Natural wood paint for baby carriers
Both more respectful of the environment, with a longer and healthier lifespan, the wooden toy is making a comeback. It pleases also good for children and parents. But which paint to choose for a wooden toy like balance bike, prams and walkers, wooden baby walker or wooden push walker? What are the different types of finish possible? What are the pitfalls to avoid? We give you some advice here.
- Bare wooden toy
In this first case, the toy is not protected by any paint or varnish. The wood is bare, therefore perfectly visible. With a solid wood toy, you can see the grain of the wood, its roughness and its flaws. It has shapes, textures, colors and smells that are pleasant to look at, touch and smell. However, it may darken over time. Indeed, natural wood is a living material. It will deteriorate with permanent variations in humidity, temperature and light. The repeated handling of the child, who may have dirty hands, will also damage it. To avoid this, and to increase its lifespan, it is, therefore, preferable to protect it with a coating.
Chipboard objects are systematically protected with an opaque finish. It is a material formed from crushed wood fibres and glued together with resins of the urea-formaldehyde type. It cannot remain visible because it is not aesthetic. Because babies also tend to put everything they touch in their mouths. It must therefore be masked with a small brush stroke.
- Varnished wooden toy
In this second case, the toy is protected with a transparent varnish. It is a liquid preparation based on binders (natural or synthetic) and solvents. It is unpigmented, transparent. There are many types, gloss, matt, satin. After application, the varnish solidifies and forms a protective layer on the surface of the wood to protect it from atmospheric and mechanical attacks.
With a solid wood toy, the transparent varnish offers the possibility of seeing the grain of the wood, its roughness and its defects. With those in chipboard, the crushed fibres are also visible. As before, it is not very pretty. It will have to be hidden again with opaque paints.
At Kinderfeets, all of our solid beech parts that make up our carrier, rocker and balance bike toys (Cf. Our 5 in 1 motorcycle toy) are protected with a transparent varnish. Our baby games are made with quality materials. We want it to show!
- Stained varnished wooden toy
In this third case, the toy is protected with a tinted varnish. It is a varnish containing a coloring material (universal dye, powder pigments) in small quantities. As before, the wood remains visible but it can take any color other than the one it naturally has. There are also colored tints that allow a beech toy to be given, for example, the color of a toy in other species: oak, pine, chestnut. The transparent nature of the tinted varnish again makes it necessary to use good quality wood, natural or multi-ply, but never chipboard.
On our carriers, balance bikes and seesaws, the main part is protected by a tinted varnish. The colors red, blue, grey and yellow are currently available. The grain and the quality of the wood are visible. The colour can be more decorative and more playful to further stimulate the imagination of babies. It is also for the parents, the opportunity to offer a design toy, with beautiful colours to the children. These are toys that will harmonize perfectly with the decoration.
- Painted wooden toy
In the latter case, the toy is protected with paint. It is a more or less viscous and opaque liquid preparation. It is based on binders and solvents in which a coloured and finely ground powder has been added. The paint completely hides the wood. A manufacturer who uses poor quality wood (usually chipboard) will be better off using opaque paint.
Conversely, those who use quality wood (natural beech, for example) will want to highlight their work. He won't hide it. As before, the painting will make it possible to offer a more playful aspect and to improve the decoration of the product. This little brushstroke that brings colors will also further stimulate the imagination of the child. The colors available are very numerous. They allow a lot of fantasy. At this date, we are not using any opaque paint. And we have no intention of doing so.
The type of paint used is quite important to recognize when buying a toy (even if this is only possible in stores). It allows you to quickly assess the quality of the underlying wood. Those with varnish and tinted varnish will be preferred because they allow seeing the quality of the materials. The use of opaque paint can mean less good quality.
In addition, it is useless to praise the qualities of the wood if the applied paints are dangerous for health. Whatever the form, varnish or paint, compliance with of the games must be respected. Note that offering an ethical wooden toy made in Canada provides an excellent guarantee in terms of the baby's health and the environment.
In final advice, on old and vintage objects. A little vigilance must be done because they may contain lead, in doses that are currently prohibited. Babies who play with them are likely to put them in their mouths.