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13
Jan

Natural Toys and CPSIA

by Tiffany in Children, Freebies

fairy doll

Due to the Consumer Product Safety Improvement Act (CPSIA) natural toys have been getting a lot of attention lately. It has quite frankly woken many people up the value of homemade and all the reasons we need to fight to protect these items.  To lose them would be to lose a part of our natural history… a part of our heritage. For us and for children all over the country it would mean a loss of the magic that is unique to hand crafted toys.

By voicing our concerns over the poorly written CPSIA legislation we can save the toys and help to ensure that our local artisans can continue to operate… artisans like Beccijo Neff of The Fairy Ring and The Enchanted Cupboard. Toys and handcrafted items like what you find here are magical, charming, and bewitching.

I interviewed Beccijo this week and asked her about CPSIA, her business, and why preserving the traditions of handmade are so important. Of course first I asked her how she got started in this business.

Beccijo: As a child in rural Pennsylvania I spent much of my time inventing new things to play with.  New games and toys were always being made by me in my free time, and I never remember being bored.  My parents encouraged creativity.  I loved kids, and there was never a short supply in my big, extended family. There was always someone around to try out my new game with.  I felt blessed by my life back then. After high school, college beckoned.  I pursued the course that my artistic talents led me on, but in my heart I always wanted to be a nanny.  My mother had a nanny growing up, and I loved the stories she told me about afternoons at the beach in Australia with her sisters and the nanny.  I decided to follow my dream, and in 1991, I enrolled in The English Nanny and Governess School.  Afterward, many years passed as I lived that dream being the enchanted Nanny I always dreamed I would be.

Years later I found a prince among men and married him in 1997.  We started our family in 2000 and now have 4 beautiful, wonderful children for me to create for and dream with.  I am now a happy housewife, SAHM and homeschooler trying to find ways to bring that same childhood enchantment that I experienced to my own children. Besides caring for my family, the other thing that brings me great joy is making things that encourage creativity. First I was just a shopper on Etsy, and then I started making items for other kids and thought that this might be a good idea for a few shops. This year I got the biggest joy knowing that under other people’s Christmas trees, my toys were waiting all wrapped up.

Tiffany: What is CPSIA?

Beccijo: The Consumer Product Safety Improvement Act is a new law that is intended to insure the safety of basically any consumer product that is intended for 12 year olds and younger.  It requires materials testing of all clothes, toys, books, educational materials, baby items, etc. to prove that they do not contain any toxic materials.  It was passed last year in response to the influx of materials from overseas that had lead paint and other toxic materials on them.

Tiffany: Who will be impacted by this legislation? And why should parents care?

Beccijo: Everyone who buys or sells items for kids 12 yrs. old or under will be affected by this law.  Parents should care because the law as it is stated now is too broad and will eliminate many nice and useful products from the marketplace because smaller manufacturers will not be able to afford the testing that is required by the law.  Handmade toys and other organic and safe products are required to be tested even though by their very nature they are made from safe materials.  This means that many handmade wooden toys and other products like them will disappear from the marketplace. 

It is good that the government is stepping up and taking action on lead, but this law is very vague in it’s terminology to the point where it encompasses anything and everything. The lawmakers wanted to make sure that there were no loopholes in the law, but they went too far.  And now the law is affecting those who make, sell and benefit from quality items that are safe including small shops, crafters, charities, yard sales, EVERYONE!  One of the worst parts of the law is the mandatory (re)testing by third party certified laboratories. The cost for the testing is overwhelming and has actually increased by as much as 20% in the last few months. My main complaint regarding the law is that my supplies are bought at the same craft stores you buy you paints, etc. and they have already been tested and labeled as non-toxic. When I put them together, they are still non toxic and should not have to be retested.

Tiffany: What is being done right now to try and save the hand made toy?

Beccijo: Things are changing fast. Right now, the government is beginning to hear the complaints, and they are making exemptions and rewriting parts (see the story at this link. So right now we need to keep writing letters and emails and making calls.

Those that know and care are doing what they can, but we need to get the word out and we need support from every parent. Everyone just needs to write, type, email and call. Get yourself heard! Contact Congress! Your representative can be reached at:
https://writerep.house.gov/writerep/welcome.shtml

Contact your Senator here….
http://www.senate.gov/general/contact_information/senators_cfm.cfm
(choose your state on top to get started)

Contact the CPSC directly here….
http://www.cpsc.gov/cgibin/commissionernord.aspx

Tiffany: Anything else to share about CPSIA?

