Monday 19 July 2010

John Crane PinToy Woodenmum Family

Rarely has such an inocuous-looking toy taken the whole Madhouse family by storm ! When Juliette recently reviewed the gorgeous John Crane Little Cottage dolls' house, three generations of women - me, my mum and both 8-year-old Sophie and 5-year-old Juliette - spent the whole afternoon playing merrily together. But that was just the beginning ! The lovely Helen from John Crane also sent us a PinToy family to play with, so that we could enter the John Crane blog's "Where in the World is Jenny ?" competition. Well, we had a look through the blog for inspiration, having a good giggle on the way (I particularly love the dad doing yoga and the mum getting taken hostage !), and the girls were so inspired that they've decided to take the little wooden figures out and about with us throughout the whole summer - rumour has it, they're even coming to Turkey with us at the end of the month ! They begged me to create a blog for them to record their travels, so you can follow the adventures on Where in the world is Jenny Woodenmum ? !

But back to the toys themselves. What's so special ? Well, I don't know really ! I think it's the fact that their legs and arms are so easy to bend into different positions so you can put them into an endless variety of different poses and situations. Or maybe it's because you can twist their heads around so they look like they're talking to each other. Or their clothes, which are so bright and funky and modern-looking. They may just be little wooden figures but they seem a lot more "human" and "realistic" than the usual uninspiring dolls-house figures wearing really old-fashioned clothes and one fixed unnatural position.

Just this weekend alone, they've been through some serious playing and posing - I've been amazed at just how far the girls' imagination can go when prodded in the right direction ! - and despite lots of rough-and-tumble and extreme bending, they've all survived in pristine condition.

I love the old-fashioned feel of the toys that remind me of my childhood. No annoying bleeps or flashing lights so you can play in public without annoying anybody. No need to constantly change batteries or recharge anything (so it's better for the environment too). No batteries required, just a hefty dose of imagination. And we've definitely got bucketloads of that in the Madhouse !

I also love the wide range of toys available. Little boys (or probably more likely their dads !) may be put off playing with dolls but they'll love the firefighters or construction workers. The PinToy Doll families are also available as a "Chinese" or "Black" family, which is fantastic for role play that all little children can identify themselves with. The dolls are also made to scale to be used with the whole range of PinToy dolls houses and accessories so if you want to build up a collection, it's a great place to start.

star rating : 5/5

RRP : £17.99

for more information :

Other reviews you might be interested in :

John Crane Little Cottage

Chunky Wooden Safari Puzzle

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