Our apartment – 2016 NSFW

It's been not only a long time since I've posted here, but it has been a long time since I shared photos of my place. The last time you guys saw where I lived I was still living at home with my parents. It was back in 2012, so easily 4 years ago you saw my collection. Now you can see not only has my… [more]

Our apartment – 2016 NSFW Our apartment - 2016 NSFW

[Alter] – Melty Review

So since I've moved into my new apartment I still hadn't set up my photography studio. Seems work has me busier than I thought I would ever be, however I took some time this past weekend to set up my studio so I could take some photos of my latest purchase, Alter's 1/8th Melty from Shining Hearts. Now… [more]

[Alter] – Melty Review [Alter] - Melty Review

[Orchid Seed] – Yuki Review NSFW

Pre-ordered this figure the moment she was released for pre-order. I needed for for multiple reasons, she's sexy/half naked, plus while she's not Sora she reminds me of Sora from Yosuga no Sora! But she's Yuki from Maid Yome and she's pretty amazing. The only issue is her adorable mouth really looks… [more]

[Orchid Seed] – Yuki Review NSFW [Orchid Seed] - Yuki Review NSFW

Nendoroid Storage Container

I recently went on a trip to a magical place, The Container Store. Ok it's not really magical, but I happen to have discovered a love for organizing my home. I tend to prefer Ikea and Daiso but we went to The Container Store on a whim and I discovered this lovely storage container! I've been needing… [more]

Nendoroid Storage Container Nendoroid Storage Container

Figure Retailer Review #1 – Small Wonders


As long as I have been collecting figures and blogging, I’ve been planning on doing a store review. Not just for online retailers since we all know we tend to buy from the major online stores than others, but instead focus on the smaller local shops. Well, I decided the other day when I went to Newport Beach to visit my brother that it was the best time to start!

My brother brought me to this shop a while back to see if the store was good, to check out their selection and to mainly see if the figures were real or not. He still doesn’t know how to check for authenticity so he relies on me to let him know what to look for in figures.

I was surprised at their selection! They had some really good figures and some rare ones that I haven’t seen in a while. Oh and yes, no bootlegs.

Just an entire wall of figures, that just speaks paradise to me!

And unlike most anime stores I’ve come across, there are newer figures as well. Not just old ones they got cheap.

Not into just Anime figures? Small Wonders has an amazing selection of Marvel, DC, Star Wars and other figures!

An awesome selection of Bags and purses. I’ve got my eyes on the the pink Yoshi bag,

Some very cute plushies as well.

The selection of Anime shirts is astounding. Most places I’ve been to have only a small rack or shelf for anime shirts.

Also an awesome Precious Moments selection that would make any series Collector go bonkers!

I was impressed with the Art book and Magazine selection.

I was able to get a copy of Replicant last time I was there, and for a good price too!

I might have to pick up that Kenshin wall scroll on the top right corner.

To give an example of the variety of their selection, Winnie the Pooh, Garfield, Charlie Brown and more.

Some great deals on the Gundam Kits. I got 1/100 Gundam Dynames, cause you know how much I <3 Lockon. I got it for a great price!

Very, very nice selection of Gundams.

Love that Chobits wall scroll on the top right as well. If only I had more wall space.

A doll collectors paradise, a wall of dolls.

Fan of Gashapons? They’ve got tons! Some good ones too!

Pocky, don’t we just love our pocky? I’m kinda over it but will admit i used to eat it all the time.

More Gashapons, really a good selection, almost had me buying some and I dont’ even like Gashapons!

Swords, hats, good items for cosplay.

Aspiring artist? Display your art in the shop!

Those Kinomoto Sakura ones are pretty good.

A very nice selection of manga and they are always up to date with the newest releases.

While taking pictures, a customer, AlexielVIII, approached me and was raving about the store.

“I like Nina, who runs it. She’s very nice and treats people fairly and she’s always there to help us out. I like the selection here, as well. There’s a lot great stuff you can’t find anywhere else, and there is a lot of variety too; anime, fairies, Star Wars, costume pieces and more, it’s a really good store.

Spotted some figures I’ve had my eye on, but didn’t buy at the moment. I might have to go back and get these lovely ladies.

Nice sale on plushies going on as well. A good selection too!

I spoke to Nina, the store owner, to see what she felt made her store special compared to other anime stores.

