Itty Bitty Greenie

eco-fabulous finds for kids

Posts Tagged ‘Eco-friendly toys’

Christmas Time For Toys

Christmas Time for Toys with a few that make our list!  Christmas is a time of open hearts and kindness and giving the simplest of token in a gesture of goodwill and happiness makes us feel remembered and loved! It doesn’t need to break the bank either!
Be creative and up-cycle or revamp an old treasure or maybe add a bit of the old and the new together!
Think Recycle, Happy and Fun!

If you’re looking for some Eco-friendly Christmas Toys here are a few that make our list for eco-fabulous kids!

Christmas Time with Green Toys! 

Screen Shot 2016-11-25 at 9.42.55 AM

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

1) Pop-out and Play Christmas A magical winter wonderland to play and display! $16.95

2) Plan Toys Fire Truck Wooden Toy for junior rescuers! $24.95

3) Green Toys Fire Engine Race to the rescue! $32.95

4) Kit Pax Fire Station Build for fun-filled action! $39.95

5) Green Toys Fire Truck Protect the environment from harm! $52.95

6) Green Toys Fire Station Playset Spark imaginative play with your little firefighter! $99.95

7) Day and Night First Word Book From tummy time to toddler’s first words! $19.95

8) ABC Touch & Feel Alphabet Book Interactive play for sensory and language awareness! $19.95

9) Count with Me 1-2-3 Book Foldout Double Sided Animals for learning and fun! $19.95

10) Wooden Stacking Rabbit  Classic Toy with a modern look! $45.00

Insta.PCpopout

 

 

Discover More Fun Eco-toys for Playing
Shop – 20% Off Now until 20th December, 2016.
using code: Xmasrescue at checkout. (Australia Only)

 

 

eco baby toys / ecofriendly wooden toys / green toys / plan toys / orchard toys / petitcollage toys / ravensburger / hess spielburg toys / tigertribe toys /dandelion /greenstart books /mibo / vulli toys

 

Eco, organic and natural does not = boring…

eco rainbow bright

When I started my search for eco products for children — long before Itty Bitty Greenie was born — I was overwhelmed by the selection of “natural” coloured organic onesies and plain wooden toys. Sure they were pure and beautiful, but having looked forward to the time when I could buy things for my own children, I craved a little more colour and fun. After all, making eco choices shouldn’t have to be boring, right?

I’ve always found rainbows cheerful and inspiring, so I guess it’s no surprise that colourful items figure prominently in our collection of eco-fabulous finds. Here are some of my faves:

1) Plan Toys Baby Car $24.95

2) Hess Spielzeug Elephant Rattle $15.95

3) Playable Art Balls $49.95

4) Beeswax Honey Sticks (box of 12 colours) $14.95

5) Hess Spielzeug Heart Rattle $15.95

6) Frugi Rainbow Organic Babygrow $29.95

7) Rainbow Rattle and Teething toy $14.95

8) Teddy Bear Rattle and Grasping Toy $16.95

9) Little Innoscents Certified Organic Skincare for children – gift set $19.95

10) Tots Bots EasyFit modern cloth nappy – Rainbow Spot print $32.95

11) Plan Toys Oval Xylophone $39.95

12) Frugi Rainbow Spot Organic Babygrow $24.95

Hess-Spielzeug: Child-friendly and Earth-friendly Toys

Hess Spielzeug

When it comes to wooden toys, German toy makers seem to have an unsurpassed reputation for being world leaders. Hess-Spielzeug is one of the top brands, and we love their designs because not only do they offer quality hand-made craftsmanship, the materials used are also carefully selected from renewable resources and are 100% non-toxic.

The company was founded in 1990 by Claudia Hess in the small village of Olbernhau, Germany. Hess was inspired by watching her own two children at play, and created the first wooden pacifier holders and pram toys. The range now includes rattles, baby gyms, puzzles and games, mobiles and much more.

In the years since its launch, Hess-Spielzeug has earned industry accolades for its colourful collection of innovative, safe and child-friendly designs. Our favourites include the wooden baby rattles, especially the Rainbow Rattle and Heart Rattle, that are suitable from birth. Equipped with colourful beads, bendy parts and small bells, they promote sensory development for babies at play.

