This box has been a great introduction to Hama to my family. I really don’t know what took me so long to get a Hama kit, I didn’t realise what we were missing out on! The box contains three peg boards which are fairly large, a large sheet of the ironing paper, three designs to follow which are exactly sized to fit under the transparent boards for easy following, and lots and lots of beads.
The beads are surprisingly big, bigger than I imagined as I’d seen the “midi” beads in a local toy shop, which makes them perfect even for younger children (under supervision) and the variety meant that my youngest daughter could happily place beads on a board (she wasn’t interested in finishing anything) while my eldest daughter wanted to follow the patterns exactly.
After my eldest had made one girl and one car (following the colours given on the patterns) I filled the duck (following pattern), car and girl boards with the remaining beads when the girls were asleep to see how far the beads would go and was only 8 beads short of filling all three boards (which could have been lost as my youngest was putting the beads into bags “shopping” and wandering around the house before I did this!) so it looks like you can probably get 5 large models from this kit, or definitely 4 plus a smaller design of your own making. (I did put the beads back in the box after I’d filled the boards, but it was a nice calming activity to fill the boards…)
My eldest can be quite reticent to believe in her own abilities, so the patterns were good for her to start to get the idea of this new craft but the ease of making the designs and her delight in the “toy” that results after the beads have been heated have encouraged her to branch out to do things “in my own way” very quickly. We would definitely recommend this kit (or any of the similar sized kits) and will definitely be stocking up on more Hama in the future
This starter kit has been enough for my girls over the past few months, especially with the mountains of Christmas toys in the middle. I’ve managed to avoid “laminating” (MG says laminating for ironing, as we have a laminater for paper so she’s associated the effect with that) many designs but we were coming to the end of the beads (as I said above, there might have been enough for five completed models but we’ve certainly lost some beads over the weeks) and a friend got a bag of 500 Maxi beads for an early birthday present for MG.
I’m glad she did, because we’d also got a starter Midi kit from the local toyshop and from the experience with the Maxi, MG has quickly moved onto the Midi beads. She loves all kinds of art so I’ve got her a Midi activity kit (and some other bits and pieces) for her birthday as that’s definitely what’s interesting her at the moment.
I’m really impressed with how quickly MG had gone from having no experience of this type of art, to copying the designs with the Maxi beads, to experimenting with patterns with Maxi beads, to experimenting with patterns with Midi beads. She is very artistic, and I love seeing all the imaginative drawings she comes up with so I’m excited to see how she’ll develop with these. Although I know I must be patient, as children follow their own path and by her birthday next week she’ll probably not look at the beads for another few months. Although, maybe DG will start being more interested and experiment with the Maxi beads then…
Disclaimer: I was not sent this kit by PlayMerrily / CraftMerrily for review but I have had a discount account with PlayMerrily since August 2011 and therefore paid a reduced price for this product. All my reviews have been written because I loved the products and are for items I freely chose to buy for my daughters, unless otherwise stated. I choose to review for PlayMerrily because of their fantastic and friendly service.