Cheers to the New Hard Rock Cafe Shot Glass Showcase on hobbyDB

Over the last year, hobbyDB has become the home of a giant collection of commemorative pins from the Hard Rock Cafe, with over 88,000 entries in the database. The same kind of fervor that drives those collectors to build and maintain our database has now become a large online Hard Rock Cafe shot glass inventory.

hard rock cafe shot glassThe online community of Hard Rock pin collectors is monitored and maintained by Pin Masters, who are some of the most devoted experts in the hobby. Some of them also overlap into other collectibles, which brings us to the shot glasses.

hard rock cafe shot glassAs they do with the pins, Hard Rock issues commemorative designs for events and holidays for several if not all their locations. So the total number of variants adds up quickly. As of now, there are over 1,000 shot glasses in the hobbyDB database and counting. There are about 4,000 Hard Rock shot glass designs that should eventually be added to hobbyDB.

hard rock cafe shot glassMost of the glasses are of the tall, thin variety instead of the shorter, more traditional shape. Designs range from simple (the Hard Rock logo with the city name underneath) to very elaborate (specific City Shot graphics). And there is some crossover to the categories as there are pins that are shaped like the glasses.

Our curators for these subjects are branching out to other areas as well. Some of the Pin Masters also collect other subjects such as Disney or Olympic commemorative designs and are working on adding their collections to ours. Similarly, several of these collectors have interest in other kinds of shot glasses, so expect to see those show up soon.

This kind of community involvement is how the hobbyDB database grows. Collectors see a need for their particular interest to be represented, other collectors see the database expand, and they get involved as well.

hard rock cafe shot glassThe great thing about hobbyDB’s database is everything is cross-referenced with other collectibles by theme, location, design, or whatever those things have in common. And there’s a good chance whatever you find will be available in the Marketplace.

hard rock cafe shot glassThe official curators for the Hard Rock Cafe Shot Glass Archive include a couple of Pin Masters, Denise Black, (demiroff) and Carmen Fazio, (hrc4faz). Three other hardcore Hard Rock Curators include  Jeff OxfordRene Schwinge, Paul Hillgren (HRC_shot_collector). Their personal showcases show off everything they collect in addition to the glasses.

So cheers to our devoted collectors and Curators who help hobbyDB grow into the world’s largest online collection of, well, just about everything. Bottoms up!

Interested in joining forces with hobbyDB to take charge of our collectible destiny? Learn more at our Wefunder profile.
Comments (2 Comments)
Bud Kalland

Sure have come a long way from diecast toy cars! :) Nice to see all those other items being added!


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hobbyDB Becomes Portal Master for Skylanders Franchise, Spyro

If you’re looking for us at hobbyDB, you might want to begin your search among the floating islands of Skyland.

SkylandersThe official toys-to-life video game franchise Skylanders is the latest addition to hobbyDB. And thanks to new curator (i.e. Portal Master) XyberDAWG, the hobbyDB catalog now boasts close to 600 Skylanders collectibles.

The franchise originally took to the consoles in the late 1990s, introducing us to the affable Spyro the Dragon. After 10 years and 11 games, Spyro spawned the Skylanders spinoff, which expanded its universe with six more games. In the process, Skylanders and its parent company Activision have generated billions of dollars from the sales of games, collectibles and television.

Check out the Skylanders catalog on hobbyDB by clicking here.


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Collecting Friends is the latest Custom Database to join hobbyDB

We’re excited to announce that Collecting Friends is the latest Custom Database to join the hobbyDB family. Created in 2010 by Airfix expert Arthur Ward, the Collecting Friends website was built to document classic British Toys including Airfix, Dinky, and more.

Collecting Friends Airfix Database

But the story starts much earlier!

