* Prices may differ from that shown
Little Tikes are a well known American manufacturer of children's toys for indoor and out. This particular item is a small cottage (1.27m x 1.14m x1.31m) with 3 shuttered windows, a front door, a sink and hob, phone and a small corner table.
This cottage has been a staple toy in our garden for the past three years, I say in our garden but actually in that time we have had three different gardens, and this house has made the two moves with us. Through these moves the house has had various incarnations as an icecream shop, a doctor's and latterly is often used by children to play "school". Sometimes it is even played with as a house - in any event it is a great source of imaginative outside play and universally popular with any visitors.
The cottage is made of moulded plastic and comes in a large cardboard box that would require delivery. The instructions say that assembly is a two person job, however I did manage to put it up by myself singlehandedly when about six months pregnant during a heatwave (blame hormones and my eldest's over-excitement), so I would imagine that most people could manage it! The pieces slotted together with only some actually attaching of screws required - the roof is secured by screws. This is a sturdy item made to stand up to children's play.
As mentioned earlier we have disassembled the house a few times (carefully) with no ill effect. The inner kitchen area has a sink with a tap that can be rotated, a hob with stickers on and buttons to turn and there is also a phone which slots in the wall with pretend buttons. All these items have worn well. My children, and those who have played with the house seem to really enjoy having their own space and particularly opening and closing the door and shutters and chatting on the phone. I have spent many a long hour knocking on the door and being welcomed to tea parties in the cottage - an adult can fit in the cottage if willing enough, and any child's small seat and toy saucepans and food are great additions to enhance the play value of this item.
As our house has stayed outside it has weathered somewhat - the red has faded but the other colours have worn very well and look as good as new.
When researching current prices of this item I was rather horrified to find they now retail at around the £200 mark. I think when I bought it they were about £130 which I thought was a lot at the time, I guess the current price reflects the weak pound and it would be worth shopping around. We purchased ours from John Lewis who actually have one to try out in every store I have ever been to, so worth at trip to see one if you are considering buying this item.
This house does hold its value well, and they are always snapped up to fierce bidding wars on ebay where I have seen them sell up to about the £100 mark.
All these factors in mind I would recommend this cottage - I would think children would enjoy it from walking age and up to school age - my daughter is now 5 and still enjoys playing with it, though I have just measured and guesstimate a comfortable maximum height at around 1m 15cm so you might wish to bear this in mind.
There are no electronic gimmicks with this item - it doesn't need them, I would say that a playhouse is an excellent addtion to a garden if you have children and this one is very good and should provide a fair few years' enjoyment and hours of fun playing house.
I think this is a great playhouse we brought this for my daughters at the beginning of the summer and they loved it. They also had a little play cooker that we had brought them for Christmas that they put in there. I thought the little house was great as it kept them playing out in the fresh air but it also stopped them getting sunburnt and being in the sun for to long. They would play in it for hours I don't no why opening and shutting windows and the door is so much fun, but I'm not complaining as it kept them amused. The house is very sturdy and safe. In the winter we plan to put the house in our garage so they can carry on playing with it. Overall I think this is a great and will last a long time so is worth the money you pay.
