I took a bit of a gamble when I decided to buy in a small range of hand-carved German wooden animals by Holztiger this month. To date, I have seen most of my toys firsthand in French toy shops which is always better than a photograph as I’m able to feel the quality of the toy. Only the absolute BEST toys from Europe make it into Tilda and Tom’s collection, after all!
I hadn’t seen Holztiger in any of the French shops I had visited but the measurements of the toys sealed the deal as – on paper – they seemed so much larger and chunkier than their plastic or vinyl counterparts.
There was demand for toy animals among customers so I searched the globe and eventually opted for Holztiger. Of course, German wooden toys have great global esteem and these toy animals, I’m very pleased to say, certainly back-up the excellent reputation.
My 2 year old, Mathilde, had great fun playing with a set of Holztiger farm animals. She instantly took to the horse and lines up the figures from largest to smallest. She’s at an age where she is fascinated by animal noises, so she made the sound of all the animals in a row, asking the name and the noise of ones she wasn’t sure of – i.e. the poor goat. “What’s this one mammy?”
We have twelve animals in stock at the moment ranging in price from £5.00 for a rabbit and £8.00 for a horse. There are dozens more in Holztiger’s range: farm, wild, forest, marine, dinosaurs and even a lovely set of knights for a wooden castle.
The quality of these toys is phenomenal. Hand-carved in beech wood, they are very solid, chunky and … I would argue … entirely unbreakable. These animals will lost for many years and are bound to pass the “attic test” to be handed down through the generations. They are also quite large with the horse model standing at over 16 cm tall.
In Germany, children build collections of wooden animals from the day they are born, receiving them as gifts from friends and relatives. It is expected that a child’s collection will grow as they age and, as we know, the collecting is part of the fun. I think it would be lovely if children in this country built up a collection of animals too.