There is definitely a wave of of people who, like Dave and myself, have woken up to how important wooden toys are for children. Wooden toys last longer than plastic, look great, are more likely be the toys to be past from generation to generation and above all are better for the environment. But I thought I would add a little information on woollen toys and why they are a better alternative to mainstream soft toys.
So here is my top 6 reasons for choosing pure wool for children.
Wool is comforting. Woollen toys are nurturing for a child as they hold and give warmth. They are filled with wool stuffing that absorbs the sweet individual smell of home and family, which is comforting for young children.
Wool is healthy. Recent studies have proven that pure wool is naturally antimicrobial, antibacterial and hypoallergenic. Due to the natural lanolin in wool it is resistant to dust mites and the structures of wool do not support mold or mildew or other allergens. These qualities are super important for children who have asthma, eczema or allergies.
Wool is safe. The structure of wool makes it resistant to fire and an excellent fiber when it comes to fire safety. Wool requires more oxygen than is available in the air to become flammable. Furthermore, it does not melt, drip or stick to the skin when it burns. Most synthetic soft toys are treated with flame retardants. These include bromine and organophosphates such as chlorinated Tris, these chemicals have been linked to cancer and are known neurotoxins.
Wool is environmentally sustainable. For me the debate on environmental sustainability lies not just in its production, but in its long term effect on the environment. Over the last few years a number of scientists have studied the ecological damage of synthetic fibers. Many of these pervasive fibers shed and are now found everywhere, throughout our waterways and even into the food chain. Many scientists are now predicting that microfibers will become an environmental disaster. Furthermore synthetic fibers are plastic derivatives and like plastic toys, simply don't breakdown. They fill our landfills and create long term environmental issues. Wool however is biodegradable, it breaks down easily and safely and actually produces a nitrogen byproduct that fertilizes the ground.
Wool supports local agriculture. Buying products made from wool supports our farmers not petrochemical companies. Where we live we are surrounded by local farmers who grow wool. Small business people who work the land as has been done for countless generations. Supporting farmers also supports country communities.
- Wool Lasts. Woollen fibers are super strong, they are also extremely durable. Woollen items last many years, as seen in antique teddy bears that were made from wool and mohair and have lasted well over a hundred years ago. Woollen toys withstand all the love, cuddles and play a child can give whereas synthetic toys will rip and tear and their polyfill will spill out, a handcrafted woollen toy will go on for generations.