Bennett House at NYIGF

This week, I made it into the city to take in the August market at the New York International Gift Fair (NYIGF). I was pressed for time, so I focused my energies on the Accent on Design section in the mammoth Javits Center.

The brinca dada booth was among my first stops, and I was rewarded: the final 3/4" scale Bennett House was on display, along with a new line of furniture! Founder and CEO Doug Rollins was on hand to answer my many questions as I stared and stared at the final house (they previously showed a prototype at the Toy Fair in February; you can see my post here).

So what did I learn this time around about the house?

* It's smaller than the prototype, but still opens up to provide many levels of play. There's even a hinged  garage and an elevator (hand cranked)!

* It's a straightforward assembly made of eco-friendly woods...Doug assured me that it would not take longer than 45 minutes (P.S. This is not a lightweight house...definitely has some heft)

* Doug and his partner Tim Boyle, the architect who designed the house, used a completely different manufacturer from the Emerson, and are very happy with the quality. Doug does not foresee any issues and knows he will have happy customers.

* A whole new line of furniture is available with the house and will be sold as a complete set for $399 or by room, and prices will range from $29.99 to $49.99 per set. This new line is a *major* upgrade from the Emerson line...real wood grains, some leather, fabric, hinged details, and working drawers. Doug told me that they were designed by Cecilia Reboursin.

* Unlike the Emerson, the house will not be electrified. Too complex, and eliminates production delays and difficulties.

* The Bennett will be a limited run, only 300 are planned and a portion of that will be shipped to Europe.

* Retail price: $599

* The house is still on track to be available in October, and they will start taking pre-orders in the next few weeks.

How about some photos? The quality is not ideal -- they were all taken with my iPhone. The final flooring in the house will be bamboo, and Doug showed me a sample. I took some of the furniture shots on the sample. He also mentioned that the flooring in the garage will be cement-like.

That's Doug making a sale on a Bennett in the background, one of the few that occurred while I was at the booth!

The garage -- floor will have a cement finish

LOVE the stool, and the lounger is pretty great as well

Fabric topped bed!

That's a leather covering on the office chair

Two rugs come with the set

Nursery furniture also features fabric toppings

Lovely shape!

What do you think??

You might have seen the Dylan lurking in the background. Doug tells me the house, which retails for $149, is doing very well since it launched this spring and started shipping in the summer. The final furniture was on display, and I was impressed by the its sturdiness and style. For $14.99, it's a steal.

Here's some video of the Dylan and its furnishings (excuse crappy video quality):

I'd love to hear your thoughts on the latest from brinca dada. Is the Bennett on your wish list? Is the Dylan already in your house? What shall we ask Doug and Tim to make for us next?!

New News on brinca dada's Dylan

All photos courtesy of brinca dada

There's news to be had on the Dylan, the latest creation from brinca dada. Earlier this year I blogged about the Dylan here and here, and it was exciting to see this inventive follow-up to the Emerson, the wildly successful modern 1:16 scale house that launched the company. While founder and CEO Doug Rollins admits that there were production issues with the Emerson, they are committed to continuing their efforts to create products that are "beautiful and fun." (By the way, check out the brinca dada website for a sale on the Emerson now.)

Doug shared some details on the Dylan and was kind enough to satisfy my intense curiosity with some new renderings of the house and furniture. The house, which Doug says is inspired by the work of minimalist masters Paul Rudolph and Tadao Ando, looks very similar to the prototype I saw at the Gift Fair, but the main difference is that it is now not collapsible. Doug said that it came down to a safety issue so they decided to launch it as a fixed structure. Constructed in 1:16 scale and made of MDF and other woods, the Dylan features lead-free and non-toxic paints, and includes four rooms on two levels. The house will be available on the brinca dada website (and in select stores) in mid-July for $149, which is at the lower end of the range Doug shared at the Gift Fair in February. And yes, brinca dada will ship the house internationally!

Care for a peek inside?

There will be a set of 26 pieces of modern furniture, made of foamboard, for a very reasonable $14.99. While in my opinion there are some similarities to the MoMA Modern Play House pieces, the Dylan set shows more sophisticated profiles with just the right pops of color.

I personally really like the design. It's boxy, but I think the open panes give it an airiness and sense of fun. Remember, this is a toy for kids too, not just us rabid modern mini fans! I see many possibilities for modern scenes and setups, and while I am disappointed that the design no longer supports a collapsible functionality, it's not a deal-breaker for me. Heck, only one of my houses is truly collapsible (my Large VERO) and I never take advantage of this feature.

Share your own feedback on the renderings, and let me know if you have other queries. I know Doug would be more than happy to provide the answers if he can, and I look forward to seeing the house in person at the NY International Gift Fair in August.

On the Bennett, the next brinca dada offering waiting in the wings, it is still in production and Doug hopes to share more on it soon. There's also some plans in the works for the Emerson. I know we'll all stay tuned...