Kids love blocks; it’s a fact of life. Parents loathe the cleanup that inevitably follows the block play. What if you could transform the blocks into furniture? This would save storage space and be practical as well.
Introducing YoGeki!! The building blocks that become kids’ furniture. Kids’ furniture that becomes building blocks.
I recently had the opportunity to introduce this product to my 4-year-old daughter and 16-month-old son. After the briefest of instructional time, I allowed them to play with the blocks/furniture on their own. Both of them took to it like naturals. The older child was hesitant to break apart the furniture, but, when she discovered it could be re-purposed as something else, she really got involved in the play. The younger one enjoyed carrying blocks around, apparently too large for his size, but, due to the material they are constructed from, they were quite easily carried in his small hands. The blocks are aimed at the 3-7-year-old set, and designed to support up to 100 pounds. (Note: I sat on the chair and it supported my 200 pounds.)
YoGeki blocks are constructed from all-natural recycled cork. Cork is strong, while being light enough to be used for play. It is sustainable, virtually impervious to water and other liquids, antimicrobial, and naturally flame resistant. The blocks are fairly soft in comparison to typical wooden blocks, and therefore less likely to cause injury when they are dropped or swung or thrown. The pieces are all cut from 2″ thick cork.
The furniture comes in various styles, all of which become interchangeable blocks, compatible with every other piece of YoGeki furniture. They are also available in the YoGeki bag. The small bag contains 10 pieces and retails for around $30, while a larger bag is available for $60. The bags themselves are designed for storage as well as transport. The chair I tested is not available on the website yet, but the manufacturer assured me that it will be available shortly for around $60.
YoGeki is the brainchild of Justin and Emily Call, of Rome, NY. Justin is a General Counsel for a data technology company, while Emily is an elementary school teacher. I asked Justin where he came up with the idea for this product. He answered, “When you are building forts you are always looking for more pillows, blankets and cushions for materials to build bigger and better and so one day we all had the A-HA! moment: ‘Hey, wouldn’t it be great to have a chair or a couch where the whole thing came apart for big building blocks?!'” After some R&D they discovered cork as the building material of choice.
I found the YoGeki products to be very well built, and my children were totally immersed in the play for quite some time. Sized perfectly for small bodies, and lightweight to boot, YoGeki furniture will be a welcome addition to my children’s rooms.
Disclosure: Justin Call is a friend of the author, and provided products for purposes of this review.