Posts Tagged ‘swing tags’

Beanie Baby Swing Tag Identification

Monday, October 29th, 2012

Tags are very important in the world of Beanie Babies. If a Beanie Baby is missing a tag it’s value can decrease by up to half!

As you may already know, Beanie Babies have two types of tag, a swing tag and a tush tag. A swing tag is the red heart-shaped tag that usually hangs from your Beanie Baby’s ear or wing. A tush tag is the fabric tag that is attached to the Beanie Baby’s rear end!

This post talks about swing tags. If you are looking for information on tush tags, please refer to my Tush Tag Identification article here.

There are currently 20 generations of swing tag, each with their own differences. There are also variations between different parts of the world, for example, a 17th generation swing tag in the UK and EU is different from a swing tag from the USA.

The most sought after swing tag generations are 1-3, the later generations were generally mass-produced (although there are exceptions) and more common than the first three.

This post will go on to explain each generation of swing tag and highlight any differences between countries.

1st Generation

This was the very first generation of swing tag appearing at the beginning of 1994. It was just a simple red heart with Ty written on the front in white. The original Ty logo consisted of very thin writing compared to the thicker logo of today. Surrounding the edge of the heart is a gold border.

This swing tag was the only generation of tag not to open like a book. Instead it was a simple tag that had the Beanie Baby’s name and style number on the back. Beanies coming to the UK with a 1st generation swing tag had a white sticker stuck to the rear side of the tag and the very first Beanie Babies to enter the UK were forced to have a white rectangular swing tag instead of the heart-shaped tag to conform to UK laws that required plush toys to have the “CE” mark present. Only the original nine had these tags.

1st generation Beanie Babies were either made in China or Korea.

2nd Generation

The 2nd generation of swing tags were introduced in Spring 1994. the first to open like a book. These tags still had the skinny Ty logo and were sometimes called a “double tag”.

The inside of the tag is white and on the left hand side is written where the Beanie Baby was distributed from. This can either be the address for North America, Germany or the UK. On the right hand side is the name of the Beanie Baby followed by the style number. Underneath the name can either be a To/From section or copyright and care information. On the back is the barcode and the words “Retain tag for reference”.

These tags were only available on Beanies with 1st generation tush tags.

3rd Generation

The 3rd generation of swing tags started using the newer thicker Ty logo, known as the “bubble font Ty logo”, which was white and outlined in gold. They started appearing in Spring 1995. This generation still opened like a book.

Inside the tag is very similar to the 2nd generation in that the name and style number of the Beanie Baby are still located on the right hand side, followed by a To/From section. Some versions of this generation have a trademark symbol after the word “Babies” in “The Beanie Babies Collection” and later versions of the tag have added Ty’s corporate addresses to the left hand side.

At the top of the rear of the tag it now says that you should remove the tag before giving it to a child. The CE mark has now appeared next to the barcode. Underneath the barcode it says “Retain Tag for Reference” followed by “Surface Wash”.

These swing tags appear on Beanie Babies with 1st and 2nd generation tush tags dated 1993 and 1995.

4th Generation

The 4th generation of swing tags started to appear in Spring 1996 and added a yellow star to the top right of the Ty logo with the words ‘ORIGINAL BEANIE BABY” inside the star written in black capital lettering. The gold outline has disappeared from the Ty logo, which has shrunk a little to fit the star on the tag.

The inside of the tag has had a bit of an overhaul. Next to the name of the Beanie Baby is a â„¢ symbol. The style number is still present, however, the To/From section has disappeared to make way for a short background poem about the Beanie Baby. Ty’s web address has also been added underneath the poem.

On the back of the tag, the words “For ages 3 and up” has appeared between “Retain Tag for Reference” and “Surface Wash”

There can be a 3rd, 4th or 5th generation tush tag present with the 4th generation swing tag, each dated either 1993, 1995 or 1996.

5th Generation

The 5th generation emerged at the start of 1998. In many ways they were like the 4th generation. The font inside and outside the tag has now been changed to Comic Sans.

At the top left of the inside of the swing tag, there is now an ® next to “The Beanie Babies Collection.

Ty UK and Ty Deutschland have now been taken off the corporate addresses and replaced with Ty Europe and Ty Canada. the Ty Europe address can either be Fareham, Hants or Gosport, Hampshire (sometimes misspelled Gasport).

The Beanie Baby’s birthday is now spelled out in full and the style number has vanished.

Some tags have misspelled “Surface Wash” as “Suface Wash”. Most of these have also misspelled “ORIGINAL” as “ORIGIINAL” on the yellow star on the front of the tag.

