Monday, 20 February 2012

Cubby Kit review

www.cubbykit.com



When a message popped into my inbox asking for bloggers to try out a Cubby Kit, I clicked through to have a closer look and totally fell in love with the concept. They describe themselves as a subscription service that delivers craft activities for kids straight to your door and explain : "At CubbyKit our aim is to help busy parents have one-on-one time with their child whilst getting creative with exciting craft activities. CubbyKit is a monthly subscription service that provides themed boxes for two age groups: 3-4 and 5-6. Each month the CubbyKit will be themed, such as outer space, music or spring. The box will include all the instructions and supplies for several projects as well as suggestions for ways to explore further. There is also an obvious convenience factor with CubbyKit; there’s no need for trips to the craft store for any of the projects. Everything you need will be in the box, so the fun can start right away!"


Well, you can see from the top picture how excited the girls were when the box arrived with their names on ! They immediately wanted to unpack everything and get stuck in but I guessed that it would take quite some time to get everything done so I told them they had to wait until after lunch ! Meany mummy !


As soon as the table was cleared, they grabbed the box and hastily emptied the contents, but not before I'd put the protective plastic tablecloth on. I wasn't sure how messy it would be but with hindsight, it is indispensible ! You have been warned - in fact, grab some aprons too, while you're at it ! As well as some paints in little pots, some paper and a few interesting looking odds and ends, there are three mysterious brown envelopes containing the three projects and their instruction sheets.


The theme of this box was Outer Space and 7-year-old Juliette opted for the Make Your Own Rocket project. You can see from her face how exciting this was for her, despite the fact that we do a lot of arts and crafts anyway. I think the big mystery of the projects in the envelopes added to the excitement !


Meanwhile, 10-year-old Sophie grabbed the envelope and instructions for the Constellation Wallchart, which was perfect for her as it was a topic they'd covered at school this year.


2-year-old Pierre was just excitedly grabbing at any bits that came within reach, saying "Look, look!" and passing them to the girls ! Easily pleased !


With a bit of help from me, Juliette managed to build her rocket which she was very pleased with. It's dead simple - basically a rolled-up tube of paper, a cone made from a semi-circle and various decorative bits and pieces stuck all over it - but she loved it. Be warned - use the double-sided tape sparingly as we ran out long before the rocket was finished. We used regular sellotape instead to finish off but it didn't stick very well.



Meanwhile, Sophie was having great fun with the dot-to-dot constellation cards (they're brilliant - they should make a whole activity book full of them) and sticking all her odds and ends on to the wallchart. The only tricky bit for her was trying to get the black paper, which came rolled up, flat. I did the usual rolling it back the opposite way trick but this made a few unsightly ridges, which luckily Sophie managed to cover up with her decorative bits !


With one project each under their belts, it was time to move on to the final project - making a papier maché Sun, Moon and Earth. Eeek ! Sounds messy !


There is some papier maché glue mixture in a little pot that needs mixing in with water but, unfortunately, ours seemed to have got a bit damp because there were a few big lumps that just would not dissolve, however hard we tried.


As we waited for the gluey paste mixture to thicken, I blew up the balloons. The instructions warn you not to blow them up too big or you won't have enough paper to cover them . However, one of them refused to go round planet shaped if I left it small. Juliette spoke my mind and declared that it looked like a boob so we'd have a boob-shaped planet ! 


The girls had never tried papier maché before and, being bilingual in English and French, laughed at the fact that this means "chewed paper" ! They had great fun but it did inevitably get very sloppy and messy so protect the floor, the tablecloth, clothes - everything ! If you watch Dexter and know what he does with a roll of plastic before a kill, that would be ideal !


The glue on Sophie's wallchart had now dried so she proudly showed it off.


The balloons are still drying out, more than 24 hours after we started covering them with paper so we'll come back to that another day.

I asked the girls what they thought of the kit and they said definitely 5/5 ! As this was done by a 7 and 10-year-old, it is possibly slightly optimistic for the suggested 5/6 age range though. If they can iron out the curled up black paper, quantity of double-sided tape and lumpy papier maché glue issues, I'd agree but for now, I'll give them a very respectable 4/5.

star rating : 4/5

RRP : £19.99 per month

for more information : www.cubbykit.com, on twitter @cubbykit and on facebook

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10 comments:

  1. This is very nice Cherly:) Thank you!
    Sarah, CubbKit

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  2. I think I agree with you about the 4 / 5 for the kit - there were some bits in ours that got spoiled by leaks and at 3 and a half the star chart constellation was a bit too much for Addison to attempt but I adore the concept and anything that makes crafting easier gets my thumbs up :)

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  3. :-o I want crafting supplies delivered to me every month! What an awesome idea!!

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  4. That's so great that it gave you the chance to do paper mache with the girls for the first time. And good to see that the themes they choose are relevant and help kids learn. So many boxed kits you find on the high street (probably for about £10 each) are just rubbish. Is delivery free?

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  5. The £19.99 subscription covers postage too.

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  6. This sounds like a great idea! I feel like I'm always trying think of these kinds of craft activities to do with my kids, but since I'm not very creative it's always a challenge to come up with something.

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  7. I've been meaning to try papier mache with my kids but it always seemed a bit daunting. I'd love see some pics of how the planets turned out.

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  8. Looks great. I love paper mache craft!

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