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lapousmor Sophie Z'Ours
Sarthe, France
Posts: 2,770

Hi everybody!

Today I received my order from Christie Bears. I ordered only plastic joints because I aimed to make bears for young children. Before placing any order I compared prices from a few retailers and this one was the only one which had all items available and together offering a fair price. So this is why I chose them. It was not my first order there.

Anyway, back to the plastic joints I bought. I just opened the packet and my eyes spotted a warning on all item bags saying that these plastic joints were not certified safety joints and so were not suitable for young children under 14!!!!

My concern is I never even think about doubting a single minute plastic joints could not be suitable for very young children.

So suddenly I feel very stupid and wonder if I can decently use them to make toys now.
They look quite strong joints. I never remember I ever broke a white plastic joint. and I am fairly sure I already use similar plastic joint that were not certified as I cannot recall seeing CE on them...

In another hand I already broke a few Glorex safety joints while installing them (a bad move when pulling the washer) so had to change them! now I put all my strength in pulling.

I would be happy to get your view points about it.
Should I use them as initially planned and just tell my customers to be careful as they are not certified?

Beary hugs,

Dawn J Hugs Unlimited
West Yorkshire
Posts: 310

Hi Sophie

I have been making bears for almost 25 years. When I started I made bears for children. Then the toy regulations got much stricter and I was unable to continue. I know it is very harsh but if you use those joints in a bear and do not state that it is unsuitable for children under 14 years old then you are breaking the law. The only other alternative is to have bears tested and it costs a fortune and they do all sorts of unimaginable things with them! If you are confident that your bears are safe for children then you must put a 'CE' label on them along with your address.

To cover yourself my advice would be to put the not suitable for under 14 years warning on every bear. It is then up to the buyer whether they want to go ahead or not. I get a lot of people who want to buy bears for new babies and are quite happy that the bear will be kept as a keepsake away from the baby. However, I always tell them that the bears are not child safe, and make sure they are labelled as such.

It is a shame that the regulations have gone so far the other way, I know that a lot of 'craft' toy makers went out of business because they could not afford the testing prices.

This information is for the UK, but I would guess that it applies to the EC countries as well.

There is another company in the UK that sells plastic joints and they do say on their website that they are suitable for children:

I hope this helps


lovenshire Love and Cuddle Nursery
Posts: 945

All plastic joints are not the same...I got some one time that I know would not be safe for children even though they did not state such. I think you can still find them that are safe and strong.  I would not use those because of the responsibility if a child was injured.

EvaJ EJ's Crafts
Fort Mohave, Arizona
Posts: 829

All the new laws are getting in the way of making and selling bears and other child safe toys by the private maker.  I have been making child safe bears for 30 years and have always used the plastic joints.  There are different types of these joints and I use only the heavy duty ones.  They will not come apart once they are together but what the law is trying to have tested is the materials the joints are made of.  They could be toxic.  Right now in the USA, the bill to have everything tested has been held back for a year.  Once the bill becomes a law, I will be out of business.  It is a sad state of affairs that the governments want to regulate every thing we do any more.

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