May 11, 2001
Boalsburg, PA

Greetings from Charleen Kinser Designs


     It is a long lane that has no turning.
     I have always looked upon fate as a friend, who brings me opportunities as if they were precious gifts. Tracy Spalvins, my right-hand woman, has decided to make a change in her life, to explore other possibilities, and is leaving at the end of December 2001. In reply, I have decided to make a change in mine as well, exploring my more challenging design ideas, in an exclusive line, Charleen Kinser Limited (very limited). I will be unveiling new pieces from Charleen Kinser Designs for the 2001 holiday season through our new website,, a support site for our retailers. Charleen Kinser Designs will be shipping until December 21, for delivery on Christmas Eve. On any piece ordered between June 1, 2001 and December 21, 2001, we will be happy to attach a special handwritten medallion reading , "Charleen Kinser Designs 2001, The Last Hurrah".

     Charleen Kinser Limited
     In a world now dominated by mass production, the characters we have dispatched to you over the past 25 years may be more correctly called 'handmade', and yet our small group of artisans has made up a "production house". For example, we do not use machines to cut a stack of pieces at one time, but, by hand, we cut several pieces consecutively. Each person who works on your toy works through her own perception of the character, and inadvertently adds to it. This means that no two pieces are exactly alike, but we do conform to a standard, which I set and against which Tracy checks each piece as she finishes it.
     The works I create for Charleen Kinser Limited will be different in that I will exercise a little more freedom in the design; the constant challenge in production will be absent, the challenge of translating my concept and vision through the eyes, hands and minds of my coworkers. I've been working with my dedicated crew for so long now, I'm sure I'll feel wildly ungrounded for a while. I will make each piece myself, and I plan to limit each edition to somewhere between one and twelve pieces. In 2002, I will show my new work from Charleen Kinser Limited through a website link, and I plan to exhibit it to retailers for the first time at the International Toy Fair in February 2002 in New York.

     The more things change, the more they stay the same.
     In searching for a way to describe what I want to do now, I come up with the same desire that has inspired me always: I want to make things, characters for people to live with. I hope you will continue to be those people.

     In sincere gratitude, and with a toast to the future,