It won’t come as any surprise to you to find that I love craft kits – all crafting – and I particularly love businesses that does as ours has done, grow out of an idea and enthusiasm. I’ve been an admirer of Rosie Flo and her fabulous colouring books for a long time, we’ve had a few to do ourselves and I was delighted when we were offered the new Pool Party kit to review.
To my surprise it was Josie who got stuck into this. She was definitely helped by it not needing cutting out (not her favorite) or gluing (although we did decide to glue the counter just to make playing easier) and really enjoyed constructing the cafe and putting together all the pool pieces. There is lots of scope for colouring in and personalising the set too (using your own pencils) and she had a lot of fun. Being Josie, she wanted to copy the ones on the box as closely as possible. Once Amelie got involved (when the effort had been done and it was built!) she got more inventive.
The set uses the sturdy box (it feels like a retro, vintage toy, the box just has that feel of weight and strength to it) as part of the kit. The top and bottom become the base and the pool and there is a printed grass sheet to widen out the play space too. Of course, because everything slots together without glue, you can take it all apart easily and pack it away for another day. Josie played with lots of it without bothering to colour it in – saving that for the beginning of another game another day.
Rosie Flo has many strengths; if I could compare it to another brand I know, it would be Djeco, which I can’t fault in any way. What Rosie Flo has, like Djeco, is a strength of design – the artwork is gorgeous, the simplicity is there in terms of making it an accessible kit but it is satisfying too. There is lots to do, lots of value for money, plenty of play value and I think it is an aspirational kit too – it inspires effrot and care and I think would inspire a child to add to it, draw like it, develop similar ideas to go alongside it.
It’s not often I can give a toy 10 out of 10 but when I can, there is only one thing I can do – put my money where my mouth is. And so before I wrote my review, I called Rosie Flo to place an order and PlayMerrily now stocks both the Pool Party and the Fashion Show craft kits. I only stock toys and crafts I believe in – and I truly do believe in these.
Just beautiful. Quintessentially English, fabulously designed, a small, enthusiastic business run by someone just like me (but better at drawing). I can’t fault them 🙂 You could do worse that support two small British businesses by adding one to your Xmas pile 🙂
Disclosure: we were sent one Pool Party to review. Opinions are our own.