Stuff the Stuffed Toys

These Pinoy rockers agree: designer toys make cool (and yes, cute) gifts for girlfriends

The days of Barbies and green miniature plastic army action figures are over. Kids today have developed a taste for digital. The computer rental shop around the corner is now their tambayan of choice, and their after-dinner ritual is playing with their PSP or Playstation 3. But for a select few, nothing can really beat the feeling of holding a brand new toy fresh out of the box. And the guys at Fresh Manila couldn’t agree more. Stepping into one of their stores is like being transported to an artsy and expensive wonderland where graphic design and toys converge. For part-owner and marketing director Alvin Yap, they’re selling not just toys, but pieces of art. "Yes, they’re still toys. But the reason they’re so expensive is because they’re made by contemporary artists and are not mass-produced." Take Ron English’s famous Abraham Obama poster which he eventually made into a vinyl toy sculpture. Only 150 pieces were ever made and they go for about $200 a pop. Fresh Manila has a signed one. And we’re pretty sure they’re not selling it. This fairly new industry boasts the likes of Frank Kozick of the very popular KidRobot and Simone Legno of Tokidoki. Their habit of crossing cute colors with inappropriate, and sometimes morbid elements, make their toys strangely interesting, and appealing enough to make guys replace those cuddly, stuffed teddy bears as their gift of choice to their girlfriends. We managed to find five guys who would rather give smoking rabbit replicas to their significant others rather than your usual pink or powder blue plushy.

Sib Sibulo
Name: Sib Sibulo Age: 26 Occupation: MTV VJ Choice: Rodys Reason: I find the Rodys cute and i think it would also work well as a paper weight of sort. Cute and functional.
Paolo Valenciano
Name: Paolo Valenciano Age: 24 Occupation: Vocalist, Salamin Choice: Skeletrino, Vinyl Toy Reason: ï¿½ My girlfriend likes cute. I think Skeletrino is very cute.
Recommended Videos
Japs Sergio
Name: Japs Sergio Age: 29 Occupation: Bassist, Rivermaya Choice: Mozzarella, Vinyl toy Reason: It looks nice and naughty at the same time. Nice, in an "aaay angkyuuuuut" kind of way, ï¿½ and naughty because of the gun.
Mei Mei
Mong Alcaraz
Name: ï¿½ Mong Alcaraz Age: 27 Occupation: Guitarist, Sandwich Choice: Sabochan, Vinyl Toy Reason: ï¿½ I’d like to get my girlfriend a Sabochan. Also I have a Mozzarella saying on top of my studio monitor speakers...thanks to the guys at Fresh Manila because I was able to meet Tokidoki. I’m a big fan!
Brian Sombero
Name: Brian Jeff Sombero Age: 25 Occupation: Music Producer, Vocalist, Menaya Choice: Mei Mei, House of Lui, Vinyl Toy Reason: ï¿½ I think my girlfriend would find Mei Mei very cute.
Mei Mei

Fresh Manila is located at #5 Sgt. Esguerra Avenue corner Timog Avenue with contact number 412-8786. For more information, please check the Fresh Manila website at Photos (toys) by Yas Salanga. Illustration on Home page by Warren Espejo.

Share this story with your friends!

Help us make better!
Take the short survey

Read more stories about

Latest Stories

Load More Stories