Beccijo: As a parent I try hard to live in such a way as to be an example to my children. When I have to wait in line, I point out that I, as an adult, have to take turns. When they don’t like to share, I point out that I let them share my things even when I don’t always want to. So this is another great example for me to show them.  Just like for them, for adults there are rules.  Sometimes those rules are not fair in my eyes, for them it is bedtimes and eating veggies.  For me, right now, it is the CPSIA.  I have heard lots of comments about the toy police not coming after the crafters. And to me, openly disobeying the law is not the point and not the example I want to send to my children.  I would rather take the opportunity to teach them how people can influence the government to achieve what is fair and right.  Let’s find a way to get a good solid law in place that protects the quality of our children’s lives without removing the things that are already there and safe for them.

Tuesday, January 13th, 2009

95 Comments

  • anne

    Oh my word…I LOVE these little sets! Particularly the tea party set with the little carry box. SO sweet.

  • deb

    The woodland Fairy Accessory set is super cute. What a neat idea!

  • Hannah

    I love that the pieces are simple and are a tool for the childs imagination and creativity- her figures are really cute! My daughter would have so much fun with ANY of the dolls/sets from her stores!

  • Marla

    The fairy baking accessories are so cute!

  • http://www.thatsillygirl.blogspot.com robyn

    thank you for posting about this on your blog. hopefully our voices will be heard!

  • http://musingsfromamom.wordpress.com/ Terra

    I really hope much can be done about this law, it’s ridiculous!

    Thanks for the adorable giveaway! I love the food sets!! my lil guy LOVES to ‘cook’ and ‘make’ me meals!

  • http://musingsfromamom.wordpress.com/ Terra

    I stumbled, my ID is TerraJones

    thanks!

  • http://www.adayinthelifeofthewatsons.blogspot.com Dana

    I love the fariy mushrooms, too cute

  • Christa

    That bedroom set is adorable!

  • chaya

    love the tea party

  • http://greenearthjourney.blogspot.com Hyla

    These toys are too litte for my kids, though they are adorable. I have been posting on this subject this month and trying to trade away my kid’s items on Etsy. I have gotten some fabulous baby items for our new coming arrival! It seriously depresses me to think this law will pass though.

    Hyla

  • http://euphoriamaternity.wordpress.com/ Rachel

    I like the fairy mushroom set. It would be an adorable addition to our nature table. I’ve been wanting mushrooms…

  • MelissaNajd

    I really like the wooden redwood tree. It is so cute!

  • http://stacievaughansblog.blogspot.com/ Stacie

    I like the Fairy Kitchen Set.

  • Anya

    The designs just echo the magic of childhood play as I wish my children to enjoy it.

  • Cindi

    What a fun giveaway drawing! I adore the Wooden Bedroom Playset!
    How cute and imaginative! Many thanks…..Cindi

  • Priscilla

    Hi, thanks for the chance to win these special items! My favorite are the mushroom table set and baking items.

  • Julie

    Wow!! These toys are just so neat and cool:) I’m sure the little one in my tummy would love to get his or her hands on them. I think the Fairy Kitchen Set or the Wooden Bedroom Set is poretty awesome although there are a lot of nice toys that they have.

  • http://hallienoves.blogspot.com/ Helen

    The Fairy Baking accessories are adorable!

  • Mandy

    Love the baking set.

  • kali

    my daughter would absolutely LOVE the wooden fairy doll tea set with carrying case. so cute!

  • Sapna

    It is such a shame that the big manufacturers got away with having lead and god knows what else in their toys but when a small business owners do the right thing they get penalized. Sorry, just my 2 cents!!
    My daughter would lovethe Fairy Baking Accessory Set, she is a addict when it comes to things looking like cookies, chocolates, cakes, etc…

  • http://crunchygreenmom.blogspot.com Suzanne B. (Crunchy Green Mom)

    Music to my ears… the Wooden Fairy Doll Tea Party Playset with Storage Box is perfect. Cute, wooden, eco-mom friendly, and cleans up into it’s own little box… :)

  • http://www.ForMyKidsOnline.com CJStewart

    Love the baking accessories. Could that tiny, tiny rolling pin be any cuter?

  • http://www.ForMyKidsOnline.com CJStewart

    I added this giveaway to our “Free Stuff” page at http://www.ForMyKidsOnline.com/free_stuff.htm

  • http://mostlynaturalmomma.com Momma

    i loved the fairy baking set!! so cute!

  • http://www.massachusetts351.com Laura

    The baking set is so cute. And I could definitely see myself playing with these toys myself :)

  • Teneik

    I can’t decide if I like the Fairy Baking set, or the little mushroom table set the best. Everything there is sooo cute!

    I stumbled it to my mom. :D

  • Angie

    Gotta love all this adorable wood fun! Especially the spaceman playsets :>)

  • Jackie

    I love the little food sets and tea party sets. My little boy & girl both love to play w/ their kitchen and cook us meals : )
    This was a very interesting post – thanks for sharing!

