TIA Names 2017 Toy Trends

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The Toy Industry Association (TIA) named collectibles, active toys, robotics, and more as top toy trends of 2017 at the 114th North American International Toy Fair. The session, held on Feb. 19, 2017, was moderated by Ken Seiter, TIA VP of marketing communications with commentary provided by Adrienne Appell, Isabel Carrión-López and Kristin Morency Goldman.

A summary of the top six trends include: [Read more...]

Ask A Pro Returns to Toy Fair

AskAProTFNYPeru Meridian Studios returns to the North American International Toy Fair in New York City this year to host, “Industrious Information Center—Ask A Pro,” booth at Hall 1C. Ask A Pro is an informational space for companies and individuals to find out new information about a variety of areas of development and business, featuring topics for new entrepreneurs and seasoned toy industry veterans alike.  [Read more...]

Nickelodeon’s Shimmer and Shine Preschool Series Debuts First-Ever Product Line

shimmer and shineThe product portfolio for Nickelodeon‘s animated series Shimmer and Shine will launch this summer. The company has teamed up with several partners to recreate the Shimmer and Shine world across many different categories, including toy, dress up, games, bedding, party goods, costumes, and more. [Read more...]

Midtown Comics Partners with Play Fair as Event’s Official Show Store

PlayFair2016logoPlay Fair is partnering with Midtown Comics to serve as the event’s Official Show Store and offer exhibitors a turnkey outlet to sell products. The Official Play Fair Show Store will be built as a 20-foot by 20-foot island booth close by the event entrance. It will be one of the first booths all attendees see and Midtown’s professional team will design, build, and staff the space. [Read more...]

WIT Adds Social Influencer Award Category

WIT_combomarkhor11-300x104Women in Toys, Licensing, & Entertainment (WIT) has added a “Social Influencer” award to the category line-up for its 2016 WIT Wonder Woman Awards.

WIT created the Social Influencer category to honor women in social media who have contributed innovative content, resulting in positive consumer influence and engagement. This includes audience reach, expertise and credibility, and the strength of the relationship with their fans and followers. Journalists, blogger, bloggers, industry analysts, celebrities, and brand advocates can be nominated for the award.  [Read more...]

COMMENTARY: Action Figures Moving Forward by Looking to the Past

Breaking Bad ReAction Jesse as Cook action figure, from Funko

Breaking Bad ReAction Jesse as Cook action figure, from Funko

Here at The Toy Book, we constantly find ourselves staring at the unfolding future of toys. In the case of action figures, the future always seems to be on bigger, sleeker, and more—whether that pertains to more points of articulation, more swappable accessories, more high-tech bells and whistles, etc.

[Read more...]

COMMENTARY: These Toy Fair Exhibitors Have Science Education Down to a Science

Kids First Level 1: Amusement Park Engineer, from Thames and Kosmos

Science kits are typically geared toward kids ages 8 and up. There have been plenty of logical reasons for this—for one thing, kids need to be able to read the manual to do the experiments; and for another, science experiments can be complex, requiring kids to have longer attention spans and higher critical thinking skills. However, at this year’s North American International Toy Fair in NYC, many companies have found ways to introduce science to a younger audience.
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COMMENTARY: These Outdoor Toys Put a New Spin on Keeping Kids Active

Backyard Sports Mega Morph Super Hoop, from Day 6

Fresh air, sunlight, and exercise are all wonderful things. Unfortunately, many kids just aren’t getting enough of them. At the recent North American International Toy Fair, I encountered numerous toy makers who are trying to address this problem by developing new outdoor toys that encourage kids to get off the couch for some outdoor physical activity. Many feature novel tweaks to familiar play patterns, and the sheer breadth of items on-hand was impressive. Most surprisingly, not all of them try to pry kids away from their mobile devices or video screens.
[Read more...]

COMMENTARY: Toy Fair 2015 Debuts Plush for Both Kids and Adults

Moulin Roty Cat Plush, from Magicforest

Plush is not just about stuffed teddies anymore. At North American International Toy Fair, there were dozens of companies with plush on display—ranging from traditional bears, to robotic plush, to artistic plush. Creative plush designs are especially cool because they appeal to both kids and adults. The right plush piece can even add a unique design element to a room, and many of these types of plush characters are great gift ideas for expectant parents who are waiting to find out their little one’s gender, since they have a gender-neutral heirloom quality to them that makes them extra special.

[Read more...]

COMMENTARY: Bathtime Toys Clean Up at Toy Fair 2015

Playmates.BathTubVehiclesThis year, bathtime and playtime will become one and the same. Kids will no longer take pride in going days without bathing or purposely “forgetting” to wash behind their ears. In fact, judging from all of the amazing bath toys seen at the North American International Toy Fair, I’m betting that kids everywhere will be cleaner than ever and the dreaded bathtime battle between kids and parents will be a thing of the past. So, check out these babies and get ready for them to hit store shelves throughout the year! (Thought you should know, they’re listed in no particular order.) [Read more...]