Friday, November 11, 2005

Parquetry Blocks

This is a very old toy category, and although perhaps no longer as well known, Parquetry sets are still made and sold.

I played with sets like the Playskool at left when I was in Kindergarten, over fifty years ago, and their descendents are now made by Learning Resources, with the same (thick) block sizes and same sample patterns (on better paper :).

Sets like the large Czech version at upper right are more commonly called Parquetry Tiles because the polished wooden pieces are quite thin. They have a wonderful feel. Similar sets can be found in Seattle stores today, from Haba in Germany.

The sets are great fun for exploring patterns of color and symmetry, with almost universally satisfactory tactile feedback.

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