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For Christmas Hope was bought this pony by my brother. He had asked what she would like for Christmas and I'd told him to buy her something creative and this was one of the items he bought her. As soon as she opened it on Christmas Day she was really excited and couldn't wait to get going with it! I managed to curb her enthusiasm until we had a bit of quiet time where we were able to get this out for her to paint. She enjoyed every minute of it and I think it is a very good purchase indeed, well done to my brother! Crayola Crayola is a brand that I normally trust although we have had one really poor purchase from them which has made me a little more hesitant than I used to be. Crayola make creative products for children and I remember having many of them when I was growing up. They make products starting at the first stage chunky crayons right through to more complex beading sets and things. What I always think is nice about this brand is that they always look so attractive- the packaging of their products always shows happy children getting involved with the product and the creative toy always looks so inviting and fun. The prices of Crayola products are reasonable and you normally get a very good quality product. First impressions of the colour and style pony My first impression of this toy was that it looked nice! Hope tore into the wrapping paper and held up the toy announcing "It's a pony!" and looked most delighted! It was clear from the box exactly what this was- it wasn't just a pony but one that you could paint and style it's hair! The first impressions were very good and I'm not surprised that Hope wanted to start playing with it right away. She forgot about the other presents under the tree and asked if we could get it out and play with it right away she was that excited by it. It definitely goes to show that first impressions count and the look of this box was well designed. It shows a little girl happily painting away and then the finished product in the foreground this is obviously a winning combination- for Hope anyway! Getting it out to paint We painted this today. Hope was really excited but we had to wait a couple of days to find a time when we could give her the time she needed to play with this without a little brother trying to join in too and making a mess so when M took his nap today Hope instantly grabbed the box and declared she wanted to paint it. Sometimes with children's toys and creative sets it takes a lot of setting up or you open the box and realise you need something you haven't got- specific glue or something but not with this colour and style pony! Everything you need is included and all of a very good quality too. The pony comes in two halves, at first Hope thought there were too ponies but when we got it out of the case we could see that it was two halves that slot together, this I presumed was to save on packaging so the box isn't so thick but once Hope started to paint it I realised it was to make it more practical- painting an entire horse would mean that it would be difficult to rest without the paint running or smudging whereas painting it in two halves made it far easier. The horse has hair which you add afterwards and then you slot it together which holds the hair in place and makes the pony 3d. The paints included are in a plastic row and include five colours- red, purple, yellow, blue and green. They have flip open lids. You also get some ribbon to tie in it's hair, some little sticky gems and some stickers too. All I had to do was get a little pot of water for Hope to clean her paintbrush with after using each colour and off she could go! What a nice change to have a product where she could get stuck in right away without it taking a while to set up! Painting the pony Now opening the pots of paint was a little tricky, the lids were really quite stiff and once you've opened one and then go along to the next one to open it it's tricky not to make the ones that are already opened spill! Once they were opened though it was all plain sailing from there! Hope had the box in front of her and began to try to follow the example on the box. This was lovely as normally she just splashes on colours all over the place but she actually tried really hard this time to be more delicate and make nice little marks on the pony. She asked me to help at one point to paint a little bow and as soon as I picked the paint brush up I was really surprised by the quality of it! It is a lovely brush, very soft to touch and the actual bristles themselves are shaped really nicely so that it's almost like a tip at the end so a child has a lot of control over it. I would quite like a brush like this myself for my painting! Brilliant quality, it really surprised me! Hope adored painting it and was so happy whilst doing so. The only problem came when she moved the pony a bit and tried to stand it up, the paint was still very, very wet and it began to drip a bit so made the pony look like it was crying! I wiped it using a baby wipe and it came straight off so that was good, no smear or anything left behind. Putting it together and adding the finishing touches Hope could not wait to get this put together but we had to wait a while for the paint to dry. It did take some time, probably about 4 hours for it to dry completely and then I couldn't get it together properly! I tried to put the hair in the slot and then press the sides together to get it to stick but it just wouldn't line up properly and I think it was because the hair wasn't put in 100% correctly. We had to wait until Daddy came home and he was able to do it right away, I think he has a better eye for these things than I do! One thing for sure though- a child definitely couldn't do this on their own. Once the horse was complete Hope couldn't wait to brush it's hair! It comes with a little tiny brush and she quite happily brushed it's hair for a good ten minutes before adding some gems and stickers to it's body. She hasn't plaited it's hair or put the ribbons in it yet but I'm sure it's only a matter of time. Not just a figure What is absolutely brilliant about this pony is that it isn't just something you paint and then it sits there on your shelf gathering dust but it's an actual play thing. Hope will be able to play with this properly, she will brush it's hair and tie ribbons to it and involve it in her make believe play. This is made from a plastic which is designed to look like pot. I thought at first it was pot and would hinder her being able to play with it incase she broke it but because it's plastic she