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If you missed the Toy Safety post, go back to read it here.


Begin Again, a fairly unknown toy company that makes one of a kind eco toys. Begin Again was founded on the principles of Benjamin Barlowe, an early 20th century inventor from Fort Collins, CO, which is also where the company is located.

These toy makers have 4 RULES:

1. Kids are the true noisemakers!

No batteries, no electronics, ever!

2. Share your ideas, then build

Collaborate, share, and build in partnership.

3. Don’t leave a mess

Take OIL out of play, use plant based materials whenever possible and always reduce, recycle, and seek improvement.

4. Great products have greater purpose

BeginAgain gives 1% to the community.

Their toys are made out of the following materials:

  • Natural rubber
  • Natural cotton fabrics
  • Sustainably harvested woods
  • Wheat starch plastic
  • Bamboo
However, that doesn’t limit them one bit. Their toy categories are separated by your child’s personality as well as age.

We’ve got…


Toys for an ARTIST:

eco-friendly art kitCat Family Puzzle

Toys for a WRITER:

Toys for a SPORTSTER:

Kicking Putt Putt ball (non PVC ball, can you beat that?)

Toys for an INVENTOR:

Number Puzzles ( snail, butterfly and dinosaur)

Toys for a HERO:

Bathtub Playset (one of the few bath toys that don’t contain PVC)

Actually, Lexi’s first obsession with a toy was courtesy of Begin Again. She went crazy over The Bathtub Ball’s “The Red Man” (which is what we call the diver dude) and the octopus. It probably had something to do with the feel of rubber on her gums, but she literally didn’t let either one of these toys out of her hands for weeks when she was first getting her teeth. They went with us everywhere. We had to use the Bathtub Ball exclusively outside the bathtub because she just LOVED those two guys. Once that extreme obsession wore off after about 2-3 months, we finally got to experience the bathtub ball where it belongs, in the tub. It has remained her favorite toy while bathing that she often takes with her while we dress her.

I can confidently say that this is the best non-PVC bathtub toy I’ve encountered.

The earthworm didn’t excite Alexis beyond the usual chew and throw game that 4-6 months olds are so fond of. I was quite surprised at that because I surely enjoyed “playing” with it myself. It’s a simple wood toy with sections of its body connected to each other in a way that allows it to take any shape and be flexible. That could be just her, though, because a few other toys that are technically ball shapes connected on string haven’t fascinated her either. Don’t let it stop you from getting it for your 3 months old, if he/she is into that type of thing.

Why Begin Again toys should be in your child’s toy arsenal?

Aside from using all natural non-toxic materials, their toys are one of a kind. True inventions that tap into an older child’s imagination as well as challenge a small baby. You can’t beat wood, lead-free natural paints and nitrosamine-free rubber.
Rather than fill up your child’s toy box with tacky looking plastic noisy toys, going back to the basics and using creative play with Begin Again will definitely be a step in the right direction.
The Art of Making a Baby, in conjunction with Begin Again would like to offer a simple giveaway of the bathtub ball for the lucky winner to try.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Disclosure: Begin Again sent us the bathtub ball and caterpillar in order to facilitate this review. All opinions are 100% our own, as always.

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  • Reply
    kristy naylor
    November 28, 2012 at 11:34 AM

    Ohh I would love to win this! I have been researching baby safe bath toys and these look so fun!!

  • Reply
    Laura Holmes
    November 28, 2012 at 4:08 PM

    My daughter Chloe would LOVE the bath ball! She wont let go of her Sophie so a replacement would be nice 🙂

  • Reply
    November 29, 2012 at 7:41 PM

    I’m so glad that you’re promoting small, ethical toy companies. “Begin Again” seem to be very environmentally minded, particularly with their “reduce, re-use, recycle” policy (my family mantra!)

    However, I do hope you realise (and I’m sure you do) that cotton and bamboo does not automatically equal “natural”, “ethical” or “organic”.

    Both cotton and bamboo are mono-cropped to the extent that farmers destroy local fauna in order to plant more crops. Workers often have very bad working conditions, and especially in bamboo production, there are still a lot of chemicals involved in both the farming and the processing. As bamboo is produced in China, it’s really hard to determine whether it’s truly organic or ethically farmed.

    It would be great if you could perhaps write a post about this in the future? 🙂

    • Reply
      Elena @The Art of Making a Baby
      November 29, 2012 at 8:37 PM

      Yes I am aware of how cotton is made and the footprint it leaves. That’s why organic cotton is best. However even conventional cotton is a better alternative from toxin standpoint than plastics. It’s hard enough to find affordable sustainable and nontoxic toys… 🙂

  • Reply
    December 2, 2012 at 6:11 PM

    I have a question. I see you posted a new photo of an early christmas present for Lexi, a little tikes swing. Now they are plastic and made with chemicals..thoughts?
    I’m asking bc I bought my LO the little tikes bus for christmas AND a radio flyer wagon…debating on what to do with that?

    I have bought all eco toys for in the home though, but I don’t know to send others back or to do as much as possible but can’t do everything?

    • Reply
      Elena @The Art of Making a Baby
      December 3, 2012 at 5:06 PM

      Sam, I’m pretty sure little tykes doesn’t use PVC in these types of products. (99%sure)
      I did send them an email when u bought it but I haven’t gotten a reply yet. I’d encourage you do the same asking about those toys specifically.

  • Reply
    December 2, 2012 at 6:29 PM

    I also was wondering your thoughts on eva foam? I was looking for jumbo blocks and they say non toxic? Thanks

    • Reply
      Elena @The Art of Making a Baby
      December 3, 2012 at 7:04 PM

      Ok these are trickier. Technically for the longest time it was believed that EVA is not toxic, however recently they found out that it emits formamide, an odorless gas that isn’t exactly nontoxic.
      So you’d be smart to either buy from companies that say that their products are formamide free and that they test for it, or let the items off gas for at least a month. It appears that Eva foam fully off gases in that time.

  • Reply
    December 2, 2012 at 7:23 PM

    Ah one more’re activity cube..have you mentioned who makes it? thanks!

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