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My daughter mentioned wanting this toy last year after seeing it advertised on the TV. However it was quite close to Christmas and all my shopping had been done. I did have a quick look at it on Amazon, but decided to give it a miss. In all honesty I thought it sounded like one of those faddy toys that never really do what they are supposed to and end up being shelved after one disappointing outing. It wasn't that cheap either at around £25. Luckily she didn't seem to notice it wasn't under the tree and it was never mentioned again.
Until this year, when again she said she'd quite like it and I found myself in a similar position. This time though I was just wondering what to buy her with the £30 my aunt had once again sent to me with instructions to buy something and wrap it up from her (does anyone else have relations who do this and find it annoying? As if I don't have enough to do!) After a quick trawl through the internet I worked out it was best being bought at Boots for £26.99 as part of a 3 for 2 deal and £12 points event, although I did see it for a few pounds less elsewhere.
So Christmas morning came and my daughter was over the moon to discover Super Grapfix in the huge parcel from Auntie (screaming something like Auntie xxx buys the BEST presents!! *Hmmph") As we were busy visiting family that day and I was unfortunately back to work for three days on Boxing Day, it wasn't until a few days later that she finally got to play with it.
So What exactly is Super Grafix? I hear you ask. Well in short it's an easel with an arch and mirror contraption that goes over it and allows you to trace pictures. I wasn't convinced that this was going to work very well at all, but found myself very surprised at what turns out to be a very good quality and accurate artist tool for children.
The set up of the toy is extremely simple. It's simply a case of clicking a few plastic legs and arms together and you're ready to go. There's no fiddly stickers to place, no batteries required (or the subsequent search for a small enough cross head screwdriver to put them in) and no annoying plastic wires to de-tangle. Super Grafix was up and running within five minutes.
The easel part has clips to hold a piece of A4 paper steady to avoid slips, as precision is pretty key to success here, and a stand clips onto the back to hold a copy of the paper image you'd like to copy. By looking through the eyepiece and tracing what you see with your pencil, you end up with a pretty accurate tracing. It's quite clever, and a little disconcerting, as you feel you are drawing mid-air rather on paper, and my daughter was amazed and delighted with the the results after taking a few minutes to get the hang of it. Super Grafix comes with 2 printed images to copy, but any image from a photograph, magazine etc can be used. We successfully traced Harry from 1D from her calender.
You're also not limited to printed images, She managed to trace a lovely drawing of her hedgehog hottie and owls from a photo album cover. You can even remove the stand and lay the toy flat allowing you to trace 3 dimensional object such as a vase of flowers, a tree, building...the possibilities are endless. It does come with a few sheets of A4 paper, but we flew through these very quickly so you'll probably want to have a good supply to hand, because once my daughter started she found it pretty addictive.
Super Grafix is also very well made and robust. In the last few days it's been carted between home and grandma's, out in the garden and all around the house and I'm confident that it can withstand much more. The plastic is extremely tough and child friendly, it's much lighter than it looks and very portable. It even folds up to become kind of like a briefcase for carrying. I'm very impressed with both the quality and usefulness of this toy, and so is my little artist.
Despite having reservations about this toy, it's probably one of the best things she owns and is certainly a success. She's already had hours of fun with it and I can see it being used for years to come, especially for a little girl who loves drawing so much. It's incredibly simple, which surprised me as for some reason I was expecting lights and batteries and a whole host of things that can go wrong. I think almost every child is going to enjoy using super grafix (who doesn't want to end up with a perfect picture of almost anything to colour?) and despite previously feeling it was expensive, I now think it's a fair price for a great toy. It's recommended for ages 8+...I can't see it being a problem for younger children as there's no small pieces or anything they can damage, however it does need a level of hand to eye co-ordination that much younger children may not have and find a bit difficult. I can't remember being so impressed with a toy, and I'm glad I eventually gave in and bought it. Oh and thanks Aunty!
Older daughter (9) badgered me for this for ages before her birthday and decided after looking at it we would buy it.
It is quite expensive and we payed £18.99 from Argos, managed to get a good look at one in "the entertainer" toy shop but did not buy it as was £21.00.
Super grafix is made by John Adams who do some great educational and craft toys at fairly good prices.
This is a copying tool for children which involves looking through a set of glasses which make the image you are copying "appear" on the paper you are copying onto,in the box is a large plastic briefcase style contraption with a handle for easy carrying, feels sturdy enough and solid that it won't break in two minutes.
It is then a matter of turning the dials on the side to open it up then you either have the choice of an easel in front of you which has grips attached to it to hold the item to be copied or you can drop the easel down which leaves you with in effect the outside frame and then you can copy everything in it.
Daughter particularly liked this still life option of dropping the easel and copying anything she liked,does not play with it everyday but still regularly uses it,my only criticism is its size makes it difficult to store.
Results have been good and get better with use as daughter gets more confident,all in all a good buy.
With Super Grafix you can draw anything! Copy a cartoon or any picture you like, and then simply pull out the picture easel to draw a landscape, still life or your best friend! Includes an amazing patented optical viewer, and no power supply is required! Its also portable and lightweight, it just folds down - take on holidays and to sleepovers!