All Simbrix kits come in a cloth bag - this is genius. They're tiny and arrive in multiples of 850. A cotton drawstring bag in which to store them is perfect. It's beautifully made and a really nice size too, so can store partially made models as well as loose Simbrix.
Simbrix come in 17 colours - pretty impressive - plus glow-in-the-dark Simbrix. If you want to make a specific large model you can buy the colours individually too. They slot together really easily, and can be joined on all sides, so your creations can be as big or small as you want. Each Simbrix is identical in shape and size - it's like putting together a jigsaw mosaic.
You can see that the Simbrix fasten with a dovetail joint, so they stay together while you move them around. As only 2 sides are notched, fixing them together differently does give a different end result, and means older or more experienced crafters have a bit of scope for adding extra detail - if you are observant and good enough!
One of the big features of Simbrix is that you can iron them to preserve your creations if you wish. Gently heating the plastic melts it enough to set the models permanently - for those moments when your work of art is far too good to go back in the bag. We haven't made anything so far that we are proud enough of to keep forever, but we've given it a shot!
We have all played with the Simbrix. Some members of my family are more free-form, and others have enjoyed following image designs included in the pack, on the Simbrix website and elsewhere.
Because they're so small, Simbrix are great for building the fine motor skills young children need to hold a pen and write, and they promote creativity and exploration, problem-solving and number skills while working out how to build your model.
Unsurprisingly Minecraft has featured quite heavily.
Here's our 6 year old's Creeper with swords.
And his Dad - cheating!
It's possible to build in 3D with Simbrix - mainly by using 2D models added together. Offsetting the Simbrix rows gives you 3D too while still holding them together, but it's much more time-consuming and the models are fragile (and I'd like to see someone try to iron one!). There is a great mini Christmas Tree on the Simbrix website if you fancy giving it a go, but for now at least we're mainly 2D.
We're very impressed with Simbrix. We haven't yet ironed any models to preserve them, nor have we successfully made a large 3D model, but they offer enough already. It's a perfect toy to have on the table if you have fidgets, as instead of picking up things and moving them to unknown locations, instead they leave behind a random selection of models...
And when the teenagers had a few hours off from revising to watch a movie, this is what they left behind....
Simbrix are available to buy now online on the Simbrix website. Prices are very reasonable - a Cute Crafter Kit is £12.99, Individual colours are £2.49 for 200 Simbrix (£2.99 for 200 Glow-In-The-Dark), and a Geek Kit with loads of Simbrix including glow-in-the-dark is £20.
We were sent our Simbrix for review.