Oh wait a minute. Maybe CE stands for something else…cluttersome extras, corporate entrails…

Levinia is not amused!
Lavinia is not amused!

So today was consumed by investigations into the legalities of toy making! Firstly, thank you all for your very useful and insightful comments on my last post. Recommended blog posts have been visited, options digested and now I have a few precious nuggets of information for all of you pondering CE certification.

Most useful was a telephone conversation with Brian at the City of Edinburgh Council Analytical and Scientific Services department (CEC ASS for short I guess!). This is one of the approved testing bodies recommended by http://www.berr.gov.uk/whatwedo/consumers/fact-sheets/page38560.html the Government body in charge of Europe trade and export control.

Brian told me various interesting things which I will now bullet point for you all

  • We cannot legally get away with omitting the title ‘toy’ or refuting the title ‘toy’ if the item is going to be displayed with, tagged or associated with toys. So basically, if it looks toy like and is likely to appeal to a child, it should be tested…Bum!
  • The toy can be tested for three things
  1. Heavy metal Toxicity I think it is only the outer fabric that needs to be tested and, if you are lucky your fabric supplier may already have tested the fabric for HMT in which case this certificate will suffice. If you have the same toy but in different colourways then each toy will have to be tested because toxicity is related to die stuffs. Toy fabric manufacturers do tend to test for HMT but not tweed manufacturers it seems!
  2. Fire This test relates to the fire retardant capacity of each toy and is impacted by their shape and the type of material they are made from. Unfortunately, a fire test certificate from the fabric manufacturer will not suffice as the flammability of each toy depends also on its shape.
  3. Small parts and durability There is hope… Button eyes are not necessarily a no no! If they are very very well fixed and really hard to remove then they can potentially pass (or so Brian says). Seams will also be thoroughly checked to make sure that they are durable and no stuffing can escape.

and the cost of it all? Well I’m not sure yet…Brian’s going to list all relevant information including cost but he did infer approx £70 – £80 for each test (in other words around about £210 for all three). He did say that not all three tests are necessary but I didn’t quite get the complete gist of that. Maybe if you omit the small parts test then the item can have CE certification with an added note “not suitable for under 36 months”. I don’t know, I’ll have to get some clarification on that point.

So now I am contemplating the ‘Sophie’s choice’ type scenario: Which of my cuddly creatures do I send to the lab for mutilation, gassing and almost certain death…

and on that delightful note I bid you Auf Wiedersehen…pet.


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Posted by:mogwaii

Born: 13th March 1969 in Edinburgh Star sign: Pisces Where do I live? An beautiful island called Lismore Who with? I live with my gorgeous man - Yorick, and my beautiful boys Ruben (currently 14) and Tom (10) and we also have cat poppy, cat Bashy and cat Spyro. What do I do there? Water veggies in the polytunnel, loads of mopping up, picking up clothes, cooking and washing dishes. The rest of the time I'm in a blissfull state in my studio making things out of wool and designing the next must have (in my head!) and a lot of cycling to and fro My favourite Books: Right now...empowerment books like "The power of now" and "The Secret", but also John Fowles "The Magus" and "The kite runner" and I love the "Tao of Poo" My Favourite films: Babettes feast, Wings of desire and The colour of Pomegranites. My favourite music: Bach cello suites for designing, Dolly parton for making (especially her album Little Sparrow), Teddy Thompson and loads of other stuff! What did I do before moving to Lismore? * Went to school in Edinburgh (South Morningside primary then St. Mary's music school and then George Watson's) * Went to Brazil for a year, fell in love, learnt Portuguese and spun a lot of wool * Studied foundation in visual arts in Manchester poly and then went on to study BA Hons in textiles at Goldsmith's college * Made felt hats, sold them at Camden market and then eventualy Liberties and had Ruben in the midst of it all - moved to Pathhead * Tom came along and I stopped making hats. sung lots of Jazz, taught Brazilian and samba singing, recorded an album and started singing with La Boum * Tom went to school and I set up Mogwaii * Moved here in 2006 There you go!! xx Sarah (from left) Ruben, me and Tom (from left) Ruben, me and Tom

One thought on “Further investigations into Creative Elimination

  1. It’s so sad to sacrifice one of your creatures! It’s funny, but flame retardant chemicals are really really bad, but they’re required on most kid stuff. Hmmmmm. The chances of fire (so slim) vs. long-term close exposure to very harmful chemicals…

    Anyway, that’s a lot of money just to sell your little guys and gals. I’ll be interested to see how it goes.

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