Greetings, fellow RetroJunkies. I'm sure some of you ladies out there fondly remember a tiny blonde girl and her friends who lived in little compact-shaped houses. If by some chance you don't remember, I'm talking about Polly Pocket, of course! She was one of my favorite toys as a little girl, and for my first contribution to the Articles section, I thought I'd wax nostalgic about these toys. Hopefully a few of you will enjoy this stroll down Memory Lane with me.

Before we get started, let me say that I'm going to be covering the original Polly Pocket style of toys, not the redesigned ones. So if you want to read about the new ones, this article isn't for you!

Alright, enough of that. Let's get to the toys!

Garden Surprise (1990)

Garden Surprise reminds me of one of my favorite childhood stories: The Secret Garden. Maybe that's why I liked it so much!

The compact is (appropriately) shaped like a pink flower. It comes with Polly, who is looking delightfully old-fashioned in her fancy hat and blue-and-white polka-dot dress. Oddly, it also comes with a statue girl. (I would sometimes pretend that the statue had come to life...) If you put Polly or the statue girl into a certain peg, and turned the little white bench, they could "walk" down the path. While they walk, a rabbit pops up as well as some flowers. It's simple, but it entertained me!

Pretty Pandas (1993)

Pretty Pandas is the first Polly Pocket toy I can remember owning, so it holds a special place in my heart. Shaped like a light blue heart, it's a little smaller than some other compacts, but that doesn't mean I didn't have a lot of fun with it. As you might have guessed from the name of the toy, it comes with two cute pandas-- one big, one small.

On the top half of the compact, there's an Asian-themed house for Polly to live in. On the bottom, there's a panda pen, a cave for them to hide in, and what looks to be a koi pond. Maybe this toy was an early influence on my love for Japanese/Asian culture...?

Bridesmaid Polly (1989)

Like many little girls, I was enthralled by bridal dresses and weddings, so it's no surprise that one of my favorite Polly Pocket toys is a bridal playset!

This compact is shaped like a yellow shell. The inside of it looks like a chapel, of course. I've never been to a purple-and-yellow wedding chapel before, but it works well enough here. There's a table set up with a cake on it, and an organ that can hold the plastic gold heart ring that comes with the set. I wish I'd known about that when I was a kid-- then maybe I wouldn't have lost the ring!

For this playset, Polly gets to be a bridesmaid. Always a bridesmaid, never a bride! Much like the chapel, Polly is also very purple. Her bride friend opts to be a little different, sporting a pink bouquet and crown of flowers. The groom wears a grey suit with purplish accents of color and a top hat, which keep him from looking too boring. Try getting a real guy to wear that.

Secret Rose Fairy Ring and Tulip Petal Fairy Ring (1993)

These were my favorite! I've put them together due to how similar they are. These rings are two pearlescent flowers with a little fairy girl hiding inside of them. Flowers and fairies-- what more could a little girl ask for? (Rainbows and unicorns, maybe...)

Fairy Polly comes in the pink rose ring. In the purple tulip ring is one of her friends named Lulu. Both of them have shiny iridescent wings and carry a wand. Anyway, I found the idea of flower fairies really fascinating back then and I still think it's pretty neat. It can really get the imagination going.

Water Fun Park (1990)

Ah, the water park playset. This one was fun because when you open it up, there's a pink water slide. There's also a clown slide, which these days I find a little disturbing, but we won't dwell on that.

Another reason why I liked this set is it came with a doll that I never saw with any of the other sets. She wears a turquoise bathing suit and has dark skin and hair. I always liked her because she looked so different.

Cinderella Castle (1995)

Now we're getting to the toys I only wish I'd had. I never even knew they made this one until recently! Licensed from Disney, it's rather bigger than any of the compacts and is castle-shaped.

My favorite thing about it is the dolls. It comes with eight of them, including the Fairy Godmother, the prince, the wicked stepmother and stepsisters. The other three are different versions of Cinderella: dressed in "rags", her ballgown, and her bridal gown. How cool is that? The only thing that could have made it better is if it had come with her little mice friends too!

To top it all off, it comes with the magic pumpkin coach! It's clear and glittery and is pulled by a couple of white horses. Fun!

Suki's Japanese Tea House (1990)

Here's another one I didn't know about until recently. The inside of the compact isn't particularly interesting-- it's mostly just a little Japanese-style house. What I liked about it is that it comes with two Japanese girl dolls! Also, they even did their homework and gave them appropriate names: Suki and Atsuko. Suki wears a purple kimono, and Atsuko is dressed in white with a green belt.

I find it pretty neat that they did try to be somewhat culturally diverse with the toys...puts them a little ahead of their time.

Fifi's Parisian Apartment (1990)

This compact is really charming. It comes with Fifi, who is clad in pink and wears a fancy hat. Also included are her two poodles! On the top half of the compact, we have a balcony with a view of the Eiffel Tower. On the bottom, there's a garden with a doghouse for the two poodles to live in.

Fairy Wishing World (1992)

Yeah, I know, more fairy stuff. I mostly just like this one because of the interior. It's all sparkly clouds and rainbows in this compact! It also has a wishing well. Included is Fairy Polly, only this time she's wearing turquoise. I would have liked it to use with my other fairy dolls.

Seashine Mermaid Locket (1993)

Finally, we have one of the many lockets. This one is shaped like a shell and has a golden finish. Oooh...shiny. Inside is an underwater scene and a place to put a photo. But the best part about this toy is the fact that it comes with a mermaid doll! I don't know about anybody else, but when I was younger, I loved mermaids so much that I wanted to be one, so I would have bought this just to get that doll...

Well, that's the end of our trip to Polly Pocket Land for now. I hope someone out there enjoyed it. If there are any toys you had that I didn't include here-- and I'm sure there are, there's a hundred of these things --just leave a comment! I'd love to hear about it. Perhaps if there's enough interest, I'll do a second installment sometime in the future.

For more information about Polly Pocket, visit the site I used as my source for this article:

Thanks for reading!