Category Archives: Plush Toys

Stuffed Stuff

One thing that never seems to go out of style are stuffed animals. Rag dolls representing people and animals date back to Roman times, but the modern version of a stuffed animal did not come around until 1880, when Steiff, a German toy company, reinvented this category of toys. The realistic looking animals with plush fur-like fabric were an instant hit.

The Ideal Novelty and Toy Company copied this success in the United States and, in 1902, their success exploded with the creation of the Teddy Bear, inspired by a story of President Theodore Roosevelt sparing the life of a defenseless black bear while on a hunting trip.

Stuffed toys have been good to us and we are always on the lookout for realistic looking, cute and cuddly animals. And some of our best sellers tend to be the more unusual animals – armadillos, bats, marmots, possums, skunks, squirrels, etc. It seems that everyone already has a bear, a moose and a wolf and while they are not poor sellers, they are easily trounced by the more esoteric members of the animal kingdom.

At the Rocky Mountain Gift Show we met with our suppliers from Stuffed Animal House, Northern Gifts, Fiesta Toy and Wild Republic to talk about product lines and upcoming releases. There is always churn in manufacturer offerings and we pick up the more interesting animals to help them find new homes.

Looking to find an animal companion with low maintenance needs? Come look at our collection!

Stuffed Animal House

Stuffed Animal House offers a wide variety of North American wildlife.

Northern Gifts

Northern Gifts is the king of novelty Canned Critters.

Coming from Northern Gifts

Northern Gifts will be adding new faces to their Canned Critters line in the next few months.

 

Happy Groundhog Day!

It’s tradition after all these years that once our Colorado prognosticator, Stormy Marmot, gives his Groundhog Day weather statement, we share it with our friends.

Groundhog Day 2016

Stormy Marmot predicts an early spring!

Once again Stormy is predicting an early spring.  We really have no objections to this as being snowed in does impact the retail world.

You can see Stormy’s full prediction at is site, Marmot Adventures.

Happy Groundhog Day!

And don’t forget, if you want to take on the weathermen, all you really need is your own marmot or groundhog!  We’re here to help you get started.

Marmot Predicts an Early Spring

After we publicized Stormy Marmot’s Groundhog Day prediction in 2014, Stormy kept us on his distribution list for weather predictions.

Stormy Marmot

Stormy Marmot predicts an early spring. Picture courtesy of Marmot Adventures.

While last year’s prediction was for a long winter, for 2015 Stormy is predicting an early spring. As retailers who don’t carry winter clothing, we are perfectly happy to hear that winter will see an early end. More sunshine and more warmth is good for pretty much everyone except the winter Olympics.

Looking at the news feeds, it looks like the groundhogs across the country are fairly evenly split when it comes to how much winter is left. Weathermen tell us that technically, because Groundhog Day, is a cross-quarter day, there is unconditionally six weeks of astronomical winter left for the northern hemisphere, but this is independent of warm and cold phases in the climate.

Climatologists are predicting 2015 to be an El Niño year, meaning warming of the ocean waters, resulting in warmer and dryer weather for the year.

Historical statistics show that groundhogs are about 40% accurate in their predictions. Weathermen make the right call about 75% of the time. This of course reminds us that as retailers we are deeply focused on economic forecasts and traditionally the economists are only right when using a rear-view mirror.

We would be amiss not to mention that you can order a marmot or a groundhog from us and start your own weather prediction service.

Thank you for your prediction, Stormy! We’re hoping that good weather flows your way!