So You Want to Make a Plushie: Gann Memorials

GannMemorialsLogo

I recently had the pleasure of talking to Chris Gann about his company Gann Memorials. Gann Memorials produces high quality custom plush toys. Before the founding of Gann Memorials, Chris Gann promoted Beanie Babies conventions. It was his love for Beanie Babies that inspired him to produce his own plush toys. Chris Gann initially produced teddy bears for charitable organizations. It wasn’t until later that he realized there was a niche for making custom plushies.

InukiibyTastyPeachStudios

Gann Memorials is a family run business, but it is not a small fry in the plush manufacturing arena. When you look at their website you will recognize the names of many of their clients: Nintendo, Google, My Little Pony, and Gaia Online to name a few. You may also recognize some of the plushies in their online showcase.  I recognized a few that made my heart palpitate. Namely Puddle Bunny and Cupcake Kitty created by Celesse. I wish she would make a Gamercat plush! Celesse is also part of the Gann Memorials toy design team. I also saw Nemu and Anpan, the magical plush dogs from the webcomic, Nemu-nemu. I squealed with delight! Ryan Zanfei, the creator of Tasty Peach Studios also uses Gann Memorials to produce her line of plushies. She was the one who recommended them to me. Thank you so much for the recommendation! You can see her adorable Inukii plush above.

NemuAnpanPlush

What sets Gann Memorials apart from other companies?  Chris says that customer service is his focus.  He wants his customers to know that he cares about them. He offers his personal phone number on the company website so his clients can speak directly with him.  I found Chris Gann to be quite personable and friendly in our conversation. With many companies you would not be able to speak with the company’s president. Instead you would probably be on the line with a sales representative.

Gann Memorials is also one of the few companies who handles small order custom plush. Most manufacturing companies have abandoned small orders and won’t deal with an order under 1000 pieces. Gann Memorials is open to doing smaller orders. They can do any size order, but smaller orders cost more per piece.

Gann Memorials also has a quick turnaround time. A plush sample can be created within 5 to 7 business days after they have a design. Once the prototype is approved, most orders can be manufactured in 30 to 40 days depending on the size and complexity of the order.

PuddleBunnybyCelesse

Well, I know your all wondering what it costs to turn your idea into a soft huggable toy, so we made up a hypothetical order, to give you an idea just how much it costs. We hypothetically ordered 500 plush animals that were 6-8 inches tall and made entirely from synthetic materials. Each plush might cost 8-10 dollars. (There is a shipping allowance included in the cost based on the quatity ordered,but it could cost more.) If we do the math it would cost about $5,000.

Chris had a few valuable tips for minimizing cost when ordering custom plush. First is that ordering in smaller quantities becomes more expensive per item. Materials is another important factor in the cost. Chris recommends using 100% synthetic textiles (i.e. fabrics and thread). Adding materials like plastic eyes or metal pieces boost the price and require third-party testing according to safety regulations. Chris encourages embroidered faces, because not only does it help you keep the cost low, embroidery is able to create more expressive faces. Chris’ favorite synthetic fabric is minky because of its ultra-soft and silky texture. You crafters and plush lovers out there know that minky is amazing. One last thing to consider when designing your plush is that the more complex the design, the more time it takes to produce and the more expensive it will be. But if you can dream it up they can make it.

Pusheenplush

Gann Memorials offers many services that are worth mentioning. If you have a great idea, but lack the art skills to design it, Gann Memorials has its own design team that will work with you to design your plush. Gann memorials offers a wide variety of organic materials. If you want your plushies to be able to market under the made in the US label, Gann Memorials works with 2 US factories and has access to materials also made in the US. Chris does note that this can double the cost of your order. I forget sometimes that plush animals are not all entirely plush anymore, you can order them with sound boxes and lights, and pretty much anything you can think of. Last but not least you can order custom packaging for your custom toy.  This isn’t some shoddy one size fits all packaging that you print out on the computer. If your want to forgo the cost of packaging, your plush will come with a black and white sewn-in tag that can feature your logo.

There is such an overwhelming amount of information. You need to check out Gann Memorials for yourself! If you have any questions please feel free to post, or give Chris Gann a call: (919-692-5559). He is eager to share his knowledge and enthusiasm for plush toys and hopefully can get you started on making your own plushie a reality.

Interested in purchasing the plushies posted above? click on the pictures!

If you like this blog post please Like, Share, or Comment. There is no better way to say Thank you!

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2 responses to “So You Want to Make a Plushie: Gann Memorials

  1. Pingback: Make Your Own Acrylic Charms | Raining Lemons·

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