Searching Portland for the Forgotten Majesty of the Tastee Freez
Since 2001, North Williams based Soapbox Theory has been growing steadily by producing and selling handprinted T-shirts, toys, gift cards, etc. that feature positive images of Black culture. Over the years they've developed a strong following, and have even started selling their products to stores around the world. Now, owner Kayin Talton Davis wants to take the business to the next level with the publication of a children's book that she wrote and illustrated, and a line of dolls based on the characters in it.
As Davis explains, she found that there is a serious lack of dolls in the marketplace that reflect diversity and aren't too grownup/creepy looking or based on Disney characters. As with all of Soapbox Theory's products, Davis wants the book and the dolls "to encourage healthy growth and self esteem in all those who enjoy them." And judging by the adorable cloth toys, paper dolls and refrigerator magnets already in the store, the dolls will no doubt be age-appropriate, natural looking and just so cute you kinda wanna scoop them all up in a giant hug.
Davis plans to start taking pre-orders on the book in February if not sooner, and to start printing by the end of March. The dolls will follow, and I will be back with updates as these projects materialize. In the meantime, check out some of the goods currently in the store: