Chicago, Illinois and online
We first encountered Rotofugi in 2005, when we wrote a review of their exhibit Plushtastrophe: The Art of Plush
. We had heard of Rotofugi, but hadn’t visited it yet. The moment we walked through the door, we realized we had found something special.
Located in the East Village neighborhood of Chicago (on Chicago, just off of Damen), Rotofugi
is owned by the husband and wife team of Kirby and Whitney Kerr and offers the latest in underground toys – including many from Kidrobot
and our personal favorite Gloomy Bear
(Who says all teddy bears must be cuddly?). Rotofugi also has a great selection of prints, t-shirts, books and magazines, as well. The adjoining Rotofugi Gallery features monthly art exhibits by local and nationally known artists.
Some of the more popular items include the 8" Eggy Dunny; Stereotype Acid psychedelic, trippin' animals; the Moofia 2 series that features kooky dairy-inspired characters that fight for schoolyard justice, and a myriad of other colorful characters ready to fit into any modern nursery or child's bedroom.
We love Polpettina
, part of the Cactus Friend line. She's like Hello Kitty
gone beserk -- but in a good way.
If you happen to be in the neighborhood, take your kids and show them that, yes, there is life in entertainment beyond an xBox or Wii. Some of the best toys are those that require our imagination. Our son loved touching the toys and looking at the great colors all around, and the entire environment at Rotofugi was very welcoming, friendly and unpretentious.
And fear not, if you don't live in the vicinity, you can always peruse Rotofugi's vast toy selection online.