Oh the magic of Grimm’s wooden toys — the colors and shapes, the way they brighten up the nursery, the imaginative play they inspire, the warm and happy feeling your little one gets when playing with them. What’s not to love?
Grimm’s is one of the most well-known names and a true trendsetter in the wooden toys space. To the best of my knowledge, they’re even the ones who first popularized the iconic and unusual wooden rainbow stacking toy.
You’re probably here because you love Grimm’s — or at least you’ve heard good things about them. They’re beautiful and educational. They’re play-friendly an eco-friendly. But which Grimm’s toy is best for a 1-year-old?
Whether you’re shopping for your own baby, or another important baby in your life — finding an age-appropriate toy comes with its challenges.
- Is it safe?
- Will the baby like it?
- Will the baby know how to play with it, or is it too advanced?
To make things easy on you, I’m skipping the fluff, and giving you my top picks! Behold the three best Grimm’s toys for 12-month-old babies!
Let’s jump right in!
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Grimm’s Large 12-Piece Rainbow Stacker
Best for first-time Grimm’s shoppers
? Perfect size for 12-18 months. With the large rainbow stacker at almost 14 inches across its base, you’d think that for a small baby, Grimm’s small rainbow stacker would be a better fit. But actually, it’s quite the opposite. For most babies, between 12 to 18 months is a crucial period for developing gross motor skills, so a larger toy offers even greater benefit.
? Develops gross motor skills. Gross motor skills, also known as movement skills, mean your little one is getting a hang of large-muscle group movements — milestones like sitting and climbing, standing on his or her own for a few seconds, walking around a table while holding on, or even taking their first steps unaided by a parent.
❤️ Limitless play possibilities. Grimm’s large rainbow stacker is a gorgeous and extremely versatile open-ended toy even at the young age of 12-months old. Its chunky wooden rainbow rings are substantial enough for less-than-perfect motor skills to move around and don’t require as much dexterity as a smaller wooden toy. As an open-ended toy, your baby will stack the rainbow rings up, sort them by color, or lay the pieces out into a tunnel shape. Absolutely gorgeous, isn’t it? Here are some creative rainbow stacking ideas to get your creative gears turning!
?⚕️ Mother-approved safety. Since the toy is designed with babies in mind, there’s no need to worry if your baby has a tiny mishap — falling onto the toy or dropping it on their foot. Made from quality European wood, it’s very durable and won’t break or splinter. Plus, the people at Grimm’s know sharp edges are a no-no, and the wooden toy’s edges are sanded completely smooth and baby-safe.
? Grows with your child. If your 12-year old has a difficult time playing with them in the beginning — rest assured that’s completely normal. Every baby is unique and will develop at their own pace. For the time being, just place your rainbow on the shelf or dresser as a beautiful nursery decoration. (Did I mention it comes in pastel colors, too?) When the time is right, your baby will be naturally attracted to the toy’s cascade of color, and give playing with it another try. Within months or even weeks, I’m sure he or she will get the hang of them.
Grimm’s Mosaic Square Blocks
Best open-ended Grimm’s toy for 1-year-olds
✋ Just right for tiny hands. Finding large baby blocks in plastic, silicone, foam, or other materials is no problem — but finding large wooden baby blocks is another story. At 4×4 centimeters (≈1.6 inches), Grimm’s mosaic square blocks are small enough for babies to grasp — and large enough to increase ease of play during early stages of development.
?♂️ Stackability for the long-run. Specially crafted for infants of 6-months to babies of 18-months and beyond, this wooden block set will grow with your child. How it happens for most families is they love their first Grimm’s toy so much, they come back for more — and eventually build up quite a colorful collection of different Grimm’s toys. Luckily, all kinds of Grimm’s toys can be easily played with together — really, it’s a creative toy ecosystem.
