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Wooden Toys
Six toy makers employ nature's classic playtime material
by James Thorne
on 08 March 2012

The tactile qualities and durability of wood make it the perfect material for children's toys. Despite the prevalence of plastic, we're still fans of old-school toy-making in the form of wooden figurines and structures. Here are six picks from this year's Toy Fair in NYC.

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Anamalz

Designed in Australia, the playful figurines from Anamalz include creatures from the extinct to the exotic. All of the toys are handmade from wood sourced from sustainable forests with rope appendages and felt manes and tails.

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Brinca Dada

Instill a bit of the modern design aesthetic early on with one of these dollhouses modeled after the De Stijl movement, which come with equally geometric furnishings replicating famous Dutch designs. Brinca Dada also offers a set of mismatched blocks from hand-carved teak, which challengees your child to create original forms—perfect for those who like to draw outside the lines.

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Citiblocs

From renewable forests in New Zealand come Citiblocs, a set of identical building blocks that can accommodate infinite arrangements. Despite the incredibly simple concept, the potential applications of these rectangular forms is truly impressive.

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Scrabble Typography

For older kids and anyone who likes to play with words, Scrabble has reinvented itself with the solid walnut set. The Scrabble Typography Deluxe Edition uses different typefaces for all of the tiles, ensuring that good spelling and appealing fonts go hand in hand.

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Guidecraft

Made from solid wood and birch plywood, Guidecraft provides a clean design center for kids to get crafty. These modest sets are sure to keep creativity at the forefront of your child's mind.

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Prince Lionheart

Teaching balance to youngsters, the pedal-less bikes from Prince Lionheart are made from birch that is cut from an FSC-certified forest. What begins as a timid walk will quickly become a gleeful glide on the chopper-inspired frame.

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Tree Blocks

The structures and elvish figurines from Tree Blocks are created from reclaimed and sustainably harvested wood. Stack the blocks to create small wooden towers for the elves to inhabit.

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