Crap. I took my daughter to Build-A-Bear Workshop and now I’m addicted. The whole thing kind of happened on accident. A routine cold afternoon running errands in a mall turned into an impulsive decision to step inside the ridiculously cute storefront. And here’s what happened next:
As you walk in there is a long wall full of ‘bears’ which are really a full range of stuffed animals to pick from not just bears. Brooklyn, my daughter, happened to pick the most unappealing animal available, some sort of cat/bear covered in fluorescent freckles. At this point I figured what the hell, go big or go home. I channeled my inner four year old self then Brooklyn and I dug through the bins until we found the one with the most purple freckles on it’s face. We knew ‘the one’ the minute we laid eyes on her.
When you select your animal only the head is stuffed, the bodies are deflated so the next stop is the Stuffing Station. A chipper employee brought us over to a large machine with a glass window, you could see it was filled with stuffing. She directed my daughter to pick a little fabric heart to be inserted inside her animal then led her through this ceremony:
Rub it on your face, so she is beautiful, just like you.
Rub it on your heart for lots of love.
Rub it on your nose so she knows you love her.
Rub it on your hair so it never has a bad fur day.
Take your heart, hold it tight, and make a BIG wish.
Now hold it close to your heart so it fills up with love….. and give it a great big kiss. Now put it inside your bear!
You’re given the option to pick out a sound and scents for your new toy. We opted out of these add-ons and went straight for the stuffing. The employees do the actual stuffing of your animal. She gave Brooklyn the cat/bear to hug before sewing it up to test its cuddliness, it was too firm so she took a bit of stuffing out until it was just right. Then stitched it up!
Next we went to Brooklyn’s favorite part, the Fluffing Station. This is a fake bathing station where you basically brush your new stuffed animal and can use a foot pedal operated fur dryer to fluff it just right.
Once we groomed our new cat/bear to perfection (it took quite a bit of brushing to meet Brooklyn’s satisfaction) we hit the racks to find an amazing outfit. We ended up with a leotard and matching pajamas for both Brooklyn and the cat/bear. Of course they had a dressing station so we could put the animal’s clothes on right away. After all, no one wants to leave Build-A-Bear with a naked bear!
Lastly we registered our new stuffed animal at a computer station which makes a birth certificate. Brooklyn gave her a very special name, Salicia. She keeps forgetting it so we’re really lucky we have a birth certificate to remind us of this unusual name, one that matches the unusual beauty of cat/bear.
So, is it worth it? We spent a total of $65.00. It’s a bit pricey but you can control your budget better by not getting matching pajamas, and only one outfit. We also learned you can have a party for as few as 5 kids. Their parties offer discounted prices on bears and outfits. It’s been a couple days now and Salicia a.k.a. cat/bear has gone everywhere with us. Brooklyn even convinced her dad to sew some clothes for her. Adopting this new critter has added some fun silliness to our family. I’m glad we did this adventure and it was worth every dollar. As for the addiction…I heard the NYC location has exclusive bears and clothing, can’t wait to check it out 🙂