Pastimes for rainy days

1961

It’s Sunday, and it’s raining… and the neighbours want their peace and quiet. So what did you give your child on one of those days to play with? Fuzzy Felt!

Each box contains felt shapes & a flat board to fix the shapes to, plus a piece of paper giving ideas of designs to recreate.  Apparently, this simple toy was discovered during the second world war when Lois Allan, whose outbuildings were being used to manufacture felt gaskets for sealing tank components, noticed how the workers’ children enjoyed sticking cast-off shapes on to the fuzzy backs of her table mats.

1964 -innocent times

The first sets were sold from 1950 onwards and were an immediate success. Soon the product spread internationally, expanding into themed boxes such as Pets, Bible Stories, Hospital and many, many more. To date, more than 26 m boxes have been sold, but the heyday of its success were in the 60s and 70s. Since 2009, Fuzzy Felt has been owned by John Adams Leisure Limited.

1968

In 2008, fashion designer Stella McCartney used a “ 7-meter high, 14-meter wide” Fuzzy-Felt backdrop, created by artists Jake and Dinos Chapman for one of her shows.

1980

If your child (or you!) prefers to draw or paint, this stencil set (I assume 1940/1950s) should come in handy:

Best known for introducing Scrabble to the UK in 1953, Spear’s Games produced many other games – since the 1860s. Since 1994 they are part of Mattel. You can view the company history in brief here.

Happy Sunday – whatever you do!

4 thoughts on “Pastimes for rainy days

  1. Love, love, love! Thanks for posting this, Wibi. I had Fuzzy Felts at home as a child, and also at school when we couldn’t play out on rainy days. Those stencils bring back happy memories too. I remember having the ones that fit inside your pencil case – the alphabet, shapes, numbers etc. But also had a large size set at home which was of wild animals.

  2. Fabulous post ! I had the idea of using fuzzy felt for contemporary art in the late 90s but didn’t actually do it, so the Chapmans beat me to it there…. moral : sieze the day ! 😁

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