“Within the mall we’re considered a specialty store. One of the reasons we’re considered a specialty store and not just an anime store is because of the fact that we carry a lot of the other gift items. We do carry the precious moment’s line, which is one of our tops sellers besides anime. One thing we’re really big on is fairies, different licensed products, Betty Boop is another one of our top sellers, Garfield, and Snoppy.”

When asked about whether they have an website,

“We are not planning on getting a website anytime soon, since it would be dealing with two things at one time. Plus the competition, I wouldn’t be able to keep prices down enough. Within the mall, we are considered a neighborhood shop. Although we will have a wide range of customers who come in, about 90% of the customers are neighborhood people; we see the same faces over and over again.”

Small wonders is a shop that has been in business for 11 years and in this location for 8 years. They don’t plan on moving any time soon so you won’t miss them when you go and check them out!

–Store Info–

Located – 2028 Westminster Mall Westminster, CA 92683
View Larger Map

–Special Deal for How a Girl Figures Readers
Get 10% off on your entire purchase excluding sale items when you give the promotional code SW2009 at the register! (always check back as the code changes from time to time!)

Check them out, they’ve got some amazing merchandise and you might even catch me shopping there. 😉

Do you have an anime store in Southern California and want your store to be featured on How A Girl Figures Retailer Reviews? Know of a store in the So-cal that deserves a review? Contact me at Dancingqueen [at] Howagirlfigures.com

You can now follow me on Twitter!


42 Responses to “Figure Retailer Review #1 – Small Wonders”

  1. ShadowKit says:

    Egads, I wish I lived somewhere that’s not in the Midwest.
    We only have one place out here that’s an Anime shop, and it’s really shady. It’s up a bit past Chicago, they sell all bootlegs, and the owner is an asshat.
    I’m so jealous! I’d love to go into a store like that.

  2. Holy crap this store has everything *_*

    Being a fellow resident of Southern California, I’m really excited about this new series of reviews. 😀

  3. Jarmel says:

    Wow that seems pretty impressive,I wish I was in California so I could drop by.

  4. Dancing Queen says:

    there are plenty of stores with bootlegs here too, which i’ll be planning on covering later

    @Coco the Bean:
    then go check it out and use your 10% off!

    no anime shops in your area?

  5. chun says:

    wow sounds like quite a nice store! thanks for sharing with us! :3

  6. Jarmel says:

    I’m near Rochester, NY. There is one called Hammergirl and it’s decent but not great to any extent like this. So kinda forced to resort to online shops. While I’m home during the holidays though, I live in NYC, there are more options but none I’ve heard that come remotely close to this. I went to Anime Castle once in Queens and that was more of a warehouse. There is one in Union Square but more comic oriented, does have an anime section but once again nowhere as awesome as that. I would love to go to a shop like that once, atleast in the USA.

  7. Kuma says:

    Very cool review! I’ll definitely check it out next time I head to Westminster Mall.

  8. Smithy says:

    Waw! They have the Beat/Solid Works “Aria” 1/6 PVC figures? 0_0

    If you want them go and grab them because they are not easy to find.

  9. Alfisti says:

    Shop looks… dangerous, bank account wise.
    Man, I wish we had something like this near where I live.

  10. Mimi says:

    Oh wow that’s a great store! :’O!! Oh what would I give to be there right now… ^^

    Mimis last blog post..Calligraphy

  11. Berurin says:

    Life in germany so I can’t go there, but it looks really nice 🙂
    But I don’t have to cry, we have some shops here like that.
    “Small Wonders” is really big and has a nice collection.

  12. Spirit Rubi says:

    Only Japanese related store around here I can think of is Mitsuwa. D:

    No figures at all. I have to get them all online, it’s awful. I was tortured so much when I went to Japan, specially the figure floor at Gamers. I found so many old figures that were extremely hard to find online. I want to go back so badly…

    Omg, I want that bikini Shana. I can’t find her anywhere now. > . <;;

    Spirit Rubis last blog post..Miku Hatsune 1/8 Scale (GSC) – Get!

  13. Dartlein says:

    Why i don’t live close to ther?
    sometimes i hate live in mexico.LOL

    JESUS! they have a togainu no chi figures, i want.

    *i try to buy them in estarland.com, but they stole my money… damn it page LOL*

    Your page is Awesome!!

  14. Rebecca says:

    I wish i had an anime store in my town,that place looks amazing,i really want to go..

