Monthly Archives: May 2014

Making learning all fun and games (especially when you lose your pants)…

The Entropy Elves caught up with Orchard Toys’ export manager Mary Watson to hear more about this UK brand that’s responsible for so many entertaining and educational games.

Mary Watson Orchard Toys

What is it that children and adults love about Orchard Toys? I think adults love the quality and the attractive packaging especially, plus the educational value. Children seem to love the characters and the interaction that the games provide.

Counting caterpillars2 Counting caterpillars







Do you have a particular favourite? I love Bus Stop because of the game play and children become familiar with the characters (family members/friends). Pigs in Pants is also a fantastic new addition – it makes everybody who plays it laugh!

 “The game originated from an idea of, ‘what do four-year-olds think is funny?’ and [under]pants appears to be a very comical concept” – Ali Brown

Bus Stop Game

What’s something people may not realise about the brand? Not everyone knows Orchard Toys is UK-made. We’re over 40 years old and still have family connections to the original founder who is actively involved in the business today.

What benefits does this have? We can control the whole process from design and manufacture to production locally, and can also respond instantly to changes in demand or special requests from any customers – and it’s happened!

Pirate Race


How did the idea for Pigs in Pants come about? The Elves love that game! I love it too. The game originated from an idea of, ‘what do four-year-olds think is funny?’ and [under]pants appears to be a very comical concept to young children, especially on pigs!

Pigs in Pants Pigs in Pants2


Orchard Toys has the ethos of ‘learning made fun’. How do you strike this balance? We like to offer educational value in all of our products, but ultimately children have to want to play them. We test and re-test our products with children at local schools/playgroups before they even go to print so that we get the mix right.

Baa Baa2 Baa Baa


You are eco-conscious as well – can you tell us about Orchard Toys is doing in this area? We use 100% recycled card, and our paper is bought from sustainable woodland.

Anything interesting to add? We are now seen as a leading brand in the UK. We have grown steadily over the past 10 years, but we still recognise the importance of good, quality products.

Explore our full Orchard Toys range.

Entropy at Townsville Family Fun Day

As you’d probably know, Entropy is a big advocate of activity – one of our key philosophies is to get children moving mentally and physically. That’s why we jumped at the opportunity to be involved in the inaugural Townsville Family Fun Day. Not only will it help to raise funds to help end childhood cancer, but it also gets kids and adults on their wheels!

If you’re in Townsville, we look forward to seeing you there on Sunday, May 25, 2014.

P.S. If you need a scooter, come and see us 😉

Townsville Family Ride Day

It’s aliiiiiiiiive! And we can’t stop playing with it….

Introducing Sands Alive: Since it arrived at Entropy Elf HQ we have not been able to take our mitts off it. Here we quiz our Sands Alive supplier Alex Burbury about this tactile product that’s great for developing fine motor skills.


What do you love about Sands Alive? To me it’s so therapeutic! It can be great for both adults and children. Running your hands through Sands Alive can relax you so easily if you are ever stressed!


Is it totally safe for kids? Yes, it is non-toxic, anti-bacterial, and even gluten free. It is made completely from natural organic materials.

Sands Alive Starter Set


Can it be reused? The sand never dries out and can be used over-and-over while, at the same time, killing off any bacteria picked up along the way.

What happens if children get it on clothes or the carpet – does it come out easily? Notice the slogan ‘all the fun of sand without the mess’? Working in an office with a lot of mums, it was the first thing they tested! It vacuums right out of the carpet and doesn’t stain clothes! It would be a parent’s dream product!

Sands Alive Box of Sand


Can you build with Sands Alive? Yes — as the air escapes while being shaped, Sands Alive becomes firm, so it is extremely mouldable and easy to create any sand sculpture your imagination allows. However, when oxygen is reintroduced by poking or squeezing with your fingers through the moulded shape, the sand oozes back into its original form and becomes soft and fluffy once again. Hence the name Sands Alive!

For more information about Sands Alive visit