Sylvanians for Christmas 2018 at Silly Billy’s Toy Shop
The latest Sylvanians have arrived here at Silly Billy’s with lots of new Families and Accessories available to buy from us in Hebden Bridge. Sylvanian Families are very popular and we have written about them before in our wonderful Toy Blog. Here is an excerpt taken from a Telegraph Article about the Sylvanians
It was decided that the setting would be woodland (‘sylvan’ meaning of woods or forests), Maeda says, because city-dwelling Japanese yearn for the countryside of their ancestors. It would all be set in the past because ‘the old days are always beautiful’. The houses and props would be Westernised because that made the toys seem more exotic – in the 1980s travelling abroad was only a dream for most Japanese. Maeda tells me that the actual setting, like the period in time (a little bit 1950s, possibly earlier), is deliberately non-specific. ‘It is indefinite – somewhere in this world, but no one knows where or when it is.’
Epoch, which still owns and controls the product, decreed that Sylvanian Families should have two unalterable features: every character and product would be rendered in great detail and would look expensive – ‘the quality had to be more than toys,’ Maeda says – and the Sylvanian world would be a utopia. So Sylvania has a policeman – but no crime. A hospital – but no one gets ill. A post office – but it is never in danger of being closed down.
It was a hit from the start in Japan. The Elysian atmosphere and attention to detail attracted an Englishman touring the Tokyo Toy Fair in 1986. Peter Brown was the managing director of the UK arm of the Japanese toy firm Tomy. ‘I happened to see the little faces of a grey rabbit and a brown bear in what looked like a dolls’ house with a huge amount of detail. I’d never seen anything like it. I just knew it would appeal to young girls,’ he says.
From the beginning the input of Brown and his English colleagues at Tomy went far beyond being the Sylvanian Families UK distributor. They began to come up with their own ideas for figures and accessories, a pattern that continues. Brown is fervent about the range and its emphasis on family: ‘With mothers and fathers and sons and daughters and grandparents, it shows the importance of relationships. It’s what everyone imagines families used to be like. Ought to be like.’
Launched in Britain in 1987 (the same year as a short-lived American television show based on the toys), Sylvanian Families won the Toy Retailers Association’s Toy of the Year Award in each of its first three years – still a record. By the late 1990s, however, the toys were losing ground, in part suffering the natural backlash that hits any successful toy, but also, industry insiders say, because Tomy lost its passion for the brand and cut down on product development and marketing.
By this time Brown had left Tomy, and in 1999 had started a new British company, Flair. Short of money to launch new brands, Flair rapidly built up a reputation for taking on established toys considered past their prime. Sylvanian Families was soon returned to Brown’s care. ‘We had to breathe new life into it,’ Brown says. Development and marketing was stepped up with fervour. Some of the original families and accessories that had been allowed to disappear from the shelves were brought back; new products were introduced. Retail turnover since 1999, when Flair took over as Epoch’s Sylvanian UK arm, has grown from £500,000 to £40 million.
Sylvanian Families has become a toy range loved not only by collectors but by retailers large and small. John Lewis in Oxford Street has a permanent display (it has a bespoke Sylvanian department store complete with miniature John Lewis carrier bags). ‘It’s one of our key lines, a real core brand,’ Rachael Larkman, one of the store’s toy buyers, says. At Langleys, a small independent toy shop in Norwich, the owner John Fielding is enthusiastic. ‘It is enormously important to us,’ he says. ‘We always have a large area in a prime location dedicated to it, and it is the only toy range for which we offer our own loyalty card.
