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Soft Toy Manufacture and Safety

By: Sarah Clark (ILEX) - Updated: 16 Mar 2017 | comments*Discuss
 
Soft Toys Toy Manufacture Toy Safety

All babies and children seem to love soft toys, and most of us can remember having our first teddy bear and loving it to bits.

[Things have moved on since we were children though, and now there are stringent rules that apply to soft toys. There’s more awareness of safety and suitability, so when you’re looking for that perfect soft toy, there are a few essential things to look out for.

Soft Toys, Baby Toys and Very Small Children

Soft toys are great play things for small children, as they can stretch their imaginations with little risk of ending up hurting themselves. There’s a huge range of soft toys available for babies and small children – even most older kids love soft toys (as do some grown adults...)

You can find almost anything under the label of soft toy – dolls, teddies, balls and skittles, baby toys like soft rattles and books.

Always choose cloth toys over fake fur or hair when you’re buying for very little people, as they love to chew and suck things they shouldn’t and this means that fur and hair are a choking hazard. Likewise it is important to avoid toys with hard buttons or eyes that could come off. Never leave soft toys near a sleeping baby.

Toy Safety Regulations

Just like any other toy, all soft toys made and sold in the UK must conform to the essential safety requirements in the Toy (Safety) Regulations. These regulations are mainly directed at toy shops and manufacturers who supply toys on a large scale.

Many people make soft toys and baby toys as a hobby, or to make extra money on a small scale which they sell on at craft fairs or markets. They also have to abide by the rules, so if you buy soft toys from a supplier like this, just check that they know their responsibilities!

Soft Toy Manufacture – What Are the Dangers?

Toys are meant to be fun, not dangerous, so manufacturers have to look out for several things when they make a toy for sale.

  • Soft toys’ eyes, noses or facial features can be removed – if a child pulls them off and eats them they could potentially choke on these small parts. This is especially important for baby toys.
  • Flammable fabrics on soft toys are an obvious no-no.
  • Sometimes, but luckily this is quite rare, pins can be left inside the toy.

Safety Tips for Soft Toys

When you’re thinking about buying that cute teddy, baby toy or soft toy, just have a quick run-through of this checklist before you part with any cash...

  • Look for an obvious CE mark - and that it carries the manufacturers name and address.
  • Check for a quality mark such as the Lion Mark, which is a symbol of safety and quality backed by a Code of Practice.
  • Have a good tug at the small parts on the soft toy – does the toy seem to be well made and properly finished? Can you see any loose filling or loose hair? Are there any tiny parts that a small child could decide to try and eat, then choke on? How well attached are the eyes and facial features?

At the end of the day, most soft toy manufacture is carried out safely and according to the regulations, and by following a few common sense rules, teddies and cuddly toys will be a part of your child’s life for years to come!

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Hi, I am lookingfor someonewho can manufacturerbird plush toysfor age group 2- 5 year olds in small quantities.
Barry - 4-Dec-16 @ 9:04 AM
My sister and I make knitted toys to raise funds for our local church, using approved stuffing and good quality wool.About 3 or 4 years ago, with a fine selection of knitted bunnies, teddies, Santa clauses, penguins etc ready to sell at our Christmas Fayre, we discovered the minefield that is EN71. We couldn't sell any of them because they were not CE-compliant. The local children's hospice benefited because we gave them all as gifts for the children but it did nothing for our church funds. Following days/weeks of intensive research, we discovered we could self-certify which we now do but we have only been able to get the required EN71 certificates from two yarn companies, thus severely restricting our choice of yarns and colours. While I am not dismissing the safety of children (though, as it happens, most of our toys are purchased for adults), it is ludicrous to assume that a knitted toy given away free of charge is inherently safe but, as soon as even 1 penny changes hands in payment for it, it automatically becomes highly dangerous.
knitwit - 29-Mar-16 @ 8:41 PM
Hi , Glad to get your info from website, that you are interested in purchasing plush toys. We export various kinds of plush toys. Hope to cooperate with you. Pls contact me for any questions. Best regards! Sincerely, Ling
Ling - 12-Oct-13 @ 8:09 AM
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