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Art supplies are something we are not short on in our house, but when I saw these crayons had been very positively reviewed, I thought I would invest in a set of them for my youngest son in particular to encourage him in his artwork. One of the things that greatly frustrates him is he cannot manipulate pencils and crayons to do what he wants to do. His writing is not as small as he would like, and his colouring is all over the place rather than in the lines, so I thought these might go some way to helping him with his confidence and abilities. He's only 4, but wants to do things as well as his older brother who is 6.
The crayons are made by Melissa and Doug, who make excellent quality wooden toys and books for children, so although crayons are slightly out of my expectation of what they make, I was happy to try them out due to past experience with the companies products.
Recommended for children age 3 plus, these crayons come in a pretty nice case that encourages the child to keep the crayons in it as it is sturdily made and has a space for each crayon, and a nice hinged lid. The lid is a little tricky to get into for younger children, but fine for slightly older children and adults. We tend to use this as a set that we take out with us when we eat out at restaurants, but we also get this out when the children are doing their homework and craft too. After experiencing this set, my oldest son in particular will now not use the other crayons that we own, as the quality here is far superior, and his art work looks much nicer for it.
The crayons are all triangular, so they are designed to be easy to grip and hold while you are drawing. They are made from a plastic rather than a wax, so they are a bit more resistant to the breakage that you find in cheap crayons from dropping them or pressing on too hard. These have been in use since christmas and only one of ours broke when it rolled onto a hard floor from table height. There has also been fairly minimal blunting of the crayons. They have rounded a bit at the edge, but not gone completely flat like some crayons do making it impossible to get a sharper edge in your drawing.
At £5 for 24 crayons, they are not so expensive they would put me off, but they are a bit more pricey than other brands that we have bought. I think though that for the quality, they are really worth this much, and it is a good selection of bright colours which have worked for the art projects we have used them for. There are a couple of the common colours like pink and purple, several shades of red, green, brown and blue, as well as black, white and grey. They are comfortable to hold, and produce good colour on the paper which is similar to crayon made traditionally with wax.
Part of the attraction to this set is the nice way it is presented, as oppose to the jumble of crayons we have in a big pot, but these are also lovely to use and very practical for storing and taking out and about with you. I would not hesitate to replace this set if we used them up, and I have also bought a set of these for a gift already as well. I can imagine the set will stay nice for a long time though as the crayons are not being banged about all the time.
I've mentioned in a previous review, that my oldest son has never liked to colour in. He will paint now and again, but he has never been one for drawing, colouring etc.... but when he started have problems with writing we bought special pencil grips which really helped. When he took to triangular grips so much I couldn't help thinking about Azana's review here. I'd been considering the crayons since I had read the review, and Azana assured me they were of good quality. I've bought a couple of other items she has reviewed, and always been happy so I gave it a shot.
I was hoping these would encourage him to colour a bit, but I wasn't expecting miracles. If I had been expecting miracles though, I still would not have been disappointed. I can't believe I now have walls covered with colouring in pictures, I am shock. Not only is he happy enough to colour now, the results are completely different, and he really is able to colour nicely and neatly. For any child with difficulties in holding pencils or crayons - I honestly can not recommend these highly enough.
Before reading Azana's review, I would not have expected these crayons to last long. I was concerned that the lack of paper would mean they would break easily. My 3 year old and 7 year old have both been using these, and ( knock wood) none have broken despite a couple of colours being dropped. These produce nice rich colours, without having to press too hard, and are very easy for both boys to use. The colour transfers easily to the paper, but not to hands, and I find these neat and easy to use. Of course the shape means you can not use a sharpener, but it is easy enough to bring these back to a point by colouring a bit with one held sideways. We have only had these about a week, so I can't say for certain how long they will last - but they have had a massive amount of use so far with very little wear.
I think the price on these is quite fair. I paid £3.34 for a package of 12. I won't be buying this pack again as the pack of 24 is a better bargain at £4.99, but I am still happy enough with the first set. My husband on the other hand thinks this is a terrible price as he has bought several sets of crayons this year from the pound shop at the obvious price - but the fact is they get used once and the broken up bits get tossed in a candle making box. He really isn't saving any money when he buys the same thing over and over - and even new out of the box they simply are not as nice to use.
