BOWLES – The wooden bowling game by Julie Chrpová


Why you design products for children?

It started when my cousins were born, I was finishing my elementary school and I had to decide what I will study next. One of the choices was Design for children. The other two were Fashion design or Graphic design. I was admitted to all three study programs. I decided for more wider field – Graphic design. I came back to design product for children later at the university. This set of wooden pins was created there – in a Design course at Czech Technical University. And I found myself enjoying playing them, too. When you like to play why not designing the toy for yourself as well!

What was your inspiration for your eco toy Bowles?

My inspiration was in nature – many forest animals. I could not decide which one I should choose. The idea was to create more animals than just one. The prototype is the set of five animal pins, three tree pins and a bowling ball. Pine wood is used for its typical annual rings which create decorative elements on animal’s tummies and faces. No additional painting helps to evolve children’s imagination. Combination of natural materials refers to classic handicraft.

How children respond to your wooden bowling game?

I tested it with my little cousins in the beginning and later with children while the product was exhibited. They held everything very well with their little hands. So it can be used by kids and adults. There was not any problem with ergonomics and they enjoyed the game. The advantage is that the pins do not contain small removable pieces.

Are there other products that you produce specifically for children?

Yes, I also designed soft toys for children. Two toys – an elephant from flower printed fabric and a teddy bear from cream soft fabric, with red scarf. I sewed both by myself. Toys were a present for my little cousins that time.

Meaningful design for kids – what does that mean for you?

The products for kids have to meet a lot of conditions before getting the final product. The product should be simple, functional, easy to grip and it must fulfil requirements of the owner. The measurements have to be derived from the measures of a child.

A few personal questions at the end: What toys did you play with as a child? Did you have a favourite toy?

A likeable interior supplement was the carpet for children “City life” with printed roads.

My favourite toys were also LEGO and LEGO Scala, these were so inspirative objects to play with.

If you look into a crystal ball and predict your future as a designer: what children’s product would you like to design next?

Definitely I would like to design another similar set of the pins – different animals, trees, wood … a new collection.


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