Posted on September 15, 2008 Under Design

PatchTogether is an almost year-old community project for character designers and toy collectors. Initially based on the model of several T-shirt websites, PatchTogether presents a space to submit toy designs and have them critiqued, voted on and possibly put into production. Winning designs are selected based on member participation such as voting, comments and the number of hits for the page. They are then manufactured in PatchTogether’s factory in China. The site’s founder, Miller Song, refers to this way of making toys as “prosumer product.” A handful of designs, including the popular Yeti Guy and Timmy the Toxic Slimeball, have been chosen as winners and are currently available for pre-order. Last month, PatchTogether launched a new On-Demand service. When pre-order demand meets a set run number, production of the toy begins. With the On-Demand service, designers don’t have to win PatchTogether’s competition to have their toys produced. Currently, PatchTogether makes toys in vinyl and resin, with metal, wood and plush as options for smaller runs.