can play away with it to her heart's content without me worrying that she's going to smash it! What a brilliant toy! This is a brilliant purchase for any little girl. It is recommended for ages four plus and I completely agree with that. Hope is 5 in February and this seems an ideal toy for her age group. It is brilliant to see a toy which is so well thought out. It isn't just something to paint and then just sit there forgotten about but something which can be played with again and again afterwards too. Previously, I haven't bought Hope anything like this as the things I've seen have been pot and I thought they would soon become forgotten about once they have been painted and we only had room for so many ornaments but this is fantastic with it being plastic and with it having the hair as this means Hope will interact with it for a good while yet. The quality of this toy is second to none. The paint brush is brilliant, it certainly makes a change from the ones we have had previously which were in sets for children where the bristles are all spikey and tend to fall out mid-stroke! This is a beautiful brush which was very comfortable to hold and made painting as easy as possible. The paints were nice, solid colours. They are a little runny which means colours may mix together easily and can run so that is the only thing to look out for. The fact that the horse is in two pieces make it so much more practical so that the paint won't run as much and won't smudge if it is laid down. The only little problem was putting it together as this was a little difficult for me to do but my husband did it right away so perhaps I just wasn't looking at it properly. The stickers that it comes with and the gems too are good so that the pony has other elements on it other than just paint. This pony has provided Hope with a good half an hour fun whilst she painted it so she was able to use her creative skills. She then learnt about patience whilst waiting for it to dry and now she can be creative again with plaiting it's hair and also be imaginative as she interacts with this pony along with her other toys so really for the price you get a lot out of this! All in all this is a brilliant buy, I've had a look and on Amazon it is selling at £10, in my opinion that is a very reasonable price to pay for this, it brings more than just something to paint and I'm sure lots of little girls will enjoy painting and playing with this toy. I highly recommend it.
Whenever I am asked for ideas for presents for my girls I ask for craft items. They already have more toys than they know what to do with so something for them to do on a miserable day when we are stuck at home is always useful. I have 2 girls age 7 and 5 and they both have had one of these as presents last year. Inside the colourful Crayola box you will find an unfinished china pony, the mane and tail, set of paints and a brush, stickers and a bag of hair clips, ribbons and small brush. The pony itself is about the size of a my little pony - approx 12cm. The pony has holes where the tail and mane slot in. Crayola have been sensible here. You paint the pony first and then put the mane and tail in once dry. The paint comes in small pots which I found really hard to open so you will need to do this for your child. Then they can decorate the pony in their own design. Once dry you can add the stickers, slot in the tail and mane and add the hair clips, ribbons etc to style it. My 7 year old did a pretty good job and the pony looked quite good. The 5 year old (then 4) just slapped paint on one colour over the top of the other and to be honest it looks a mess - but is still proudly displayed in her bedroom. For that reason I think older children can take longer over it and get a better finished result. It would really look better if it had been glazed rather than the unfinished look. We have since had a paint your own cat money box which is shiny china and looks far better. This costs between £7 and £10 depending on where you look. It is a good activity for a rainy day but remember you will be left with the finished product afterwards!!
When my youngest daughter was five, one of the presents she received was the Crayola Colour 'n' Style Pony. This is a delightful little painting set with a finished item that your child can get a lot of pleasure playing with afterwards. Being Crayola, it is well thought out as a set and all of the items are of a good quality. The box states that it is suitable for children aged four and above but with most of these kits they are most successful when they are that bit older! The main item in the set is the pony which is ceramic and is not quite fifteen centimetres high. If your child is a bit heavy handed they should be reminded to take care when painting this as it could easily break. The kit also contains a paint brush, five mini paint pots - purple, red, blue, green and yellow - and a number of pretty items to embellish the pony once it has been painted. There is a suggestion of how the pony might be painted on the front of the box but if the painter is anything like my daughter they will ignore this and paint it just how they want which is no bad thing as we are all original. The paint pots are the usual fiddly kind that you get with Crayola. The little lids are quite difficult to prise off and then you have to remind your child to push the lids down firmly (which is quite difficult for small children) otherwise the paint is likely to dry up before they have finished. Also all the little paint pots are attached to each other in a line. I can never decide if this is a good idea or not. On the one hand it does keep them all together but it's not great for sharing and if you knock one paint pot over the whole lot are likely to go! It doesn't take that long to paint the pony with the thin brush that is provided and then the fun starts. The pony comes with a clip in mane and tail and with some clips. Examples show how both of these can be plaited or bunched and held together with some bright stylish clips in order to make an extremely elegant pony. There are also some beads and ribbons to add those final touches and a mini hairbrush to make sure all the hair does not get too untidy. I have to say that my daughter definitely seems to prefer brushing her pony's hair than her own! My daughter really enjoyed painting her pony and now she really enjoys styling it so it is definitely a success all round. The kit is available for only £7.36 from Amazon (August 2010) and that seems pretty good value for something that will get so much use. My five year old definitely recommends it and so do I!
