Sylvanian Families - Who are the Favourites?
Can you guess which Sylvanian Family has udderly won the hearts of Australians .....?
In a poll, conducted in 2017, without a doubt, the clear favourite Sylvanian Families winner was….The Buttercup Cow Family!
In 2020, there was a Favourite Family Voting Competition, and it's no surprise that the Sylvanian Families Buttercup Cow Family were voted one of the favourites. Now, in 2021, the Cow Family have been released again.
Here they are posing for their family picture - only Aunty Elsie (who rides the icecream cart) and Uncle Penleigh with his horse and market cart are busy elsewhere today. They are working Sylvanians, after all!
One of the most popular Families, which is very hard to find nowadays is the Friesian Cow Family, who go by the surname of The Buttercups. Besides the Buttercup Family of 4, which includes Dad, Hornbull Buttercup, his rather bossy wife, Daisy and their two little cow children.
And yes, there’s also a Grandpa and Grandma Buttercup, the Cow Grandparents. Not all Sylvanian Families have Grandparents released, but the lucky Paddock and Annabell do have some adorable Grandparents. They go by the name of Angus and Bessie Buttercup.
The Friesian Cow Uncle Penleigh comes in his very own Horse and Market Cart Set, all ready for a day at the markets selling his produce. It’s quite rare to find this set brand new nowadays. In fact, our last Pony and Cart Set to date has just gone on a long trek across Australia, to Joondalup, to be sat under a West Australian Christmas tree! Someone will be delighted!
And there’s a Friesian Cow auntie also! Aunt Elsie Buttercup and her Icecream Cart. Friesian cow auntie Elsie Buttercup owns a traditional ice cream sellers tricycle and can be seen pedalling up and down the promenade all day long in Sylvanian on ice-creamy type days or at Sylvanian markets.
There is a standing baby cow, who comes with his own crib - which we sometimes have available in our Sylvanian Treasure Trove.
And the Sylvanian Families Cow baby twins, by the name of Dolly & Fennel Buttercup. (Don’t you love the way they name these Sylvanian Families figures?)
Dolly is in sitting pose with a yellow outfit, and Fennel is in a crawling pose wearing a green outfit.
The Sylvanian Families Van Dyke Otter Family
Is it any surprise that second place in the poll went to the Van Dyke Otter Family?
Love them, or hate them? Some find this Sylvanian Families Otter family adorable, others quite the opposite. Whatever the prevailing opinion, there’s no question that these little guys are extremely collectible.
The Van Dyke Otter Family have been released several times over the years. The first release of this Van Dyke Family was 1993. The only noticeable difference in this release, from other later releases, is that Mrs Van Dyke’s dress is a darker shade of blue. They were released again in 2002, 2007 and finally in 2012.
The Otter twins, Becky and Eddy Van Dyke, cute and cheeky looking as they are, prove themselves even harder to come by. These days, if you find them brand new, you can consider it quite a collectible coup.
Sylvanian Families Elephant Family – the Trunk Family
The Otter's only held a narrow lead over the Elephant family. In fact, nearly too close to call!
A Family of animals who are big in real life, and even in their miniature Sylvanian form they are still big in popularity!
Ever popular in anyone’s collection, child or adult, are the Sylvanian Families Elephant Family.
Sylvanian Families distributed by Flair call this family the Trunk Elephant Family, but their Trans-Atlantic cousins, the USA Calico Critters, are known as the Ellwood Elephant Family. These are still available in store.
The Elephant Twins, who come in sitting and crawling poses, although now discontinued, are sometimes still found online, however the Standing Elephant Baby is quite rare and there would be places around the world where these can still be purchases brand new, but we do have a supply of these in Sylvanian Specialty Store!
So, that was 1st, 2nd and 3rd place. Now we mention other Sylvanian Families that are very popular too, but in not particular order. Each one just as well-loved in their own way
The Dale Sheep Family
The Dale Sheep Family have been available in Australia up until fairly recently. They were probably last available in stores in Australia around 2014, but have now joined the “retired/discontinued” list of Sylvanian Families. It would be lovely to have a re-release of the Dale Sheep Family at some point.
The Dale family are: Father, Ewen runs an orchard and mother Barbara is his right-hand lady. Children, Winton and Iona Dale complete the family of 4. There is a Sheep Grandparents set, but they are very hard to find.
