Product Type: ELC Outdoor Toy
Newest Review: ... places. The thing I like about these balls that is different than other brands is the colours. I really like the pretty pinks and ... more
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ELC Coloured Playballs
Member Name: broxi3781
ELC Coloured Playballs
Date: 19/04/11, updated on 19/04/11 (81 review reads)
Advantages: Slightly larger, better make, last longer.
Disadvantages: More expensive
When I was pregnant with my oldest son, my husband felt we just had to have all sorts of baby items we never used. One of these came in hand later though, a large plastic play pen. Although the play pen was never used for it real purpose, it makes a brilliant ball pit - but is takes quite a lot of balls.
We started out with an inflatable ball pit from ELC ( which lasted less then a week), so of course we bought the balls while we were there. We bought 3 bags each containing 100 balls, which was no where near enough even for the ball pit, and once we moved the balls to the play pen we really needed more. So we bought more from a boot sale, from woolworths and from Argos. Over time though, many of these balls have burst and we ended up needing more, so yesterday I sent my husband off to buy 3 more packages from ELC.
I do think all children love ball pits. There is so much fun to be had, diving into them, burying yourself ( or a sibling) and throwing the balls about. We even have a small basketball hoop set up over the ball pit to make baskets with. Even babies love these balls, they are soft and light and easy to hold or throw. I have also found that their light weight makes them unlikely to do any damage in the house, and they do not hurt when you get hit with them. Of course I would still prefer that they not land in my tea - why everything ends up in my cuppa I will never know! They are also handy for babies to learn colours from, or just to have a good chew on.
I had read several reviews here on dooyoo and researched online carefully before choosing ELC. The balls cost £10 for 100 at ELC, but they have a buy 2 get one free special that seems to go on forever. This meant 300 balls cost me £20. Every other place I checked was less money most of them being £5 for 100 balls, so I would have ended up with 400 for the same money, so why did I choose ELC?
ELC does have more choice in colours I believe, with the traditional multicolour, pink with light blue, and even a set with silver. While I would have liked the ones with silver, they were out of stock, so we ended up with the ordinary multicolour which I could have bought anywhere. While the extra colours are nice, it would not be a selling point to me, especially since the 300 new balls are just a top up for the heaps we already have.
Again packaging is not a selling point for me, because we keep the play pen and balls set up at all times, only taking it down for occasional cleaning, or more recently to paint the room. However, I realise many people want to be able to put the balls back into their packages for storage. ELC's balls come in a thin white net bag. I could see this tearing with frequent use but it does seem well stitched together. I am aware that the plastic bags also tend to split at the seams, but they still seem sturdier then these. The net bags do have one great advantage though. If the balls are used with water, or even just washed before storage, the balls will dry nicely and no worries of mold or slimy stuff growing. Although I won't be using these for storage, I am keeping these bags. I think they will be very handy for swimmers.
This is another case where size really does matter. I was hoping to get really big balls, like the ones in soft play centres, and I do have a few of these, which I believe came from the boot sale. However, I could not find anything like this in a reasonable price ( I dis find some at about £1 per ball). The ELC balls however were the largest I could find in anything near a reasonable price. They are only slightly larger then most other play balls at 6.5 cm or 2.5 ". The other balls we have range from just barely over 2" or 5.5 cm to 6 cm. I know this does not sound like much, but I do think it makes a difference.
This was the real deciding factor in deciding to go with ELC. I know when we first set the ball pit up over three years ago for my oldest son we noticed many of the Argos balls split or went flat very quickly. Our ball pit is left up year round and gets quite a bit of wild play with my sons taking flying leaps from the train table (It is a very large home made train table) into the balls. Over the years the ball pit has diminished as more and more balls split and were removed. But the number of ELC balls seems to remain close to the same and it is very rarely that I find myself removing one of these. We felt that this fact makes these balls worth paying extra for as they will not be likely to need replacing.
If you are just buying a few balls to float about in a pool, i think I would go with a cheaper set, or if the balls will only be used occasionally. However, if you expect you ball pit to get a lot of use, then I would definitely choose these. Better to pay a bit more for something that lasts
Summary: Quality worth paying for.
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