Hasbro’s Marianne James on why Furby is set to become a force in fashion

Marianne James – Vice President, Europe & Asia, Licensed Consumer Products at Hasbro ­– on why collaborations with Furby allow partners to push creative boundaries.

Marianne, it’s always great to catch up. Hasbro recently debuted a striking collection of Furby apparel with Cakeworthy. What makes that brand an exciting one to explore through licensing?
Well, since Furby first hit shelves 25 years ago, the cute, cool – and weird! – toy remains a unique symbol of self-expression for fans across the globe. With a passionate and growing fandom, Furby has turned into more than just a toy – Furby is an icon!

Furby also offers a nostalgic journey back to their childhood, reimagining 25 years of history, while bringing forth a sense of fun, creativity and relatability for audiences of all ages. The brand reminds fans that they can be their hilarious, wacky, perfectly imperfect selves, because that is what makes them – and the world – a little more special.

Marianne James, Hasbro, Cakeworthy, Furby, Fashion, Toys & Games

Brilliant answer! The Cakeworthy collection made a splash – why do you think Furby is proving a great fit for fashion?
The brand is poised to become a true force in fashion, capitalising on the current nostalgia trend at its peak. We’re immersed in the revival of our fondest ’90s memories, reimagining iconic characters, embracing vivid colours and transcending traditional silhouettes beyond basic tees.

“Collaborating with Furby allows our partners to push creative boundaries.”

Collaborating with the Furby brand allows our partners to explore new possibilities and push creative boundaries, giving birth to fresh collections that reimagine the original toy in a contemporary light. There are few better ways to show off your Furby fandom than by wearing Furby on your sleeves – literally!

Marianne James, Hasbro, Cakeworthy, Furby, Fashion, Toys & Games

Ha! Or on your head – the Furby bucket hats certainly catch the eye! On that, what made Cakeworthy stand out as a perfect partner for the brand?
As an expert fashion brand in the fandom space, Cakeworthy fits in seamlessly as a partner for Furby. Their team’s affinity to the brand empowered them to bring their vision for the perfect collection to life. They not only introduced an exhilarating and pioneering assortment to their core fan base, but also captivated fans of all demographics.

“Furby has turned into more than just a toy – Furby is an icon!”

This widespread appeal is fuelled by the nostalgia and rich history associated with the Furby brand and its resurgence. With outrageously fun designs inspired by earlier versions of the iconic toy, this collection has something for every generation of Furby fan.

Marianne James, Hasbro, Cakeworthy, Furby, Fashion, Toys & Games

Cakeworthy Founder Brandon Shedden said this is one of the firm’s most ambitious collections to date. There’s 3D elements and hair, which are new elements for the company. How important was it to push this range design-wise?
Both Furby and Cakeworthy have always celebrated all things playful and weird, so bringing those unexpected details into the assortment felt like an obvious win. Highlighting the textural elements of the nostalgic toy as a distinctive embellishment to apparel and accessories brings the collection to life – for both the bold fashion connoisseur as well as the nostalgic fan.

Marianne James, Hasbro, Cakeworthy, Furby, Fashion, Toys & Games

Marianne, this has been fun! Before we wrap up, looking ahead, what other areas of interest do you have for Furby?
The world is our oyster when it comes to the future of Furby. We look forward to attracting all types of premier partnerships across licensed consumer product categories to create a similar impact on the new generation of Furby fans as it did for 90s and Y2K kids.

Hasbro has big plans to grow its branded offerings for Furby in new and exciting formats, ultimately giving consumers more ways to showcase their fandom. Furby is not just a passing trend; it’s here to stay!

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