? Safety-conscious colors. Sooner or later, you can be sure the blocks will make contact with your baby’s mouth. Rest assured, Grimm’s got you covered. The blocks are hand-painted with water-based non-toxic natural dyes and treated with natural oils — following European-grade safety regulations (EN 71). That means even when it’s block-to-mouth, Grimm’s toys are perfectly harmless to your baby’s health.
It’s worth noting, I’ve heard of other parents buying cheap Grimm’s look-a-likes, only later to find later the blocks’ dye around their baby’s mouth. To keep your baby safe and avoid a horror story like that, I highly recommend going with the original Grimm’s brand — even if it’s a tad more pricey.
Grimm’s Large Conical Stacking Tower
Most educational Grimm’s toy for 1-year-olds
? Top-grade baby stacking rings. Stacking rings are one of the most well-known baby toys — and Grimm’s is the category’s top-of-the-line. Its simple design and bold colors offer an immersive play experience that will develop your baby’s motor skills and hand-eye coordination along the way.
? Bigger is better (for 1-year-olds). At ≈10 inches tall with wide rings, this is another Grimm’s toy made larger for babies to manipulate easier — perfect for practicing gross motor movements like picking up, putting down, positioning, and repositioning. When you’re shopping online, it’s difficult to decipher how big a toy is. For example, Mellisa & Doug’s Baby Stacking Rings are just 8.5 inches tall with much narrower rings. For 1-year olds, bigger is more age-appropriate, and the Grimm’s is exactly the right size.
? Layers of education. Something as simple as rings stacked onto a base may seem like a simple toy, but Grimm’s stacking towers offer all sorts of developmental benefits for babies — from color differentiation, to shape recognition, to eye-hand coordination, to spatial awareness, and even the basics of math. At 12-months old, your baby may struggle a bit getting all the rings onto the tower, but with practice, he or she will learn to order the rings by size and sort the rings by color. Comparing objects based on explicit criteria? That’s a whole new level of cognitive ability!
Extra Baby Toy Shopping Tips
Whether or not you ultimately choose to go with Grimm’s toys for your 1-year old is completely up to you. There’s certainly no shortage of wonderful baby toys out there, but there are also a few things to watch out for. Here are a few helpful shopping tips that’ll help you make the right decision for your little one — Grimm’s or not, wooden or not.
- Colorful for the win! If this is one of the first wooden toys you’re considering for your baby, he or she might be used to the flashy lights and stimulating sounds of electronic toys. By some measure, wooden toys may seem a bit more boring. To help your baby ease into the world of wooden toys, I recommend choosing a bright and colorful model. Albeit lacking the dings and whistles of fast-fashion toys, a wooden toy with bold exciting colors will help make the transition easier.
- Play along. Another way to help your baby warm up to wooden blocks and toys is to join in the fun. By demonstrating how to stack blocks up or sort different colors and shapes — your child will learn the fundamentals of open-ended play through imitation with their favorite person in the world!
- Avoid small pieces. As goes for any baby toy — small pieces spell trouble. A good rule of thumb is “Can my baby fit that entire toy into his or her mouth?” If so, it’s best to avoid the toy altogether and opt for a toy with chunky parts that pose no danger. Parental supervision is always recommended for young babies, but especially with wooden toys’ loose parts, please be extra careful to choose one that’s age-appropriate.
- Pay a little extra for peace of mind. Wood in general has never been considered an expensive material, but not all wooden toys are created equal. Grimm’s is a brand with decades of experience developing and manufacturing high-quality wooden toys — everything from sourcing and shaping to treating and painting. The price difference between a Grimm’s and a look-a-like can be something like $10 to $30, but the peace of mind knowing you’re bringing home a baby-safe toy is priceless.
Over to you!
Like lamb chops, my praise for Grimm’s toys is a song that doesn’t end! (Yes, it goes on and on, my friends.) I hope you’ve found a toy for your 12-month old — something that even at 12-years-old, he or she will remember fondly.
After all is said and done, I’d love to hear how your toy shopping journey ends — and I hope it’s a happy ending! Let me know in the comments below!