Totem Topples


Toys are an important part of children’s physical, mental, social and emotional development across different cultures and age groups. They stimulate imagination and creativity, support learning and education, and provide opportunities for play and fun. Toys are one of the worst offenders when it comes to landfill and take a large amount of energy in their creation. Toy packaging also becomes obsolete and discarded very quickly. Just ‘using less’ and recycling is not enough. We need to completely rethink the manufacture and life cycle of products and their components, and design them in a way that eliminates waste.


  • Apply circular design thinking – ‘designing out waste’ – to a consumer toy and its packaging.
  • A toy that could be kept to grow with the child and family.
  • The toy and its packaging should be attractive to them as well as safe to use and handle.
  • A toy and associated packaging made from a repurposed waste stream
  • A toy that considers reuse, repair and retention
  • A way of repurposing packaging to become part of the toy itself
  • A toy and packaging that can be easily returned to the product manufacturer for remanufacture