How to build a wooden toy collection without spending your life savings?
Firstly, let’s touch on the benefits of wooden toys.
- Wooden toys are more environmentally friendly then their plastic counterparts. Plastic never breaks down.
- Wooden toys are healthier. Plastic toys can leach chemicals and toxins which are detrimental to health. Germs can also harbour on plastic.
- Wooden toys provide a connection to the natural earth which can help children make better sense of the world.
- Wooden toys often have various textures and grains which offers a sensory experience.
- Wooden toys are calming. They don’t overstimulate unlike the flashing lights, bright colours and sounds found on many plastic toys.
- Wooden toys encourage imagination, literacy and numeracy and problem-solving.
- Wooden toys look better. Let’s face it, wood goes with anything!
We’ve established just how wonderful wooden toys are, so how do we build a collection without a huge outlay of money?
Buy less: The good news is that wooden toys can be so open-ended that you don’t need a lot. I’m also a huge fan of minimalism, and I believe that children play better when their options aren’t overwhelming. A carefully selected wooden toy can become a telephone, a bridge, a boat, a slide, a doll bed, a rainbow or anything else our imagination allows. Therefore by making the initial outlay of one wooden toy, you’re saving the cost of multiple plastic toys.
Durability: Wooden toys will last A LOT longer than plastic toys. They can be handed down from generation to generation. Although the initial cost might be higher, you need to consider the many years of use it will get. Wood is also biodegradable and won’t turn into landfill!
As promised, here are my tips to build your collection:
- Search at your local op shops, markets and recycling centres. You won’t find something every time but I’ve found some amazing and unique pieces. You are also giving something a second or third life.
- Set up an automatic notification on gumtree and Facebook market place for the search term ‘wooden toys’. This way you’ll be notified whenever something comes up in your local area and you can get the bargains first.
- Get creative and repurpose or reuse what you already have. Sand back, reseal or paint. If you are handy on the tools then make something out of untreated wood or some cut down trees.
- Create a ‘Wishlist’ on a toy website (wink wink our website has this function) and share it with your family if they ask what to get your child for their birthdays. This way you are actually getting what the family wants, not a pile of stuffed teddies and clothes that are too small.
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