About this project
An ageless, modern designer toy for you or your children that invites for creative playing" - created by a Red Dot Award winner industrial designer.
Our sophisticated ROLLARK is a sturdy, heavy-duty toy. You can play with it outside or inside, you can sit on it, even stand on it. We designed it so that you – weather young or adult – can have a high quality alternative in a world full of low-grade plastic toys. Even your grandchildren can inherit your ROLLARK thanks to its long-standing materials and it’s peerless high precision manufacturing process.
We believe in simple forms and shapes. We believe that it’s through play that we discover joy. We believe that we have responsibilities to ensure that joy for our children and grandchildren. We also believe that at the core of that responsibility is high quality as a must, which is ensured by caring about the things one does. And we believe that things with varied functionality can always be put to new use.
Our design introduces simple and natural shapes, colors and materials that encourage children to play and dream freely. It lets them familiarize with wood and metal and their properties. ROLLARK wouldn’t want to dominate aggressively in the middle of play. It purely helps the story to unfold and invites ideas to come alive. It lets the player's imagination to wonder on details, functions and accessories during the game. It invites into new worlds and variations inside and out. ROLLARK is not a toy but a toy-system that can be extended and recombined. If a part would go missing or broke completely then that part – and that part only - could be replaced. Parts are connected with a magnetic system so everything pops in place easily, even the wheels. All of ROLLARKS magnetic wheels have a unique double-bearing system that allows all wheels both to turn and to roll freely. Wheel axes are easily maintainable and cleanable.
In every ROLLARK, the wooden body will be shipped in its natural beauty. We want every owner to decide for themselves their own color for their ROLLARK. We do not want to use any chemical finishing to our product. Ours is natural. ROLLARK is designed to be strong and sturdy so one day after all the amazing playful hours you could pass this magical toy on to your grandchild connecting generations through this single object. To make as massive as possible, we use hard wood for its construction. That is why it is heavier than the average plastic toy – it weighs 5-5.5 kg (11-12 lbs.) depending on finishing. That is why shipping is a bit costly.
Is it an ark or is it a bus?
The simple answer is: it is both. And a lot more: it’s a showpiece, a house, a dragon, a scooter, a footrest... It is anything you can imagine.
Is it a toy or is a design object?
Well it is both and so much more. You can give it to your children as a present and let them play with it all day long. Or you can exhibit it on your shelf and marvel at its high quality design and finish while gathering admirers.
The main body of both ROLLARK and MINI ROLLARK are unique and numbered. Every other parts are available separately as replacements for ruined or lost parts. Only what you need, no complete panels or bolted packages.
Do we cut to trees to build ROLLARK? Yes, we do. But we do it with thoughtfulness and in a moderate way. We also plant a tree after every sold ROLLARK. The substance of our strategic thinking is that people need to reconnect with the real world where natural raw materials prevail. From the earliest concept, sustainability was very important for our team.
Not only did we want to use sustainable materials and manufacturing but we also designed the final product to have a long lifetime. The body of the toy is made of locally grown wood (beech, ashen, maybe acacia). We use aluminum and steel - two of the most commonly recycled metals. The essence of our philosophy is that long life will bring appreciation and a lasting value. So we’ve designed every part of the ROLLARK to be strong, easy to maintain, to repair or to replace.
We - the EMBER Design Manufactory - invite you to join our world of high- standard imaginative toys and sustainable toy-systems like the ROLLARK. We take our children’s development seriously and we have a strong emphasis on protecting our nature. We commit ourselves that with every ROLLARK delivered we shall plant a new tree for our environment. We need your help to spread our green philosophy so we invite you to actively support our endeavor. We participate in two EU programs in order to develop our strategy. Both organizations are highly committed to sustainability.
About my connection to the ROLLARK
The functions of ROLLARK are symbolic to me. On the one hand ever since my childhood I have been devoted to sailing; a true passion that has become an inspiring force in the creation of ROLLARK and in many other areas of my life. On the other hand during my university years I restored several Volkswagen hippie buses and I still have a strong bond with them. So these two elements combined led me to the creation of ROLLARK.
My goal is to get ROLLARK into production and to release new products, which further strengthen the world of EMBER Design Manufactory.
The EMBER Design Manufactory team
MINI ROLLARK is 1:2 scale-down of the original, it has the same design principles, shapes and finishing as the original but it’s built to be simpler. Some of the special features of the ROLLARK stay solely to the original product.
It will be the first challenge in the project to develop tooling for the MINI according to the full size ROLLARK prototype.
Although the MINI ROLLARK does look like its big brother, it has only some of the functionality of the original. First of all you can NOT sit on it, compared to the ROLLARK that supports two children or an average grown-up easily. Secondly the Mini does not have the magnetic double articulated wheel system so its moves are limited, compared to the ROLLARK which glides and turns freely, as in the video.
MINI ROLLARK is a Kickstarter EXCLUSIVE. Will not be available in the future after the end of the campaign!
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Risks and challenges
The design is absolutely safe. We tested the prototype with children. No injuries were caused, and there was no risk of any harm whatsoever that any parts of the ROLLARK could cause to kids.
We have taken all the steps possible to be fully ready for production and to be prepared to deliver products at the highest level of quality and craftsmanship.
There are always some risks when you put a wooden object into production. We want to manufacture it with high precision and if we want to do that we have to expand our workshops. That is why we invite you to our Kickstarter project.
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