It's no secret in the world of modern miniatures that children's toys present a wealth of opportunities for furnishings and accessories. Right after Christmas, Cindy of Snowfern tipped me off to a new line of miniature play sets carried exclusively for the month of December at Wal-Mart called MiWorld. And then The Shopping Sherpa asked me separately if I had seen them as well, since she was intensely curious about the scale and quality.
The sets are modeled on actual retail and food stores, namely Claire's, Sweet Factory, OPI, Dairy Queen, and Sprinkles Cupcakes. The toys are targeted at ages 7+, and consist of simple, plastic constructions that also snap together across sets (vertically or horizontally), so you can create your own retail mecca.
|Both images courtesy of MiWorld|
In addition to the stores, there are accessory packs that provide extra minis for all the stores, as well as figures.
|Images courtesy of MiWorld|
From the website, it is difficult to tell the scale of the rooms and pieces, but it seemed they were close to 1:12.
Only one way to find out!
I managed to get to my local Wal-Mart and picked up their last three sets--OPI, Dairy Queen, and Sprinkles. They were $10 each, which did seem quite reasonable at the time, and then even more reasonable once I went online to eBay! The sets are selling for three or four times that amount -- crazy!!!
I had two surprise helpers: my two boys, aged almost 7 and 11. They had grudgingly tagged along with me to buy my "weirdo dollhouse stuff," but then were excited by the Dairy Queen and cupcakes. So, I was able to engage their help in constructing all three sets to report back to you all on the quality and scale.
First: the sets are all closest to 1:12. YAY! I used a Kaleidoscope House figure to illustrate the scale.
Second: there are some very cute accessories across all three sets. Notable mentions: Dairy Queen ice creams and shakes; OPI nail polishes and rounded chair; Sprinkles coffee cups and display case.
Third: the overall quality is quite good for the price, but there were common flaws across the three sets. The wall graphic stickers, while very realistic, were not evenly applied and bubbled in places. The paper flooring was bent around the edges. The small tables in the Dairy Queen and Sprinkles sets did not snap together and hold securely.
On to the pictures -- there are a lot, to help show you all the details.
The OPI nail salon is first!
|This chair is definitely usable for modern mini scenes|
|Very proud of his chair!|
Next up: Sprinkles!
|Lots of little stickers...|
|You can see the flooring and table flaws pretty clearly here|
And finally, the Dairy Queen.
What do you think?? I can say that I will definitely use some of the accessories and perhaps a piece of furniture or two. I might even go back to Wal-Mart to see if they have anything left, although the shelves were pretty cleaned out.
Anyone else have any sets? Do share!