It's been yet another rainy Bank Holiday, and in that tricky couple of hours before dinner we were very pleased to discover this forgotten birthday present lurking at the back of the cupboard. My crafty children have had other Crayola sets before, and they tend to be well designed and fun to do. This set proved to be no exception and kept my six year old busy for over an hour, which given the circumstances was no mean feat! When we opened the box we found that it contained a china pony in white, unfinished porcelain. It's about 12 cm high and the same length wise, and hollow - actually it looks a bit strange when you first get it out as there are holes where the mane and tail go, they are on solid plastic mounts which slot into the holes to complete the horse. The mane and tail are contained in a seperate packet, along with ribbons and a number of mini hair slides and beads designed to be added on when the pony has been painted. There are is also a sheet of stickers, a hairbrush for the pony, a paintbrush and 5 little pots of paints. My daughter wasn't able to open the paints without assistance, but apart from that was able to complete the pony independently. She made a rainbow pony with stripey legs, no doubt inspired by the colours provided; purple, green, blue, yellow and red. I was delighted when she spent a good deal of time carefully painting her design, the pony did look quite cute and obviously inspired her to try and make a good job of it! She did get a little frustrated at points that the paintbrush wasn't quite fine enough for the design she had in mind, but we have other brushes so this wasn't a huge issue. The paint dried surprisingly quickly and was easy to scrape off, for example around the rims of the eyes where she had gone slightly over the lines. Importantly it seemed to wash off her hands very easily too, and there was enough paint in the pots to allow the entire pony to be covered. Once my daughter had finished her pony she was very pleased to be able to add the detail of the mane and decorate it, having slotted it in herself fairly easily. The finished item is breakable, due to being made of china, but robust enough to stand up to some careful play. I found that she was happy to style and restyle her pony for quite a while. This pony seems to cost about £5, which to me is a fair enough price. The finished item has limited use to be fair but is, for my daughter, a welcome addition to her special shelf where all her best creations are displayed with pride in her room. She really enjoyed making this item, and despite the fact that it has a silly name the "colour n' style pony" according to the box (is it me or is that "n" a bit naff?) , I'm happy to recommend it as an enjoyable activity for the age Crayola suggest (4 +), and I will definitely be buying some more of these for our birthday present drawer!
Here I am reviewing another of my daughters Christmas presents. She loves anything arty or crafty so Grandma and Grandad thought htis was ideal for her. It did well - we didn't do it until yesterday as I like to spread these kind of activities out as once you have done them you can't do them again. The item in review here is the colour and style ony from Crayola. The item comes in the attractive box pictured above. The box is rather large for the size of the actual item. The pony its self is packed in another box within the box. There is also a set of paints, paint brush along with a sticker sheet, bag of beads and a mini hairbrush, ribbons as well as the mane and tail. I thought it was a great idea for these to be seperate so that you don't have to worry about getting the paint on them. The pony is the same size as a 'my little pony' and looks pretty similar too to be honest. It is made from some type of white breakable ceramic material - madness considering it is suitable from 4 years as they are sometimes a bit heavy handed. There are 5 paints in total included - red, purple, yellow, blue and green. They are all in indiviual plastic pots attached in a line. They have lids which should just pop up but even I found this quite difficult to do. The brush is quite nice and of a reasonable quality not like some of the cheap nasty ones you get in these type of things. It goes into a point at the end which I like should you want to do something artistic on it. We didn''t manage too much detail with my daughter only being 3 she just enjoyed painting random colour over it! She has called it Rainbow! It looked a complete mess but she was more than happy with it. The paint is quite thick and went on nice and easily although I'd recommend a bit of water with it if you want it to go further as the pots are only about half full. So we painted Rainbow and waited for it to dry so that we could decorate it. Mini Me picked the pretty stickers to decorate it with and attempted to stick them on - easy you might think but they lacked stickability and would not stick! A bit of pritt stick (well poundlands own version) sorted this no problem. Rainbow was now looking good (ish)!! It came time to put the mane and tail in. The hair plug are all attached to a small plastic bit which should just slot into the cavity that was already there. The tail went in no problem but when I pushed the mane it it seemed fine at first - then I heard a crack and half of Rainbows head had fallen off. I now had a hysterical 3 year old on my hands... great..... I didnt use excessive force and was gentle with it so I don't think it was due to this. I found the superglue and stuck it back with mane in situ. It was simply just too tight a fit I think. I am quite disappointed that a childs toy is so delicate and really I'd have expected better quality from Crayola as they are a well known and trusted brand. I appreciate this may be a one off but still disappointing. Foolishly I promised my daughter I'd get her another so we'll see what happens. My daughter has decorated the mane and tail with the beads and ribbons included though and now it sits looking at me from the shelf. It is currently available from Amazon for £7.82 if you would like to purchase one but I'm not recommending it to be honest. ----------------------------------------- Update 11/2/10 - after I emailed the company and expressed my disappointment in the product as I am convinced it is a design fault they said that they are going to send a replacement free of charge, hopefully with more success this time ------------------------------------------ March update - replacement item received free of charge - painted and bits put in place. Rainbow 2 seems pretty happy and is in one piece.