The V&A Children’s Museum is more than just a space for children to play. It has an amazing toy collection which occupies much of the space- much to the delight of visiting parents. I especially enjoyed looking at the 1970’s toys. I discovered that Mary Quant designed a doll named Daisey which was available in the UK around 1977. My favourite overall toy was an English butcher set. The whole thing was carved out of wood: the butcher, the shop and the hanging meat carcasses. What more could you hope for in a toy!
My other favourite toy museums:
Japan Toys Museum in Taito-Ku, Tokyo, Japan. (Currently no discoverable website, but there is a good description on QuirkyJapan.) Highlights include a historical collection of electronic games including a seldom seen Nintendo Game ‘n Watch called “Vermin”. The extent of the gameplay includes whacking rats on the head with a stick.
Japan Toy Museum in Himeji. Highlights include a comprehensive international toy collection from many eras, as well as extensive collection of Japanese traditional toys.
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Random notes to self about toys…Penguin Fridge, Barbie Fridge, Wooden Building Blocks, Aardvarks on stick, Space Hopper 1970’s, Strawberry Shortcake by Palitoy, Schmuck aus Silberdraht (drakt?) 70-80 German Jewellery making set, Play+ arredi per l’infanzia http://www.studiouk.net, Toy Butcher and all meat cuts in wood 1800’s, Egg- Soft and hard moulded Plastic, Carving Wood, Material, The History of Toys: From Spinning Tops to Robots by Deborah Jaffe