July 2014 | Vol. XIII - No. 7
Top-10 Most-Wanted Plush and Puppets
With additional reporting by Chris Lundy and Brenda Ruggiero
When TDmonthly Magazine interviewed retailers about their best-selling plush and puppets in a June 2014 survey, we learned that high-quality brands like Folkmanis, Douglas and Jellycat remain favorites among specialty toy store owners and their customers.
Learn more about the top-10 best-selling plush and puppet toys below.
*No manufacturer paid to be included in the Top-10 list below. All products listed were designated by editorial staff without regard to the company's relationship with TOYDIRECTORY.com/TDmonthly Magazine.
Entertain your friends and LOL with the Grunting Pig puppet. Delightful silky soft plush of pale pink with grey patches and a curly tail come to life with a workable snout, mouth and front trotters. Squeeze his pot belly to make him grunt and witness the hilarity that ensues! This little piggy wants to come home with you. 14” long
Awards: 2014 TDmonthly Top Toy Debut Award
— In a June 2014 survey, four out of 10 retailers told TDmonthly that Folkmanis was their best-selling puppet brand.
ToyDirectory Product ID#: 36457 (added 1/9/2014)
Floppy and relaxed, Jellycat's Loppie Elephant is covered in soft, shaggy fabric. Wide ears, curving trunk and beady eyes, along with long limbs and big feet, characterize this 13” gentle giant.
— “Jellycat is our best line,” said Mary Schedjick, owner of Educare Learning Center in Oshkosh, Wis., during a May 2009 survey of top-selling plush.
— Two of 42 retailers listed Jellycat as their best-selling line of plush in spring 2009.
— In a June 2014 survey, three out of 10 retailers told TDmonthly that Jellycat made their best-selling plush toys.
ToyDirectory Product ID#: 24050 (added 6/9/2009)
This fox is 15 inches tall and is soft and squishy. Squishables comply with U.S. ASTM F963 safety standards. They're made out of all new materials (100% polyester fiber). Squishables can be spot-cleaned. Also available in a miniature size.
Awards: TDmonthly Top Toy Award, June 2011
— Why it won: These extra soft and plush animal/pillows include a variety of characters we don't usually see in children's toys, such as narwhals. They come in several sizes, too, which make them fun for decorating a kid's or tween's room. With a range of characters from the Google Android to a T Rex, they'll appeal to boys, too.
— "Squishables are selling really well. It's a big ball pillow in the shape of animals. We sold 20 last month," Joe Berardoni, owner of Pun's Toys in Bryn Mawr, Pa., told TDmonthly in late Spring 2011.
— In a May 2012 survey, Elmer Carranza, manager of Doodlehopper 4 Kids in Springfield, Va., told TDmonthly that they sell six Squishables each month, making them the best seller in the plush category.
ToyDirectory Product ID#: 32352 (added 5/27/2011)
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Goodness, are Owls scary. Fearsome terrors of the night, they strike with vicious precision at all things squeaky and crunchy in a wave of silent death...I'm not convincing anyone, am I? All right, fact is, yes, Owls are extremely efficient hunters, but who cares when they're so gosh darn cute. Who wouldn't gladly sacrifice the occasional mouse for those huge eyes, those fluffy feathers, that permanently surprised expression that asks, "Who, me? What mouse? It was like that when I got here. Incidentally, pass the ketchup." 15 squishy inches of innocent bird, polyester fiber, ages 3 and up. Launch date: 2011.
— In a June 2014 survey, three out of 10 retailers told TDmonthly that Squishables were their best-selling plush toys.
ToyDirectory Product ID#: 34504 (added 6/25/2012)
Googly eyes is not his only quality, but makes it more exciting for this out of this world creature. Guzly is super silly for a friendly monster, bright colors and an extra-long tongue makes kids smile just by looking at him. Turn playtime into Guzly time with the Googalops Guzly hand puppet.
