Talking Toys: Nicola Jennings

Tuesday, 1 November 2016

Today we are talking to Nicola Jennings, artist, blogger and avid collector of cute. I adore Nicola, I found her on Instagram some years ago and have loved getting to know her and her toy collection over the past few years. She is to blame for many a cute purchase in my home, most recently I purchased a Mimi Canimal just because I spotted it on her feed, far to adorable to resist. Nicola lives in the beautiful city of Kent and as well as collecting toys, she is also a big comic book reader and a super talented artist. 

What made you want to start collecting toys?

I think the reason I first started collecting toys was because of my Dad. He used to take me to comicbook stores when I was a kid. He used to collect lots of different things, but I always remember him collecting Star Wars figures. When the new trilogy of Star Wars films came out in the late 90s, my parents took me to Toys R Us where I first started buying and collecting toys properly. My Dad is the coolest, and I have always looked up to him. I always wanted to collect something like him, so toys were a good idea. 

When I was at university many years ago, I started getting addicted to buying vinyl toys. These always seemed like grown up toys to me. I lived in Nottingham and I was right down the road from Forbidden Planet, so it was easy to pick them up. That started a whole new collection. So now I collect figures from tv shows, films, vinyl, Lego, and loose figures from vintage stores.

What are your favourite types of toys to collect?

My favourites at the moment are Pop Vinyls by Funko. Mostly because they are a good price point, and you can normally always find a new Pop you need for your collection. I am also really into mini figures and blind bagged figures. They are like a fun lucky dip moment, and they don't cost too much.

If you could have any toy right now in the world, to add to your collection what would that be?

I think it would have to be some of the new 3.75inch Star Wars The Force Awakens figures. We don't seem to have received any of them in the UK. I have visited lots of different shops and can't seem to track them down. I need a mini Han Solo, Rey with her lightsaber, and Finn in his storm trooper outfit. Fingers crossed I can find some of them soon. I also can't wait for the bearded Luke Skywalker Pop vinyl to come out because Mark Hamill is the coolest.

Have you got any favourite toys within your collections?

I love all the toys I have collected over the years, as they all have stories or memories attached to them. For instance I remember working for Woolworths when I was younger and collecting all the Doctor Who figures. I was always so excited for a new delivery to arrive. Also my Harry Potter Lego figures have a special place in my heart. My memory isn't the best, but when I look at my collection I can remember where and when I got each piece. 

Do you have any favourite places to look for new toys to add to your collection?

I am a big fan of bootsales, vintage and charity shops. Myself and my boyfriend are collecting loose vintage figures for a wall display, and love searching for them. Of course I love to visit Forbidden Planet and it's heaven on earth. Perfect place for any toy collector! And conventions are amazing for picking up toys! I can't wait for my next con!

Have you got any advice for newbie toy collectors?

I think the only piece of advice I can give is collect what you love! Forget about if something is an investment, or collecting what is rare, and just collect what you love! Your collection will mean so much more to you that way. Be passionate, and connect with others who love the same things!

Want to find out more about Nicola Jennings?

If you've got a toy collection you want to show off, i'm open to submissions! 
Drop me an email and say hello for some more information.
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