I will get on to some of the suggestions and the winner in just a moment, but before I do I'd like to introduce the two, actual new members that really are joining the Grand Family this year. They are Jeanne the Goose and Mimosa the cat.
Aren't they lovely! They should be arriving end of March so look out for them then (I just hope they don't send them over in the same box - I'm not sure Jeanne would fare too well).
Anyway, back to the competition. I had a few hundred entries so it's been quite a big job to decide a winner but first I settled on a few criteria:
1. The animal or name can't already exist in any Moulin Roty ranges
2. It must fit in with the existing Grand Family range - so I was looking particularly for woodland or domestic animals
3. The name should be 'quite grown up and human' to fit in with existing naming conventions
4. It can't be a discontinued Grand Family animal (A moments silence please for Philemon Pig, Agathe Cat, Clotaire bear, Charlotte cow... RIP)
Honestly, there were too many good, funny and original suggestions to mention, but here are a few of my favourites:
Gigi the goat
Holiette the horse
Florence the guinea pig
Cardew the stoat
Two animals in particular cropped up again and again and both are, I think, excellent suggestions. These are the squirrel and the badger. For each of these we had various names suggested, including for the squirrels: Estelle, Emmelie, Sebastian, Cyrille and Sabienne, and for the badgers: Horatio, Henri, Bernard and Silas.
But in the end, after much thought and deliberation (mainly over coffee and a biscuits) I finally decided on.......... (drum roll)........
Marcel the Badger!
This was suggested by Vanessa Mathieson. Well done Vanessa (and I will email you in just a moment to tell you the good news and invite you to choose a free toy).
To illustrate the winning suggestion I have borrowed a lovely badger picture from Catherine over at Bumpkin Bears. She makes lovely prints, cards and accessories featuring lots of different animals. This particular picture is called Time for an Adventure and is available in her etsy shop as a print, notecard and soon party invitations and gift tags. In fact I hope to have some of her work for sale at Cottontails in the near future.
For what it is worth I will send the suggestions over to Moulin Roty so who knows, maybe this time next year Marcel the Badger really will be joining the Grand Family. As a woodland creature I think he might get on well with Arsene the fox or Emile the hedgehog (oh hang on, badgers don't eat hedgehogs do they..?!)
On that note I must just finish by telling you that Humphrey is not very happy about the winner. For obvious reasons he is not a fan of the badger and has been sulking ever since I made the decision. I'd better go and have a word with him, see if I can smooth things over with a bit of digestive biscuit...