Today I want to share Grimm’s 12 rainbow friends. Now J is still too young for this but I purchased it with intent of saving it for later.
The toy is rated for ages 1+, but it actually does not pass the toilet paper roll test. So if plan to give it to your 3yo or younger, I recommend keeping a close eye on them. I gave J, 1 friend to play with under my supervision.
Okay, let’s get into the review.
So originally I thought all of Grimm’s toys were made in Germany, but it turns out a lot of their stacking toys are made in Bosnia. Which is kind of disappointing. This set however, is made in Germany.
I like that these friends encourage imaginative play yet at the. same time they can also be used for learning colours, counting, ordering, and sorting.
There are 12 friends which can be used to represent the 12 months of the year – so you can make your own perpetual calendar.
The friends are made from sustainably sourced wood and is hand painted with a non-toxic, water-colour stain.
Overall this toy is really well made. I also enjoy the wooden tray that it comes with as well. With me, I love this toy. So time will tell how baby J likes it.
Update at 2 years old: J loves his friends. He enjoys matching them with his other wooden blocks or placing them into the grimm’s stacking boxes.
Continue scrolling below to see some alternatives…
If you want to stick to Grimm’s they have two other sets to choose from. I really like how the cherry wood looks.
The pastel version is great if you have the large pastel stacking rainbow. But as a stand alone toy, I find that the colors are too similar. You basically have 5 friends that are in that pink/purple tone and 4 that are blue. I guess it’s not too bad if they’re learning about shades.
Grapat also offers 12 piece set for the same price. The nins/friends in this version has a warmer complexion. Also beautifully made. Doesn’t come with a wooden tray though, but you do get a drawstring bag. Basically comes down to preference on which friends you prefer. From the ones I have, I find that grapat has a soother finish for this type of toy.
For an extra $13, you could get the friends in cup as well. I think if I didn’t purchase the 12 rainbow friends to start with, I would’ve gone with this set first. You still get the benefit of using the pegs for imaginative play, counting, ordering, and sorting. But with the cups, they can stack it, match the colors, and use the cups later on for scooping and pouring. Not to mention the cups can be used in your pretend kitchen!
Oh – and these friends pair perfectly with the medium rainbow.
For around the same price, you can also purchase the set from Grapat which is very similar to the friends in cup concept. Instead of the round board, you get 5 matching coins and a drawstring bag. (I ended up purchasing this one).
Last but not least, you can look into Grapat’s perpetual calendar. I think you can use the nins earlier and as they grow older you can use the calendar as part of their routine. As tempting as this set is, I also have a birthday ring from Grimms. So pair that with my existing rainbow friends, I think I can DIY something similar with other toys I have.
What are your thoughts on the rainbow friends? Do you prefer the 12 piece set or the other varieties?