Thank you to Brilliant Sky Toys & Books for providing Brilliance Award winning toys for our review. All opinions expressed in the blog post are our own. This blog post may contain affiliate links.
There are literally tens of thousands of toys (possibly more) in the world today. Parents and grandparents want to buy the ones our kids will enjoy the most. And sometimes, we have no idea where to start looking. One way I like to narrow it down is by trusting toy experts, like the ones at Brilliant Sky Toys & Books. Every year, this small, locally-owned toy shop selects some of their favorite high quality toys and give them a Brilliance Award.
The 2014 Brilliance Award list features 10 surprisingly low tech toys. The list is a useful guide to holiday and birthday gift ideas for kids.
Squigz Starter Set (24 pieces), Plus-Plus Mini-Basic (480 pieces), Lottie Dolls, Doodle Quest, Create Your Own Storybook, Super Stadium Baseball Game, LoopDeLoom, Sew Cute Sets, Illustrated Adventure Stories and Illustrated Fairy Tales, Paint Your Own Porcelain Bowls.
My almost 6-year-old daughter thought the Create Your Own Storybook was so cool. She loves to draw and color already so actually creating her own book was so fun for her. With this craft you get to color a picture and write a text on each page for up to 12 pages per book. We chose to write a book called Ella’s Family. She is dedicating a page to each family member and writing a little bit about what they like to do. We are so excited to send the pages off (free shipping is included) and receive our printed story book back in the mail.
I would highly recommend this craft project for kids! It is great to get kids coloring and also creating a story that makes sense. It was good to watch my daughter think through the process before starting and make a game plan. She will have such a fun treasure to keep and read now and in the future.
My daughter did a wonderful job creating the “Sew Cute” Owl. She LOVED this item. She has already asked me for her own sewing machine and she isn’t even 6! This was a great craft because it was easy and turned out so cute. The project kit comes with the felt already pre-holed where you have to sew, a child-safe needle (not sharp), yarn, stuffing, and easy directions.
After I showed her the stitch, she was able to complete the entire project by herself in about an hour. It is now known as “Owly the Owl” at our house. My kids love stuffed animals so to actually be able to create her very own stuffed animal was very fun! We only ran into one glitch. We ran out of the yarn the craft came with. I don’t know if I was too generous or what happened – but we did have to use our own yarn to finish stitching up the bottom. It wasn’t a big deal, just mostly a heads up for you.
I think these are great sewing crafts for kids. My daughter really enjoyed making the owl and I would definitely buy it again. It would make a great gift especially at the price point of around ten dollars.
The LoopDeLoom was my daughter’s very favorite! I had been working on how to teach her to crochet, which is pretty difficult for a young child. We hadn’t gotten very far, to say the least. Once we used the LoopDeLoom, I was sold. We said Goodbye to crocheting until she is much older.
The LoopDeLoom is amazing! It was SO easy for her to use and she can make a myriad of crafts with it. She opted to make a purse and it turned out so fabulous. She wears it everywhere now. She has already asked me to buy more looms for her upcoming birthday. That’s the awesome part about this loom. You can buy additional looms and they connect together so that you can make even larger items.
She really wants to make a blanket for the baby our family is expecting in a few months. The kit itself came with plenty of yarn. The directions were okay, but had an online link for more thorough directions, which I found very helpful. The loom is so easy to use once you get it figured out. I didn’t have to help my daughter at all once I showed her how to use it.
Yes, I would highly recommend this product. Both my daughter and I loved it. I am already planning to buy her additional looms for her birthday.
The Paint Your Own Porcelain Bowls kit comes with 3 paintable bowls, a paint brush, and plenty of paint. Both of my girls and I each made our own bowl. It was quite a bit of fun! My 3-year-old really enjoyed this activity. We are not overly amazing painters, so our bowls are not designer, but my girls love eating their morning yogurt from their own painted bowls.
We have been to cute shops that let you pay to paint pottery, so my girls were so excited that we could paint our bowls at home instead of going out to a shop. After the bowls have been painted and baked in the oven, you really can use them! We have even washed the bowls and the paint is still there.
Painting is fun, but can be a little messy. We did spill the paint on the counter, floor, and my daughter’s pants. I quickly washed out her pants by hand and threw them in the wash. They came out good as new. So the good news is that the paint doesn’t ruin your clothes, just be sure to act fast.
I would recommend this creative kit. Not only did the kids have fun painting their bowls, but now they have fun eating out of them!
Which one of the Brilliance Award Winners (any of the 10 toys listed at the beginning of this blog post) would you love to own? The list is definitely full of cool gift ideas for kids.