I love my children to spend as much time as possible outside in the garden, and have several good outdoor toys. This summer I decided to add to the collection by purchasing a playhouse for my nearly 2-year-old son. Every morning when we take his older brother to school he makes straight for the little tikes playhouse in the playground and makes his feelings known when I try to extricate him! Although I knew I wanted a playhouse which would stand the test of time, I was unsure whether to buy one made of wood or plastic. The wooden ones we looked at were lovely but very expensive. In addition a friend told me that her children have had several splinters from their wooden house. We checked out various plastic models but thought little tikes were superior to any others on the market. We have several other little tikes? toys (see my op on the cozy coupe) and have always been very happy with them. Little tikes are an American company and have been making toys since 1970.They have an impressive track record and have won many awards. Their toys are all made of bright chunky plastic, are very strong and extremely safe. I don?t intend to write any more about the company or the huge range of toys they make. If you would like to view their range they have a good web site at www.littletikes.com Having decided to buy a little tikes playhouse we then had to decide which one. Little tikes make several playhouses and a wonderful castle. I loved the log cabin but at nearly £300 we decided against it! We finally chose the country cottage as this seemed the best value for money. What does it look like? ??????????.. The playhouse is 50 inches in length x 41 inches wide and 51.5 inches in height or if you prefer 127x104x131cm.The house is constructed of very sturdy plastic in bright colours. The full height door has a chunky white doorknob, easy for little hands to open. The windows have shutters, which open and have a space to prevent fingers gett
ing trapped. Inside the house has a little sink with a pretend tap, a hob with knobs, which turn and make a clicking sound. There is also a corner table with a portable phone. The house comes flat packed with the walls in 4 sections which simply lock together The roof comes in 2 pieces which also locks together but requires a few screws (supplied) to hold it securely in position. The house does need 2 people to put it together, but only took my husband (with my brilliant assistance) about 20 minutes! The little shelf, which fits inside the house, was the only tricky bit to fit as it was a bit of a tight fit. The house is designed to look like a country cottage and has a pitched roof and 4 windows. Ours has a green roof, yellow walls and a red door and window shutters. I have seen the house in different colour combinations on the Internet, but it only seemed to be available in these colours on the high street. The verdict ?????.. We bought our playhouse at the beginning of the summer and it has been played with on most days. When we have visiting children it is always the first toy they make for. The house encourages imaginative play and is great for helping to teach children to co-operate together (well in theory anyway!) My little boy loves to peep out of the shutters when I knock on the door-a game that can go on for ages! My 6 year old and his friends also enjoy playing in the house (when his younger sibling will allow!) They recently played at serving food to each other through the open windows, MC Donald?s style unfortunately! The house will easily allow 3, 2 year old to play inside whilst mums sit in the sun with a coffee! Well for a few minutes anyway. I have spent some time inside the house albeit squatting, whilst my son cooks pretend food on his hob for me. This does little for my back but a lot for my imagination! The possibilities for imaginative play are endless. I do have a few niggles with the house though. The
roof does not fit firmly onto the walls of the house and therefore allows rainwater to get inside the walls. This is not a major problem but would make the house heavy to move if you wanted to do so. Our house is situated on our patio .If the house was placed on grass it would have to be moved regularly to avoid killing the grass. It is very heavy, so it is better to have a permanent resting place on concrete. The house has no floor so feels a bit cold inside. I have put a rush mat down to make it more homely! The windows are great fun to peek through, but my little darling has found that they are also great to climb through! He has managed this without mishap so far but I can see that he will need watching as he could well land on his head, potentially an accident waiting to happen on concrete! I wish that a little seat had been included, although our chair from the E.L.C fits well. My son likes to have a snack in his new home and therefore likes to sit down. To conclude the playhouse is recommended for children ages 2 ? 6 although I think younger children would enjoy this house and as I have said my over 6 year old and friends still play with it! As always before I bought I price checked, and the cheapest price was from John Lewis at £129.00 including free delivery. Toys r us advertised it for £129.99 with £50 off! I suspect a case of price fixing here! I could not find much price difference anywhere. Little Tikes say that the colours will not fade in the sun, but I will update you next year on this! Overall I am delighted with this toy and hope it will give many years of pleasure!
The Little Tikes Country Cottage is a safe, robust playhouse for your 2-8 year olds. It is available in three colour combinations: primary, pink or green, so there'll be a perfect one for any fussy youngster. The playhouse is designed for simple self-assembly only, requiring minimal tools (screwdriver and hammer only). The interior is fully equipped with pretend sink, tap, and stove, plus a push-button phone and fully operating windows and full size door. Hours of fun!