The Genesis & Genius of Disney Merchandise

The Genesis & Genius of Disney Merchandise

Happy Thanksgiving! The season has arrived with Black Friday and a lot of holiday shopping ahead. No doubt, if you are a Disney fan, something on your list to Santa includes something Disney. There are so many retail choices when it comes to buying your favorite Disney merchandise, but all of that had a beginning. From my newest book, A Century of Powerful Disney Insights, we’ll share with you that story, and about one of the little known Disney legends who not only brought Disney merchandise to life, but in many ways saved not only Disney but other companies during a difficult period of the Depression. From this we’ll share some free souvenirs in terms of ideas you can take home into the new year. And then we’ll share with you a few really impressive holiday gifts to consider all tied to the 100th anniversary of The Walt Disney Company. Join us as we talk about the Genesis & Genius of Disney Merchandise.

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Kay Kamen & Disney Merchandise

As promised, each month of this year I’m reading one of the chapters from my new book, A Century of Powerful Disney Insights. Each month is a different decade. This one is very much at the center of the Depression which set in during the 1930’s. It was a critical addition to the company that in many ways saved Walt and Roy from losing income and going bankrupt. One of the definitive icons of The Walt Disney Company is the Mickey Mouse Watch. This timepiece is about as much about timing as it is about time. It’s also about a fairly unknown Disney legend who solely perhaps made one of the most significant contributions of anyone in The Walt Disney Company other than Walt and Roy themselves.

Souvenirs For the New Year

As we move into the new year consider the following:

  • How can you broaden your potential?
  • How is your timing with making things happen?
  • How do you organize in a scramble to meet tight deadlines?
  • Are there new markets you may be missing?
  • What are you doing to not be late to market?

Disney 100 Holiday Gift Ideas

Disney Lorcana Trading Card Game

This game celebrates Disney characters from throughout the Disney animated films–not Pixar, just Disney. With card decks made up of at least 60 cards, players work to produce “ink”, a resource that allows cards representing characters, items, and more to be summoned. As you take your turn you follow a sequence of generating ink, playing cards, using actions from cards, and challenging opposing opponents’ character cards. The object is to accrue twenty points (known in game as “lore”) before their opponent does.

I’m not much for card games, and I wondered at first if I was going to get this. But half way through playing with my son, I started to get a hang of it, and while I lost at the end, we came very close to either winning. I look forward to playing this many times over, and in adding more cards. While selecting a card is random, there are strategies for creating your set of 60 cards, and even more strategies as you play. This is not just a game of luck.

Lorcana even has a Disney 100 set that retails for $140. But you can find starter sets for less than $50.

Disney Animated Studio Game

I am a big fan of Disney park board games. I have many, and if I had another wall I would take the game boards, frame them, and hang them up. I’m not that big on the games, but I am big on Disney park maps.

This board game is as Disney as any Disney board game could be as it focuses on the heart of Disney–It’s full-length animated classics. Here you explore the storied history of the Disney Animation Studios with five classic films!

  • Alice In Wonderland
  • Fantasia
  • Snow White & The Seven Dwarfs
  • 101 Dalmations
  • Aladdin

There are really stunning components include full-color player boards, custom wooden tokens, and 15 transparent cel cards. Throughout you develop sound, ink & paint, and background art—plus a bit of magic—to bring your films to life. The game builds on values central to any culture–and those very much at the center of Disney–Heart, Focus, Inspiration, Grit and Teamwork. And while you do need to vanquish the villains, the game actually encourages collaboration and cooperation more than competition.

This game from Funko retails for $34.99 What’s really cool is that it’s such an homage to the original style and approach taken in creating Disney animated films. Even the color tones mimic the original Walt Disney Studios in Burbank. Even cooler is how you have animated cells that you place together to create an entire image. It’s very Disney, but it’s very difficult to pick up, and videos we watched were not that helpful. Still, it’s the perfect gift for the Disney fan who thinks they have it all, and who really loves Disney animation.

Lego Disney Walt Disney Tribute Camera

One of my favorite gifts for Walt Disney World’s 50th anniversary was a Cinderella Castle Lego gift. I’m not big on Legos, but I found myself endeared to the experience as I put it together. There are several Disney 100 Lego selections to choose from, but my family gave me for my birthday The Walt Disney Tribute Camera. I am impressed! I haven’t even finished it but it has so many gems and clever aspects to it. People who created this knew their Disney. Here are some of the really great touches:

  • You start by building a small, separate animator’s office. They are built on a movie clapboard that opens and shuts
  • In the office is a multi-plane camera–complete with a sliding camera and glass slides that actually stack on top of each other like a multi-plane camera.
  • Mickey and Minnie are part of the crew, along with Dumbo and Bambi.
  • The nearly 15″ old-fashioned camera is built like a camera with gears and detailed parts. At times you will wonder if you can shoot film with this camera.
  • A film strip emerges from the camera with Disney characters in each frame, done in Lego style.
  • A private animator’s table and chair can be found inside the camera body
  • A Walt Disney Lego figure with two different faces to include his “angry bear” look!

If you love Lego and love Disney this is the gift you won’t want to miss. There are other great choices as well, like the Disney 100 Villains Icon set. But I really recommend this Lego set with 811 pieces. It retails at around $100.

A Century of Powerful Disney Insights Book

You can order my newest book, “A Century of Powerful Disney Insights” on Amazon. It’s a great way to celebrate the 100th anniversary of The Walt Disney Company. In over 100 years, The Walt Disney Company has emerged as one of the most successful entertainment entities across the globe. In this, the first of two volumes, we study the first 50 years of Disney, beginning with Walt and Roy. We look at major milestones and not only see the evolution of an organization begun in a garage, but how it truly became so beloved to millions around the world. From Oswald the Lucky Rabbit and Mickey Mouse through Snow White and Cinderella, from the Mouseketeers to Mary Poppins, and from Disneyland to Walt Disney World, we share stories and insights from 1923 to 1973. We hope you’ll be inspired with ideas and how you can apply these stories to your own life and work. 

Order your copy today!

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