  • Natasha Adams

    aw it reminds me of the little faries i use to make that u would get me.

  • http://blog.alexandari.com Jennifer Hudson

    My daughter would love any of the fairy dolls, and I think the baking set is so cute!
    Thanks for the giveaway.

  • http://blog.alexandari.com Jennifer Hudson

    I just stumbled it…

  • http://blog.alexandari.com Jennifer Hudson

    and tweeted about it… http://twitter.com/mimsibags

  • Bridget

    My favorite has to be the kitchen accesories: it even has a bottle of dew! =)

  • http://thedirtywork.blogspot.com Patti

    I love the Fairy Baking Accessory Set. It is so adorable! I can’t image making something that small and cute! Love it.

  • Molomatic

    The Wooden Doll School Playset is very cute! A great set for little ones who are getting ready to start school. The little globe is adorable!

  • Bena

    The Fairy Baking Accessory Set is great! My daughter and I would have a wonderful time playing with it during “girls only” time! thank you for the giveaway and making others aware of the overly strigent law.

  • toulamom

    I believe even my 10-year old daughter (and I!) would love the playsets – especially the bedroom set with that cute & cozy little bed! She still loves imaginative play, and toys like these truly are magic.

  • http://www.jenny-amothertryingtofindherkids.blogspot.com jennifer bowen

    wow i must say i realy like every thing at both the shops and well i be happy to have any thing of them and that the fairys are realy sweet please enter me infor this every thing is too sweet thanks when it comes to hand made noting else will do out of every thing i think hand made things are the best thay have more to them then a toy made in china

  • http://www.jenny-amothertryingtofindherkids.blogspot.com jennifer bowen

    wow i must say i realy like every thing at both the shops and well i be happy to have any thing of them and that the fairys are realy sweet please enter me infor this every thing is too sweet thanks when it comes to hand made noting else will do out of every thing i think hand made things are the best thay have more to them then a toy made in china

  • Dawn

    I am so glad you posted about this Tiffany! I hope more people get involved now.

    Everything she makes is so cute! The one that sticks out the most though is that adorable tea party set with carrying case.

    Thanks for the heads up on another wonderful shop!

    Dawn

  • Karen

    I love the mushroom table and checker piece seats.

  • Valerie C

    I like the baking accessories – adorable!

  • Mandee

    The fairy baking accessories are super cute!

  • http://www.ForYourBugABoo.com Cheri D

    First, THANK YOU so much for your previous posting and for this great interview about this new law! I have already signed a petition and written letters to my representatives.
    Second, for the giveaway. Such wonderfunl toys! I love the wooden doll school!!

  • http://www.enchantedtree.com tree

    i love the fairy doll kitchen playset! The a brick fireplace cooking stove is adorable! Great stuff!

  • Dan

    I like the Lavender Wooden Fairy Doll.

  • tara

    What sweet little dolls. I think my daughter would love the sleeping beauty doll, she’s so precious.
    Thanks

  • Kaycee

    Wow, these are fantastic!! Also thanks for bringing more attention to this issue. I love the wooden doll laundry set, I love the detail!

  • http://melaniescrafts.blogspot.com melanie

    Love the Fairy Baking Accessory Set.

    =) melanie
    http://melaniescrafts.blogspot.com
    melanieadey at hotmail dot com

  • Lindsay

    Would love to try these toys. Thank you

  • Missy

    Hard to choose, they are all so cute! I really like the spaceman playset though :) Thanks for talking about CPSIA too. I have been following it VERY closely and so far the CPSC has clarified that fabric like cotton and wool are exempt from testing. Now, if they are died or contain any other adornments, that’s another story.

  • http://www.petalzandfinz.com Jenny

    I love the little fairy tea set. The mushroom table is darling.
    Thanks for the giveaway!
    ~Jenny~

  • http://lovingheartdesigns.blogspot.com gahome2mom

    I had to pick Wooden Fairy Doll – Petunya because she is wearing a pink dress. My 3 year old loves pink. Thanks.

  • http://www.panjokids.blogspot.com Ellie

    Thanks for talking about this issue. I love her little kitchen and kitchen accessories- so cute!

  • Carol

    I just adore the Little Fairy Tea Set. My little one is almost at the age where we can start having little tea parties together. Thank you for the chance to win.

  • Aura

    The Wooden Fairy Doll Tea Party Playset with Storage Box is so adorable what little girl or boy wouldn’t want to play with it??

  • Naomi

    Thank you for posting on this issue. My own hyena cart store will be closing on February 10th, so this issue is dear to my heart…I love the spaceman playset, so cute!

