Thursday, September 23, 2010

Schleich Animal Figurines

Do your children love animals?  If they do, you will probably want to know about the figurines made by Schleich!  These are not your every day plastic animal figures.  Each one is made from a special hand crafted mold.  This company strives for perfection in details.  A new mold often takes up to six weeks for completion.  Once it is in use, the figurines produced are painted by hand, so every one is special, and unique.  The detail is incredible!  The horses have shoes, and there is texture and shading to make each figure look true to life.

I was afraid that such finely crafted toys would be delicate, and too fragile for my boys to play with.  I was pleasantly surprised to see that each figure was quite sturdy.  The strong, stable bases and solid weight of each piece make these a perfect fit for young hands.  They do not fall over easily, and are very resilient indeed!  I will confess that ours were not always used in peaceful, tranquil scenarios.  My boys put them through a few battles and some simulated natural disasters.  The animals are still in wonderful condition.

The Schleich company works with parents and young children to make sure that their products are comfortable in little hands and that they are what families want.  You have probably noticed that these would be easy for even a very young child to pick up and begin to play with naturally, letting their imagination take over.

When the package with the animals arrived, there was a catalog included which was filled with photos of some of their other products.  There are some really neat product lines for older children, too.  Dinosaurs, Knights, American Indians, and fantasy figures.  They even have and adorable line of Smurfs.   I think my children enjoyed the catalog as much as the toys!

Some things we noticed while looking through the catalog and website... There are two different animal lines to choose from.  Farm animals, and wildlife.  In addition to the animals, there are also numerous accessories such as plants and trees, buildings, fences, corrals, and vehicles.  Another thing I noticed, and appreciated, was that they make animal families.  For instance there are several different breeds of cattle.  For each breed, there is a cow, a bull, and calves available.  This is the case for most of the animals they produce.  Browsing the site is also educational.  As you click on an animal on the website, it will enlarge the photo, and give an informational blurb about it.

My boys loved the fact that domestic dogs and cats of many varieties are included in the farm animal series.   Many families will be able to find a replica of their family pet.

Although there is no website store, there is a tab on home page to help you to find a retailer in your area.  The figures vary in price from place to place.  They are a bit more expensive than most figures, but in my opinion, they are truly worth the extra money.

The company is currently celebrating it's 75th anniversary.  If you visit the website, you can join in the celebration, while learning more about these wonderful figures and accessories.

I think these are perfect toys designed for imaginative play.  Some of my other TOS crew mates will also be reviewing this company today.  You can find the links to their blog posts on the TOS website.

**As a member of the TOS crew, I was given some of these animals to use with my family in exchange for blogging my honest opinion about the products.**