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Wednesday, April 27, 2022

Dragon Dice Bag cross stitch kit (1982)


The above image, taken from a recent Ebay auction, shows the packaging for a 1982 DRAGON DICE BAG, a "Counted Cross Stitch Kit" from TSR subsidiary Greenfield Needlewomen, which includes some interesting hand-drawn line art showing the bag front and back, along with a set of polyhedral dice. The bag front includes a dragon and "D&D games", and the back says "May you always make your saving throw". Another image from the auction shows the pattern for stitching the dragon, which is green-colored, with a yellow-green belly:




I've seen other Greenfield D&D-tie-in cross stitch products before - for examples, see this post on Cyclopeatron - but I don't recall seeing this particular one, which has more rudimentary packaging than the others. Per Frank Mentzer on FB, this is because:

This was very early after our acquisition. We retooled their packaging; later ones all have a distinctive green theme. This has their art, not ours. (No it's not a Sutherland dragon. ;> )

This one is also interesting because it uses the "DRAGON DICE" trademark and logo (i.e., the same font) also featured on TSR's 1981 Dragon Dice, the packaging artwork for which was designed by Jim Roslof and can be seen in this post.


Advertisement for TSR's DRAGON DICE
(this was the first set of dice that I owned, in the same blue color)

You can read more about TSR's purchase of Greenfield Needlewomen in Jon Peterson's book Game Wizards, which briefly covers it in the chapters titled, "1982: Extravagance" and "1983: Splitting the Party". Based on quotes from Gary Gygax in TSR's in-house newsletter Random Events, TSR had designs on growing their business by entering the adjacent craft field; which isn't unreasonable because, as pointed out by T. Foster in the first comment in this post on Grognardia, at the time D&D was often sold in hobby shops alongside craft products. However, this particular company, based in Greenfield, Indiana, was purchased seemingly because it was owned by relatives of the Brian and Kevin Blume, and ended up being shuttered by TSR in 1983 after losing a large sum of money for the company.

A thank you to a post on the TSR Old School Gamers FB group for making me aware of this.

2 comments:

  1. I love it. Thanks, also, for linking through to Cyclopetron with the woodburning set

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  2. Great write-up! Never heard of the crosstitch set

    ReplyDelete