Ask Design Mom: European Toys

August 17, 2007



Ask-Design-Mom-Question:

Dear Design Mom. I have a question for you. My friend has all these darling hanging toys in her kids’ toy room that she got in Europe. They are animals, clowns, an airplane, etc., made of wood and fabric, and hanging from a long, very springy spring, attached to the ceiling. When you pull gently down, they bounce in a darling, mesmerizing way! She has collected them over the years on her trips to Europe, but I’ve been trying to find this type of toy online, without any success. Do you know where I can find these? Thanks for your help! Adri Murdock



Answer:
They sound adorable, Adri! I don’t believe I’ve seen the exact toys you’re refering to, but I do have 3 European toy sources that I’ll share and maybe they’ll lead you to the right place.

1) Vilac
This is a great source for French toys. So many adorable things — like the yellow ride-on roadster above. I saw the actual roadster, but in red, at the gift show and immediately fell head over heals. The site is mostly in French.

2) Erzi

A terrific website for German wooden toys. The site is all in German.

3) Wooden Toys Shop
Some of my favorite European toys are from the Czech Republic. This is a good source.

What about you Design Mom Readers? Has anyone else seen the cute toys Adri is referring to?

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{ 7 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Claudia August 17, 2007 at 10:25 am

Hi, I think the toys you are looking for are Czech – I bought one two years ago from the Christmas markets in Prague for my boyfriend (a donkey – don’t ask!) Anyway, this website sells them http://www.woodentoys-shop.com/toys.php3?toy=Czech%20Toy%20Wooden%20Mobiles.

Hope this helps!

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2 La Yen August 17, 2007 at 10:47 am

I have also found tons of wooden Euro toys at Magic Cabin–lots of Waldorf and things, too. magiccabin.com

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3 tracy m August 17, 2007 at 11:18 am

Playstoretoys.com
Nova Natural
Selecta
Haba
Haist
Walther Kraul
NIC
Kinderkram
Osteheimer

These are all sources and manufacturers of wooden German toys. I’m a big fan, and started stockpiling them long before I had children. Excellent quality, all. A little pricey, but they last and last and are beautiful to boot.

Google any of the names for multiple websites.

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4 rebecca August 17, 2007 at 1:31 pm

thewoodenwagon.com also sells some adorable wooden toys

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5 Adri August 18, 2007 at 10:46 am

Thanks for all the suggestions!

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6 Kim January 20, 2013 at 6:16 pm

Hi Adri,
I’ve been looking for these toys for a while.
Did you ever find them??

Reply

7 Randall Hertzler August 28, 2007 at 9:43 pm

Selecta Spielzeug is one of the best wooden toy companies of Germany. They are all designed and produced in Bavaria – no China items here. They range from toddler items to games for older children.

Also, Kathe Kruse items, although not made of wood, are great and lasting toys – and all made in Germany as well.

http://www.euroToyShop.com has them both.

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