Bright USA Had a Ball at Toy Fair 2016 in NYC

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James and Alex spent some time this week showing the Bright portfolio at Toy Fair 2016 in NYC. The Javits Center was transformed into every child’s dream with plush toys, brightly colored games, and tons of puzzles on display. Wandering through the exhibit halls was like exploring a fantasyland. Enormous pyramids of stuffed animals towered like gatekeepers over booths of magical kinetic sands, child-size luxury automobiles, and a labyrinth of never before seen merchandise.

James even spotted one of his favorite childhood characters, Pikachu! Bright’s own Zoe Persico saw the photo on Twitter and was quick to contribute her own illustrated rendering of the duo.

James and Pikachu

It was a pleasure to speak with clients about where they saw toy trends heading in 2016, as well as what they looked for specifically in illustration. Feedback was that games with nostalgic and “vintage-but-fresh” artwork are always a hit with both parents and children. In puzzles, there was a significant interest in very soft animals and picturesque but “not too stuffy” landscapes. Perhaps unsurprisingly, adult and children’s coloring books are still seeing enormous success, though there was a new and distinct emphasis on connect-the-dot books for adults as well!

Exhibitors like Cottage Door Press were focused on enhancing the early reader experience through toys by creating beautiful knit characters to be sold alongside some of their titles. Bright illustrator Natalie Marshall worked on one such project with the CDP, and her ABC Caterpillar got its own adorable plush.

There was also a fantastic poster hung on one display wall asking fair goers to share their personal trend predictions for 2016 and beyond…

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Outdoor games, coloring books, and games that make you think were among the predicted trends.

#TFNY16 was a fantastic showing of what this year’s biggest toys and games are going to be, and it was great to touch base with clients to review Bright’s newest selection of illustration talent. If you were unable to make it to Toy Fair but would like to meet with an agent in NYC, contact Alex here.

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