Clackity clack

Gunnar Lundh photograph of two girls on sledges,1944

You wouldn’t have to click far through Shelf Appeal to spot the toys. Toys r us. The arrival of a new book (an equal favorite thing) about toys is as good as it gets. A smile for Swedish Wooden Toys, then.

The last toy book of substance to arrive on the shelf was the catalogue for the MoMA exhibition Century of the Child in 2012. Swedish Wooden Toys has a much tighter remit, yet its smaller geographical ground is approached in more interesting ways. Chapters on retailers and toys in Swedish photographs look especially tasty. That last because I have followed the Flickr group Playthings of the Past for a long time.

The Swedish wooden toys themselves are stunners, photogenic and completely moreish. I have a Brio toy I love longtime, a wooden stacking toy chef whose character is delivered through simple and beautiful design. And there are many more examples of that sort of winning toy formula in this thick juicy tome, most beautifully photographed.

The image of the two girls above, also in the book, is a beaut. From a photographer I have come across before – Gunnar Lundh. Look at those mini sledges for the toy rabbits. Just look.

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