Danii Meger, Scooby-Doo

Danii Meger collects Scooby-Doo merchandise. In this edition of Collector Spotlight, Danii talks about right and wrong in the world of collecting and the approach that turns “stuff” into a collection.

How do you describe your collection?

I just love Scooby-Doo so I made an atmosphere of Scooby-Doo.

The collection is pretty general in terms of its era, but I find myself tending to go for the items from the 1990s to the early 2000s. That’s the era when I was growing up and I really like the packaging from that time.

It’s not very often that I open a conversation by letting people know I hold a Guinness World Record for my collection. But people seem to think it’s kinda neat. I have to work on a proper count, but I probably have 2,500 items now. When I set the record in 2018, I had 1,806 items.

When and why did you start your collection?

I started liking Scooby when I was three years old. I have a photo of me dressed as Scooby for Halloween just after I turned four — that was very serious business.

When you’re little, you are given versions of the thing you like. If you like horses, you get horse everything. For me it was Scooby-Doo, so I received Scooby everything. It wasn’t until I was seven or eight years old that I found out what collecting was. At that point, I started actually collecting instead of just getting the thing I liked.

It’s been 20 years.

My enthusiasm as a collector inspired me to develop a course and coach other collectors. I am developing the course and coaching because I’ve learnt so much in my time collecting that I feel like I don’t want to just keep it for myself.

Collecting can be accessible, it should build community, and it’s an amazing hobby that I want to support others in. I’ve spoken to so many collectors who get frustrated with what they have or haven’t added to their collection, are confused about how to display it, or don’t know how to keep it safe. I’ve worked on learning, testing, and expanding on this for years. I have over seven active collections, all of which I can display, afford, and keep safe.

Collecting isn’t just buying things and having them collect dust, it is so much more — that’s what I want to help people understand. My course will include videos and downloads and my coaching is one on one time where I can help people iron out details for their collection. I’ve done this with a few close friends in order to help them with displaying their collections and it’s been extremely productive so far. It’s an absolute dream to help others enjoy their collections to the fullest, and hopefully miss out on as many collection dangers as possible!

The show did lead me into a career as a voice actor, too! I fell in love with animation because of it and moved through career paths related to animation and fell in love with voice-over! I am now a voice actor, casting director, and project manager for voice-over. I fell in love with the voice-over industry because of it! Casey Kasem — who originally played my favourite character, Shaggy — and Frank Welker — who has been Fred and Scooby forever — are absolute voice-over icons. I appreciate them a lot.

How do you display and store your collection?

Displaying is a big deal for me. I’ve learned how stores create displays and have made my collection look uniform like that. Every layer means something.

I acquired amazing store shelves from a place that was closing. The person knew my dad and knew about my collection. They sold them to me for $500 but it’s thousands of dollars worth of fancy shelving. I wish I could still use those but I’m currently renting and I can’t destroy the house that much.

I went online and found a bunch of free bookshelves on Facebook Marketplace and places like that. I worked them into the rental space I’m in now. Bookshelves are the best things to use. Some people like cube shelving but it wastes so much space. After trying different things, bookshelves are the best thing I’ve found, especially for the shape of my Scooby stuff.

I group things by theme or collection: my Funko POPS! are all together because the box shapes are the same and that means I can use the space to its best. If someone asks me about the POPS! they are easy for me to find and remember. It makes the most sense to me and is the easiest way to display everything.

I use good-old Google Sheets and Excel to track the collection. I designed a spreadsheet that works for me. It took me hours to put it together. I didn’t just put in what Guinness needs — I also keep track of worth, a photo, the year it was released, and its condition (in case I want one that’s in better condition). It’s there for insurance, for me, and for other people who want to look to see if I have something. I made the spreadsheet something that is useful and can continue to be useful.

What do you consider to be the Holy Grail of your collection?

It’s always very difficult for me to name my favourite thing because the collection is built around love. If I name something, I then think, “Oh, but I also love… and I also love…”. I’ll just keep remembering all the other things I love.

One thing that I honestly never thought that I would find — and for this reason, I will call it a favourite — is a Boo Brothers art cel signed by William Hanna and Joseph Barbera. The cel is from my favourite movie, Scooby-Doo Meets the Boo Brothers. My dad and I found it when we were Christmas shopping one year. We found it in a strip mall, sitting on the floor of a little framing store.

I did recently acquire a Holy Grail — the Scooby-Doo Bissell vacuum. I got that through a Scooby friend I made online. They said, “Wait, that’s your grail? You should have it, not me.” I had never met anyone who owned that item so they let me buy it from them.

Something on the top of my list is a cookie jar from the Warner Bros. Studio Store. There is a specific one with Scooby breaking out of the front of the television. I have no Scooby cookie jars and I feel like it’s because I want that specific one.

There’s actually a bunch of stuff from the Warner Bros. Studio Store on my wishlist. That includes Scooby and Scrappy items. I love Scrappy and the two of them together on the merch is extra cute — Scrappy with his determined face. I think the Scrappy hate-train is starting to get lost. It used to be cool to make fun of Scrappy but now people are like, “Wait, no, I actually like him; he’s kinda cute.” We know.

I don’t really buy online. I thrift. For the price of what someone pays for one pencil on eBay, I can get 30 things.

What advice would you give to someone interested in starting a Scooby-Doo collection?

I think the biggest thing is to do it with love. What takes it from “stuff” to a “collection” is how much you care about it and how much it means to you.

There are no parameters for collecting — no rules. There is no wrong or right — you set those rules. You have to do what makes sense to you. You don’t have to collect fast. Your collection doesn’t need to cost a lot. It doesn’t all have to be on display, behind glass, or in its box. It is 100 percent up to you and what makes you love your collection. Anyone who thinks they’re a bigger fan or that their collection is better doesn’t fully understand collecting.

It’s not about other people. It’s about you and your collection.

You can find Danii on TikTok, Instagram, and Twitter. Visit her website to learn more about her work to help other collectors design and manage their own collections.

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