  • Melissa

    Thank you so much for blogging about this and getting the word out. I love the mushroom set. Adorable!

  • judy brittle

    How adorable everything is. I totally fell in love with the Wooden Fairy Doll Tea Party Playset with Storage Box. That is fantastic. Thank you so much!

  • jessica

    that tea set is so cute, this doll set would be great for the house she got at Christmas

  • Jeanne

    I really like the Wooden Fairy Doll Tea Party Playset with Storage Box. It would be perfect for my daughters.

  • http://sweeps4bloggers.blogspot.com/ Valerie M

    the baking accesories are really cute

  • http://sweeps4bloggers.blogspot.com/ Valerie M
  • crystal

    I think that the Fairy Mushroom Table Set is adorable:)

  • April E

    I love wooden toys not just for the peace of mind but they last longer and keep my daughter more entertained then toys that have no imagination. I love the wooden Doll School playset. Thanks

  • Melanie

    My daughter would love the little fairy tea set! A gf of mine makes baby/kid clothes so I sent her the link issue as well. Thanks for the giveaway!

  • Rebecca

    I love the tea set and kitchen toys. Pretend with safe toys!

  • http://backyardmama.blogspot.com oona b

    The Fairy Mushroom Table set is so very sweet. My daughter would be thrilled to win and her fairies could meet this new little friend!

    Thanks! foxsquirrelrabbit at gmail dot com

  • Keilann

    I think that the Wooden Fairy Doll Bedroom Playset is absolutely adorable! Thanks for the contest!

  • Nicole

    I love the mushroom set!! It is eye catching and the children would love that! Great contest.

  • Jayme

    i love the Wooden Bedroom Playset! my nieces would love to play with this! thanks!

  • http://rockfordpilates.com summer in Illinois

    Thank you for your commitment to safe and eco-friendly toys!
    I just love your wooden tea set and food——beautiful
    I will contact my state rep. this week–thanks for sharing
    Summer in Illinois

  • Shari

    I just adore the tea party set simply adorable!!

  • Mary Lynch

    I love the tea set

  • http://mommyhoodisthankless.blogspot.com/ Rebecca C

    Wooden Fairy Doll Tea Party Playset is really cute!

  • http://mommyhoodisthankless.blogspot.com/ Rebecca C

    I stumbled your giveaway

    Username: wastebasketsa

  • Elaina

    So much cute stuff! My son and daughter would love to play with these toys. The food, tea party playset, space set. It is all beautiful!

  • http://overcoffee822.blogspot.com/ Lena

    The unique shape of the items catches my eye. Thanks for the cute giveaway!

  • http://dinnertimechimes.etsy.com erin, maker of chimes

    love the kitchen set and carrying sets to go with the dolls!

  • Melissa V

    the Wooden Fairy Doll Tea Party Playset is so lovely. my lil one loves to have tea parties. the dolls are so cute!

  • Leah

    I soooo love the Wooden Fairy Doll – Hydrangea! So adorably cute!

    Thanks so much for this fabulous give~away and the amazing interview with Beccijo! : )))

    We just keep fighting the good fight!

    leahita[at]gmail[dot]com

  • Leah

    I also stumbled this give~away! : )))

    http://leahita.stumbleupon.com/

    leahita[at]gmail[dot]com

  • christin

    this stuff is so cute!! i lov the fairy kitchen set:) thanks!

  • Annmarie

    All the items are just wonderful! I’d have to choose the Wooden Spaceman Playset with Storage Box as one of my favorites!

  • http://www.inexplicableways.com Julie

    My daughter loves fairies! I adore the mushroom table. Well done!

  • Jen Mc

    The baking set is so cute, but so it everything else!

  • xenia

    So cute! I especially like the Wooden Fairy Doll Tea Party Playset with Storage Box, it’s adorable. Thanks!

  • Krista

    i love the fairy baking accessory set!

  • http://rockinmama.net Caryn B

    I like the Custom-made 18 inch Cloth Fairy Doll

  • http://www.naturemoms.com Tiffany

    The winner is Rebecca C! Cmment #76

  • http://textilebulletin.blogspot.com/ Jupitex

    Yes, CPSIA is not only a large impact for toys market, but also impact for children products (eg. children care, children wear). Please visit the blog for more detail about CPSIA in deep.
    http://textilebulletin.blogspot.com/

  • courtney

    As a new mom mom, I’m disappointed to find that I will no longer be able to buy some of my favorite products here in the states. Selecta toys, for example, is pulling their beautiful wooden toys off of American shelves.

    http://momguru.com/content/cpsia-prompts-selecta-toys-exit-us-market

  • http://www.niton.com/ x-ray fluorescence

    Very nice and cute toys.Thanks for posting…