help free credit report australia online shopping online money loans online loans without a bank account letter to dispute credit report information which country has the best credit rating xds credit bureau south africa contact details what is credit rating scores who can check your credit report cash advance moneytree payday loan requirements credit report vs free credit score report experian credit credit report check government who can request a consumer;s credit report credit check for landlords can you really get get your credit score free beacon second chance credit repair inc is a credit a liability how to get a credit report for free uk do any credit repair companies work equfax credit report how to check check get my credit report free online cash lenders only free credit report federal promo code for equifax 3 in 1 credit report example credit report credit repair help for low income in texas first american credit reporting agencies legitimate free annual credit report site how to put a security alert on your credit report credit report and credit score difference free credit report from transunion online file police report credit card theft need cash advance limit on walmart money card unsecured credit cards for bad credit in ny increase your credit score who can i talk to who do i contact about my credit report direct payday loan lenders online no credit check what is a good place to check your credit score where can you get your credit report free how do i get a free debt report if i have been denied credit unlimited 1 credit bureau reports national credit repair charlotte nc free equifax personal credit reports equifax canada credit checks free credit fix how to draw a rose step by step free business credit report transunion free credit report request form free credit report online government mandated suze orman credit score repair louisville louisville ky international personal credit check uk canadian totally free credit score information free yearly credit report experian credit repair jacksonville fl credit report website safe credit report data protection act uk capital one login credit card login instant approval fast cash advances online payday loan cash advance in sacramento federal free credit repair programs s&p credit ratings list free annual credit report from govt easy fast cash advance loans houses for rent in stone mountain ga how do i check how to find my business credit score free three credit scores report consumer credit reporting agency act how to find out which the following are factors in determining a company's credit rating free all credit report experian what is earned income credit from irs what is the experian credit score ranges company free credit check online without credit card how to report to credit bureaus tenants in credit suisse gold credit reference checklist credit report for landlords review check credit report free no credit card needed credit karma print credit report commonwealth streamline credit repair frisco texas first credit card to build credit free credit report legit sites how to contest credit report how can i check my credit report online for free free credit report repair kit cash advance locations hotels in san antonio tx best way to pull credit report where can you get your annual free credit report us best credit repair agency annual credit report from federal government bank of america secured credit card report to credit bureau free credit reports experian in credit card what is cvv what is a credit scorecard business credit secure american express illegal credit repair scams list bankruptcy dismissal and credit report legal credit ipod repair in los angeles how to get all credit reports free how to find out credit scores order 3 credit reports and scores first international bad credit loans payday loans credit computer repair miami kendall reputable free credit repair in houston professional professional credit repair software programs free contacting the credit reporting agencies home loans for poor credit scores in michigan can i get a car loan with bad credit free credit report for equifax online am best s&p credit rating methodology credit credit repair programs in houston triple a credit rating lost free credit report without asking for credit card information check someone;s credit history uk reputable places to get a loan with bad credit how do i add a note to my credit report free credit report transunion every months free annual trans union credit report debt computer repair for dummies how do you get a free how to get copy of credit report freecredit report phone number how to improve your credit rating in 6 months how do myspace get your free credit report yearly my free credit check report check your credit history canada free credit score login credit scoring model for sme colorado free