Wednesday, June 23, 2010

The Rochester Toy Show

A few months ago Alicia and I ventured out to Rochester to check out a vintage toy show at the Village Gate. It was surreal to see countless tables filled with random action figures and collectibles from the 80's and 90's...if I had been able to attend an event like this when I was still in college I would have gone completely bankrupt buying a ridiculous amount of G1 Transformers and McFarlane toys. Since I've had to reign in my compulsive toy collecting in recent years, I managed to just enjoy the opportunity to see so many of these rare and unusual pop culture relics in person.

This event was actually closer to a flea market than a traditional toy show, which meant that the prices were really great but the presentation was a little...rough. Most vendors had toys that were packaged in ziplock bags with prices written in sharpie, then piled into cardboard boxes in front their setup. A selection of eye catching pieces would adorn the surface of their tables, but to see the majority of their goods you'd have to get down and start rummaging through the unorganized clutter. I could very happily do that for hours, at every single table...the only reason I didn't was because I was limiting myself to just a few purchases, and I knew that if I started digging I'd probably find a bunch of stuff that would be hard to say no to.

I did find a few gems that day, all of which were great deals that also fit nicely with my current shelf setup. As soon as we walked through the doors, I saw this guy at the very first table.

Vintage Voltron

Friday, June 4, 2010

Dunnys - The Gateway Toy

Secret Lab Dunny

These little guys were actually my first introduction to the world of "vinyl toys." I first noticed them in a few of the art magazines I used to read, but they never truly caught my attention until I got a look at them in person. Several years ago, a local toy boutique opened up on a nearby street and I finally had a chance to learn a bit more about his whole "art toy" scene that everyone was so excited about. Stepping through the doors, I was instantly exposed to a whole new world of collecting. It was all so foreign at the time, I was completely unfamiliar with just about everything around me. A glass display case in the center of the shop housed a wide array of larger vinyl pieces from designers like Pete Fowler, Buff Monster, Junko Mizuno, and Frank Kozik. The surrounding walls had shelves filled with various blind box series, everything from Qees to Ci-Boys and of course, Dunnys.