Archive for the ‘Project Launch’ Category
05 Sep

DIY Crib Mobile Project

The Playful Factory has not had a diy toy design project for a while and I think it about time we get back at it! Now that we are settled into our new home in Chicago we are realizing there are somethings that we are missing. Either from leaving it behind in Arizona or things that we have never had before. One of those things is a crib mobile for Nolan. We have been dangling his toys from anything we can find. We have even resorted to this: He really enjoys watching his toys move around overhead. He also loves handling his toys, but he has trouble holding onto them and it frustrates him greatly when they fall out of view. As a result of all of this I am going to make him his very own crib mobile, but I need your help designing it. The "theme" of Nolan's Nook (nursery) is loosely taken from Dr. Seuss's book "Oh the Places You'll Go!". So use that as a starting point if it helps. There are many great crib mobiles out there. These two are my favorites: Check out more amazing crib mobiles on Playful Factory's Pinterest Board Up next we will be sketching some concepts for Nolan's new crib mobile...
02 Dec

Elf Toy Design

The Christmas time toy design challenge is to design a toy associated with elves. They are such fun loving creatures I thought it would be fun to make a line of toys themed around elves. So, let's see what you've got... I will add my concepts as the month goes on. I look forward to seeing what you come up with.
02 Nov

Pet Toys Project Launch

My niece just got one of these: (the dog, not the stick) and she named her Molly. I do have to say it is one of the cutest dogs I have ever seen. And boy oh boy is that little Jack Russell full of energy! As I was playing with little Molly, it got me thinking that it could be a lot of fun to design some pet toys for all of our favorite pets. I realize that not everyone has a pet, but you can still design a toy for an imaginary pet or the pet that you hope to have someday. The next series of posts will be exploring pet toys of all varieties to help you come up with some great pet toy ideas. Participate in the design process through leaving comments to this projects posts and become eligible to win the free toy giveaway. What type of pet do you want to design a toy for? (dog, cat, bird, horse, fish, ferret, rabbit, hamster, guinea pig, gerbil, turtle, snake, lizard, chicken)
16 Oct

Halloween Toy Design Project!

I have been looking forward to the Halloween project for a few months. I have been having an internal debate whether we should make cool costumes or make awesome trick or treat candy bags. I was unable to decide between the two, so we are actually going to do both. Some of you may already have your costume all figured out, so you can focus on making a cool trick or treat bag. Others of you have not even thought of what you are going to be for Halloween and this will be a great opportunity to work on designing your own costume.

Trick-or-Treat Candy Bags

When I was a kids I used an old pillow case as my candy collecting bag. Wait... isn't that what looters carry the stuff they steal around in? We can do better than that... right? Here are some fun bags that I found: Owl Goodie Bag by Susie (found here). They have a downloadable template to make your own bag. Thanks! Scrappy Owl by The Long Thread (found here). Candy Corn Bag by Ducktivities (found here). This great little youtube video helped get me in the mood to design some sweet Halloween stuff... Beware the tune is kind of catchy: You see the list is short! There needs to be more fun bags out there!!! Come on little designers, the trick-or-treaters need your help to be able to have a cool fun bag for Halloween night to help gather up all that yummy candy. Let's see what you got. Design and submit a trick-or-treat candy bag to be eligible for the free toy giveaway. (If you need inspiration I have sketched out some design concepts here) If you are making your own costume take a picture of the costume (with you wearing it or not, up to you) and submit it to be eligible for the free toy giveaway. If you do both, design a bag and costume, you will have double the chances of winning. Good luck! (Submit your designs as a comment to this post and attach pictures or drawings if you have them. If you have any issues please let me know and I can help you out.)
22 Sep

Project Launch: The best Ride-on Toys

How do you determine which ride-on toys are the very best? Well, I can tell you how I chose my top fifteen. First, I broke ride-on toys into four categories; Wheels, Slide, Bounce, and Rock. Then, I did a whole bunch of research, trying to look at all of what is out on the market right now. Finally, I rated each product by its; Safety, Function, Uniqueness, Cost, Style, and whatever I "feel" about the product. Without further boring you with details here are my top 20 ride-on toys:


^ Space Hopper found on ^ Frog Hopper found on ^ Rody found on by Gymnic ^ Fluffizoo found on by fluffizoo ^ Howdy found on by TRUMPETTE


^ The Big Wheel found everywhere ^ Ride On found on by Brio ^ Scooter found on by Plan Toys ($162) ^ Euro Scooter found on by Unknown ^ Skipper Scooter found on by Skipper Toys ^ Svan Scooter found on by Svan ^ Plasma Car found on by PlaSmart ^ Krazy Kar found on by Amloid Corporation ^ Sirch Max Push Car found on by Sirch ^ Leka Trojan Horse found on by Yngve Eriksson ^ Wooden Trike found on by PlanToys ^ Scoot n Zoom found on by Radio Flyer ^ URoll found on by Giggles ^ Inch Worm found on by Radio Flyer ^ Wheely Bug found on by Prince Lionheart ^ Okiedog Trike found on by International Playthings ^ Push-Bike for Three found on by Winther ^ BIT found on by Glodos ^ Trunki Ride-on Luggage found on by Trunki Okay, so there were a little more than twenty... can blame me? Which one is your favorite? Why? I am sure I missed some good ones. If you find other ride-on toys that you really like add them to this post as a comment.
14 Sep

Playful Factory Project Launch: Chain Reaction Toys

There are not many things more exhilarating than putting a well laid plan into action and having it be a success. There is also not much that is more frustrating then having those plans goes completely awry. This week we will be designing chain reaction toys. Although you may have never heard of that type of toy before, you have definitely seen them. Check out these cool toys...

Mouse Trap

A chain reaction classic! Check it out life size below...

Digital Chain Reaction Game

GoldBurger chain reaction game on

Chain Reaction Machines If you want to look up more chain reaction toys it might be more fruitful to look up Rube Goldberg Machines. He was a cartoonist that kind of invented these inventions. After all of this research we learned that these contraptions are simply a machine that takes multiple complex steps to perform an extremely simple task. In short, a really fun waste of time. Have you ever built your own chain reaction toy? Share with us your experience or fun chain reaction toys you find.