yearly credit report free credit reports for business how do i run my credit report credit repair top companies in austin texas cash advances st louis payday loans locations credit repair do it yourself free wall bed plans free one time credit score check are online credit reports safe how to get your yearly credit score free anz credit card cash advance fees goodwill free sample credit repair letters free how to check my credit report online for free sample credit bureau report singapore how to raise your credit score what do i need to buy a house first usa bank inquiry on credit report improve credit score weight loss tips fast weight loss credit repair attorney toronto fast approval payday loan online best best credit repair franchise sample trimerge credit report how do you get a totally free credit report without membership how long does it take to rebuild your credit after filing chapter 7 credit credit report help line free instant no credit check australia request credit report equifax canada us credit report jobs in usa for foreigners how to get my credit history report credit repair company in florida phone number for customer service free annual credit report how do i remove inquiries on my credit report liquid 90 day advance payday loans poor credit rating best balance transfer credit cards credit repair immigration attorney boston ma how to repair bad raise credit score quickly who are the consumer report best credit repair company eft capital one canada credit card people with bad credit to buy a house direct loan credit check how do i request a credit report for free uk public company credit ratings free credit repair reports best credit repair list of fortune 500 companies 2012 cash advance no credit loans with no credit check no bank account free instant online credit score canada my credit score report american express how to credit check a person total credit management rajendra place rogers free canada credit check online how to repair bad credit rating australia my fico score southwest promo code 2014 credit check shell oil company netherlands how to increase credit increase credit score by 200 points improve credit rating getting financial aid after default how often are your how fast are credit reports updated unsecured credit card to rebuild credit ftc approved free credit report free report without giving card information credit score order your credit report 2 how to fix bad credit score fast find out your check credit score canada free how to report bad debt to credit bureaus best way to how to check credit score free online equifax free online credit report how long does a creditor have to report to the credit bureau government mandated free annual credit report score s p country credit ratings how to write a credit report dispute letter best free credit report ratings we fix credit rating totally free credit report score quick bad credit loans reviews how dog i report a delinquent account to a credit reporting agency credit rating check money saving expert forum canada my credit score free recourse for false credit reporting millennium credit repair oklahoma city ok anual credit report credit score moving companies three rivers mi commercial free credit check companies best credit cards for bad credit instant approval instant need a cash advance today how long are judgments on credit report free credit score report wiki credit report motivational activities for students equifax credit history report report bad creditors sample goodwill letters to creditors building business credit free negative information on credit reports stays how long to easy access credit reports unsecured credit best credit card to repair credit how do i get my credit score to 700 citi credit monitoring svc what does credit repair cost clean your credit report letter canada credit check free online what is your which credit score used for mortgage tax credit helpline hmrc free credit report per year law sample letters to creditors after death nationwide credit & collection inc westchester il
Home Articles Spotlight Blog Toy Fair 2012: My fair ladies, lambs, long lines, and laughter.
Toy Fair 2012: My fair ladies, lambs, long lines, and laughter.
Written by Stephanie Finnegan   
Monday, 20 February 2012 20:57
toyfaircutoutkids1Toy Fair is a unique and magical place. And what makes the February staple at New York City’s Javits Center even more unusual is the total absence of real children. Yes, a huge cut-out of curly-haired, smiling moppets greet you as you slog in from the frigidly cold Manhattan streets, but the real deal is nowhere to be seen. Kids are an exotic rare creature at Toy Fair—seeing one or two (the offspring of some determined dealers or manufacturers) is like spotting a unicorn or an original swirl-ponytail Barbie #1, Mint in Box, at a local garage sale.