They also provide safe and natural teething relief and, as with the case of the toy bear and elephant designs, they’re easy to grasp, which makes for a lovely first toy for babies.

Hess SpielzeugFor those who are a little older, the teddy bear stacker helps children learn about size, colour and hand-eye co-ordination. And new to the range are some very fun toys on wheels, including the pony, turtle and car, that are great eco-friendly toddler toys as they encourage movement and promote the development of gross motor skills.

It’s worth mentioning that all paints and stains are water-based, non-toxic and saliva-resistant. All other materials used such as strings, elastics and glues are also non-toxic and child-safe. Any metal part such as clips and bells are nickel free, and Hess-Spielzeug toys fully comply with European and Australian safety standards for toys.

View the whole range of Hess-Spielzeug toys at Itty Bitty Greenie.

Building puzzles = building life skills

blog_puzzles

Putting together puzzles is something I hadn’t done for years until my son was old enough to take an interest, and when we started doing them together, I was quickly reminded why I loved the activity as a child.

It involves several aspects of the thinking process, and it’s this cognitive engagement that makes puzzles a great activity for children of all ages. Child play therapists argue that puzzles build skills that can be applied to most aspects of daily living.

Here are the top five developmental benefits of doing puzzles:

1) Hand-eye co-ordination: From an early age, simple puzzles and stacking toys can help babies recognize shapes and, through trial and error, they can manipulate pieces to fit in the proper spots. Wooden puzzles and shape sorters are great for this.

2) Fine motor skills: As their spatial awareness develops, puzzles give children a chance to exercise mental manipulation as well as physical dexterity. By learning to grasp and manipulate pieces, children develop their fine motor skills in the process.

3) Problem solving: Puzzles create an opportunity to develop your little one’s critical thinking, work on planning, logic, reasoning, organization and deductive skills.

Ravensburger-3-in-a-Box-Preschool-Jigsaw-Puzzles-Nursery-Rhyme-14034349-54) Language development: Word and picture association offered by puzzles allows children to build and expand their vocabulary. Puzzles built around nursery rhymes, for example, can be a fun way to build associations with pictures and stories.

5) Social skills and self-esteem: When children work together in co-operative play it encourages communication as they take turns, negotiate where they think the pieces should go and why, and in the end they can share the satisfaction of seeing their masterpiece completed. Puzzles can also help children with attention issues, such as those with ADHD, to stay engaged.

At Itty Bitty Greenie, we aim to offer a range of challenging eco puzzles and games for children aged 0-5 that are not only intellectually stimulating, colourful and fun, but also environmentally friendly. Click here to view our range of eco-friendly puzzles (made from recycled board) by Orchard Toys, Ravensburger, Mudpuppy, and more.

Makedo your own toy masterpiece this Christmas

For many of us with children, there’s a familiar scene on Christmas morning after all the presents have been opened and the kids are happily playing with their new treasures: a mass of packaging carnage littered across the lounge room floor. And while it used to be that this “waste” was discarded or recycled and forgotten, there’s a better way to engage kids in the process, and even get them making their own new toys and Christmas masterpieces by upcycling.

Makedo is a connector system that enables everyday materials including cardboard, plastic and fabric to easily join together to form new objects or structures. It has been hailed as the “Lego of the next generation” by media around the world, and has won some very impressive toy and design awards. But did you know that it was conceived by a Melbourne-based company?

I love the brand because not only does it inspire children to use their creativity and change their perspective on what might otherwise be thought of as rubbish, it also has no boundaries, it celebrates sustainability and aims to foster social change and sharing.

The makedo system started with the Freeplay Kit that includes their clever “re-clips” (reusable nylon connectors), “lock hinges” for creating corners, and “safe saw” for cutting cardboard or plastic as needed. Recently they’ve added new products to the line, including a “Find & Make Robot” “Find and Make Car” “Find and Make Dollhouse” and “Find and Make Flowers”, which are all based on the same concept of using found materials to inspire new creations.

And of course, coffee lovers will adore their newest addition to the makedo family: Makedo Cup Critters, which allow you to take an ordinary coffee cup and turn it into a cute creature, from silly monkeys and cheeky chicken, to happy hippos and waddling penguins.

