Janod has been making toys for 40 years and are well established in their home country, France. They are making a big push into the US this year with their line of attractive wooden toys focused on open-ended play. Here are some of my favorites from the Janod booth as well as other notables from Kid O, Seedling and another newcomer, AppCrayon:
Pictured above is one of Janod's play kitchen (the Chic Maxi). It's a bit more refined looking than most available play kitchens and I think kids will enjoy that the hanging utensils are magnetic. It comes with a pot, pan and oven mitt.
Toy Grill, Janod
What I especially liked about this little play grill was that it was on wheels so it can do double duty as a walking toy or be wheeled out to the yard for proper summertime grilling.
Rocking horse, Janod
The Janod rep told me they have a patent on this rocking horse and she pointed out the added safety of the horse's legs having a wide stance. The sides are removable for older children.
Your kids can live out their Roman Holiday fantasies on this adorable wood bike.
Airplanes, Kid O
Kid O's white and primary colored tip trucks were a hit and they've added airplanes and tug boats. All have rubber wheels for smoother movement. On the right you can see their Free Play Magnatab. Kid O started with alphabet and number versions and are now making it free form.
Kid O is the US distributor for Seedling (NZ) who specializes in art and craft kits like Design Your Own Wood Shield, Make Your Own Snowglobe and this inflatable Color the Earth.
AppCrayon, Dano Kids
The Toy Industry Associaton's "trend experts" declared toys that work with smart devices and apps one of the year's top trends. The AppCrayon isn't exactly a toy, but a tool for children to use in conjunction with apps on tablets and touch phones. It's a stylus designed to help kids learn the proper way to hold a pen to optimize writing. AppCrayon has been so popular with schools that they're on backorder for a few months.
(Images: Carrie McBride)
MORE TOY FAIR 2012 ON APARTMENT THERAPY:
• A Toy Snob Visits the Toy Fair (And Awards Fake Prizes)
• Toy Fair Highlights: Part I
• Toy Fair Highlights: Part II