Things I Miss: Polly Pocket & Starcastles

‘Things I Miss’ is an occasional segment on my blog about things that I miss. It could include places I have been, things I bought as a child, things I used to do, things that have become obsolete or are no longer produced like old television shows, foods, toys, and the like. Other posts in this segment are under the Things I Miss category.

This was something I featured on my old photoblog, and that got me thinking about the Things I Miss segment initially.

When I was younger, at about the age of seven or eight, I got my first Polly Pocket. It was for my birthday, if I remember correctly, and it was a small, ordinary, but quite colourful house. It is a bit sad that I don’t have any photos of it, and that there isn’t some kind of “Polly Pocket archive” to look for every Polly Pocket that existed. But I remember that although it was mostly grey, it was a nice blue-grey, with the trees and mailbox coloured, and it was super colourful inside. The way it opened was really creative – basically the house was cut in half horizontally with a hinge on the back at the middle.

When opened, it would open like a two-storey house, with the roof section of the house consisting of the second floor; the furniture was really colourful and nice. I remember it being one of my most colourful Polly Pockets.

I sadly don’t remember too many of my other ones. From there, I moved on to Starcastles, which were similar, but you couldn’t really stick some of the figurines and characters into little cut-out holes on the playset, not like Polly Pocket. Starcastles were similar to Polly Pocket in that they were like little doll houses, but they contained a heck of a lot of other fun features, like bubble wands, fairy dust, and scented parts, not to mention they had very nice glittery features without being too glittery.

I think Starcastles started to get better over time, probably because of the best (and last) Starcastle I owned. I was about ten years old, and I had a giant Starcastle that my parents bought me for Christmas. Up until then, I didn’t get many “cool” toys – I was more into books at the time. But this one Christmas, my mum said I could choose whatever toy I wanted. I don’t think it occurred to me, but at the time, I chose the most expensive thing on the shelf. The giant Starcastle was… well, giant. It wasn’t bigger than me or anything, but it was about twenty times the size of a normal Starcastle and cost about a hundred dollars. The figurines even had holes in the bottom so you could stick them on these posts in the castle. So, like, you could actually stick them in the castle, they didn’t just have to stand there with risk of falling over! Well. My mum kept asking me if I was sure I wanted it, and didn’t want anything else. She said it was a lot of money.

Suffice to say, I don’t think I took care of the Starcastle as much as I should have. I lost a lot of figurines, including a tiny little duck (damn it I love ducks!) that dropped somewhere in the grass at school. It was a bit dumb to take half the figurines to school, and not take the Starcastle (then again that thing was huge). In primary school they always tell you not to bring toys because they will get broken and lost. Well, you know, kids always think they are careful.

Many years later, I remember feeling much regret when it came to giving the toy away. A lot of the figurines had been misplaced, including the lovely Beauty and the Beast, and I remember purposely keeping the glittery plastic key and not putting it with the whole set (or what was left of it). I think I just said to my parents that it could be forced open (which it could be, but that’s not really ideal), or if kids had another key, they could totally use that themselves. Because kids don’t just buy one Starcastle, do they?

Although I loved that Starcastle, it wasn’t my favourite toy. My favourite was a Polly Pocket house that was shaped like a perfume bottle. And to this day, I still have it. It sits nicely on my shelf and looks like a plastic piece of crap, but really, it is a nice bottle compared to some really weird perfume bottles out there. Not naming names. I actually can’t think of any off the top of my head.

Polly Pocket perfume bottle
Closed outside view
Polly Pocket perfume bottle: bottm half
Bottom half view
Polly Pocket perfume bottle: top half
Top half view
Polly Pocket perfume bottle: Full view
Full view

I loved the colours, the blue and pink, and the fact that it looked majestic – really, a thousand times better than a lot of other Polly Pockets. I had one that looked like a makeup mirror, one that was like a shell, another that was just a square (clearly the older and less creative editions)… yeah, this just topped it, really. Translucent blue, with a bubble wand inside the top knob, and with this bubble area inside that you could press and it would blow bubbles in the little spa inside. Polly came with this majestic looking towel, which was just a translucent roll of orange, but seriously it looked like a towel…

Polly Pocket perfume bottle: Polly Closeup
Polly, closeup shot
Polly Pocket perfume bottle: Polly and open doors
Polly with open doors for the shower and the towel cabinet
Polly Pocket perfume bottle: Bubble wand feature
Bubble wand feature

I also don’t know why I am writing in past tense when I clearly still have this thing.

But I think one day I will delve into Polly Pocket and see if they are still around. I wish they were as classic as Barbies.

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I can’t begin to tell you how many Polly Pockets I have gained and lost over the years. I’ve had several Mickey Mouse watchers stolen from me at the YMCA (when I was going there until a day we went to the beach and someone had torn up my lunch money).

