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Hand-made Toys to Become Illegal

Ah, they’ve done it again, those crazy lawmakers! They took an opportunity to do something good, and f*ed it all up!!! After all the toy craziness, the lead recalls, etc of all the stuff mostly made in China, the CPSC and Congress got together and made some new rules. Limits things like lead, pthalates, and other toxins in our children’s toys, and requires testing of items that are to be sold in the US. Great idea, right? You’d think so given recent articles like this one: 1 in 3 Toys Toxic. Well, sadly, it’s a horrible idea. Really bad. Really, really bad.

This new law requires toy makers to have their tested, on their own dollar. Still fine, you think? Sure, it’s fine for huge corporations who save money by making their toys in China, and other giants with more money than time. This testing must be done at least once for EACH TOY a company manufactures, at a cost of $4000 per toy. Once again, probably not so bad for a company like Fisher Price or Mattel. However, imagine you are a small-time toymaker, a true craftsman (YES!!! They still exist!!!! Check out…,…toys are still made in the USA!!! And some even by hand!) and you are forced to test a sample of each item you make. It’s impossible financially. And these rules are far sweeping to all infant and child products, including clothing, cloth diapers, hair bows, etc. I’m all for keeping things safe, I’m sure you all know how nutty I am about the things my kids use, but this is a bit much. For example, Holztiger is a larger small company that produces awesome wooden animals and figures. Even though they are all made from the same say 3 woods and the same paints, each figure needs to be tested…so…the big cow, the small cow, the brown one, the black one, the horse, the little horse, the horse sitting… get the idea. Selecta, a European company, has decided not to distribute to the US anymore. You see, in Europe they have much stricter toy safety standards anyway…one of the reasons I order a lot of European toys. So for them to have to test all their stuff again….it just doesn’t pay off. Selecta pulls out of US market

What can we do?

Please write or call your senators, representatives, and the CPSC. There was supposed to be an emergency hearing today to address this, but it was canceled. If this is not addressed soon, we are going to lose our handcrafted products and high quality toys…and thousands will lose their livelihoods. Let’s face it, this is not a good time to be putting people of jobs!

Here is a link from the Handmade Toy Alliance, with info on who to write to and what to say.

Also, here is there info page which helps describe the issue further.