One of the comments I hear over and over again from retailers (because they hear it over and over again from customers) is that there is so much more cute stuff on the market for girls than boys. And to that, all I can say is, it is true. There is. And since you know that toy manufacturers, like everyone else, need to make a profit, it is not remarkable that the reason for this is simply that people buy more stuff for girls than for boys. What I don’t know is why consumers seem to buy more for their daughters than for their sons. But if the reason has anything at all to do with the overall appearance of girl products to boy products, we are in an era of things starting to even out. The design for boy products has evolved significantly in the last five years. So much so, that honestly, I want to start playing with cars and trucks. And I want them scattered on my coffee table and about on the rug in the living room. If they are from Hape’s Bamboo Collection, that is.
Hape International, a German toy company, has been around for twenty six years. When one thinks of German toy companies, one tends to think of quality wooden toys, and Hape products certainly fall into that category. However, in 2005 Hape changed things up a bit – the company started a full line of bamboo toys. Bamboo is an awesome environmentally friendly material to work with for several reasons. The first being that is grows so incredibly fast. It can actually fully regenerate within 3 months! It also raises the water level in its surrounding area and increases oxygen.
With this new line, came a new look. A sleek, simplified, modern look to basic toys. A look that grabs your attention and makes you want to play.
My favorite part of the bamboo collection is the group of vehicles. Their curved lines and simple form, bright colors (painted from water-based eco-friendly paint), and big rubber wheels are the perfect invitation to grab one and start pushing it along the floor saying things like “vrrrrrmmmmmmmm” and “beep beep”. I don’t know about the kids, but that is what I want to do with them, anyways. The full line includes racers, trucks, helicopters, planes, motorcycles and minis. The regular sized vehicles are priced at a higher birthday party gift price of about $25 while the minis come in at about $7. Each vehicle is packaged in a box made from recycled materials.
I have a giveaway! Just leave a comment below by 5:00 pm, Monday, May 7th and the winner (chosen randomly from Random.org.) will receive a Hape E-Truck and a Mini Racer. Good Luck!
Hape products are sold in OC specialty stores such as
Bears, Buddies, and Toys, 10061 Adams Ave., Suite 103, Huntington Beach, (714) 968-4050
Granola Babies, 3315 Hyland Ave., Costa Mesa, CA (714) 445-4948