And The Award for Best Designed Toy...


When I was scouring the Toy Fair back in February with two of my colleagues, looking for the hottest toys for 2010, we were introduced to hundreds of new toys — some innovative and mind-blowing, others wacky or lame. Yet my all-time favorite finds were at the German toy company, Hape — and it seems you all agreed. I’m happy to report that both new Hape building toys — the Organeco and Totter Tower — are now in stores!

I love when classic kids toys are revamped for modern times, which is what they did with the building blocks. Not only did they remake; they practically reinvented. Check them out below:

These Organeco Blocks are possibly the most beautifully designed building blocks I’ve ever seen — vibrant, whimsical and inspiring. I love how the unique, unconventional illustrations allow kids the freedom to build different creations time after time. Not only do they look good, but Hape created these from hollowed-out bamboo, making them an ultra lightweight, eco-friendly alternative to typical wood. (They said that bamboo is extremely difficult to bend and manipulate, but it’s also one of the cleanest, environmentally friendly materials out there.)

Don’t take my word for it — the Organeco Blocks were recently named Best Toy Design at the International Toy Fair in Nuremburg.

As for Hape’s second block set:

Talk about thinking outside the box. This Totter Tower is a collection of strategically angled bamboo rings that effortlessly go where no other building blocks have gone. I remember playing with this at the Toy Fair and being amazed at how the felt edges seemed to almost magnetically attach for unique building possibilities.

Check back in with our Best Toys for 2010 feature, as many of those toys are now (or are soon-to-be) available!