  15. OTOhime says:

    How much was the Candy Bikini ver. Shana? It’s $35 at Anime Jungle, so I wanna get the cheapest price possible.

  16. Hageshii Ame says:

    Close, yet so so far away.

    I live in North California… ah… the pain…

  17. yumyu says:

    This is one huge store! I would be there everyday just browsing their selection of item, haha. The idea of a store review sounds unique. Keep up the good effort!

    yumyus last blog post..BBurago – Lamborghini Reventon

  18. OTOhime says:

    How long’s that special offer going to be up?

  19. Larein says:

    Aw man, I would love to go to this store. Too bad I live too far away. Though it might be near my grandma and grandpa… Looks like I just might need to pay them a visit sometime soon… >_>

    Do you know if they had any Code Geass items (specifically figures and artbooks)?

    Lareins last blog post..Quick Yuki figma Photo shoot

  20. SoNSo1 says:

    There’s stores like these in the US? Wish there were some closer to where I live. Of course then I would be really out of money.

    SoNSo1s last blog post..Slumdog Millionaire

  21. Onikinou says:

    I’ve been there, it’s not so great. I think it had too much americanized anime stuff stuff. I prefer stuff thats straight from japan.

  22. Akarui says:

    …must…move…to…CA… That shop probably has to have the largest selection of figures I’ve ever seen O-o

  23. Ken says:

    Wow, great review on the store. I used to the go to this store alot back in the day, but after I find out about Anime King, I kinda stop going to it since Anime King is only like one blog down the road from the mall. But your review kinda make me miss it a little, may be I will drop by it tomorrow since I have to go to Anime King to restock on my hobby supplies anyway (ran out of topcoat -_-)

  24. Dancing Queen says:

    no problem, i know how hard it is to find a good anime store locally, so i thought this would be good to point out exceptional stores in our community

    yeah my bf lives near buffalo (Niagara falls) and he tells me there are no anime stores what so ever near him… must suck

    don’t forget to use your discount code!

    i might have to snag her later, but i really want aika

    yeah, hard not to spend money i don’t have there

    they are a pretty awesome store

    i’d love to see what an anime store in Europe looks like

    @Spirit Rubi:
    that bikini shana is so cute

    where in Mexico? Currently i’m visiting family in Los Mochis, Sin.

    Small wonders isn’t that close to me, but it’s close to my brother so when i visit him i can get him to take me there

    i think $42.99

    @Hageshii Ame:
    where in nor-cal? i know a few people in rocklin

    why thank you, i felt it’d be fun to do and not many people do it so it felt original

    for now till February, then the code will change, i’ll make a post about when it changes

    you know i’m not sure, most i saw was a Japanese newtype with Lelouch and Suzaku on the cover

    yep, but it takes a while to find…

    while they do have lots of americanized stuff, i felt they had a very good selection of Japanese items as well

    oh, well maybe i need to do a review of some of the anime stores in Little Tokyo, then you’d run to move to cali!

    where is Anime King exactly? i’ve heard some people mention them but have no idea where they are located

  25. Ken says:

    Anime King
    7188 Edinger Ave
    Huntington Beach, CA 92647
    Phone: (714) 841-8762

    That is the address of Anime King. It is like one or two block down from Westminster mall, right by Golden West college. It is one of the two best stores that I know for anime figures and Gundam, the other one is Anime Nut, but they gone out of business not too long ago *cry*

  26. Ken says:

    Ohh btw, if you want to browse their store items b4 visiting the shop, you can do it on their Ebay store, since their Ebay store pretty much have everything that they have in the store. One small hint, the price in the store is more expensive than the price they listed on Ebay. So if you want to buy cheap item, just print out the item that you want on their Ebay site and bring it to them. They will sell the item to you using Ebay price (and with no tax if you pay by cash) ^^


  27. JB says:

    Where is it in the mall? which wing or the nearest large department store name ? thanks.

  28. Dartlein says:

    Really? Cool!
    I live in Cancún Mexico.
    take lot of pics of your travel :3!

    Dartleins last blog post..ONLY BRRRRRRRRRRRRRROTHERS

  29. kowloon says:

    ah, my goddess! tsk, wish there was a store like that where i live. and, wow, they still have the nanoha kotobukiya ver. in stock? you’re one lucky girl, imo.

    hope the powers that be would bless our city with a store like that.

