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Making Toys That Teach: With Step-by-Step Instructions and Plans

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  • The story tells how Lego founder Ole Kirk Kristiansen began business as a carpenter who later switched to making wooden toys. Ole Built the business up slowly and eventually had a thriving business making quality wooden toys.

    With only a few weeks of worktime left till the holiday zero hour, I thought I’d check out a few toy-making books and try my hand at building something smaller than a pony for a change. Making Wooden Toys: 12 Easy-to-Do Projects with Full-Size Templates by James Stasio caught my eye right away.

  • In 1932 Ole Kirk Kristainsen had a failing carpentry business in Billund Denmark. His shop was well run but Ole couldn’t seem to make a profit. Ole switched from making furniture to making wooden toys. Later Ole began personally driving around Denmark making deals to sell his toys directly to the shop owners. Kristainsen bartered some of his sales and got enough money to keep things going while he slowly built his business. The company invested in new tooling such as milling machines. Sometime in 1934 Ole Kristainsen renamed the business LEGO. In Danish the words “LEG GODT” means playing well. In Latin LEGO also means “I put together”.

    While a lathe is not a must-have tool to make wooden toys, if you plan to make any number of wooden toys or turn it into a regular hobby, you'll want to consider investing in a lathe to create toys with even sides and a smooth surfaces. However, you don't need a lathe to get started. You can make wooden toys with a collection of basics tools including:

    What a happy, busy place. Santa Claus and the elves are working hard to make Christmas toys for all the good girls and boys in the world! And there are lots of fun things for you to do.

    See the world's most advanced Toy making machine!
    Just click on the Magnetic Kinetic Toy Hulla-Ballu downstairs and you'll see Santa's latest toy-making creation. It's the one and only creation of its kind in the whole wide world. Click through to see all the screens and then have the Hulla-Ballu make the toys you select! If you have the Flash 4 plug-in, you'll see a fully animated edition, complete with wacky sounds and extra fun. (Flash 4 is free and an easy download.)

    Choose your very own Elf Buddies.
    Pick as many as you like from Santa's favorite elves. You can print their pictures with a personal greeting from your Elf Buddy to you. If you'd like, you can even ask your Elf Buddy (or Elf Buddies) to send you a weekly E-mail, so you'll get the latest about news about your Elf Buddy, Santa Claus and what's going on in the Village! No ads or anything. Just tons of fun!

  • Enjoy Making Wooden Toys

    If you want to try your hand at making wooden toys before you actually buy a book, the following links offer free plans for how to make a variety of wooden toys:

Recyclables for Making DIY Toys at B-Inspired Mama

Cats love to play and cat lovers can spend many hours lost in the pursuit of keeping kitty amused. Like most good things in life, you don't need to spend a fortune to ensure your cat's happiness and entertainment. Not only is a cat not judging you by how much you've managed to spend – or not spend – but your cat will be easily pleased by a range of homemade toys, plus your presence and involvement in the play. Making cat toys is child's play, so involve the kids, find the resources about the house, and don't waste any more time worrying about entertaining your cat, as he or she is sure to enjoy these homemade toys! Just see Step 1 below to get started.