These swing tags should come with 6th, 7th or 8th generation tush tags.

6th Generation

The 6th generation appeared in 2000. The yellow star on the front of the 4th and 5th generation tags has been replaced with a holographic star with “2000” written across it in yellow.

These tags still feature the Beanie Baby’s name, birthday and poem on the left of the inside of the tag.

The corporate addresses have now been simplified to the just the locations, such as Ty Inc., Ty Canada, Ty Europe, and now, Ty Japan.

The barcode on the rear has reduced in size to make way for the words “safety precaution”.

6th Generation Zodiac

The 6th generation also brought with it the Zodiac swing tag. This was reserved exclusively for the Zodiac range of Beanie Babies depicting animals from the Chinese Zodiac.

This tag replaces the holographic “2000” star with the word “Zodiac” in gold foil writing.

The rest of this tag is identical to the regular 6th generation swing tags.

7th Generation

This generation appeared in early 2000 and was only used for Beanie Babies shipped to the UK and Germany.

The 7th generation still uses the holographic star, but has replaced the “2000” with the word “Beanies” written in yellow across the star.

The corporate addresses have been changed to allow room for the full Ty Europe address in Gosport (sometimes misspelled as Gasport).

This swing tag was used on Ty Europe Beanie Babies right up until the 13th generation tag began to appear.

8th Generation

The 8th generation began to appear in January 2001. The holographic star has now shrunk to allow the word “Beanie” to appear over the top of it and “Baby” underneath, both written in yellow.

This tag was not available with Ty Europe Beanie Babies.

Inside the tag is absolutely identical to the 6th generation swing tags. The rear is also exactly the same.

9th Generation

The 9th generation of swing tags appeared in Summer 2001. They are almost identical to the 8th generation, except for where the words surrounding the holographic used to read “Beanie Baby”, it now reads “Beanie Babies” in yellow writing.

On the rear of the tag, the wording has slightly changed on the safety information.

These tags were issued to Beanie Babies distributed in the US and Canada only, and didn’t appear in Europe.

Birthday Bear Tags

Birthday Bears began to appear in July 2001 with these swing tags. They appeared at the same time as the 9th generation.

The front of these swing tags differ to the 9th generation in that the holographic star has disappeared and been replaced with a yellow birthday cake with seven red and green candles on top. Inside the birthday cake, the month that the bear represents is written in multicoloured lettering.

The inside has also changed. On the left hand side, the month that the bear represents is written in capital lettering. Underneath, it either has a poem (earlier bears) or states who shares a birthday on that month (later bears). On the right hand side, HAPPY BIRTHDAY is written and underneath is a To/From section. The website address is located under the To/From section.

10th Generation

The 10th generation appeared in January 2002.

The holographic star has now changed to the words “Beanie Babies” written in yellow on two separate lines. Five tiny holographic stars sit above the writing.

The 10th generation was only attached to Beanie Babies distributed in the US and Canada.

11th Generation

The 11th generation appeared in December of 2002.

Further changes have been made to the front. Where the five stars on the top right of the previous tag were, there is now a holographic “10” above the yellow “Beanie Babies” followed by a small white star with “yrs” written inside it.

The inside of these tags remain identical to the 10th generation apart from now two locations have been added to Ty’s corporate address list. These are Ty Asia and Ty Australia.

Beanie Baby of the Month (BBOM)

The Beanie Baby of the Month swing tags started appeared in January 2003.

On these tags, the yellow “Beanie Babies” in the top right and the “10 yrs” have been replaced by a yellow “Beanie Baby of the Month” badge with white lines emanating from it.

The inside of the Beanie Baby of the Month swing tags are identical to the 11th generation tags. This is considered by some to be an offshoot of the 11th generation given it’s similarities.

12th Generation (US)

The US version of the 12th generation swing tags replaced the “10 yrs” with the word “Original” in holographic writing above the yellow “Beanie Babies” writing and added a holographic splash underneath.

The inside of the 12th generation is the same as the 11th generation.

There are slight variations of this swing tag. The State exclusive bears have a slightly different tag from other Beanie Babies, replacing the poem inside the swing tag with facts about the State they are representing and a State flag replaces the corporate addresses and includes further information about the State, such as the State’s official web address.

12th Generation (EU)

This is the first change in the UK swing tags since the 7th generation.

The EU version of this swing tag is very similar to the US 12th generation, apart from the yellow “Beanie Babies” only says “Beanies”.

The inside of the tag is very similar to the US version, except that it now has the full Ty Europe address in Gosport.

An new white tag is now present just behind the swing tag because of safety regulations.