Some of the brands we stock are new to us and may well be new to our customers too. They really captivated us when we visited them at toy fairs, and we can’t wait to tell you about them. So we won’t. Here goes…
That was my first and lasting impression of Bajo (pronounced BAY-joe). Really, the internet does no justice to these toys; one really needs to hold and play with them to appreciate the quality of the materials and workmanship, and the innovation in their design. Adults and children alike will be thrilled by the movement of their push and pull along toys.
Bajo toys are manufactured in a small factory in Poland. They use locally-sourced, sustainable wood of the highest quality.
These are truly heirloom-quality toys.
At first glance it looks like Bioserie make high quality plastic toys… nothing remarkable there, although one might notice that they do look very cool – the stacking shape sorter is particularly eye-catching. But wait! It turns out that these toys are actually made from plants – lovely, annually renewable, plants.
Think of it as a rigid version of those green bags you put your food waste in.
Quut is a Belgian design company that makes brilliant toys for the beach (but don’t worry too much about the British weather – they can also be used in the garden, bath, or at the water & sand table). Quut toys do everything that traditional beach toys do, but they do it a bit differently (and a lot better). We took Alto and Cuppi to Bournemouth beach the other day, and can confirm that they really do work exceptionally well – see photographic evidence.
Wooden blocks are pretty cool, right? And magnets are pretty cool too. Well, cleverly conceal some magnets in wooden blocks and you get something more than the sum of its parts. Something with play potential that is almost never-ending.
Immediately after playing with Tegu magnetic blocks for the first time at the Toy Fair I went out and bought myself Xander the 14-piece set. It seemed like a lot of money to pay for 14 small pieces of wood, but I figured it was worth it. I wasn’t wrong. Xander, not yet two-and-a-half, sat and played with it non-stop for well over an hour. That’s an incredible level of engagement for a toddler. Five months on and neither of us are in the slightest bit bored of playing with 14 small pieces of wood.
And the good news doesn’t stop there. Tegu is manufactured in Honduras, and helping the people of this nation is “a foundational priority” of the company. They provide the local community with living wage jobs, long term career development, and investment for the local school. The blocks are made from sustainable Honduran hardwood and they plant trees to help with the country’s reforestation efforts.
And remember, you can check out these brands and more at the North Street Summer Fair on Saturday June 25. One lucky customer will win a 24-piece set of Tegu magnetic wooden blocks, and the iguana above is just one of many creations possible. I for one will be extremely jealous!