Design and build your own toys!!!
We design toys together by sharing; toy reviews, toy research, toy safety/design tips, d.i.y. toy tutorials and toy design concepts. Share your comments, opinions, ideas, sketches, etc... and entered win the free toy giveaway! In addition, each new toy design idea you submit will have a chance to be made into a real toy in our Playful Factory! Get involved now with our current toy design project.
25 Jul

Make the world a better place… with more WATER BALLOONS!!!


A project worth backing.


03 Jul

Creative Fireworks

Have a great 4th of July weekend… Hope to see some fireworks!

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image source: Playdough


08 Mar

Great Toys – Pop Toob

I found a great toy today! It seems like I played with one of these as a kid, but never realized it was actually made for kids. I found these at the local grocery store for a dollar a piece.

I love the ‘play-ability’ to cost ratio! I gave my nieces and nephews several of them and they played with them for hours… turning them into marble runs, telephone lines, whistle wind mills, and more!

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The only downfall of this toy that I can see is that they come with a barcode sticker attached to one end… while removing it leaves behind that awful sticky junk.


24 Dec

Play from Scratch… Build Big Ideas

A great new site to check out, follow and buy cool DIY toys too!… Play from Scratch. A fun company with a great mission…

“We want to inspire kids and adults to build big ideas through open-ended creative play. We see the world as a place full of possibilities and resources that can be used to solve problems and create fun.”

Inspire


23 Aug

Cool Kickstarter Toy Project


Back their project here.


03 Jul

Bubble Jet Stream Paper Airplane

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This fun project was the brainchild of one of the kids at Playful Factory Camp. We did not have all the supplies needed to prototype the idea at Camp, but I have since built several. It is a fun toy and hopefully this video tutorial will help you build your own.


03 Jul

Chalktrail – Ride and Draw

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In 2012 a great kickstarter project was successful and is now doing rather well… All because their idea is awesome! By combining two of the greatest outdoor playthings, a bike and sidewalk chalk… you get CHALKTRAIL.

Having a toddler age son that loves riding any type of vehicle, I look forward to seeing the two piece chalk version that doubles as training wheels.

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14 May

Little Monkeys Make Us Smile

So proud to be related to this little monkey.

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07 May

DRAWNIMAL

A fun new app for kids that like to doodle and learn the alphabet!

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I love the connections between physical and digital play that this app inspires through the simple use of pen, paper, and iPad. The pairing of doodles and alphabet learning is spot on… the two become interests right around the same development stages.

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The ‘add-on’ alphabet game reminds me of the game we used to play in church as kids… one person starts by drawing very abstract doodles (a half circle or three dashed lines)… then the second person is challenged to turn the scribbles into a masterful drawing.

What a fun idea! Thanks for making it and for making it look great too.

Made by three guys that sure seem to be having fun! Check out more about this app here.


06 May

Stamping my way to graduation

I only have a couple of more weeks of school. After graduation I am hoping to get to spend some more time back at Playful Factory. In reflection, I have been looking at my projects, very grateful that I been able to have so much fun during my two years at IIT Institute of Design (Chicago).

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Here is one of the projects that I am just wrapping up. It is a game to help people better understand another culture, specifically ‘Childhood in India’. The game is called Bachpan (means childhood in Hindi). It is played by rolling colored marbles from house to house within an apartment complex. This symbolizes the open and friendly social play structure found throughout much of India. Friends quickly blur into being your extended family as you ‘roll around’ together. You will learn this and many other characteristics of Indian culture through the eyes of six kids.

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One of the really fun aspects of developing this game was getting to learn about wood block stamping. It is an Indian traditional method for making patterns on fabrics. They make some really amazing patterns, so I decided to mimic some for the decoration of this game.

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I made the stamps by laser cutting into wood. I then wetted the stamps using normal stamp ink.

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You can see more projects from my graduate school days here. There are several stores on Etsy that sell these wooden stamp blocks if you are interested, but I found making the block to be just as much fun and stamping. Also, I had fun collecting inspiration art to inform my design… check out my pinterest board.