I’m very excited to launch one of the new products that I have been working on, and has kind of become a signature party gift of mine! I have personally gifted this to kids and adults alike, with great success, and most any theme or occasion can be customized to fit!
(Cue the trumpets)
Prize Puffs and Curio Cones!
But what’s a Prize Puff or a Curio Cone you ask?
Vintage inspired toys, trinkets, and treasures wrapped in over 100 feet of crepe paper streamers.
The prizes are all curated and hand rolled by me!
In the 1950’s Charles Gregor Surprise Balls, “The Toy You Destroy to Enjoy” flooded the five and dime stores, as well as those of Fao Schwarz and hospital gift shops. Today an original Charles Gregor Surprise Ball can cost you hundreds on auction sites, IF you can even find one.
Experience the simple joy and thrill of these nostalgic toys with my Prize Puffs! These are great party gifts for every age, and involves the entire crowd. What color will come next!? What prize will fall out next!? Great for developing fine motor skills, and requires little effort so it is the perfect gift for a get well or hospital patient.
Each Prize Puff and Curio Cone is hand wrapped with prizes in each layer that have been diligently searched out in an attempt to remain authentic to their original predecessors. Prizes may include vintage and vintage inspired trinkets, toys, jokes, riddles, fortunes, candy from around the world, and other treasures hand selected and sought out from vendors and personal artisans.
I was always the black sheep of my family. While other kids my age were interested in sports, or social interactions, I was busy staging full scale Broadway productions of Disney Flicks in my grandma’s living room, and carnivals on the weekends. As a young adult, and with the discovery of my love for vintage childhood nostalgia, I began to entertain at out home. Each event was meticulously planned, making sure the theme was carried throughout, from decor to food to favors.
For most of my life I’ve been surrounded by individuals who merely “put up with me” but never really understood my passions. However, with the vast connecting powers of the internet, I discovered others who shared in my oddball passions. I found others who loved talking about their estate sale treasure hunts, and the thrill of finding that lovely vintage item for a steal. Others who loved planning events with sometimes obscure themes, but that were painstakingly researched in order to stay true to the authenticity of the time period, and theme. Others were out there that reveled in a weekly thrift store ritual, or who were content to spend their Friday evenings creating art.
I often wish I could go back in time to visit a five and dime store, with it’s rows of penny candy and vintage trinkets… I would surely be in heaven! Perhaps, in a past lifetime, I had happy memories visiting with only a handful of coins in tow. Until the popularity of such fads rise again, here is my time machine for others who find they are a little like me.
I spent a lot of time doing some soul searching to better communicate why I created Nicolyndime, and the etsy store of the same name. This is an excerpt from my shop’s page:
MY MOTHER WAS A STAY AT HOME MOM/ HOMEMAKER WHO WAS ABSOLUTELY DEVOTED TO ME. ONE OF MY FAVORITE ACTIVITIES WAS OUR WALKS TO THE COMMUNITY GROCERY AND PHARMACY WHERE WE WOULD PUT A QUARTER INTO THE SQUARE VENDING MACHINE THAT WAS JUST AT MY LEVEL. ALL OF THOSE COLORFULLY LIDDED CAPSULES INSIDE, AND THE ANTICIPATION OF WHICH SURPRISES WOULD ROLL OUT, WAS ALMOST TOO MUCH TO STAND!
EVEN BETTER WAS THE ANNUAL FIREMAN’S CARNIVAL, ALSO A SHORT WALK FROM OUR HOME, AND THE THRILLS OF WINNING NEON COLORED WHISTLES, BOUNCY BALLS, AND OTHER TRINKETS FROM THE DUCK POND; THE ONLY GAME THAT REQUIRED NO SKILL. MY CHILDHOOD WAS MARKED WITH THESE PLASTIC TRINKETS THAT, IN THE EYES OF A CHILD, ARE SURELY THE EQUIVALENT OF RUBIES AND GOLD.
LATER MY MOTHER SUFFERED AN ILLNESS AND LOST HER ABILITY TO WALK. CONFINED TO A WHEELCHAIR, AND NO LONGER ABLE TO GO ON OUR WALKS, WE WOULD REMINISCE AND LOOK THROUGH HER VINTAGE TRINKETS, AND SPEND PRECIOUS TIME TOGETHER.
WHEN I WAS OLD ENOUGH TO MAKE THE TREK TO THE PHARMACY BY MYSELF, I WOULD PICK OUT TRINKETS FOR MY MOM, AND DELIGHT IN MY ABILITY TO BRING A SMALL GLIMPSE OF OUR PAST ENJOYMENTS INTO HER HOME.
SHE HAD SUCH A KNACK FOR FILLING MY YEARS WITH WONDER, AND I’M SURE I GET MY CREATIVITY AND LOVE FOR CRAFTING AND ENTERTAINING FROM BOTH MY MOTHER AND MY GRANDMOTHER, THE TWO WOMEN WHO RAISED ME.
SUCH POWER THOSE SMALL PLASTIC TRINKETS HELD! SO MUCH SO, THAT IF I SEE ONE TODAY, THE MEMORIES COME FLOODING BACK. SMELL A CRAYON AND INSTANTLY BE TRANSPORTED TO CHILDHOOD, SEE AN ITEM LONG FORGOTTEN BUT THAT IMMEDIATELY TELLS YOUR STORY, OR HEAR A SONG AND TRAVEL THROUGH TIME. I GUESS THAT’S WHY I HAVE ALWAYS BEEN DRAWN TO ITEMS FROM THE PAST. OLD ITEMS CREATE CONNECTIONS, GIVE US STORIES, AND TIE US TO A NETWORK THAT’S GREATER THAN US.
NICOLYNDIME EXISTS TO BE PART OF THAT CONNECTION. PERHAPS I CAN HELP YOU SAVE TIME BY PROVIDING A PARTY DELIVERED RIGHT TO YOUR DOOR SO YOU CAN SPEND VALUABLE TIME WITH YOUR LOVED ONES INSTEAD. THERE’S NEVER ENOUGH TIME… OR MAYBE I CAN SUPPLY A WONDROUS PRIZE PUFF, OR CURIO CONE, TO A FRIEND, OR AS A NOSTALGIC GIFT TO YOURSELF FOR A RAINY DAY! POSSIBLY I HAVE JUST THE VINTAGE ITEM THAT YOU HAVE ALWAYS REMEMBERED FROM A HAPPY MOMENT IN TIME.
WHEN YOU MAKE A PURCHASE FROM NICOLYNDIME, YOU’RE GETTING MORE THAN YOU CAN SEE. A CURATED OR HAND CREATED GIFT PROVIDES THE RECIPIENT WITH A CUSTOMIZED PIECE OF ART THAT SHOWS THOUGHTFULNESS AND SOUL. A PARTY IN A BOX SUPPLIES A STRESS FREE EXPERIENCE TO MAKE MEMORIES, SAVING YOU TIME TO SHARE WITH THE IMPORTANT PEOPLE IN YOUR LIFE. A VINTAGE FIND NOT ONLY PROVIDES A PRECIOUS MEMENTO AND MEMORY TO THE PAST, BUT ALSO RECYCLES THAT TREASURE FROM A FATE IN A LANDFILL.
Also exciting is the pre launch of my youtube channel where you can see a prize puff in action!
Check it out here:
I hope that you will continue in my creative journey with me, and follow along as I continue to add products!