Although we focus on natural materials we had to make one exception for the new Gem and Lucite blocks.
There are two reasons for this:
1) Feedback we've had from colleagues in the business have indicated that girls love to build with these blocks and it is encouraging a whole new interest level; not only are girls loving building with them, the boys see what the girls do and are encouraged to try new ways of building as well. It's a nice synergy and both sexes benefit.
2) They are just so darn pretty!
The way the light catches the gems, the way the light works thru the Lucite, it really is very engaging and if you check out Instagram you'll see many adults engaged in building the most amazing structures with the blocks.
So yes, it is plastic, but as we combine it with natural wood (the 2 materials look so great together) we feel a little bit excused and hope you can enjoy this new range as well.
A note on the gems: in some, tiny specks of imperfections are visible. I have talked to the factory making the gems and it seems that these are unavoidable. There is also a lot of handling that goes on before the actual product arrives in your home, this may also be part of the reason why tiny scratches can be seen on some gems. In working with this product I sincerely do not believe this impacts in any way on the play value and it only happens occasionally. Of course, during quality control the bad ones get filtered out. If you happen to get a broken gem please let us know immediately as this is not OK and will be replaced. If you feel you, or your customers, can not deal with these little specks and marks, please refrain from buying this product.
We keep working with the different factories in educating them on keeping the gems blemish free, the quality is already very good but we are trying to get it as close to perfect as is possible. In the mean time, please enjoy the blocks.
And, just in case you are wondering; we work closely together with Bauspiel to make sure our products work together as this enhances both our ranges. His wood blocks are made from Alder, whereas we use Beech, he oils his and we don't. It's a different aesthetic and yet the various ranges work great together, ever expanding the child's (of all ages) ability to imagine new and wonderful structures.
A note on the Lucite products:
It is recommended NOT to let kids play on concrete with these items. They are all compliant with EN71 for age 3+ (fully tested) but the pieces can chip when dropped on a very hard surface from a table top height. Keep an eye on your kids and help them understand. The Lucites are gorgeous and add a lot of play value, they are also excellent for teaching about colour and light reflections.
They can be cleaned by wiping with a damp cloth.