A year or so ago both my children (boy and girl aged 7 and 3) became really obsessed with playing with their toy kitchen. They especially liked to pretend that they were running a restaurant or take away shop. Wanting to add to their fun I bought this Casdon set for £7 in a closing down sale. Currently it sells on Amazon for around £11 and the RRP is £12.
Once you have extricated the toy from the box you can have a good look at the replica kettle and toaster for about ten seconds before they have been snatched out of your hands. Unlike some other toy kettles and toasters the emphasis here is on realism, right down to the fake on/off button on the kettle (which really moves) and the replica water gauge which of course bears no relation to the level of liquid in the kettle. The kettle, despite its precarious looking handle is actually surprisingly sturdy and it has put up with being flung around the garden all summer - and then flung back into the playhouse/shed at the end of the day. Its one weakness has to be its tiny little lid which is around four centimetres across. We lost it within a week of opening the box, which is pretty good going for this household, but a little disappointing. In addition the lid was a bit tricky for my youngest child to put on and take off as he had to negotiate the handle over the top of the hole each time. The lid doesn't click on either, it just rests on the top so a vigorous swing can mean it flies across the room. I suspect this is when we lost ours.
The toaster is similarly realistic and it comes with two slices of rather unappetizing plastic toast. Even better it comes with a little mechanism which pops the toast up into the air which caused my children a great deal of excitement as they waited and watched the toaster. However to do it you need to push down hard on a lever and then turn a slippery, hard to grasp dial. I struggled with it and neither of my children are able to do it, so I am regularly called to make the toast pop. For a toy that I was hoping would buy me a bit of piece and quiet this is very disappointing, but to be fair the warning does say that an adult should supervise. The toast does go satisfactorily high though and there is a good solid pop at the same time.
The recommended age for this toy is 36 months to four years which seems rather limited. Certainly at 7 my daughter still happily plays with this toy and my son shows no sign of becoming bored with it. My children have mentioned that they would love the kettle to make a noise or do an action too but I am actually quite glad that it does not. No doubt I would have to be called into action to make it work, or change the batteries, or remove it from them once it started driving me mad!
I'm not sure how much longer this toy with last. Repeated bashings have meant that both the toaster and the kettle are looking really rather battered and scratched, although sadly the mechanism on the toaster STILL works and hasn't become any looser or easier to do. It's a nice inexpensive addition to a toy kitchen and I have no regrets about buying it. I do however wish I had spent less of my life pretending to eat lots of slices of plastic toast under the threat of a tantrum.
A fun role play breakfast set, comprising of a chrome effect mechanical pop-up toy toaster with matching toy kettle a detachable lid and realistic water level and an on/off switch.