About this project
Hey There! Thanks for watching our video and welcome to the only brother/sister toy making project on Kickstarter (we think)!
- Kickstarter helps fund creative projects by allowing people to pledge money in exchange for rewards
- Rewards are located on the right column
- Most of them are toys but we added a few rewards for those that don't know any kids
- ALL rewards include shipping!
- ALL rewards will be shipped by Christmas!
Our idea for Larsen Toy Lab is a simple one, and it stems from a frustration of seeing the same cheap plastic imported toys on every shelf and every online shop. With our combined experience in Product Design, Engineering, Marketing, and Sales we felt like we were in a position to do something about it - and after talking with friends and family it was clear that our toy pain was shared!
We started developing a few ideas based on our favorite toys as kids - Blocks. We got to work making prototypes and testing them with kids of our family and friends - all while making continuous improvements. With the help of our mom (an art teacher) we created a children's book starring Leif: a young Viking boy that uses his imagination to transform from a poor farmer's son into the town hero! We even brought a set into the classroom so that we could talk to teachers and watch kids as they listened to our children's book and played with our blocks:
After talking to parents and teachers there were two things that became obvious:
1. Blocks are arguably the single most important toy when it comes to developing critical thinking, problem solving, and social skills. Also (sadly) most teachers said that block play was losing out to new technology.
2. Kids love a good story. It gets them to think differently (if only for a short time) as they relate to new characters and situations.
EVERYTHING about our toys is different compared to what you would find on a shelf at most toy stores.
Help us reverse this trend..
Fast forward a few months are here were are: 3 new products ready to go into production - all centered around the idea that blocks should be in the hands of more kids! Each product lets kids interact with the blocks in a slightly different way, showing off the versatility and educational power of the blocks themselves. Our ultimate goal is:
1. Educate and engage kids (and parents) through original puzzles, games, and stories
2. Offer ample opportunity for more open-ended, imaginative, and creative play - an inherent characteristic of blocks!
Those boxes above are actually just a thin piece of paper that our printer gave us as a proof (we can't believe they held together). We are still a ways away from turning our idea into a success - but luckily we found some really great vendors and have some awesome family and friends that are constantly giving us free advice.
We have everything lined up to go full speed ahead, all we need is the money to get started. This is where you come in - take a look at what we can offer you below and we will do everything possible to make sure YOU ARE REWARDED FOR SHOWING US YOUR SUPPORT!
Rewards (limited amount available for 2012 Holiday Season!)
Risks and challenges
Even though we've encountered plenty of hurdles to get to this point we are fully aware of the challenges that lay ahead. Our biggest challenge so far (partly because it wasn't our area of expertise, and partly because it doesn't come as naturally to us) is to build an audience through social media and blogs. At the end of the day, after meeting with new vendors and discussing new products, we often forget the need to share what we've learned. We love following our favorite companies on facebook and seeing what they're up to (also getting the scoop on promotions, deals and sales!) so we definitely know the importance of those efforts, it's just an area we need to become more comfortable in - and realize that what we share from our experiences can be used to educate and, hopefully in some cases, encourage more people to follow their passion!
Up to this point we've published 2 books, designed 3 boxes, created a website from scratch, sanded a thousand blocks, found vendors that are aligned with our values, filmed a video, and went back to Kindergarten class. But.. our willingness and eagerness to learn all of this new stuff is absolutely secondary to the importance of the help and support we've had from friends and family. Similar to most Kickstarter campaigns, we think the most valuable thing we can achieve is to build a community of fans that tell us what we are doing right, what we are doing wrong, and how to be better!
A very special thanks to all the family and friends for showing support, and to Randy Funke and Joe Haddad for helping with some of the more technical challenges!Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
Support this project
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