There are Sylvanian Families Sheep babies to increase the family size. Lambs come as a single Sylvanian Sheep baby
They have a beloved Aunty Dolly Dale, who rides the Candy Floss Cart around town. Besides the obvious draw of her Candy Floss treats, which the twins love, Aunty Dolly is a very jolly and loveable aunt too!
A European version of the Sheep family are available too. The European sets are unnamed and come in a Family of 3.
The twin sheep were also released as a special limited edition Sheep Baby Kindergarten set, kitted out in their very school kindy uniforms.
Other play sets that include the Sheep babies are the European Sheep baby on a tricycle set.
Sylvanian Families Honey Fox Family – The Slydale Family
Sylvanian Families Honey Fox Family – The Slydale Family
Now don’t be confused with the early 1980’s Tomy Slydale Fox family and the more recent 2005 Slydale Fox Family! The modern Fox family are known as the Honey Fox Family. They are completely different in looks, as you will see. However, Flair decided to re-use the same family names for this release of Fox family, so the little tyrant, Buster Slydale, lives on!
Sylvanian Families Panda Bear Family
The Panda Family will win anyone’s heart. The Bamboo Panda Family were first released in UK in 1992. Since then they have had several re-releases. The most recent release was in 2012.
A Panda on a train Carry case set is also available.
The Bamboo Panda also comes in the Limited Edition Sylvanian Families Around the World Series, Russia and China, which were special releases featuring Clarice Bamboo, the sister Panda, in traditional Chinese costume and Abigail Bramble, the Hedgehog sister in a Russian dress.
The parents of the Sylvanian Families Meerkat Family are named Harry Spotter and Beatrice Spotter! Aren’t those names just magical! How I’d love a job in Sylvanian marketing, spending my days thinking up the cutest names for new Sylvanian Families members.
The Meerkat Family, another firm favourite, were first distributed by Flair in UK in 2010 and only release once, however they must have been in production for quite a few years, as have been available in shops even as recent as 2015, but are now discontinued from production.
The Spotter’s babies, the Meerkat Triplets, only ever came as the peanut-butter-loving meerkat triplets, Penelope, Peregrine and Prudence. Now that would be quite a mouthful if you had to call all three at once!
A darling pair of Meerkat Grandparents followed closely in 2011, Cliff and Clarice Spotter.
Sylvanian Families Red Deer Family
The Sylvanian Families Buckley Red Deer Family consist of Father (Rupert), Mother (Agatha), a brother and a sister. A very cute addition to any Sylvanian Woodland collection.
There are also several babies available in individual sets
Sylvanian Families Baby Buckley Red Deer on a Slide in a carry case set.
There are also Individual Family Members available from Sylvanian Families Japanese releases, and some of these items are on sale.
Sylvanian Families Billabong Koala Family
There are two distinct Koala Families and i wonder which is your favourite. The earliest version was the Billabong Koala Family and later on the lighter coloured Outback Koala Family were released.
Rolf and Matilda Billabong and their two babies were first on sale in UK in 1994. Later on, in 2010, they were re-released, this time with Rolf and Matilda and a son and daughter children (rather the baby figures)
The Sylvanian Families Koala Billabong Twins also became available to purchase separately in 2010. They are now quite hard to find.
Sylvanian Families Outback Koala Family
This 2012 Sylvanian Families Koala Family, whose surname “Outback” is suitably Australian, come with Mum and Dad Outback Koala and a baby boy and girl, which fit nicely into Mum Koala’s sling. There are no sibling brother and sister in this Koala family.
Sylvanian Families Red Panda Family
The Robinson Red Panda Family don’t follow the usual pattern of releases. Initially, in 2010, they were released as a family of 4 called the Redwood Pandas. Later their name was changed to The Redwood Pandas for their UK release in 2013.
Epoch further re-released the Redwood Panda Family of 3 members (Mother, Father and daughter) in 2016. The baby red panda only came in the previous sets.
Sylvanian Families Chocolate Labrador Family
The oh-so-English sounding Hunter-Smyth Family of Chocolate Labradors were released at the Farm Owners at Highfields House. The Sylvanian Families Hunter-Smyth Chocolate Labrador family were first released in 2011, as part of the new Sylvanian Families Farm Collection (which included a Highfields Farm House, a Barn and Beekeeper Set
The UK Flair Hunter-Smyth Chocolate Labrador Family are now discontinued, but the USA version of this family, The Calico Critters Chocolate Labrador Family are occasionally available.
We have a great selection of the USA Calico Critters Chocolate Labrador Triplets at Sylvanian Specialty Store, who are terribly cute with their serious little faces.
