Scooters are going to be HUGE in 2013! At the Toy Fair we spotted all kinds of scooter designs from character classics such as Mr. Men, Spongebob Squarepants and Spiderman to more modern additions such as flashing lights, fluoroscent colours and bling-tastic accessories.
Our favourite finds included Scoot’s Scoot Lites (colourful handlebar lights that fit into your scooter handle) and Bedazzles (sticky bedazzle gems to give your scooter sparkle). Plus, Razor’s new range of pre-school scooters morph from a three-wheel to a two-wheel design as your tot gains confidence and features thick chalk at the back so your little one can scoot and draw as they go!
With news of Jurassic Park 4 and the re-release of Jurassic Park in 3D expected to hit the big screen, it’s no surprise that the high street will be full of stompin’ dinosaurs this year.
We spotted all kinds of prehistoric creations from craft-style archaeology sets to a four-metre-long moving, roaring animatronic T-Rex that can be ridden by a child (which will cost a whopping £9,500!).
Our favourites dino designs included Schleich’s dinosaur (pictured), Playmobil’s Paleontologist set, TOMY’s Dinosaur Train range and V-Tech’s Mega T-Rex – an interactive, robotic dinosaur that moves on command!
Cowboys & Indians
Toys are set for the Wild West this year. Disney and the filmmaking team behind the Pirates of the Caribbean franchise will release The Lone Ranger starring Johnny Depp as the Native American spirit warrior. LEGO showcased some awesome Lone Ranger-inspired play sets that we predict will be a hot favourite for budding builders.
From Playmobil’s western-themed Toy Fair stand to traditional fabric teepee’s (pictured) – we think little one’s will go wild creating their own action-packed adventures.
Eco-conscience parents will be happy to know that this year’s Toy Fair was jam-packed with planet-friendly buys. The focus for many of the stands were on ethical, organic, eco-friendly and fair trade options.
Favourites included eco-friendly wooden toys for kids of all ages, puzzles, balance bike and ride-on cars. Plus, we loved the traditional-style dolls houses made from sustainable wood.
Technology for tots
From kid-friendly projector cameras to interactive app toys and tablets, technology continues to be a strong toy trend for 2013.
V-Tech’s range included the Kidizoom Touch (a clever toy with photo morphing features and MP3 player), Kidizoom Twist Plus (With new motion trigger self timer so kids can create their own stop motion videos) and InnoTab 2 Baby (a baby-proof design with tailored apps and soothing tunes).
Favourites included Leapfrog’s Touch Magic Counting Train (for nonstop number fun) and Touch Magic Discover Town (which helps build early vocabulary) and dancing dog Teksta (pictured).
Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles
Turtle power is set to reach all-new highs with the news that the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles aka TMNT are celebrating their 25th anniversary!
The lean, green, fighting machines will also hit the small screen with Nickelodeon’s new CG animated TV series (pictured). We spotted loads of play sets, collectable figurines, games and more. This merchandise is bound to be hot property for little boys!
Kids collectables vary every year but they’re always popular because of their accessibility and pocket-money prices. We loved the new realistic Hex Bug’s range but the top trend we spotted was on app and online characters such as Moshi Monsters, Bin Weevils, Angry Birds and Cut The Rope.
Collectables from their favourite TV shows, video games, apps and online games give little one’s the chance to bring their favourite characters to life. Others to look out for include Skylanders, Yu-Gi-Oh!, Jitsu and Star Wars.
This trend is the antithesis to the technology trend – here classic and traditional toys that don’t cause parental headaches are king.
One of our favourites was 40-year-old brand Ambi Toys, whose bright and bold designs meet the stages of children’s development with an emphasis on quality and safety. Plus, we couldn’t resist the Galt Toys collaboration with Dr Miriam Stoppard that included a gorgeous soft plush Activity Kitten and balance encouraging Pull Along Puppy.
Role model toys
We noticed a big push towards real role models from career-inspired play sets, nurturing interactive toys and inspirational games.
Our favourite find was the Doc McStuffins range (pictured), apparently inspired by President Obama’s daughters Malia and Natasha. Already a huge TV hit in the US, Disney Junior’s Doc McStuffins is based on a six-year-old girl who can “fix” toys, with a little help from her stuffed animal friends.
Calling all superhero kids! Always a top trend but it looks like comic book characters and superheroes will soar in popularity again this year thanks to the new film releases Iron Man 3 and Man of Steel.
We saw some cool new designs of DC and Marvel comic classics such as a sticky web flinging Spiderman and foam disc shooting Iron Man fist (pictured).