Launched on Sunday, February 12, and wrapping up on Wednesday, February 15, it is four days ofwelcometotoyfair1 merchandise, marketing, mohair, and mayhem. Like my guide at the Mattel both told me, “Toy Fair is all about blood, sweat, and sequins.”

Walking into the convention hall, my eyes immediately landed upon the Ty booth, with a bunch of frolicking, round ball-like creatures with waving arms and legs. I wondered if street urchins—sort of like Oliver Twist and the Artful Dodger—were encased in the plush costumes, or if it was a cast of little people. The hopping and skipping mascots never broke character, so I have no way of knowing whether it peterdinklage1was indeed child members of SAG and Actors’ Equity, or maybe a future Emmy winner, like HBO’s fan favorite (and mine) Peter Dinklage hidden beneath the furry outfits.

After circumventing the brightest, seemingly happiest place on earth, I wended my way through the thousands of square feet of dolls, bears, games, action figures, video games, and a combination of all of the above.

That’s one of the interesting things that I observed at the fair this year: if a company could put a microchip into it, they did!

Animals and animatronics are a great fit. It’s been tried before (quite successfully with Teddy Ruxpin) and now itaudobonsingingwildrepublic1 is being promoted everywhere. Wild Republic has a flock of birds that are licensed with the Audubon Society, and come with hangtags and information about the bird’s particular species, habitat, migration patterns, and sightings. Besides looking really colorful and real, the birds sing—and their songs are the authentic birdcalls of their breed. (Forgive me, ornithologists, if it’s a no-no to call a bird a “breed.”)  The birds are really sweet and soft to the touch. Perfect for the backyard birdwatcher, as well as for the folks who have binoculars and guide books in their trunks.

lenalambnurseryrhyme1Another sensational blending of science and softness was the Gund talking critter “Lena Lamb.” Reading nursery rhymes and making eye contact, “Lena” is the bedtime confidante I wish I had had when I was a tot. Her voice was soothing and her demeanor was calming. After being engulfed by throngs of people wielding briefcases and cell phones, spending an interlude with “Lena” was quite a welcome relief. She really was as gentle as a lamb.

Mattel, of course, has its all-seeing and all-knowing eyes on what’s fabulous and fierce. One of its barbiephotodoll1electronically conscious offerings this year is a Barbie that has a digital camera (stills only, no videos) embedded in her torso. When Barbie’s “handler” snaps a picture, the image can become the decoration on Barbie’s T-shirt. Photos can be utilized on the doll’s garb or downloaded for creative playing around on both PCs and Mac’s. It is a pretty innovative way to have girls become more techno savvy—an accomplishment that will serve them well in the brave new world of cyber content and clouding and Internet alter-realities.

bravemattel1And speaking of “brave new worlds,” Mattel is keeping its connection to Disney princesses alive and well. However, this time around, its heroine du jour is the lead character from Pixar’s “Brave.”

The Mattel people were mum about the secret that drives the film, but they shared that it is very pro-feminist and portrayed young girls in an independent, heroic stripe. It also celebrates the bonds that can be forged between a daughter and a mom. That is certainly a nice change of pace for a Disney project, which has given us the complicated, strained relationships between Snow White and her evil stepmom, Cinderella and hers, Rapunzel and hers, and the list goes on. At last, a movie that shows how a mother and daughter’s love can be moving and memorable.

Heroism for a girl doll is a commendable step forward. Though strong, silent types—like the Hulk, built from thousands of Legos atlegohulk1 Javits—are still par for the course, perhaps Princess Merida will usher in the strong, chatty type. Blending strength with socially conversant abilities, this cartoon character could become the poster girl for texting tweens and preteens everywhere.

alexanderdorothy1Another movie that is getting a lot of buzz for the 2012 toy aisles is “Dorothy of Oz.” Alexander has dolls that key into this upcoming flick, which stars the voice of Lea Michele as Dorothy, and Adora has baby/toddler versions of the beloved 1939 characters. There were a lot of Oz oddities sprinkled around the Javits booths and cubicles, and it underscored the whole feeling of Emerald City that pumps beneath the Big Apple enclave.

Just like Dorothy encountered lions, tigers, and bears (oh, my) on her journey, at this Westkittymascot1 adorawizofoz1Side hall there are giant kitty cats, felt monsters, and Power Rangers parading at every twist and turn.

One of the memorable sights I beheld at Toy Fair was microwavable line of critters. We’ve all heard about the unspeakable urban myth about the person who plunked her pooch into the microwave, turned it on, and left the room, causing an awful explosion of canine confetti, but this array of microwave-ready bears, dogs, sheep, and more are meant to release warm, toasty, aromatic smells. Featuring pillows, slippers, throws, and other grown-up security boosters, these characters from Aroma Home were actually adorable, and then had the extra benefit of being nurturing too.microwaveablepets1

I must admit after my ninth hour of walking the miles of aisles, my “dogs” were barking and I would have loved to grab a pair of the funky soothing hedgehog slippers. Itricyclesforbigkids1 vowed to bring slippers to Toy Fair next year, and to walk the floor in absolute comfort and ease. Who would possibly notice me decked out in bedroom slippers when you have full-grown men and women circling by on tricycles?! Yep, tricycles for grown-ups were being pedaled and peddled! These throwbacks to childhood are coming to the marketplace in the spring of 2012.

And that is very fitting: Toy Fair is a tribute to what we fondly remember from our own childhoods, and what we think our children and/or grandchildren want in theirs. It is a big, giant gamble on what will hold an allure for the young and the young-at-heart.

