Ostheimer

As a family we bought our very first Ostheimer figures in Germany from a small independent retailer in Schleswieg Holstein. The little girl figure for my daughter, and hedgehog for our son.

Myriad has been stocking Ostheimer figures from our very beginning. They are a cornerstone of our range and we have always held their toys in the highest esteem. Our children played with a small collection as children. It is a common misconception that lots of figures are needed, and therefore the cost too high. A well-chosen single figure given as a special birthday present opens many avenues to a child’s imaginative play.

Ostheimer – the ethos behind the products

Ostheimer are today unique in the way that they make their beautiful wooden figures. The vast majority of wooden toys are today sawn out using a computerised process. Not at Ostheimer! Each template is transferred to the wood and sawn out by hand. Each figure is then given its characteristic Ostheimer carving, then sanded, hand painted and finally dipped in walnut oil. At each stage of the process the human hand is present and in control.

Ostheimer wooden toys are designed specifically to stimulate the child’s imagination, rather than presenting them with a fixed concept. It is the fantasy of the child that breathes life into these seemingly stiff wooden figures, whose form and colour has been purposely reduced to an essential minimum.  Ostheimer takes great care in shaping and crafting each individual figure so as to preserve this fantasy world and thereby give children the ability to draw on their creativity during play.

Ostheimer focus on the children who will play with their products. Ostheimer believe that good toys inspire children to embrace the world with all their senses and to roam freely in creative Play which is so essential for every healthy childhood allowing children to take important steps in their development, experience the beauty of childhood and gain talents that will strengthen them and help them to meet life with all its challenging aspects. This principle has been Ostheimer’s guideline during the past 70 years of producing hand-made toys of the highest quality. Ostheimer want to provide children through their toy figures with a beautiful and pleasant image of the world with all its human beings and animals. Children need such pictures to grow up healthily in our world. Ostheimer figures are made for children’s hands. Each toy is individually hand crafted and each is a unique original.

Ostheimer only use high-quality, environmentally-friendly materials. All resources are chosen consciously. All wood used at Ostheimer is sourced from local sustainably managed forests. It is painted with carefully chosen colours and organic oil, to preserve the natural qualities of the wood. By doing so, Ostheimer make it possible for the child to experience all these qualities in a unique way.

Ostheimer take their social commitment seriously, training and employing special needs adults and refugees.

Ostheimer figures are enjoyed by children of all ages and are a particular favourite with our own family and all at Myriad. Their quality and aesthetic appeal is unsurpassed! Myriad offers a very large selection of the Ostheimer collection. Myriad stocks over 400 different figures including Ostheimer farm animals, Ostheimer forest animals, Ostheimer exotic animals, Ostheimer Knights and Castle and the wonderful Ostheimer nativity figures, plus a range of Ostheimer buildings and trees.

Ostheimer –  a little history

Ostheimer began back in 1939 when Margarete Ostheimer’s parents, Adeline and Wolfgang, started a small company making wooden toys. The company closed in 1950 due to the influx of plastic toys. In 1958 they are back up and running, and with the support of an anthroposophically founded toy store in Munich requesting their thoughtful toys.

The hand crafted wooden figures, which Ostheimer are renowned for today, where first made in the very early 60s. Most of the figures in the 60s and 70s and 80s are the work of Margarete Ostheimer. The German “green wave” of the 70s sees expansion and higher demand for their unique figures. They moved their business to the small town of Zell untel Aichelberg in 1967, and have remained there since. In 2001 Margarete Ostheimer set up a foundation as the cornerstone of the business as it was M Ostheimer’s conviction that profits should not be accumulated, but returned back into the community, supporting forward-thinking initiatives and projects. This is still notibly  an important part of the Ostheimer corporate philisophy.

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