The Beginning of Calisson Toys - Sophie la Girafe's Journey from France to America
Tradition, quality of materials, and exquisite craftsmanship. And with these three standards of craft, Calisson Toys was born.
The unexpected yet heart-warming discovery of her father’s perfectly preserved baby shoes in an attic two decades ago, alongside the birth of her daughter, inspired Helene to build a brand based around family and high-quality materials.
This high standard sets Calisson Toys apart from other kid brands, and is our promise to you of a sweet embrace. Calisson Toys has been the original and sole US distributor for original Sophie la Girafe products since 2001.
More than 70 million Sophies have been sold across the globe, and you can now purchase Sophie in over 80 different countries.
Sophie was first created in France in 1961, but wasn’t sold in America until 40 years later when Helene asked Vulli (Sophie’s current manufacturer) if she could import the Giraffe teether to the States.
At that point, Sophie had become a household name in France, with 9 out 10 babies receiving their very own Sophie la Girafe teether!
Since then, more than 70 million Sophies have been sold across the globe, and you can now purchase Sophie in over 80 different countries.
We started with just 100 Sophies. In the beginning, Helene drove from boutique to boutique and was only rejected because it was considered expensive for a rubber teether. But she had a lot of faith in Sophie.
One of our first and significant customer was Teri Weiss, owner of the Beverly Hills boutique Elegant Child.
She said, “I knew I could sell it.”
Teri bought a few giraffes to put in the expensive baby baskets she collected for celebrity parents. Surprisingly, our toy became an instant hit, and later Weiss was selling hundreds of Sophies a week! We started noticing how sales went up each time a celebrity’s baby was photographed holding our giraffe. But, it was just the beginning.
After years of dedication and working with mom-and-pop baby boutiques, we are proud to say that Sophie la Girafe grew into a well-known established brand in the US. We are hearing again and again from our customers that “Every Mom knows and every baby loves Sophie.”.
Now, Sophie is available in stores like Target, Bloomingdales, Buy Buy Baby, and Nordstrom! But, we are most proud of the thousands of boutiques across the US that play such an important part in local communities. Over the last 20 years of Calisson Toys, we’ve loved seeing all the photos, videos, and sweet notes of all of your littles enjoying Sophie and her friends.
Thank you for all of your endless love and support of us and Sophie la Girafe.
With Love and Gratitude,
The Calisson Toys Family
Want to learn more about Sophie's birth and how she is made? Click Here