Anyway, I remember playing with Polly Pockets, and my little ponies. I was wanting what the guys had on my block. Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles. However, my mom wouldn’t buy them, nor would my grandmother. They both wanted me to play with girlie items. I was crushed. But in a way, I’m glad as I got to experience Polly Pockets. The newer makes of them are cheap. Not to happy with the way they’re portraying Barbie to be, and Polly Pocket. I was never a Barbie collector or anything. Just ponies. ha!

This Polly Pocket set looks so familiar to me. I’m pretty sure I had one from a similar set but a slightly different design and colour (in fact I just Googled it and found the exact one! Ah, nostalgia.)

Polly Pocket is still around but she’s not really pocket sized any more. I remember as I started to grow out of the toy they were bringing out larger plastic dolls with changeable clothes that were made out of a sort of rubbery material. She just wasn’t the same after that.

I completely agree with you, Holly! The Polly Pockets we grew up with as a kid were plastic and small. Yet, you could move her in the different compartments. The newer ones are rubbery, can change her clothes and not really move her as much. I never did like the newer ones myself. I was more attached to the older ones.

I have the same blue Polly Pocket! I never knew it was a perfume bottle. I always thought it was just supposed to be all bubble-covered. The door to the cabinet broke off a long time ago, and I no longer have the bubble wand (part of me thinks I drank from it at some point…) but it’s relatively intact. I loved making bubbles in the little bathtub.

I sill have the four Polly Pocket sets from my childhood: a Merry-Go-Round, a pink heart-shaped house, a swimming pool, and the perfume bottle.

The Merry-Go-Round actually spins when you turn a bush, and there’s detachable little stand that I think is supposed to be a ticket booth. When you open the top flaps, it reveals a restaurant with a slide down into the Merry-Go-Round, and the figurines could be sat on the horses. That one got a lot of love.

The heart-shaped house was mostly amusing because of the way it sounded when snapped open and shut. I think I opened and closed it more than put the figurines in it.

The pool was magnetic and came with a figurine which had a magnet on the bottom (incidentally in the shape of a heart). You could fill up the pool with water, put her on the magnet, and have her slide around. There was also a shower that, when pumped, took water from the pool and splashed it down–it could even turn into different places. The set had a snack bar and a slide into the pool (which wasn’t very good. The figurines go stuck so many times).

They all got so much love.

I remember losing one of the figurines down the bathroom sink. I cried so badly that my dad messed around with the plumbing to get her back. I can’t remember if he actually did…

A family friend had the newer/bigger Polly Pocket playsets and I remember adoring them when I visited. Rubber clothes, different hairstyles, no longer a coking hazard. 😛

http://onlypollypocket.com/ has a whole bunch of sets listed. I think they’re just for sale, but it’s fun to look back at them… Even if the site design is old as heck.

I was OBSESSED with that site in high school, honestly contemplated collecting all of them. The “Visitor Collections” section is particularly awe-inspiring.

Damn. I am really disappointed that they are now bigger and just not the same as they were. Times have changed! I might look on eBay or something for some old ones, and buy one just for fun. I laughed at your choking hazard comment, hahaha.

Man, Polly Pockets! I miss them so much! I used to have a lot of them, but of course, as a kid I didn’t take care of them, and I threw them away when I lost interest. I sure regret that now. I wish I had them to decorate my room with!

Wow! I had literally hundred of those, and I used to love them to death! ♥️ Now that I think about it, I guess that I still have them all hidden somewhere in the attic, where all of my childhood stuff is. I’m not able to get rid of anything, and having a lot of spare space isn’t helping. You made me want to go get them right away!

Polly Pocket was my plaything of choice as a kid. Yeah, more than Barbies and video games and everything else. Everyone at my school had at least one set too, so we would bring them, put them all in a row, and play with them during lunch break.

I had most of the ones from the 1994 and 1995 collections (see: http://www.onlypollypocket.com) – I remember my friends being super jealous because I had the Magical Mansion (http://www.onlypollypocket.com/1994/Magical_Mansion/magical_mansion.html).

My first one was the Babysitting Stamper (http://www.onlypollypocket.com/1992/Baby_Sitting_Stamper_Set/baby_sitting_stamper_set.html) and my favourite was DEFINITELY Sparkling Mermaid Adventure (http://www.onlypollypocket.com/1995/Sparkling_Mermaid_Adventure/sparkling_mermaid_adventure.html)

#90snerdtime

Hahahha oh my god. I am jealous of you because of the Magical Mansion. I never had the large Polly Pockets because I actually wanted to put them into my pockets (they never fit, though). I think I am now going to spend an hour on that website… 😄