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Thursday, January 28, 2010

American vs. European trolls

I've always found it fascinating that the same type of troll can look so different depending on where it was made! So I wanted to create a running blog entry on the differences between these trolls (which can mainly be put into the broad category of American vs. European), and update as I find examples :-).

The trolls found within this entry will mostly be vintage. During the Norfin era (80's and early 90's) and later, the Dam company had been able to regain their copyrights, and had more control over the general look of their trolls, and who sold them.

There are a few differences between American and Euro trolls that tend to happen across the board, so I will list them here to avoid being repetitive:

American trolls tend to be made of a hard vinyl, whereas Euro trolls tend to be made of a "squishier," softer vinyl (this is a very classic tell tale of European trolls)

European trolls (and I say this from an American stand point ;-) ) are more difficult to find, and therefore sometimes can be a bit more expensive. This is mainly true for animal trolls.

American vs. European Iggy

The lovely green girl on the left was made in America, and the pristine girl on the right comes from Argentina, but is a beautiful example of the European Iggy.

American: came in a variety of colors, the most common being amber.
Euro: larger, plastic or glass eyes of a dark, reddish amber color, or orange, that are a bit more flat.

American: soft pink blush on the cheeks.
Euro: very red blush on the cheeks.

Skin Tone:
American: has a lighter tone.
Euro: has a darker, slightly reddish tone.

The Euro Iggy is a big larger and stockier than the American, with a wider head.

American vs. European Girl, Medium size (~5-6")

When doing comparisons, I like to try and stick to the original felt outfits. For the vintage medium size, I realized I don't have an American in original outfit! So I flanked my European girl with the two sizes of the American medium troll, and underneath put a photo of the American original outfit that came from an old troll brochure.

American: was either in glass or a flatter, plastic spiral, and came in a variety of colors.
Euro: glass in a dark amber color.

American: soft pink blush on the cheeks, if any.
Euro: more red blush on the cheeks.

Skin Tone:
The Euro has a bit of a darker skin tone.

American: came in two medium sizes: 5" (the Go Go girl on the right) and 5.75" (the Ballerina on the left)
Euro: came in one size: 5.75 inches, and has a larger head.

Same jumper, but the American medium size did not come with a shirt, whereas the European did.

Medium trolls from New Zealand:

Medium trolls from New Zealand are interesting, and aren't as easily found. They use the boy's mold for both genders, and have squishy vinyl like Euro trolls, but have a lighter skin tone (sometimes bordering on very pale). Their outfits are similar to the American's, but the girl has buttons, and the boy has shorts instead of the usual one-strapped overall, and a vest tied with a ribbon. The girl also has a ribbon bow in her hair, instead of a bow made of felt. Their eyes are dark amber, and made of glass, similar to the European's. Their hair is more kinky, with a rougher texture than the Euro or American's soft mohair, and is most likely sheep's wool.

Foot imprint:

(used with permission)
A very nice, matching pair. Click to see larger!

American vs. European Giraffes

Though I already defined the differences of the giraffes in another entry, I decided to rewrite the information here. Its good to consolidate :-). In the photo above, the European giraffe is flanked by the two sizes of American giraffes.

American: amber
Euro: brownish, dark amber

American: fuzzy orange spots, ears, horns, and hooves.
Euro: has a more distinct brown, diamond pattern.

Skin tone:
American: usual lighter skin tone.
Euro: darker, more brownish skin tone

Hair color:
American: came in several different colors (peach, white, brown, black).
Euro: brown or black.

American: came in 2 sizes: the larger 12.5 inch giraffe (white hair on the left), and the smaller sized 11.5 inch giraffe (my sweet girl with replaced pink hair with black tips ;-) ).
Euro: tends to be the larger 12.5" size

Danish Horses vs. Regular Horses

(used with permission)
(Danish horse head, Danish horse, and regular horse troll with original tag)

(used with permission)

Major Difference: articulation
Danish: articulated head
Regular: body all one mold

Danish: short and bushy
Regular: long and straight

Danish: more "squishy"
Regular: harder variety

The ears on the Danish pony are a bit larger, pointed, and are perked up more than the regular pony's.

Danish: Tends to be similar to the Chocolate pony (darker airbrushing), and sometimes the Danish pony has a bit of white airbrushing on his nose.
Regular: Lighter color: orangish airbrushing, Chocolate color: darker/brown airbrushing

(used with permission)
Beautifully restored Danish pony flanked by 2 regular horses (see how his head can turn?)

(used with permission)
Good reference for the difference in their ears.

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