Both of my sons love these. I would very strongly recommend them for toddlers and young children because they are sturdy, easy to use and the triangular shape will help develop the habit of holding crayon correctly. For children who struggle to hold writing implements correctly these are really a gift, and I do think children who get used to using these from an early age may naturally develop correct finger placement for writing. But even for older children, with no difficulties, I would still recommend these. They are a very well made product and a real joy to use ( naturally I tried them out myself before writing this). The triangular shape just makes these so much more comfortable to hold, the high quality of the pigment makes them pleasing to use, and you can even use them sideways to shade large areas. I certainly would have loved these as a child myself, and I can't see going back to ordinary crayons in the near future here. The only reason I could imagine going back to ordinary crayons would be to buy one of those giant boxes with a huge variety in colours. These only seem to come in 12 or 24 packs, but in all honesty 24 colours is fine for our purposes - and 24 coulours that get used is a far better deal than 96 that stay in a box.
Much as it pains me to rave about a children's art product - I've got two rather over prolific little artists who seem to permanently keep my recycling bin full - I wish that I'd discovered these crayons years ago as they are so amazingly good. Five pounds might seem a lot to pay for 24 solid 8 cm triangular pencils but we have found these crayons far better than any others we own and when they run out I will be buying some more.
These aren't traditional wax crayons but are more like a solid version of the inner part of pencils. This means there's no need to spend time sharpening pencils, something I abhor as I find the even quite expensive pencils can be broken all the way down and not up to the task - at risk of sounding like a kids' art nerd the only exception to this being the staedtler ergosoft pencils which are fantastic. These pencils are easy for a child to hold and promote correct positioning of the fingers. They have a 1cm diameter so are perhaps best suited for a child of five or more - there is a thicker version available but with less colours. When colouring with my daughters I've found them quite satisfying to use, the way they wear down means that you always have a fine point to use but can also use the nib for shading. By applying more or less pressure you can get a surprising amount of effects.
The pencils come in a sturdy case, handy for taking out and about and for encouraging children to keep them tidy. I think there is a great range of colours - you can see the exact colours above- from more muted shades to brighter tones. The only criticism I would make is that there is only one shade of yellow, this is made up for by there being a lovely metallic gold and a good range in all the other colours. They are without doubt a quality item.
With extensive use we haven't had any break from colouring - though if you drop them on a tiled floor they will snap in two, since doing this my daughter has been more careful with them. Both my children of 5 and 8 really enjoy colouring with them more than with their other pencils. The finish they get with these crayons is similar to the one you would get with traditional pencils but they are, in our experience, much more satisfying to use. Highly recommended and well worth the purchase price given that your average child is bound to get hours of fun from them.
My daughter Hollie loves arts and crafts, she has a box full of supplies to make loads of wacky creations. She can spend hours colouring in pictures and for a three year old her concentration to keeps in the lines is amazing. Hollie prefers to use felt tips for colouring but after she kept leaving the lids of the tips dried out and the pens were put in the bin so we switched to crayons. I purchased the triangular Melissa & Doug crayons after having them recommended to my by Hollies nursery teacher.
Melissa & Doug triangular crayons cost £4.99 for a box of twenty four. I purchased the crayons from Amazon uk as they has a special offer on at the time.
The crayons come in a hard plastic case, this is red in colour with a clear plastic lid so you can see all the crayons inside.
The lid is hard to open and close this is hard for Hollie to open on her own , this suits me as then she has to ask me for help and I can constantly remind her to put each crayon away as she uses it. I hate emptying her craft box just to find a few scattered crayons at the bottom so the case storage is ideal for these crayons and its better than a small cardboard box.
Each crayon has an indent on the bottom of the case so they are held in place hand for travelling with and keeps them tidy.
There are two different shades of each colour of crayons, for instant pale pink and a darker pink and so it goes on for each colour etc. The crayons measure 7cm long and 2cm wide perfect for small hands and fingers to grasp.
The crayons are triangular shaped this has a few benefits. The crayons can't roll off Hollies desk or lap tray as they sit perfectly on there side angle unlike round crayons which regularly roll off onto the floor.
The other thing I liked is the triangular shape helps pre school aged children get used to holding the crayons right just like you would with a pencil helps develop pencil control. This has been a good thing for Hollie as normally she held pens and crayons right at the top pushing down on them to draw.
Another thing I like about the Melissa and Doug crayons is the fact they are unbreakable, yes you can try to snap or stand on they but they don't break and no paper wrapping around them to peel off another thing Hollie used to do problem now solved.
Melissa & Doug crayons are very comfortable to hold and use. You can scribble lightly and the colour transfers onto the paper with ease. They don't feel waxy either, and no smell from them. Nice bright colours and plenty to chose from.
I would highly recommend the crayons, these will last forever. Hollie has had the crayon set for four months now and she uses them daily. We have not lost any or broke any yet.
I highly recommend the Melissa and Doug triangular crayons they are fantastic.