“ Manufacturer: Vivid Imaginations / Type: Doll House „
The Cottage is packaged inside an attractive, colourful cardboard box. There is a clear picture and list of contents on the box. The box is quite large but is lightweight and very easy to wrap up.
The Fifi Cottage Playset includes...
- Fifi Cottage.
The Cottage is made of durable plastic and is quite large. It is yellow and looks just like it does in the programme. The cottage comes complete with 2 blue doors that open and close, windows with curtains, a banana seat, a leaf staircase, a white hammock, a sink, a cooker (with a tray of cakes that go in and come out slightly bigger) and a white ladder which leads to a hatch in the roof. The cottage also has a large spout and handle to carry it around easily. The end of the spout can be flipped open and Bumble can be plugged into it via a small piece of plastic, you then turn the handle round at the other end of the spout and Bumble appears to be flying around in circles.
- 2 figures.
A plastic Fifi and Bumble are included which are durable and look just as they do in the programme.
- Fifi's bed.
The whole bed is made of plastic and has a duvet that you can pull up and down to tuck Fifi in to bed. There is an imprint of Fifi's body in the bed so it's easy to fit her in.
- Fifi's wardrobe.
The wardrobe is made of plastic and its doors open and close.
The table can be flipped from an empty table to a table full of cakes in just a second.
- Dancing flowers and watering can.
There is a pot of 3 flowers on the outside of the cottage. When you put the watering can near the flowers (or 'water' them), the flowers move around. It works by magnetism.
- Flowerbox hairclip.
There is a flowerbox attached to the cottage. The flowers double up as a hairclip when removed from the box.
- Flower pot ring.
There is another flower pot that holds a single flower. The flower doubles up as a little ring when removed from the pot.
**Difference between Fifi Cottage Playset and Fifi Deluxe Cottage**
The Fifi Forget-Me-Not Cottage Playset retails at around £20.00 and the Fifi Deluxe Forget-Me-Not Cottage retails at around £30.00.
The only difference between the two is that the Deluxe Cottage includes 4 more characters than the Playset (Stingo, Slugsy, Primrose and Violet). So really you are paying £10.00 extra for 4 little plastic figures. Pointless really as my daughter is happy with the 2 Fifi characters and adds other figures from other toys to play in the Fifi Cottage.
Retailers often get the 2 Cottages mistaken, so check the description before purchasing.
**Cost and availability**
As I've already mentioned the Fifi Cottage Playset costs around £20.00, although if you shop around you might be able to get it for even less - I saw it selling on Amazon a couple of months ago for £14.99 and it was selling in Argos over Christmas 2009 for just £10.00.
It is also available from Toys R Us and The Entertainer.
**My overall thoughts**
This is a great toy for Fifi fans but is also suitable for children that don't watch Fifi. My daughter watches Fifi but I wouldn't say it's one of her favourite programmes, however that doesn't affect play time with her Fifi Cottage. I've noticed that the same goes for her two slightly older cousins who also have the set.
The set is recommended to over 3 year olds (there are lots of small parts) but my daughter was enjoying it at a younger age - under supervision of course. In my opinion the set would be fun for children upto around 7 years old. This isn't really one for boys but I think younger boys would probably enjoy it.
I find it really handy that you can open and close the Cottage, as it means I can store all the bits inside safety when it's not in use. The handles are also very handy and allow my daughter to carry the Cottage around with her without causing an accident!
I'm impressed with the amount of pieces included and feel the set is good value for money. The Cottage is quite large (not huge) but the inside (when the Cottage is opened up) is a lot smaller, however this never seems to be a problem for my little one.
My daughter has had hours of fun with her Fifi Cottage - it is one of her most played with toys. She has had it since she was 1 or possibly 2 years old and still gives it a lot of attention.
She really enjoys making up her own little stories and games with the characters and fiddling around with all the little bits and pieces. That's not to mention glamming herself up with the ring and hairclip! The set really encourages imaginative play and concentration.
The downside of the Fifi Cottage Playset is that it isn't the best quality. The Cottage itself is solid and sturdy, however all of the bits inside and attached to it are very easy to remove. The doors constantly fall off and the curtains are so useless that we don't even use them anymore. This is really disappointing as the toy is aimed at heavy handed preschoolers.
Overall this is a nice little playset that is sure to get lots of use. I recommend.
I bought this for my daughter for christmas as a stocking filler as it was on offer for £10.00 in Argos. For that price I didn't think I could really go wrong as she's pretty keen on Fifi.
It comes in a box with instructions. I had to attach the spout but other than that there was no other construction required. The house itself opens up and there are two levels. There is also a ladder that goes from the bedroom and clips on through an opening hatch up to the roof. It came with 2 characters, Fifi and Bumble, there were quite a lot of pieces including a bed, table, wardrobe and watering can.
I was impressed by the quality of the pieces, the plastic is thick enough to be durable but not enough to hinder play. The instructions explained all the features of the house with great detail, I found these really useful as I don't think I would have found a lot of them on my own. My daughters favourite features include a sponge that when wet wipes the mud from Fifi's boots, the lifting duvet cover on the bed that Fifi fits perfectly underneath, a bun tray that when put in the oven the buns rise and the table that flips over to reveal jam tarts and tea. Another nice addition for any little girl, the flowers in the pot come out to be a ring and the flowers in the window box come out to be a hair clip.
The other feature my daughter really like is the flying Bumble, a strip of plastic slots into the end of the spout which Bumble slots onto the end of. A handle in side the house near the cooker turns and Bumble goes flying round. My only concern is that with continued use the plastic seems to be bending slightly and might snap.
Storage wise, everything fits in well and despite the funny shape it fits on the shelf in our cupboard quite nicely. To clean it just needs a wipe with a damp cloth, although I could see it being a bit of a nightmare if it gets dirty in the corners as my fingers wouldn't get in there too easily. I definitely would not recommend this for small children who like to put things in their mouths as there are quite a few little parts that could be a chocking hazard.
My daughter does spend quite a lot of time playing with this, moving the characters from one room to another, feeding them and putting them to bed etc. It has encouraged her to use her imagination. I also find it really handy if we are going out because it can be carried anywhere with all the pieces in to keep her entertained.