Sylvanian Families and the Adult Collector

Sylvanian Families vintage collector's


At what point does someone who buys Sylvanian Families regularly, cross over into being an Adult Collector? That's an interesting question.

There have always been adult collectors who love Sylvanian Families, as much as children. Many grown-ups spend a lot of time looking for Sylvanian figures and sets that transport them back to the days of growing up in the 80's. 

Sylvanian Families early vintage 1980's Treehouse

Maybe it's the Sylvanian Families they always wished for, but could never afford to have as a child.  Or perhaps the toys that  remind them of the fun, wholesome hours of a  happy childhood? Often adult collector's choose to display their items. Some keep them brand new, unopened, in their original box, which maintains the value of a vintage item. Others use Sylvanian sets for dioramas and photographic scenes. It's a fun hobby for many collectors and some even consider it a good investment, as some of the early vintage sets hold quite high value.

Sylvanian Families Fan magazine Collector's club

For many Adult Collector’s it's not about the value of the collection, but more of an emotional connection with what they collect. For some there’s a certain security in collecting and they consider their collection a “safe place”.  It can be a relaxation, can ease anxiety, or simply be a place to withdraw and forget the pressures of life. Some collector’s love the systematic organising and cataloguing that goes into a collection. Others can spend hours on presentation or photographing  a collection.

So how does one find themselves well on the way to being classified as a Sylvanian collector?

Is it because you enjoy the thrill of the hunt for that elusive vintage Tomy 1980’s piece, almost more than actually acquiring it?

Or buying a particular Sylvanian Families item, apparently for the kids, and then stashing them in a safe place, away from little hands, as they're “not to be played with.”

Could it be determined by the space your items require? When you really don’t have any more space for further acquisitions, but you’ll somehow manage to juggle things around to make more room? Or your Sylvanian gleanings start to overflow into the next room (or two)

Sylvanian Families St Francis School

When you keep checking your Facebook notifications on a Friday night, just in case there’s a Sylvanian collectible comes up for sale on your Sylvanian Buy Sell site, that’s too good to miss?

Having a Sylvanian "Holy Grail" - that one item that you've set your heart on obtaining, and yet always just missed out?

Maybe when you do a random head count of your personal Sylvania and are slightly surprised to find the population has sneaked over 100 without realising it! (but not to worry, I have heard of someone with over 3000 figures, and I'm sure they were slightly surprised too, when the tally results came in)


You spend your evening poring over dungaree patterns for Chocolate Rabbit fathers, that make allowances for fluffy tails to appear through the seat of the pants and crochet dress patterns for foxes, and your lady folk Sylvanians have more bonnets than all our great-grandmothers combined. Hmmm, I would say you are well on the way to being an Adult Collector!

Sylvanian Families DIY Possum Creek Blogspot Sylvanian Families Possum Creek Blogspot DIY Red Carpet dresses







My own awakening to realising I had crossed over into the “serious territory” of an “Adult Collector of Sylvanian Families” was when I found myself on Ebay bidding up to a ridiculous amount for a vintage item that I felt I had to have to complete my collection. And, of course, is it really ever complete? As it was with glee, that I paid what others would consider a foolhardy waste of money on some anthropomorphic animal figurines made of flocked plastic, dressed up in folksy 1950's frocks and dungarees, I understood, that, Yes, I am an Adult Collector.

Well, any of the above might possibly mean you could be a Sylvanian Families Adult Collector, and when it comes to collecting,  you're not alone! A recent British survey concluded that 1 in 3 adults engage in collecting in some form or another.  It's a term that is difficult to define and a title that almost creeps up on you unawares.

 Your thoughts, comments and confessions are welcome in the comments below.



Our Treasure Trove is the perfect place to find Vintage Sylvanian Families - new or near new. An Adult Collector's haven! We hope you enjoy browsing through a little of Sylvanian Families history in the form of some of these vintage collectibles.

These collectible Sylvanian figures are long gone from toys shops. Sometimes they'll turn up on Gumtree, or on Ebay, or other sites if you keep an eye out for them. But we've taken a great deal of time and care to source and place as many of these collectible Sylvanian items in one place, our online Sylvanian Specialty Store Treasure Trove.

Sylvanian Specialty Store vintage rare items Australia

A little background of these fascinating collectible toys.  Sylvanian Families was created by the Japanese gaming company Epoch, in 1985. The figures soon became immensely popular worldwide. In 1987, the company Tomy obtained exclusive rights for the Sylvanian Families brand and began distributing to the UK market. By the late 1980's, Sylvanian Families had become a major success around the world, winning the  award for "Toy of the Year" three years consecutively, in 1987, 1988 and 1989.

These early Tomy released Sylvanian Families are still sought after today. It's rare and quite exciting today to find a 1980's Tomy item still brand new in it's original box, unopened!  In 2017, we can open a Sylvanian Families item that has waited more than 30 years to be opened!

So, do check out our fabulous Sylvanian Families Treasure Trove! Whether it's just for a walk down memory lane, or to see what special Sylvanian Treasure we've managed to unearth. New items are being added as they arrive.

You might also like to read our other


Home page