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Little tikes cosy cottage sunshine is a small play house for the garden which is bright in colour and very fun to look at it is recommended from ages 12 months to 5 years so can be used for a good amount of time.
**Putting it together**
Normally little tikes products are a dream to put together but this was actually really difficult the shape means it is awkward to slot all the pieces together and it took a good 45 minutes until it was fully assembled it takes a lot of bashing pushing and elbow grease and at first we actually thought a piece was missing as we could not get it to for the round house it is supposed to but in the end we got there but it was one of the more difficult toys we have had to put together.
The holes for the screws seemed to be lined incorrectly which means you will need two people and a lot of pushing and shoving and a nice sup of tea afterwards because even myself with a calm nature was really wound up after trying to put his together. All the bolt and screws required are in the box and you will need tools to put it together.
**The house itself**
There are three windows in the cottage which means there is lots of light and it is pretty much open apart from small panels separating them and then also a door that is only half size so again leaves the cottage open and free rather than enclosed. The roof makes it waterproof although there are tiny gaps in it from where it fits together so you do get the few drips coming through that.
It is bright in colour and really does look nice and attractive for children it is not an eyesore in the garden and the strong plastic means it is durable as I have found all little tike's products to be.
There are lots of cool features for the children to play with the door that opens wide and moves slowly so that little one does not get their fingers hurt provides the only way in and out of the house but as the door opens wide it does provide easy aces. This also has a slit for a post box that my children think is fantastic and lovemaking letters to post to each other so is a fun interactive item of the house.
Also on the windowsill are a tap and a sink moulded in to the frame of the house all though the tap does nothing and there is even a small plug whole detail at the bottom of the sink which fuels little ones imagination while playing. They love to ask me o fill his with water to do the dishes apparently and clean the sides and can spend ages playing at the sink. The sink collects rain water each time it rains as it sits right on the frame of the cottage and will need to be emptied.
On the right hand side is more stickers these are for the hob of the kitchen again great for little one to role play and have fun and below this is a sticker of an oven so they have a full kitchen to have fun making up stories and playing in.
It has lasted well we have had it for over 18 months now and it has not faded in the weather and still in perfect order apart from the stickers coming away. My children still love it although I thought the simple design would mean they get bored after a few months all three still love this.
I was worried about the house staying put in strong winds but it is rather stable the only time it moved was in the extreme winds Scotland seen at the start of the year the rest of the time even in harsh weather it stays grounded.
Age recommendation is 1 year up to 5 years which I would say is right as my little boy who will soon be two loved this from as soon as he could crawl he would prop himself inside and refuse to come out and my eldest son who is soon to be five loves it just as much always coking something in the kitchen. This does have a great age appeal and means it lasts well enough for all of my children to enjoy so it was worth the price tag given to it.
Product dimensions are Product Dimensions: 45.7 x 106.5 x 56 cm; 21 Kg.
The size is not great it is ok suppose but for the £100 price tag you would have thought that it would fit 2 children in comfortably unfortunately when two of my three children are playing in here it is a very tight squeeze an if my youngest son decides to go in also which usually he does not he prefers to try and find an escape route out the garden it means they are like sardines in a tin and cannot move at all which is why we have actually purchased a bigger garden house for my son's birthday in July.
If we realised how small it was we would have originally went for something a little bigger this would be perfect for use with one child but as I have three children we really should have brought something bigger.
The stickers are really easy to add to the play house but unfortunately within a few days of rain which is pretty normal for Scotland the stickers on the outside of the house began to peel off and after a few months as the water can easily get inside the house as it is so open these have began to peel too. This is really disappointing especially for the money paid but because of the detail in the moulding of the actual plastic it does make it a little better as the dogs hose and post box are still easily recognisable.
My children love this house and they have played with I each and every time they are in the garden without fail although there is not a huge age gap between them hey l use the house and find it highly entertaining even after a year of use. They always find new things to do and love playing house or just hiding in there from the sun.
The simple features although they do not actually do much provide fuel for children's imaginations and weather they are plying home or shouting out the kitchen window at their brother or sister to be careful it provides a great home for role play. When friends come round they like to pretend top b a shop and although there is no way they can all fit in the house the 3 windows make I perfect for interaction with others while it is in use and they take it in turns to be the shop keeper.
From my point of view I was disappointed in the amount of space available inside the cottage but my children seem happy enough even if they are squished while trying to play inside this seems to make it even more entertaining for them. The height of the roof allows older children in to play and the low sideboards means it gives younger users something to hold on to and make themselves a little steadier.
We brought this for around £80 which is the going retail price for the play cottage and although at first we were both shocked and disappointed at the quality it has proven us wrong by lasting well and really becoming a focus part of the garden for our children to play. I would recommend this if you have one or two small children but for the long term if you have a big family.