More than 20,000 buyers and toy industry professionals descend on New York each February to feverishly buy and sell what else but toys… lots of toys. This year over 100,000 products were represented – anything and everything you could ever imagine. I typically get to wear two hats at Toy Fair as both a buyer and a seller. Even though I sold my toy manufacturing company – Be Amazing Toys – in 2004, I still hold a position as Director of Product Development. In other words, it’s my job to think up science related products and kits that store owners will buy and kids will love.
This year we introduced a new line of kits focusing on the “Yuck-Factor”. I got the idea last Spring while teaching a group of 3rd graders the finer points to making the world’s best batch of slime. It’s pretty simple stuff… just mix a little green goo with the cross-linker and you’ve got slime. But I soon learned that kids don’t want to follow recipes – they want to create their own. Within minutes of learning my formula, these kids were mixing up their own concoctions… adding new ingredients… trying their best to gross each other out. This experience was the inspiration for a whole new line of science kits through Be Amazing Toys focused on the ooey, gooey, slippery, slimy and just down right gross world of polymers. During the product development process, we accidentally invented the “shaker” method of making slime which eliminates the mess and increases the quality of the slime. We discovered a new way to make “instant snot”, and the formula for barf is exquisite. Yuck! is due out in stores in May along with Shaker Slime and a handful of new products.