  30. lostty says:

    The store review idea is great! This honestly seems like an amazing place, I wish there was one like this in my location! The only stores I know similar to this one are very small, but they do carry a lot of figures both old and new. I hope I can one day visit this place myself!

    losttys last blog post..My Top 10 Anime Openings

  31. Blowfish says:

    I am amazed that they let you take pictures of their store!
    Over here they wouldnt let me and i had to use my sneaky ninja photography skills.You are alot more famous than me tough so that might be the reason.

    May i ask how you approached the shop owner?

    Its nice that you manage to get discounts for your readers! Now how about getting reader discounts for a german store? ^^

    Blowfishs last blog post..Another Figure Dilemma!

  32. Dancing Queen says:

    thanks that helps out a lt, i’ll check them out next and see if they want to be featured!

    i think by JCPenney

    awesome, i’ve been there. Visited on my trip to Merida, Lelouch has been too! http://howagirlfigures.com/2008/08/04/lelouchs-mexican-vacation/

    us anime fans need to prove that we’re willing to spend on anime merchandise, then the shops will star sparking up everywhere!

    i love shops with old and new

    you know it wasn’t that hard asking her thinking back, but at the time i was so nervous i was almost shaking

  33. JB says:

    I made it to SW shop which was nice place to checkout… I did see some nice figures that are a bit older there. Some prices were good others were kind of same or a bit high compared to what I had paid for the same items. Did not see much in new figures though. Will check them out again in the future.

    Regarding Animeking. Gundam kit prices are very good IMO. But Animeking is pricey on most anime figures even with the ebay price. About as much as the cost of buying from Japan + shipping… which is OK I guess if you don’t like to buy online, but you would get it sooner from Japan… shop around!

    Their are other shops (mainly etailers) in the area that have much better prices, but mostly you have to pre-order way ahead of time for new figures as they only get a set quantity. Some will let you pick up in person to save on shipping.

  34. :] says:

    I been here before, the prices are great and I got some great gifts for my friend on her birthday, now seeing these pictures make me want to go back. I wanna see if they have Lelouch figma, but I only had like 10 minutes to get the gifts. (TT__TT)

  35. rockrgirl says:

    I live in the L.A area and this is an hour drive. I am thinking about begging my parents to take me. I don’t think 42 for Shana candy bikini is a good price. I saw it for like 28 online. That is a ripoff.

  36. ^_^ says:

    I love Small Wonders it’s just a great place, much better than the other store nearby(they hardly talk, and make me fell nervous, since the staff there only sit behind a computer playing games all day) Small Wonders is much more friendly, which is why I always shop there.

  37. Mike Jones says:

    I just LOOOOOOOVE Small Wonders 😀 I discovered it 6 years ago while searching for the Battle Royale movie, when it was still in the Buena Park Mall too, and Nina was just soooooo nice 😀 Since then, my mom and I have been going to get almost all of our Anime stuff 😀 @ most places like Anime King and Anime Nuts, the staff are very impersonal and are sometimes very rude to my mom (since she is an older otaku xD). Nina always remembers your name after you go there enough times:D She has a good variety of stuff there, and if she doesn’t have what you are looking for she will sometimes order it for you 😀

  38. Hertz! says:

    HEY! This is my local mall!!!
    I go here whenever I go to the mall, they just have EVERYTHING an anime nerd could want! I’ve been going for a about 5 years and they’ve never let down 😀

  39. Mario says:

    Just went there on saturday. WOW they had a lots of stuff there, I just wish my wallet was not as empty. I did find a Saber Alter there and was at a good price. I also picked up a small Shakugan No shana figure as well. I really like it because they were nice and the store looked clean. I went to two other anime shops the same day one was anime king and the othere was Japan Anime. Did not care much for AnimeKing prices were out there and no help what so ever. Now Japan Anime was okay had lots of nice stuff but some of the figures looked like there were bootleg so I passed on them. So far this is one I like the is close to me. The other one is Jungle Anime in LA.

  40. […] the entire month of April Small Wonders in the Westminster Mall will have a buy 4 get 1 free sale! On any non-sale item in the store! You […]

  41. Nice, I wish there were stores like that around here. Not so much in Indiana 🙁

    anonymous_objects last blog post..Kotobukiya 1/6 Hinagiku Katsura

  42. LunaOkami says:

    Do you think they have those store in Germany, Japan, or Illinous? I want to go there so badly! why cant i find places like those T_T do they have a website?

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