In our latest massive Sylvanian delivery here at Silly Billy’s Toy Shop we have the following lines:
Chocolate Rabbit Family
Maple Cat Family NEW 2018
Marshmallow Mouse Family NEW 2018
White Mouse Family
Chiffon Dog Family
Maple Cat Baby NEW 2018
Marshmallow Mouse Baby NEW 2018
Maple Cat Twins NEW 2018
Chocolate Rabiit Twins
Walnut Squirrel Twins
Yellow Labrador Twins
Marshmallow Mouse Triplets NEW 2018
Classic Furniture Set (for Cosy Cottage Starter Home)
At the start of manufacturing, on March 20, 1985, Sylvanian Families were developed and also launched in Japan, which makes use of the idea of doll houses and also human like animal characters. The very first launches of the doll houses as well as various other play sets were constructed from porcelain with the furnishings being manufactured from timber. Nevertheless, later launches changed the products to plastic as well as steel in the manufacturing. The toys were later on launched in The United States and Canada during the same year (1985), yet with various product packaging as well as small distinctive changes to the Sylvanian personalities themselves. The toy line was initially entitled Pleasant Friends of the Forest
In October 1987, the collection generated a computer animated series created by DIC Animation City and also TMS Entertainment, which lasted for 13 episodes. The series was prominent in the UK as well as in Spain. The name of the TV collection based upon Sylvanian Families was adjusted in various nations. As an example, in Spain it was called “La aldea el arce”. See video below:
It was additionally screened in the very early 1990’s in the United States on Nick Jr.
Later on that exact same year, the success in these markets brought about growth all the way into Western Europe, starting with the UK subsidiary of Tomy obtaining unique legal rights for the brand name in the UK. Tomy presented Sylvanian Families into the UK market in 1987, and the Sylvanians rapidly came to be a bestseller.
By 1988, Sylvanian Family members had actually ended up being a significant success around the globe, winning the British Organization of Toy Retailers honour for “Toy of the Year” 3 years back to back, in 1987, 1988 and also 1989.
In 1993, Tomy, that had actually been dispersing the toys worldwide, lost the legal rights to the name “Sylvanian Families” in Canada as well as within the UNITED STATES.
Tomy then re-established the line under the brand-new name of Calico Critters of Cloverleaf Corners.
The Calico Critters line is presently retailed in the United States as well as Canada by International Playthings, LLC
Decline and Reinvention
By the late 1990’s, Sylvanian Families had actually been discontinued n the UK, in 1999, they were re-established by Flair. Ultimately, Sylvanian family members have actually been reestablished in Australia and also are ending up being a lot more extensively offered there. Tomy quit offering Calico Critters, and a brand-new business, International Playthings, got the line.
In 1999, the toyline commemorated its 15th anniversary in Japan, with the opening of the themed dining establishment Sylvanian Woodland Kitchen area (シルバニア森のキッチン Shirubania mori no kitchin), which was run and also handled by Epoch. The dining establishment not just offer food, additionally it sold goods and toys based upon the franchise business. The dining establishment sadly closed in February 2011.
In 2004, the franchise business commemorated its 20th anniversary in Japan with the launch of the Walnut Squirrel Family. In July 2004, EPOCH revealed a brand-new tourist attraction in Grinpa, an amusement park taken care of by Fuji Kyuko. The tourist attraction, initially called Sylvanian Village (シルバニアビレッジ Shirubania Birejji) prior to it was relabelled to Sylvanian Gardens (シルバニアガーデン Shirubania Gāden), started its building with Date’s guidance. In 2005, the franchise business held its initial online occasion labelled Sylvanian Families Musical~The Large Commotion Eve Party (シルバニアファミリーミュージカル ～ パーティーイブは大さわぎ ！ Shirubania famirī myūjikaru ~ pātīibu wa dai sawagi!) which was held at the Gekidan Kogumaza Theater. It was later on launched on DVD in 2006.
In 2006, the personalities in the Sylvanian Toy line were opted to be the mascots for the National Federation of Workers and Consumers Insurance Cooperativess national mutual aid. By the end of the year, the toys sold a total of 78 million units.
In 2007, EPOCH coordinated with Itochu, Nippon Columbia and also Shogakukan to create a 3D CGI Original Video clip Computer animation collection based upon the toy line generated by Kōji Kawaguchi as well as Yumiko Muriai and guided by Akira Takamura.
All 3 episodes were launched on June 20, 2007. Inning accordance with EPOCH, extra episodes were prepared, however these episodes were never ever produced for unidentified factors.
In the UK, Flair commemorated the franchise business’s 20th anniversary with a picked variety of brand-new products. The most effective of which was an Otter boat, and a reintroduced of the Dalmatian Family who now wore party hats that read “Happy 20th !”.
