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Balsa Wood and Architectural Modeling Contest Winners Announced

Ever see those really cool models of cities like the one in “Die Hard” where Alan Rickman unsuccessfully tries to get the password from the Nakatomi Corp. President. I love those things, and contests for architectural models are always on the very high end of cool. The Association of Professional Model Makers set up a web page to announce the winners of the latest contest, and the pictures there are amazing.

National Balsa Wood Company, in Ware, Massachusetts, makes the base laser-cut balsa wood and basswood pieces that architectural students and model airplane makers use to build their planes and cities. I spoke to the owner of that company the other day and he said that architecture students from all over the country order specially cut pieces from his firm to build their scaled-down cities, like the one shown below.

Balsa Wood Architectural Model

Hugmeez

Filed under: Business,Collectibles,Marketing,Toys — Tags: , , — Positronic Dave @ 6:36 pm July 19, 2010

The Hugmeez are the latest invasion from the Land of Over-Cute, looking very much like a genetic cross-experiment between a muppet and a serious case of steroid poisoning. And much like Beanie Babies and Pokemon, they have come to our shores, intent of capturing the hearts and munds and allowance money of young children, as well as the otherwise sad and empty lives of adult collectors.

Sold in the UK through Clinton Cards, PLC and here in the U.S., through Bluw, the wide variety of the dolls is further enhanced by varying levels of availability (ranked in number of stars, with 1 star meaning the dolls is common through the very rare 5 star Hugmeez), hence instant collector frenzy and its accompanying jacking up of prices far, far over retail.

I’m sure Hip Designs hopes they have the next big plushy thing, but I wouldn’t buy one. Creepy little neckless things, they have their arms raised eternally wide, and while it’s supposed to be the universal posture of offering (or needing) a hug, it looks as much like the cute little toy wants to feel you up. Like I said… creepy. Hugmeez inappropriately, or what?

I expect that they will sell, and be collected and traded very well. This is a Anglophile Aunt’s dream, especially if she can find, or be gifted, one of the very rare Hugmeez sport the British Flag, or the Symbol of Saint George, etc. No Boy George doll, but maybe that’s an oversight to be rectified later.

Certainly nothiong says fun in England than a Neo-Hippy ad with some faux Reggae/Ska song about how awesome these dolls really. are. It’s got a loping beat, a rousing multi-voiced chorus, loud horns… and, no doubt, a cleverly hidden psychologically devastating subliminal message. Check out the video of the promo ad:

See? Don’t you just want to, need to, have to own several of them right now? I mean right now?!?! That’s the Hugmeez magic working, no doubt. That being felt up this is, no doubt, a lil’ Hugmeez misunderstanding.

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