Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Day 18: We're Caught in a Spiral...

Today is Day 18 in our 24 Days of Books, and we're feeling a little playful. While we usually speak only of books (the series is, after all, called the 24 Days of Books), today we're going to tell you about something that's a book and an activity, all wrapped up in one package: The Klutz Spiral Draw.

When I was a kid, I used to love to play with my Spirograph, happily making designs for hours. Did you do that too? The geometric drawing toy was first developed by British engineer Denys Fisher. It has been a registered trademark of Hasbro, Inc., since that company bought the Denys Fisher company.

Now Klutz has developed a new spin on this classic drawing activity: Spiral Draw. With this kit, you can create one zillion designs. Really. I counted them. The package includes a 48-page book of instructions, inspiration, and wide open space for your own spiral expression; 4 see-through drawing wheels with more than 65 shapes; a spiral draw frame; and one six-color pen (yellow, pink, violet, blue, green, and black, for those of you dying to know).

The Spiral Draw box says it's for ages 8 and up, but I bet they're are plenty of kids older than 8 (my age, for instance, which is plenty older than 8) who would get a big kick out of this box o' fun. And you know how you find yourself at the last minute having to bring a present to a kid's holiday or birthday party? Keep a few of these in the closet for just those occasions. Or need a white elephant gift? (I bet this is the one that people will keep trading to get!) And it's under $20, so it should easily fall under your spending limit.

Klutz was incorporated in 1977 in Palo Alto, California, by three friends from Stanford University: an English major, a business major, and a psychology major. They began by selling sidewalk juggling lessons along with a trio of no-bounce bean bags. "We think people learn best through their hands, nose, feet, mouth and ears. Then their eyes. So we design multi-sensory books," says John Cassidy, the English major. The company's credo is "create wonderful things, be good, have fun." Sounds good to me. Klutz was acquired in 2002 by Scholastic Inc., the largest children's book publisher and distributor in the world.

As always, you'll find many more great gift ideas in our Holiday Books guide, available in our store. Hope to see you soon!

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