Creator Stories Chapter 1: Why We Collect

Creator Stories Chapter 1: Why We Collect

Seeing a toy from our childhood wakes something up in all of us. Memories of those first opened presents, first friendships, first joyful moments and the sense of wonder we had when we were kids. The power nostalgia has to remind us of who we are is a major reason we collect toys. Our first Creator Story digs into this with some of our favorite collaborators and team members.

We’re launching a series that will bring you behind the curtain at Mattel and into our passion for creating, designing and collecting toys. This episode introduces you to four unique collectors: MADSAKI, Manson Cheung, Kayoko Takahashi, and Rebecca Shipman.

Toy Collectors Recall Their Favorite Mattel Moments

“He-man spoke very beautiful English — he’s like an English teacher to me.”

- Madsaki

Japanese-American artist MADSAKI, known for his irreverent acrylic and spray paint works, grew up loving Masters of the Universe but also learning from it. The series taught him English and helped him connect to American culture after moving to the United States as a kid. He became a lifelong fan, collector and beloved MOTU collaborator.

“Usually, something great comes from different creative avenues intersecting.”

- Manson Cheung

For Hot Wheels sculptor and collector Manson Cheung, an obsession with the DeLorean from the Back to the Future franchise led him to a two-decade-long career at Mattel. Cheung took his fascination with the car to new heights when he purchased his own DeLorean and practically willed a Hot Wheels version into existence in 2010.

“I remember playing with stuffed animals. When I was with them, I felt at home.”

- Kayoko

It makes sense that as we grow older, the things that brought us joy as children can still have a profound impact on us today — even toys. Kayoko Takahashi, owner of SPIRAL Toys in Japan’s Harajuku district knows firsthand the excitement and joy people get from toys and believes that collecting toys nourishes your heart.

“It's not weird for adults to be buying toys.”

- Rebecca Shipman

When Rebecca Shipman first discovered Monster High, she was hooked. She became an avid collector and it even led her to the job of her dreams. Today, as lead designer on the Monster High team, Shipman applies the franchise’s philosophy (embracing your taste, flaws and differences about yourself) to her work.

This is just the first glimpse of the creators and why toys are such a HUGE deal for collectors of all ages.
Be sure to check out Chapters 2 and 3 for more great toy stories, coming soon.