Now for some Friday fun. I wish I had seen this before Valentine’s Day. But Easter could do just as nicely.
Need a plush toy to give to that special someone? Special as in “twelve donuts short a pack of dozen” special. Or want a furry & squishy toy for your cubicle, the kind that will get your cubemates to inch their chairs away from you or request transfers?
Why not get a Roadkill Toy!
What’s a Roadkill Toy? It’s a plush stuffed animal resembling, um, roadkill – complete with popped eyeballs, extruded guts, and tire marks. How adorable!
The founders of Roadkill Toys describe themselves as
avant-garde toy designers “Toy Terrorists”.
We take standard toys and we mess with them. We like toys that don’t take themselves too seriously. Toys with a bit of humour. Toys with a twist.
The founding team is made up of three buddies from a school in the UK (the place where they funny spellings for words, like “colour” and “humour”): Adam Arber, Mike Velcro, and Charlie Bradshaw.
So far, they have one toy that’s ready for sale: Twitch the Raccoon for £25.00. It’s not just a furry plush toy that you can place next to your ultra-soft Gund bear either. They’ve taken pains to create a “realistic squidgy effect”. Squash-plush, they call it. The outside is made of a special material to give it the “tactile quality of mangy fur” and the guts (or Gut-plush) are made of “stretchy thin material that squidges and bulges under your fingers”. Similar to a Japanese Barbapapa plush toy, apparently.
This kind of attention to quality is admirable. Sick, but admirable. Their next product will be Grind the Rabbit, which they’re aiming to have released for Easter.
The toy business is tough. It’s controlled by trends, marketing, holidays, and the fickle demands of hyperactive kids. Well, except maybe for that last part. Traditionally, toy designers have aimed at children. Now, there’s an increasing number aiming at adults too. Roadkill Toys is one. Uglydolls is another, with, well, ugly dolls. ThinkGeek carries a bunch as well (for the more techie-minded adults). And Happy Worker’s action figures are targeted toward working professionals.
It’s a market that’s clearly growing. And lots of toy designers are clawing for a piece of these consumers. Which makes me wonder: what will this market be called? Adult toys, as opposed to children’s toys? Happy Worker’s founder Kris Schantz gave Entrepreneur Magazine this piece of advice on creating toys for adults: “Don’t call your products ‘adult toys’. We made that mistake the first week. Now we say we make ‘toys for big kids.'” Oh. Ha, oops.
So Easter is coming up! That special someone is really going to appreciate the thought and attention you’ve given toward selecting a very special, quality toy! Whether it be a semi-realistic Squash-plush Twitch the Raccoon, which sold fast back around December, Grind the Rabbit (whenever it will be available), or an Uglydoll or Happy Worker, I’m sure that special someone will enjoy your gift of an adult toy. Er, I mean, toy for big kid.