Sorry, this isn’t our specialty. Happy Worker manufactures toys, gifts and collectibles in the thousands of toys at a time.
But all hope is not lost – if you’re looking for just one or a couple of custom toys you could try one of these happy toyful and joyful partners:
- Toy Customizers – Craftspeople & hobbyists that take existing toys and rework them by hand, using a combination of crafting, sculpting and hacking. It’s most common for plastic toys like action figures and dolls. Customizers can range from hobbyists to creative professionals who dabble in their free time.
- Budgets: range from low $100’s to low $1,000’s per toy
- Find a Toy Customizer: by searching “toy customizers” online, or by asking around in toy-focused online forums & communities
- Sculptors / Sewers / Craftspeople – Creatives and artists who have expertise with the materials that your toy is made from – e.g. plastic toys – sculptors; plush toys – sewers; wood toys – carpenters; metal toys – metal casters, etc.
- Budgets: varies widely based on project, but can range from low $100’s to low $1,000’s or more per toy
- Find a Craftsperson: through online forums and communities, craft and art schools, and craft marketplaces like Etsy
- Model / Prototype Shops – Professional model makers with expertise in creating one-off or small prototypes.
- Budgets: range from low to mid $1,000’s and up per toy, depending on complexity, fabrication method and revisions
- Find a Model Shop: Search online for prototypers, model makers, prototype shops, etc.
- 3D printing Services for 1-offs – Services online that focus on 3D printing personalized action figures and figurines for gifts and personal collections.
- Budgets: range from less than $100 and up per toy, depending on complexity, size, and the quality of printing
- Find a 3D Printing Shop: search online for personalized action figures, 3D printed action figures, etc.
If you’re just looking for a prototype (and not a full production run), then no. Prototyping is a part of every order we create, but we can only prototype toys we have a committed production order for. We’re unable to create standalone prototypes as we’re a manufacturer first and foremost.
The short, ballpark answer – in the low thousands. The long answer is it depends on the type of toy & its materials, along with your goals and budgets or pricing targets.
Below are our general minimum orders by type of toy:
- Vinyl Figures: 2,500 – 5,000 depending on the size
- Action Figures: 5,000 or more
- Plush: 3,000 or 5,000 depending on the size
- Resin Figurines: 1,500 or more
- Stress Toys: 3,000 or more
- Other types of toys: Usually 5,000 or more
It depends on the type of toy, its materials, its size, and the design of the toy, along with other nitty gritty details. Some toy orders are in the tens of thousands of dollars, while others are in the hundreds of thousands of dollars.
You’ll find rough budget ranges on these pages of our site:
Most orders take between 5-7 months to create. Rush projects are sometimes possible, depending on the type of toy and the time of year, however rush projects still tend to take 3.5 months or longer.
You’ll find specific creation timelines on these pages of our site:
We have a diverse range of clients, but here’s what they have in common:
- Established companies with large and engaged communities (sorry, smaller companies and inventors normally aren’t a fit)
- Need thousands of toys (sorry, we’re not set up to make 1 toy or low-runs of hundreds of toys)
- Ready for protoyping AND production (sorry, we don’t do standalone prototyping)
- Looking for high quality toys only (sorry, no lower quality options are available)
- Passionate about design and high-end toys
- Have the love, time, and yes, money
Please read some testimonials from our clients.
We sincerely appreciate you thinking of us with your new toy concept. But – and unfortunately it’s a big but – we’re unable to consider ideas from outside our team or outside our clients’ teams. Sorry! We’re a happy contract manufacturer for our clients and partners. Our clients hire us to collaboratively manufacture toys and collectibles, and our clients choose how they want to use their toys, whether it be for wholesaling, retailing, convention exclusives, or marketing/promotions.
Happy Worker doesn’t typically work with toy inventors to prototype and manufacture their toy inventions. We specialize in working with brands, retailers, companies and agencies that want to create toys and collectibles for resale, gifting, and marketing. We haven’t built out services for the unique needs of inventors and aren’t able to consult with or partner with inventors.
While we can’t consult with inventors, we do want new toy inventors to succeed and happily launch their new toys into the hands of fans. If you’re serious about designing and inventing toys, we’d strongly encourage you to do your homework – starting with these excellent resources:
- Toy Industry Association’s Toy Inventor & Designer Guide for new toy inventors.
- Toy and Game Inventor's Handbook by Richard Levy and Ronald Weingartner:
- Attend a Toy Fair in person as a toy designer/inventor- annual trade shows where the toy industry gets together and shares their upcoming releases for the upcoming year. The most important toy fairs are:
- Many toy associations have good web sites with additional research and resources on the toy market in your country. Check to see if your country has a national toy association.
- Find and join a local inventor’s group, grassroots association, or meetup. Happy Worker continues to be an active participant in a number of inventor groups and communities. They’re a great way to meet other inventors – including those who have already created, designed, developed and commercialized their ideas.
We produce our toys in China with longtime factory partners. We know people can have questions and concerns about manufacturing overseas, but we love it for more reasons than we can list (and our clients love the high quality results). Below are some more resources about manufacturing overseas, but please contact us if you have more questions.
Learn more about our ethical manufacturing processes, or how we ensure our toys are safe. You can also find out about Happy Worker’s shipping, logistics, and customs services.
If you have a big, engaged fan community, a powerful marketing plan, and several thousand campaign supporters, then creating a toy for your campaign backers may be possible.
You’ll find rough budget ranges, minimum orders, creation schedules, and other details on these pages:
No, sorry. Even if it’s sort of toy-like or made of similar materials, we still aren’t the right match. Happy Worker specializes in making vinyl figures, action figures, figurines, statues, plush toys, squishy stress balls, and a few other types of collectibles listed here.
If your creation doesn’t fall into one of these categories, we recommend finding a manufacturer with experience making the thing you want to make. Sorry we can’t help with more specific recommendations.