Best of all, the parts are reusable, and the possibilities are endless. The makedo website has instructional videos, teacher resources and a photo gallery where you can upload your own creations and connect with others.

Discover the makedo range this Christmas at Itty Bitty Greenie, and share your creations with us too – we’d love to see them!

Win a Green Toys Recycling Truck!

I had a laugh the other day when I dropped my son off at childcare, and noticed as I was leaving that there were quite a few kidlets with their noses pressed against the window watching intently… and just what were they so interested in? Why it was rubbish day, and the recycling truck was on it’s way down the street to pick up the bins.

I don’t know what the fascination is about the rubbish truck, but I do remember waiting eagerly to watch the same weekly event when I was a child. And that’s probably one of the reasons the Green Toys version of the recycling truck is such a popular toy. It’s an awesome eco design, made from 100% recycled plastic milk containers and no metal axles – it even has a movable recycling bed and open/shut rear door.

My son received one as a gift on his second birthday, and I can honestly say he’s played with it almost every day since. He sorts rocks, sticks, cardboard and just about anything he can find before re-enacting the ceremonial “dumping of the rubbish” complete with some pretty interesting sound effects.

Since we know our customers love this classic, we’re giving one away in time for Christmas! Just tell us in the comments below any of your own recycling tips. Whether it’s getting the little ones to help with sorting, or “upcycling” by reusing household items for crafts and such, we’d love to hear your ideas.

A winner will be chosen at random and notified on Dec. 10. In the meantime, discover the entire Green Toys range at Itty Bitty Greenie – and save 20% until Christmas!

Happy Birthday Sophie!

Oh Sophie, you don’t look a day over … wait a second. You’re 50? Wow, what’s your secret?

For those of us who know and love this little giraffe there’s no secret to her lasting appeal. Born in 1961 in France, Sophie the Giraffe has made parents (and SO many drooling babies) smile for half a century now with that soft little squeak, cute contrasting spots, and super-soft texture that is just the best for teething relief.

I love the fact this toy is still hand made using the same traditional rotational molding process, from eco-friendly, all-natural and sustainable rubber derived from the Havea tree. The fact that it’s natural rubber means it’s also completely safe and free from BPA, phthalates or other harmful additives commonly found in teething toys.

To celebrate Sophie’s birthday, Itty Bitty Greenie is offering 25% off any Sophie sold in May. We’ll gift wrap her for free, too!

Here’s a fun little video that tells more about Sophie’s heritage and journey through the years:

From milk jugs to pure joy

I love seeing people discover the classic and colourful Green Toys range for the first time. The reaction is generally the same: “Hey, look! That’s so cool!” Then when I tell them they are made from 100% recycled plastic sourced from thrown away milk jugs, their eyebrows raise, and I get a surprised: “Really?”

Yes, really! Green Toys is one of the most innovative eco-friendly companies on the planet, committed to using environmentally friendly materials in everything they produce, from their unique line of recycled plastic toys, right down to their 100% recycled cardboard packaging that comes without the usual mess of twist-ties and glue to cause frustration for anyone having to open them and delaying the joy of a child waiting to play.

The recycling truck is a perennial favourite, not only for its unique design with no metal axles and slots for sorting recyclables, but because it also fits so perfectly with the “green” message we can pass on to our children in a fun way. It’s also important to note that these toys contain no BPA, PVC, phthalates or external coatings. They’re food-safe and are also safe for babies to teethe on.

And just when I thought this company couldn’t top itself, after winning accolades and multiple toy and child development awards the world over, they release a new line of toys that are now available for the first time in Australia at Itty Bitty Greenie. Check it out:

1)   The Green Toys Fire Truck
Put out 3-alarm blazes. Rescue kittens from treetops. Protect the environment from harm. This is just a typical day in the life of the Green Toys Fire Truck, the world’s greenest emergency vehicle. Watch how this truck (and all it’s features) work in action with this YouTube video.

2)   The Green Toys Tugboat
There’s no end to the good green fun young sailors can have with the Green Toys Tugboat. This colorful craft floats and has a wide spout to scoop and pour water. It comes in 3 colour combinations too. Watch kids playing with it here.