Sylvanian Families Pig Family
The Sylvanian Families Grunt Pig Family were originally released in UK in 2009 and became available in Australia about the same time. They consist of Father - Richard Grunt, Mother - Constance Grunt, Brother – Hugh Grunt and sister – May Grunt.
There were also a family of Sylvanian Families pig triplets released about the same time, by the names of Little, Minor and Tiny Grunt – who are renowned for their appetites, no surprises!
Sylvanian Families Neptune Otter Family
The Sylvanian Families Sea Otter Family, by the surname of the Neptune Family, which came out in 2012, have only been retired from production fairly recently. You may be lucky to find some on sale at cheap prices if you’re lucky enough to find a store selling older stock.
Interestingly enough there were only girls in this family – a sister and a baby sister.
Sylvanian Families Hamster Family
Originally Flair UK released this Hamster Family in 2012 as the Goldbacke Hamster Family, but by 2014, when these were released in Australia, Epoch had changed their surname to the Sylvanian Families Hamilton Hamster Family. These are relatively recently retired, and may still be found on sale in some stores in Australia.
Father Huckleberry Hamilton is the official Nursery School bus driver.
The Hamilton Hamster twins are also available in store. According to their official biographies, Neil and Christine Hamilton, the Hamster twins, are very good at sleeping and drinking yogurt smoothies!
Sylvanian Families Dalmatian Family
Brown Spotted or Black Spotted? That is your choice! The Sylvanian Families Dalmatian Family comes in both coloured spots.
But who came first?
The Black spotted Kennelworth Family were the first Dalmatians on the scene.
Released by Flair 3 times – 2002, 2004 and more recently 2014, the Kennilworth Dalmations are becoming quite hard to find brand new.
Later we were introduced to the Brown Spotted Dalmatians, the finely named Henry-Lloyd Dalmatian Family. This family are ardent sailors, and were brought out at the same time as the Sylvanian Families Marita May pleasure Cruise boat. Promotional material displays the Henry-Lloyd family as the accompanying yacht owners.
The Sylvanian Families Brown Spotted Dalmatians also come with a set of Dalmatian twin babies and a Dalmatian single baby.
Sylvanian Families Beaver Family
Sylvanian Families Beaver Family
The Sylvanian Families Woodbrook Beaver Family of 4 were only released fairly recently in 2014, but were no longer being produced by 2015. As a result, they became “discontinued” in stores fairly quickly.
The Beaver Family also have a set of Beaver twin babies and the single Beaver baby.
The Beaver baby also comes in a bathtub carry case set.
Sylvanian Families Bouquet Skunk Family
Bouquet indeed! These humourously named Sylvanian Families Skunk’s first names are well worth mentioning too. Father is named Stilton Bouquet. Mother is named Rosemary Bouquet. Brother and sister skunk are Sage and Jasmin and their babies are Parsley and Lavender!
The Family of 4 (Mother, Father, brother and sister) initially were available in 1994, but a more recent release was made in the UK in 2013.
The Brightfield Goat Family
The original Sylvanian Families Goats were the Nettlefields, but in more recent years in Australia we have seen the Brightfield Goat Family. The Brightfield Goat family is made up of Mum, Dad, big sister and little baby sister goat.
There is also a Japanese Goat Pharmacist set, which is very hard to find nowadays, with an auntie, who is the local Sylvanian Goat pharmacist.
Sylvanian Families Polar Bear Family
The Sylvanian Families Polaris Polar Bear family appeared in 2015, and have fairly recently been retired from stores in Australia. They are the second Sylvanian Families Polar Bear Family to be released. Before the Polaris family came the Beaufort Polar Bear Family.
The most well-known Polar Bear set is likely the Ice cream Van Seller and Driver set, who were released to coincide with the Icecream Van. These Polar Bears are described as Beaufort Polar Bears, but are in actual fact much the same as the Polaris Bear Family.
Sylvanian Families Border Collie family
Having had a Border Collie dog, this would have to rank as one of my own personal favourite families. The Fletcher Border Collie Family were released in UK in 2012. An adorable family with Mum, Dad and Border Collie brother and sister. This UK Flair version has been retired from the UK range from about 2015.
We still stock their USA counterpart, the Calico Critter Border Collie Family, who come with different names and slightly different clothing.
These are also retired now from the Calico Critters range.
The Border Collie twin babies are also available in store, Carly and Cameron.