Toy Stories

The things we play with, seen from brand new angles.

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The Renegade DIYers Demanding Dolls as Diverse as They Are

American Girl has long epitomized a particular vision of childhood perfection. Armed with pots of dye and webcams, today’s teens are pushing the brand to embrace their underrepresented fans.

Ringmaster of the Nerd Circus

Inspired by steampunk culture, the maker movement, and his Atari-founding father, Brent Bushnell is ready to reveal his carnival of crazy contraptions and educational wonders.

The Stuffed Animal That Saved My Life

In my thirty-six years of life I’ve battled borderline personality disorder, struggled with heroin addiction and was nearly shot dead in the street. One tattered toy dog has helped me every step of the way.

When Mommy and Daddy Took the Toys Away

Hold those sleigh bells, Santa: A growing number of Americans are rethinking the urge to pamper their kids with playthings. But should this minimalist approach become the next big trend in parenting?

How to Succeed in a Most Puzzling Business

When an artist, an architect and a rocket scientist team up to create the next great puzzle craze, they learn that conquering the toy market is far from child’s play.