In March 2009, the collection commemorated its 25th anniversary in Japan with the opening of the Sylvanian Gardens destination in Grinpa. Taken care of by EPOCH, the destination showcases real-life reproductions of Sylvanian houses and also structures from the Sylvanian Toy Series line along with a gallery including an event concerning the background of the playthings. The tourist attraction additionally has a store which markets products which are special to the park. In 2010, the franchise business once more organized 2 musicals, Sylvanian Family’s Amazing Music (シルバニアファミリーわくわくミュージカル Shirubania famirī wakuwaku myūjikaru) and also Sylvanian Family’s Exciting Musical (シルバニアファミリーわくわくステージ Shirubania famirī wakuwaku sutēji), which both ended up being a staple for advertising the toys at conventions.
On June 28, 2013, Flair confirmed that the rights for the toys in the UK will be transferred to the newly formed Epoch UK, and they began distributing the toys from January 1, 2014 on wards.
In the Gallery Below are just a selection of the Sylvanian Families Sets and Accessories that we have for Christmas 2017 at Silly Billy’s Toy Shop.
Also at Silly Billy’s we have a Sylvanian’s loyalty card so if you spend over £15 on Sylvanian Families at Silly Billy’s Toy Shop you will receive a stamp and when the card is filled you will receive a special White Mouse Family for free:
The period leading up to Christmas is always very busy for us here at Silly Billy’s and this year is our first Christmas in our new Retail Unit at Old Gate House, Old Gate, Hebden Bridge, HX7 6EN. Logistically in our new space we have less storage than we used to which means that we have to be quite prudent with Christmas orders and delivery schedules.
Since our last post we have increased the amount of Playmobil we have and we also have Playmobil 6624 Advent Calendars to compliment the Lego Star Wars Advent Calendars, and for the first time we have Playmobil 5497 Advent Calendars suitable for our very young shoppers.
Christmas in the Forest
Other Playmobil new in are the Playmobil Summer Fun Campers
Summer Camper 6671
Here at Silly Billy’s Toy Shop we believe we have the best range of Playmobil anywhere in the North of England, and this has been verified by customers in the past who have complimented us on our range. So if you are looking for any Playmobil then please give us a call as we can always look to get products in from Playmobil which we may not have in stock.
Hex Bugs are back
The Hex Bugs range is new to us here at Silly Billy’s and has been hugely popular, we were running low and have recently been re-stocked with Nano’s, Nano V2’s and track, everything you need for great Hex Bug Fun and Chaos, more on Hex Bugs here
We also were running low on Orchard Toys and now have been fully replenished, Orchard Toys are a great learning and play toy for the younger audience and we are really happy to stock this great British Manufactured product.
Silly Billy’s is a major retailer of Sylvanians in Yorkshire
As a major retailer of Sylvanians in Yorkshire and being the premier Independent Toy Shop to buy Sylvanians in Yorkshire we are pleased to announce a further extension to our Sylvanians Range. This includes:
Walnut Squirrel Family
Yellow Labrador Family
Chocolate Rabbit Baby
Striped Cat Baby
Persian Cat Baby
Chocolate Rabbit Twins
Silk Cat Twins
Chihuahua Dog Twins
Persian Cat Twins
The New Arrival
Baby Bath Time
Baby Carry Cases
Buy Sylvanians at Silly Billy’s Toy Shop and help keep Independent Shopping Alive
We are still very busy here at Silly Billy‘s and next week we will have a new display stand in the shop and we hope to be soon stocking Sophie The Giraffe Teether. For now our Manhatten baby toys are in the stock room until our display cabinet is built, hopefully next week.
Also we have just received our Lego minifigures collectors cards so now you will get a sticker with every Disney Minifigure purchased and if you collect 5 stickers you will get the sixth Disney Minifgure free. I am progressing my Minifigure collection slowly and have now one HALF of the Disney Minifigure series:
Sylvanians have proven to be very popular since their re-introduction into Silly billy’s Toy Shop. As well as a ride range of Sylvanian Familes we also have the following Amazing Accessories for Sylvanian Families.
2015 sees in the thirtieth year of Sylvanian’s and although absent from Silly Billy‘s in preceding years the little furry fellows have made s surprising come-back in 2015 since their distribution and rights have been taken over by Epoch Making Toys Group.
Here are some of the Sylvanian Accessories we have at Silly Billy‘s: