This is why Toys Make the Best Gifting Option!

Giving a gift to someone is always a confusing & risky task; it’s hard to understand what the person may or may not like. It can be disappointing if they don’t like the gift. So why not gift something they all like?  Here are some reasons why toys make an awesome gift –

1. They’re beautiful

Everybody will agree that toys are beautiful. These cute little toys are the pleasure for eyes and children adore them. Children register and remember the bright colours and they love to play with the toys. Especially the handmade toys have a great artistic value because the makers put their years of experience in them.

Wooden Parrot toy by Desi Toys
Wooden Parrot toy by Desi Toys

2. Emotional attachment

Not just for the playtime, children gradually get connected to the toys and form a bond. Toys are an inseparable part of the childhood and they help create wonderful memories with children for the years to come.

 3. They double up as souvenirs / memorabilia

Some toys are so beautifully crafted that even though they’re not useful, it still makes sense gifting them. That’s because they look pretty as an artifact on a side-table, or something to brighten up your coffee table. Traditional toys vary according to the region, so they can be carried back as a souvenir from the trip. E.g. – Kathputli from Rajasthan, Ganjifa from Sawantwadi etc.

Kathputli from Rajasthan Image credits 3.bp.blogspot.com
Kathputli from Rajasthan Image credits 3.bp.blogspot.com

4.They bring back memories

All the old toys are hard to forget.  We have so many memories attached to them that in one glance we remember so many happy stories, the old days, quarrels with the siblings and friends, the old playtime with parents, and much more. So not just the kids, but handmade toys can be gifted to anyone irrespective of their age.

 5. They are educational

The toys help in developing children’s physical and mental skill sets. They learn fine motor skills, mathematical ability, colour and shape recognition, etc. Toys help kids develop their creative side & sharing.

Pallanguzi by Desi Toys
Pallanguzi by Desi Toys

 6. Help preserve the tradition

When you are gifting a traditional toy to someone, it is not just an object, but the years of glorious culture, tradition, and the fine art of toy-making. All the traditional toys have some story / moral attached to them and thus, we help it to carry forward when we gift a toy.

At Desi Toys, we want everyone to experience the sheer joy of gifting a traditional toy. To know more and check the complete range, visit www.desitoys.in

 

Shatranj – India’s contribution to the world of Chess

India in her golden years has always been very progressive when it came to art, music, and culture. The art forms, games, music used to be affiliated towards each other as well as various walks of life. This also included the warfare and war techniques. And the most glorious proof of it is Shatranj, a game that later gave birth to Chess.

Shatranj originated in India in the 6th century during the Gupta Empire. It was known as Chaturanga, a Sanskrit term that translates to Four Divisions of the military during those ages, namely – Infantry, cavalry, chariots, and elephants. In modern chess, these very forms are represented by the names of pawn, knight, bishop, and rook!

Wooden Chess Board By Desi Toys
Wooden Chess Board By Desi Toys

Chaturang then became a part of Persian royalties and courtly education. It was introduced to them by Indians. The name gradually changed to shatranj because of the absence of ‘ch’ and ‘ng’ sounds in Arabic languages. They later modified and developed the rules according to their war and political techniques. While attacking the king of the rival team, the player started calling out ‘Shah’ – that means King in Persian. And if the King could not escape from the attack (move) they would say ‘Shah Matt!’ and these words remained even though the game travelled to the other parts of the world. Remember Checkmate?

It is amazing to understand how ancient Indian games beautifully incorporates knowledge and techniques in one. Playing chess increases brain growth, exercises both sides of the brain, increases problem-solving technique and so on. A study from The New England Journal of Medicine found that people aged 75+ that engage in brain-games like chess are less prone to develop dementia than their non-game playing counterparts.

Maharaja Satranj by Desi Toys
Maharaja Satranj by Desi Toys

We have a treasure in the form of board games like Shatranj that we should preserve and promote in a positive way. At Desi Toys, we have designed an ornate Maharaja Shatranj for the purpose of conserving our golden tradition.

The Role Mythology plays in Upbringing of Children

If we ask you the name of the first TV show you watched, you might not remember it, but you will remember the stories our parents told us when we were kids. Be it Krishna – Kans, or a story of a thirsty crow. All of us must be recollecting those simpler times when afternoons after school or the bedtime was never complete without the stories told by grandparents or mother to entertain and engage us.

As kids, those stories used to take us to another world and nurtured our imagination and unknowingly, our morals too. Interestingly, most of those were from the traditional Indian mythology, along with the made-up stories by the parents.

Among the various beautiful things that India is blessed with, mythological scripts are one of the important factors that set India apart from other countries of the world. We know how mythology has a major impact on Indian arts, culture, festivals, games, and toys. Along with that, it has been a great inspiration to the folklore and Indian oral tradition of story-telling.

Kaliyamardan - Indian Mythology. Image credits- 100varta.wordpress.com
Kaliyamardan – Indian Mythology. Image credits- 100varta.wordpress.com

Indian mythology catches the children’s attention because of its gripping stories, fascinating scenarios, heroic characters, and the important life-lessons.  Mythological stories teach kids the bravery of Arjun, dedication & concentration of Eklavya, Sharpness of Krishna, strength and loyalty of Hanuman, and devotion of Bhakta Pralhad, generosity of Karna and so on. Indian mythology is so interesting and varied that every character imparts some or the other virtue and life lesson.

Storytelling has been an important part of parenting because it increases the conversation between kids and parents, it allows kids to ask questions, increases the curiosity of the child, and it makes them aware of the glorious past and traditions. All of these while subtly imbibing the values and morals among the kids.

Desi Toys has always believed in this rich tradition of India and thrives to uphold it through our exclusive Indian toys and board games, all made in India. You can check our complete range here. – Desi Toys 

Traditional Indian Toys – A Treasure to preserve

As we are heading towards a completely digital world, we are missing on a lot of exciting things and experiences which we used to enjoy before the advent of a battery-operated world. One of them is our pure desi happiness of playing with desi toys – The cute little simple toys and games which used to make our boring afternoons fun as well as enriching.

Indian culture emphasizes a lot on symbolism. Behind every fable & mythological stories, there lies a hidden message and moral lessons. Same goes with many Indian games and toys. Indian toys find their roots way to the Indus valley civilization when raw material as simple as twigs, cotton, mud, leaves were used to create them.

The motive behind traditional Indian toys was not only entertaining the kids, but also to educate them and develop certain skill sets. It developed their minds and also had a lot of life lessons along with them.  Those toys took inspiration from nature, like this –

Desi Toys Do Chidiya
Desi Toys Do Chidiya

and revolved around the simple joys of life. These toys also subtly imparted many life lessons while playing, e.g. the game of snakes and ladders says that while we have many ladders to go up in our life, there are many snakes (distractions / problems) that can easily drag us down; the game of Shatranj improves our concentration and so on.

There are a wide range of traditional toys that were made in India including whistles, carts, dolls (Thanjavur Dolls are said to be the inspiration for Bobble heads). Many collectible dolls were made taking inspiration from the mythological characters. The dolls were used to tell stories (kathputlis).

Image credits - caravanparks.com
Image credits – caravanparks.com

Another great asset of Indian toys is the way they are made – using all the natural material. Wood was the basics of all the Indian toys and the colours used were organic; usually made from the vegetable dyes. Because of the natural material used, these toys were safe for toddlers even if they lick or chew them. Unlike the mechanized toys which have intricate parts to them, these toys are totally safe.

It is very important for today’s kids to experience the unadulterated joy of the desi playtime and it’s responsibility of the grown-ups to offer this to the kids. At Desi Toys, we strive to do the same.