A collector from an early age, Ward developed a deep passion for all things Airfix. “The models I built as a kid, the Spitfires, Messerschmitts, Lancaster bombers, Sherman tanks, Flying Fortresses and the like, encouraged me to research their subjects carefully,” Ward remembers. He started documenting his passions by authoring multiple books on the subject. “My first book, The Model World of Airfix, was published in 1984, a few years after they spectacularly went bust in 1981 to be rescued by American multinational General Mills. I knew, and the publisher agreed, that a history of this famous brand would catch the zeitgeist prevalent at the time – the Brits had nearly lost a famous and iconic brand.” He’s since written several guides to the Airfix brand, but is also the author of books on other subjects such as World War II collectibles.

Ward with his Airfix Model Kit

Arthur with a small section of his collection

Then came Collecting Friends – Discover Airfix, Dinky and More

In the early 2000’s Ward decided that it was time to transfer his knowledge to the internet. Soon after, he created an online archive of classic British Toys as well as his World War II collectibles known as Collecting Friends. Ward’s inspiration? “Making an online database allowed me to help other collectors immerse themselves into the subject for hours on end.”

Collecting Friends

Collecting Friends had a blog, collection management and more tools

Despite securing a Guinness World Record in December 2009 for the largest number of people constructing aircraft models at his ‘Spitfix’ model making marathon at the Royal Air Force Museum in London (supported by Airfix), as time went on, Ward started to realize that without the right tools and development efforts, building and maintaining Collecting Friends became less of a passion project and more of a time commitment. So, Ward continued to focus on his books, and Collecting Friends (similar to many collectible websites) started to fall into the background.

In 2016, our paths crossed and Ward joined the hobbyDB Advisory Council. Throughout the years, Ward watched the technology on hobbyDB grow and when the new Custom Database feature was released in early 2019, he knew exactly what he wanted to do with it.

Enter the Custom Database, powered by hobbyDB

“When I heard about the Custom Database feature, I immediately thought about my passion project Collecting Friends,” Ward recalls. “It was an easy decision for me. By using the hobbyDB Custom Database feature, I can now easily continue to document all of the collectibles that I love, while also not having to worry about the technical maintenance behind the database.” With the Custom Database feature, Ward will keep the look and feel of Collecting Friends, while also offering his followers more tools such as collection tracking, a price guide, and a safe marketplace (all powered by hobbyDB). Ward’s Custom Database is just one of the databases that we’ll be bringing on board in the next few months. Our goal is to provide a resource for collectors like Ward everywhere. We want to continue to build the tools so that documenting the things that you love can truly remain a passion project. Ward will begin primarily documenting Airfix, and then will continue to build out to more World War II collectibles. Just go to to check out his all-new site!

Rod’s friend Peter Allen (who designed these kits) & Roy Cross (who did the artwork)

We also want to say a huge thank you to Ward as he is one of the latest investors in our Crowdfunding Campaign. “I’m continuously impressed with what Christian and the hobbyDB team are doing for collectors like me and for the hobby overall,” says Ward.

To find out more how you can help us grow and provide more resources for our collecting community, check out our Wefunder profile here.

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Paul Budnitz’ Superplastic Joins the hobbyDB Catalog


Don’t let the name fool you, there’s nothing janky about the Superplastic character Janky.

In fact, the set of limited edition animation-based figures is among several well-crafted pieces from designer Paul Budnitz and Superplastic.

And now they can now be found in the hobbyDB catalog.

The project is among the latest from Budnitz, who also founded the art toy company Kidrobot. At Superplastic, Budnitz joined forces with some of the brightest artists from around the globe – such as Pete Fowler – to specialize in toys, apparel and games based on original characters.

Check out the Superplastic catalog on hobbyDB by clicking here.


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The Joker is IT: Collecting Lovable Clowns in Pop Culture

Ron Ruelle

Ron Ruelle hobbyDB

pennywise jokerHey, collectors, do you know what time it is? It’s clown time! (Maniacal laugh). In all seriousness, and clowns are a serious subject, they’re kind of a big deal right now in pop culture. The second IT movie is doing big box office, as is the Clown Prince of Crime, aka Joker.

