Those ubiquitous plastic play-kitchens for kids may be a thing of the past, if massive recalls and a recent upsurge of interest in non-toxic, higher-quality toys mean anything. That's why these vibrant play kitchens (made from empty olive cans) from Berlin-based "family project" LOUyLOU are especially appealing -- they are uniquely handmade and have a nostalgic touch to them. But true to their motto "made for kids and you", LOUyLOU's scope includes the whole family, so there's a whole range of thoughtful goodies for parents and babies too.
If you are looking for an alternative to those scary plastic swings for baby, check out Mawok, a lovely 100% cotton baby swing that can be packed and safely hung on any door.
These irresistibly colourful fabric rocking horses ("spielpferde" in German) come in a whole range of delicious colour combinations (which your toddlers may or may not decide to take a bite out of). For the artistically-inclined, there's a kids' DIY section for painting and sewing kits.
Kids with large imaginations might find that these charming (but durable) wooden play-shops, workbenches and toolboxes will just do the trick.
Founded by two design-conscious mothers Susanne Moller and Nicole Srock-Stanley, LOUyLOU identifies itself as an "alternative to game consoles, plastic and aggressive non-sustainable products", so there's no worry about toxic components or sweatshop labour -- all of LOUyLOU's collections are eco-friendly and social-responsibly made in Berlin.
LOUyLOU (in German)