We are all familiar with the little blue creatures that wear white pants and have the cute little white hats perched on their blue heads. They are, of course Smurfs and although the United States and Canada didn’t embrace them as household names until the early 1980’s they have been around since the 1950’s.
It all started with a comic strip written by a Belgian artist and it featured the Smurfs, all male at first who lived in a faraway kingdom. Their homes were mushrooms and they all wore white clothing save for the elder, who was to become known as Papa Smurf who had a white beard but, to stick out and be easier to spot, a red shirt and hat.
Later on, Smurfette, the only female Smurf came into being and even later they added another two female characters, though Smurfette is still the most popular and enduring of them. Smurfette was supposedly placed into the midst of the men Smurfs by their arch enemy in an attempt to infiltrate their society, but Papa Smurf was on to the evil plan and made her the happy go lucky, flirty character that we know today.
The Smurfs were a hit because they, like Care Bears were all named for the good trait or skill they possessed. It was easy to know which one would come to the rescue on any given episode of the show based on what their strength was. Kids loved them and so did merchandisers, starting with rubber characters and branching into plush, not to mention lunch boxes, books and games.
By 1981 the Smurfs were a staple of Saturday morning cartoons on NBC and were popular with kids in both Canada and the United States alike. The show liked to use classical masterpieces as background music for the storylines which enabled even the youngest kids the chance to be introduced to the historical works and the Smurfs easily became household names all over the world.
By creating something from an idea, like with the Smurfs, there is no telling how far it can go. What started as a simple cartoon strip blossomed into a worldwide phenomenon. In their heyday, you could see Smurfs on Ice and Smurf themed amusement parks rides and attractions, it seemed Smurfs, and their cute little white hats were everywhere.
If you have a character that you want to bring to life, there is no better way to do it than with the creation of a custom plush of your design. Start small and see where that idea takes you!