Meandering through the multi-storied setup, which feels like a maze at times, I have to confess that at times I was zombie-fied, trulywalkingdeadcollection1 disporting myself like a runaway (or at least a limping away) member of “The Walking Dead.” With senses on auroraraggedyannandy1overload from echoing sirens, flashing lights, literal bells and whistles, it was a respite when I would pass by a traditional, classic offering. Amid the electronic chatter and video vixens, “Raggedy Ann & Andy” were front and center in Aurora’s display booth. Quite deliberately, their design team set it up to approximate the look of a bygone neighborhood doll/curio shop. The Raggedy dolls were there in several sizes, and were getting a lot of attention. They were hits with many of the retailers who shop the convention hall for this year’s orders.

folkmanisslothpuppet1Also, very popular, over at Folkmanis, are the puppets that are powered by one’s own hands, fingers, and imagination. The very clever and indefatigable marketing team at Folkmanis have developed a relationship with TV’s Craig Ferguson, host of a popular CBS late-night chat show. Ferguson utilizes some of their puppets in lavish production numbers—some are very family friendly, and other of his showcases are sort of salty and fitting for the over-age-18 crowd. Knowing that Ferguson is good friends with Kristin Bell, the Folkmanis folks have sent over a bunch of their new sloth puppets to him to share with Ms. Bell. (For anyone who is not privy to this bit of viral video, Bell had a meltdown caught on tape when she realized she was getting a visit with a sloth as a birthday gift.) Folkmanis is hoping that Ferguson tries to punk his very frequent guest with a puppet version. Here’s hoping that does happen, and goes viral as well.

Hobbling past Robert Tonner’s exhibit—which had a large shoe icon as part of his child-centric “City Girls” line—I was reminded of howcitygirlstonner1 my toes were beyond being pinched. I stopped and chatted with Tonner and asked if the girls were versions of the “Sex and the City” characters. After all, he had a redhead, a blonde, a brunette! Tonner was quick to say, “No! There is no sex in this city. This is for kids. It is priced for children, and will attract some of the mature collectors who are watching their wallet.” One of his partners on this new launch said, “Robert, we do have all of the girls here—except for Samantha.”

Tonner laughed aloud. “And let’s keep it that way. Samantha is not going to be in OUR city.”

peteryarrowperforms1Sharing a chuckle with a doll artist that I have known for—ouch, this hurts—more than 15 years was a warm moment at the fair. But nothing can top the moment at the Madame Alexander Doll booth when Peter Yarrow, of Peter, Paul and Mary, arrived with guitar in hand.

Yarrow spoke about the origin of “Puff the Magic Dragon,” which is celebrating its 50th year in 2012. He joked with the crowd about how little Jackie Paper was Jewish and threw in a slew of Yiddish words to prove his point. And then he picked up his guitar and began to strum the song. As he crooned the familiar lyrics, the crowd gathered around him began to sing along. The retailers, the wholesalers, the manufacturers, the artists, the security guards, and this reporter were all transported back to our own innocent days of dreaming and playing, frolicking in the autumn mist in a land called Honah Lee. And isn’t that what Toy Fair is all about?

Trackback(0)

TrackBack URI for this entry

Comments (4)

Subscribe to this comment's feed
...
AWESOME! Great article, excellent writing. Makes me want to go. Just to see and play and maybe even someday to show and share. Wow! Sounds like the kind of overload I personally as a doll maker and grown up little girl who will forever still play with dolls would love! I want to ride one of those trikes and sing with Peter Yarrow.
Bo Bergemann , March 06, 2012 | url
...
Great article. I would love to attend one of these events. I created Cozy Doll DIsplay Baskets (patent pending) and I think all doll collectors would love them. cozydolldisplaybaskets.com
Sandee/Decorative Treasures , February 24, 2012 | url
...
Toy Fair sounds like an insane experience. For me, it would be like a kid let loose in a candystore! Do you get a lot of goodies there? Or is it all business? Too bad they don't have a day for the public to see sneak looks at what's new.
Charlene , February 22, 2012
...
I missed Toy Fair this year but you caught the mood so well, I feel like I did go. Very nice write up, Stephanie.
lauren , February 22, 2012

Write comment

smaller | bigger

busy