Hurray for vintage tuesday! Hey, how about those crazy toddler road map pants Dottie found?? I love ’em for a summer vacation car trip, that’s for sure. So today I thought it would be fun to take a look at one of my favorite vintage toys—the Dakin Dream Pet. Dream Pets are wee little stuffed animals that are like cuddly cartoon characters. They all have amazing personalities and great little details—like hats, handerchiefs and more. These little suckers are super cute and make for adorable little room accents, but they have an equally interesting history too!
image: Kitsch and Curious.
Back in 1957, R. Dakin & Company began importing electric toy trains from Japan. As they unpacked the trains, they made the unusual discovery that the boxes were packed with several small, quirky stuffed animals—apparently the Japanese workers had handcrafted these whimsical little animals from scraps of velveteen and used them as padding to protect the trains on their long trip. Unexpectedly, these sawdust-filled little critters became more popular than the trains themselves! The workers called them “Dream Pets” because they said they could make any kind of animal they could dream up and the name stuck. The people at Dakin weren’t fools and quickly realized that they should be producing these sweet animals instead of trains! Let’s check some of ’em out:
These little guys are so full of personality! The best part is, they can still be found very affordably (we’re talking $5-7 a pop, perhaps a little more for rarer ones). They would look adorable on a book shelf, or even a display shelf. You can also try hanging them on a little framed shadow box on the wall! Yup….these little cuties are certainly dreamy.