We spent last week at Toy Fair. 5 full days among 1100 exhibitors and 10,000 buyers from around the globe. In 345,000 square feet filled with toys!
Just 100 years ago (and still in many places on the planet) a child contented himself with a ragdoll or a top or a stickhorse. It’s hard to comprehend that toys now represent a $21 billion industry. My living room alone contributes a nice chunk to that. My professional life’s work has too.
“Chief Toymaker” is hard work. But since I love what I do and am able to do good with it, it often does not feel like work at all. Every day I collaborate with people I care about, on a mission we all care about: the creation of beautiful playthings for kids we love—our kids, ALL kids.
Do you know the movie “Lemonade”? Perfect telling of our story: “It’s not a pink slip. It’s a blank page.” We turned what was a job we loved into a passion-driven juggernaut of everything I ever wanted to pour into toys. It’s all I’ve ever done…make toys…for the world’s largest toy companies (Hasbro, Playskool, Milton Bradley) to the world’s finest (Museum of Fine Arts- Boston, Learningsmith).
There we stood at New York Toy Fair, barely a year old. Pinching ourselves that the loooong days and laaaate nights we’ve worked on B. magically paid off in a wonderful and wonder-filled brand.
We won many awards in one short year. We made it onto Ellen and onto the Zappos Delivering Happiness Bus. Lots of press was kind to us. We made many fabulous friends in the blogging community (just wrote a guest blog at Small for Big about ugly toys). But most of all we took a moment to raise our glasses and have a family dinner (we really think of our B. team as family) and remember it is our JOB to bring you beautiful, thoughtful, fashion-forward and eco-friendly toys.
It’s a responsibility we take very seriously since we know we are putting things into the hands (and mouths) of your most precious little ones. We think of it as an opportunity of a lifetime—literally. To offer your kids wondrous playthings is our privilege.
I went back to find my original Missions for B. and I herewith lovingly share them with you. With the promise that we will continue to strive—every day, with every toy—to B. good to kids, their parents, and our planet.
Yes, toymaker is a job.
A really important job.