Retailers Recommend Fabulous Products
Retailers Recommend Fabulous ProductsNovember/December 2011
by Anya Harris
Alan Cason of abraKIDabra Toys, an online retailer based in Athens, Georgia
"The EZ-Fort line (1) from Toobeez has done really well for me. The kits contain rods and connecting pieces that kids use to build a structure and turn it into a tent. They're pretty cool. They make a regular one, a fairytale one and a camouflage one.
"I've also done consistently well with the Moonjar Moneybox (2). It's a bank divided into compartments for spend, share and save. It's a good learning tool.
"The football player sets (3) from Kaskey Kids resemble little classic Army men. They do generic ones like red versus blue, but they also do licensed collegiate teams including the Texas Longhorns and the Georgia Bulldogs. They come with a mat that looks like a football field, and all of it can be stored neatly in the plastic bin it comes in.
"I sell a lot of Angry Birds products (4) from Commonwealth Toys. A lot of ASTRA stores might not go for that, but I am on Amazon and attract a lot of people who might not be the typical ASTRA-store customer. Angry Birds plush has been hot for the past few months. Giant plush that retails for around $100 was recently introduced, and I have been surprised by it. I sold four of the giant eagle in one day, which is phenomenal.
"I started carrying Wall Coaster marble runs (5) from Active Products after seeing them at ASTRA's Marketplace. There are a couple of different sets. They did okay for me when I got them in June, but they've really taken off in the last few weeks.
"The little Shrinky Dinks sets (6) from BSW Toy are themed sets that retail for about $6 a pack. There's something for both boys and girls, although the dinosaur set has probably been the number-one seller. They've been hot all year.
"The Moon Sand (7) from WABA Fun is popular. It surprises me a little that it sells as well as it does, but that may be because not a lot of stores still have it. There are about six different colors. It was really hot about five years ago, but maybe it's been moved to the back burner for a lot of retailers. I am seeing a resurgence."
Katy McCarthy-Hodock of Unique Toy Shop in Canandaigua, New York
"All the Poppers (8) from Hog Wild are doing well: the Dino, Pig, Moose, Cow and more.You put a foam ball in their mouths, squeeze their stomachs and the ball pops out. Both kids and adults think they're fun.
"The new Tobbles stacking toy (9) from Fat Brain is good for kids age 1 and up. The six pieces are weighted at one end and they're rounded, which makes them a little different.
"The Doodletrack (10) from Daydream Toy has been out for a few years now. Kids draw a path with a marker and the car follows it. It's mostly boys, ages 5 to 10 who get into it, but we have a demo in the store that the girls play with, too.
" Fastrack (11) from Blue Orange Games is fast paced and a lot of fun. It's not particularly intellectual but my customers really like it.
"In just the past few months we brought in the Mini vehicles (12) from Hape. The bodies are made of bamboo and the tops are brightly colored plastic. They're doing very well for us. They are attractive and priced well.
"The Pewi bike (13) from yBike for kids ages 9 months and up is popular here. It is so cool! The youngest kids can use it as a walking aid and for slightly older kids, it's a ride on or balance bike. It's very different, and I think people like that."