Child’s Play

Competition Details

Opfinde Children's Toy

by Luisa Ruge

Opfinde comes from the word for play in Danish. The project was born as a research activity on how to create a Lego-like toy specifically for girls. As children where interviewed a need arose to create something that could be as modular and flexible as Lego, but that did not come in the form of a plastic block with sharp edges. Both boys and girls wanted an alternative that was as simple as a basic shape but offered endless possibilities AND was easy to manipulate.
One afternoon, after sketching and playing around with various ideas, I grabbed a piece of paper and started folding it. It then dawned on me that with a simple cut out shape made out of a flexible but durable material and some magnets something could be developed.
I went on to build prototypes and test if my idea was true. I gathered about 12 kids, gave them some popcorn and released about 40 prototypes among them. The kids played for about 2 hours, creating new and exciting things at an amazing speed.
I then went back and thought about an appropriate and safe process to manufacture this toy. The process was almost as simple as the design itself: I could weld the magnets in between sheets of recyclable polypropylene so as to not create any chocking hazard.
This is Opfinde, an endless amount of possibilities at your fingertips and the strength of polarity!!