3)   The Green Toys Racecars
Available in blue or pink, this cool hot rod is better than any hybrid, and proudly displays the #2 recycled plastic symbol from which it is made on its hood.

4)   The Green Toys flatbed truck and racecar
This sturdy blue truck hauls our sleek red hot rod on its back, and has a flatbed that tilts up to allow the car to roll off.

5)   The Green Toys Blocks
All 18 boldly coloured blocks are oversized and lightweight, making it super easy for tiny hands to stack and unstack. This unique block set includes a variety of shapes for building castles, towers, or any imaginative structure budding architects can dream up. Watch the YouTube video of kids in action with these blocks.

6)   The Green Toys Stacker
The eight whimsically coloured nesting pieces stack easily from large to small, while also allowing little builders to use their imagination and stack in any order. This toy has won multiple parenting awards – see how real kids use it here.

7)   The Green Toys Pizza Parlour
Pizza lovers can pretend and play chef and server by taking orders, creating custom pizzas, and serving guests. This colourful 27-piece set features four slices that can be stacked with toppings galore to dish up any personal pie.

8)  The Green Toys Sandwich Shop
Young chefs can open their own imaginary cafe and take orders, create sandwiches and serve guests. This 15-piece, stackable, mix-and-match play food set comes with all the fixings to create two complete sandwiches.

For more information on Green Toys, visit their website, where there’s lots more information about how the brand started, what others are saying about them, and they even keep a running tally of the number of milk jugs that have been recycled to date.

To celebrate the release of Green Toys’ new line in Australia, Itty Bitty Greenie is offering the complete range at 20% off until the end of May, and as always, we gift wrap for free!

Gifts for the Itty Bitty MasterChef

Whether they’re practising their cooking skills in their cubby house, or simply copying what mummy or daddy does in the kitchen, these toys are great for encouraging imaginative play, role playing and language development, and are perfect gifts for your little MasterChef-in-training!

1) Organic Cotton Kids’ Aprons in gorgeous Scandinavian-designed fabrics (RRP $34.95)

2) Orchard Toys Lunch Box Game, made from recycled cardboard (RRP $32.95)

3) My First Garden book, made from recycled paper and printed with soy inks (RRP $12.95)

4) Green Toys 17-piece Tea Set, made from recycled plastic (RRP $51.95) *On sale now $41.56

5) Fruit and Vegetable Play Set, made from sustainable and eco-friendly rubber wood (RRP $37.95) 

6) Green Toys Chef Set, made from recycled plastic milk bottles ( RRP $29.95) *On sale now $23.96

7) Food and Beverage Play Set, made from eco-friendly wood – perfect for the cubby house (RRP $39.95)

Gifts for the Itty Bitty Animal Lover

Gifts for Animal Lovers

There’s a reason why so many children’s books and films have animal themes and characters – kids love them! And when toddlers are learning their first words, sound effects make great teaching tools. (I still wonder whether my son will ever learn that it’s actually called a dog and not a “woof woof!”)

Inspired by my own love of animals, (and the joy I get from watching children learn about animals and all their noises), here are some gift ideas for the Itty Bitty Animal Lover.

1) Organic Bath Towels with a hood, perfect for the bath or beach … and dress-ups too! (RRP $ 54.95)
Elfie the Elephant, Hazel the Hippo, Milo the Monkey, Chico the Chicken and Tito the Tiger

2) Orchard Toys Farmyard Puzzles, set of 6 made from recycled cardboard (RRP $27.95)

3) Sophie the Giraffe Teething Toy, made from all-natural rubber, she’s ever-so-sweet (RRP $34.95)

4) Dandelion Plush Duck, 100% organic cotton and stuffed with corn fibre, it rattles too! (RRP $34.95)

5) Little Panda soft book, and Little Monkey soft book, made from Polartec Fleece (recycled material) (RRP $16.95)

6) Zebra Pull-a-long toy, made from eco-friendly rubber wood (RRP $34.95)

7) Organic Cotton “Jungle” Lunchbug (RRP $39.95)

8)  Set of 4 Farm Animals Puzzles, made from recycled cardboard (RRP $19.95)