So with those two lovable jesters going at it (I haven’t seen either movie, so I assume they’re light-hearted comedies), why not look at some other clowns from pop culture. And since this is hobbyDB, we’re focusing on ones with collectibility. Also, Halloween is around the corner, and you might need a costume idea.

pennywise collectibles Stephen King’s original novel IT was actually a middling success with critics, and he even disavowed it to a degree. Pennywise seems innocent enough to the kids at first, which is the scary part. Nonetheless, it made for a scary TV movie adaptation in the early ‘90s and a downright horrifying two-part cinematic remake in the last few years. Both generations are represented in the collectible world.

Not to be outdone, the Joker has pestering Gotham City for so long he has become something of a sympathetic creature. Thanks to the fluidity of the DC timeline, the character has been interpreted numerous ways from relatively benign (Ceasar Romero) to comically psychotic (Jack Nicholson, Mark Hammill) to psychopathic (Heath Ledger) to, well, a tragic and misunderstood figure (Joaquin Phoenix). While the older versions of Joker have been well represented in collectible form, the latest one has not… yet.

joker collectiblesCould it be that the “R” rating of the new movie makes it not as useful for being turned into what are essentially toys such as Funko Pop figures? Well, consider that Ledger’s Joker was anything but kid-friendly (a lot of folks felt The Dark Knight should have come with the same rating) but is well represented in collectibles. Also, there is no shortage of Pennywise merchandise, and both IT movies were for grownups.

It might be that the passage of time was necessary for those two versions to become collectible. Ledger’s Oscar-winning performance has become so iconic that it has passed into the culture in general. And part one of IT came out two years ago, so the critical and box office success suggested collectors wanted more Pennywise.

Even Jared Leto’s much-maligned take on the character was worthy of some Pop love. But Pheonix’s performance has also come with critical acclaim (more so than the movie itself even). And early box office has been no joke. While we wait for the punchline, let’s look at some other pop culture clowns…

Seems Harmless Enough

clown krustyIf you grew up in the ’60s or ’70s in the Chicago area, you were treated to a morning of goofiness from Bozo. Other stations in other markets had weak imitations of him, but WGN Bozo was the real deal.

A younger generation grew up with Krusty the Clown as their makeup intensive morning entertainment. As a part of the Simpsons universe, we get to see him not only behind the scenes but in day-to-day life where he never removes his costume or gets out of character (aside from being a surly, bothered, chain-smoking pile of bitterness).

Even though he’s a throwaway character, The Clown With The Tearaway Face adds a bit of spooky fun to the Nightmare Before Christmas. But not too spooky.

Not to get into the politics or ethics of fast food and consumerism, but Ronald McDonald has been enticing kids into his restaurants for decades. Despite his gentle demeanor, artists and satirists have portrayed him in a scarier form, the weirdest being the heavy metal band Mac Sabbath. Seriously, check them out!

Speaking of Clowns Who Rock…

kiss insane clown posseLove’em or hate ‘em, the boys of Insane Clown Posse put on an intense show and have an even more intense following. Juggalos, their fans, are more invested in the whole circus act than the band itself.

Can we talk about KISS? As much as they wanted to be scary metal gods, their music was more of a loud, hard, pop sound and their mostly monochromatic outfits barely qualified as menacing. Don’t worry, though, we’re laughing with you, not at you.

killer klown funkoClown Schlock

No one would ever pretend Killer Klowns From Outer Space is a cinematic masterpiece. But it was a good, silly, modestly scary time at the cinema, and in the right frame of mind, buckets of fun.

Clown Time is Over

hot wheels clown carFive Nights at Freddy’s walks a weird line between entertainingly good fun and genuinely dark jump scares. In addition to the animatronic band gone awry, the cast includes Fruitpunch Clown who knows how to exploit evil lighting angles to maximum effect.

Regardless of whether clowns give you the giggles or nightmares, there are plenty more collectibles out there we just couldn’t fit in our clown car. Let us know some of your favorites in the comments!

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