I love Michaels. They are the defacto ‘local craft store’ for my neck of the woods and the place is just great. I’ve previously used the store for picking up all kinds of puppetry-related items. Feathers, boas, felt, goggly eyes; you name it. I’ve probably been down the aisle and bought at least one thing.
Now with a kid it’s a new ballgame. There are so many choices of crafting activities it’s insane. Not the typical “Hey browse the aisle and load up on a pile of stuff you’ll never use.” crafting but all-in-one products that include everything you need to have an entire house full of crafting creativity at your fingertips. The prices vary from the very inexpensive to higher quality (and priced) items. Your craft of choice obviously determines that.
My monster is not even 2 yet so we go for things you can destroy and not get hurt category. The Creatology Castle fit the bill perfectly.
A Castle of our own, Castle Chaos is born!
We brought it home and 15-20 minutes later it was out of the box, all the little pieces of cardboard poked out, and assembly well under way. Now my kid is huge for her age and has what I call “Godzilla Syndrome” in that she likes to be rough with her toys. We keep the valuables high up now, really high. With that in mind I added some gaffers tape on the inside seams to give it a little more structure and support.
This was our first cardboard playset experience and it was a good one. A little slow popping out all of the pieces but she quickly picked them up and threw them in the trash to help expedite setup. Can’t blame her, it’s a freakin’ castle!! 3 feet by 3 feet so it will take up space, be prepared 🙂
Sadly I can’t find the fresh pics of the castle, lost somewhere on a cell phone or in my insane iPhoto folders. So let’s get right to some pics from a few weeks later. Yup, this thing lasted a solid month before starting to take serious damage.
She decorated the castle to her little hearts content. Stickers covered the inside walls and the outside coloring was done with Crayola and their washable line of markers. I just love their products and the knock off washables always seem to take days longer to clean up, so we stick with the kings of coloring!
Final Grade – A
We were constantly shocked at how well this product held up to her monster-like attempts to destroy and overtake the castle. She gave it her all time and time again. For a $19.99 retail price before any coupons of deals I would buy it again without hesitation.
Everything has a drawback. For the Creatology Castle the only downside was the setup time. It’s due to keeping costs down but punching out a million windows and gate openings just made the little monster frustrated as Daddy took waaaayyy too long in her book to get things setup.
She enjoyed easily 30+ hours of fun with the castle while it was in her room. In the end it went to the recycling gods but it was one heck of a ride!