— In a June 2014 survey, Joel Dinkins from Doodlehopper 4 Kids in Falls Church, Va., told TDmonthly that Manhattan Toy made their store's best-selling puppets.
— In a June 2015 survey, Ava Allen, owner of Be Beep A Toy Shop in Columbia, S.C., told TDmonthly in a June 2015 survey that Manhattan Toy was their best-selling plush/puppet brand.
ToyDirectory Product ID#: 34839 (added 8/9/2012)
This huggably soft 13" dolly is the perfect take-everywhere companion for baby! With embroidered brown eyes, the sweetest face and just a tuft of brunette hair, My First Dolly is extra lightweight? making her easy to take everywhere!
— Helen Ulrich, sales clerk at Hardware Toys in Paoli, Pa., told TDmonthly in a June 2014 survey that My First Doll from Gund is one of their store's best-selling plush items.
ToyDirectory Product ID#: 36848 (added 6/29/2014)
This Beanie plush line from Ty features 8” characters and includes such favorites as a penguin, a panda, a koala, a monkey, a frog, and a Husky dog.
— As of 05/13/2011 this product had 4.5 out of 5 stars from 8 reviews on Amazon.com. Cons: According to the user, the smile was crooked and the toy was taller and thinner than depicted, rendering it less adorable.
— Beanie Boos were popular sellers at My Club Tabby in Lake Charles, La., in March 2010, Owner Natalie Comeaux told TDmonthly.
— In a May 2012 survey, two out of 11 retailers said that TY Beanie Boos were their best sellers in the Plush and Puppets category. John Taylor, owner of O.P. Taylor's in Brevard, N.C., told TDmonthly that they sell 48 TY Beanie Boos each month.
ToyDirectory Product ID#: 27725 (added 3/25/2010)
This lush and beautifully soft husky is almost life size...the details are amazing and the face is exquisite. The fur is silky smooth and soft as can be.
— Phil Wrzesinski, owner of Toy House and Baby Too in Jackson, Mich., told TDmonthly in a June 2014 survey that Douglas Plush does well in their store, especially the dogs.
ToyDirectory Product ID#: 36723 (added 4/29/2014)
This set of realistic birds, licensed by the National Audubon Society, features real bird calls provided by the Cornell Lab of Ornithology. Each bird is carefully researched, and comes with an educational hang tag that includes information about its appearance, eating habits, habitat maps and sounds. This series includes a Mallard Duckling, Baby Chick, Baby Emperor Penguin, Baby Piping Plover, Baby Ostrich and Baby California Sea Gull.
Awards: Dr. Toy Best Green Toy Award 2010, Dr. Toy 100 Best Children's Products - 2010
— Shana Hack, owner of Moon Rabbit Toys in Santa Fe, N.M., told TDmonthly in a June 2014 survey that Wild Republic plush is a best-seller in their store.
ToyDirectory Product ID#: 30026 (added 8/13/2010)
Bring Elmo to life yourself, Cuddly soft puppet plush, 11" tall, Great for aspiring puppeteers.
— In a May 2014 survey Andrea from Hardware Center Toys in Paoli, Pa., told TDmonthly that Elmo Puppets are their store's best-selling licensed toy.
— Robert Klenberg, co-owner of Richard's Variety Store in Atlanta, Ga., told TDmonthly that Sesame Street plush from Gund is their store's best-selling plush.
ToyDirectory Product ID#: 36786 (added 5/19/2014)
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Writer's Bio: Justina Huddleston graduated Magna Cum Laude from Emerson College with a BA in Writing, Literature, and Publishing in 2009. After graduating she was the on-site director of the Boston Children's Museum gift store for a year, selling educational, developmental, and creative activity toys that tied in with the museum's exhibits. Justina also interned at children's book publisher Candlewick Press before moving from Boston to Los Angeles, where she is now Editorial Director of TDmonthly Magazine. Read more articles by this author
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